Cape Town, South Africa

Service Learning

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Information for term Service Learning

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

May 1, 2019

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Tentative Dates: Jul 12 – Nov 10, 2019 (17 weeks)*
  • Credit: 16 semester hours / 24 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA

Application Deadline

October 1, 2019

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Tentative Dates: Jan 31 – Jun 1, 2020 (17 weeks)*
  • Credit: 16 semester hours / 24 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA


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Getting involved isn’t an extra – it’s what your time in Cape Town is all about. Apply the principles of leadership-in-service as you join a Cape Town community organization, school, or nongovernmental organization to make a positive impact. Whether you work with HIV-positive children or organize math workshops, you’ll learn the challenges of community service and contribute to positive social change.

Unique Experiences

  • Explore iconic Cape Town

    sites like Table Mountain (one of the seven wonders of nature) and Robben Island where Nelson Mandela was jailed for 18 years.

  • Get new insights

    to the region’s economic, social, and political challenges from experts.

  • Compliment

    your learning with a capstone project that unifies your engagement, research, and coursework.

  • official languages

  • universities

  • UNESCO World Heritage Sites


Location & Culture

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With a glorious climate and natural icons like Table Mountain and stunning beaches, it is no wonder that Cape Town is Africa’s number-one tourist destination. Day and night, this multicultural city offers much to do: water sports, mountaineering, nightclubs, and restaurants. As a microcosm of many African countries in transition, Cape Town illuminates the issues of joining the global economy while grappling with vast socioeconomic inequalities born from its colonial and apartheid past.

The Culture


  • Discuss the region’s economic, social, and political challenges with experts.
  • Enjoy downtime with local fans at a cricket or rugby match.
  • Get a taste of the city’s food scene with a gourmet night out.
  • See culture come to life with theater, music, and dance productions.
  • Visit rural cooperatives to see the challenges facing farmers.
  • Explore the South African Museum, the oldest museum in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Study the languages of Afrikaans or isiXhosa.


Peer-to-peer connections. Resident Assistants (RAs) are UCT students, recruited and trained by CIEE, to help with cultural excursions, live with CIEE students in their apartments, and introduce CIEE students to the Cape Town community.

Daily Life

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    Shared Apartment: Students share apartments above the Global Institute with other CIEE participants and Resident Assistants (RAs). There is a combination of both single and double rooms within the apartments. These are allocated randomly. Students share kitchen and other facilities with five to 10 students. All residents of the apartments share basic cleaning duties. 

    Homestay: A limited number of homestay opportunities are available. Living with a South African family allows students to maximize cultural immersion. Families live throughout the Cape Town area, and students take public transportation to and from the Global Institute.


    Breakfast and dinner are provided on weekdays. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are provided on weekends. Students are responsible for lunch on weekdays.

    Shared Apartments:
    Students are responsible for all meals. They can prepare their own meals at their apartment, or eat at the many restaurants on the Global Institute block. 

Cape Town, South Africa

Where You'll Study

  • A

    CIEE Global Institute

    Cape Town

  • B

    Getting Around

    Students take a free university shuttle to get from housing to UCT

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Program Details

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What you need to know

The program details

This program allows students to fulfill educational and personal goals and build relationships in the communities where learning takes place. Supported by coursework and skill-building, students learn about community issues while developing a better understanding about their own positionality and  techniques to engage with marginalized communities in an ethical and responsible manner. Reflection is built in to help students fully integrate all they are learning.  

Academic work includes exploring socioeconomic issues that impact impoverished communities via case studies, learning about quantitative and qualitative inquiry, data collection and analysis, and studying a new language. Students also participate in a community project and complete a service-learning capstone project.

Classes are held at the Global Institute and taught by CIEE-appointed faculty.


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    Students take classes only with other CIEE students, and consult with faculty project advisors on their individual capstone projects.


    The U.S. grading scale of A-F is used. Students are graded on the basis of attendance, class participation, homework, project work, presentations, and mid-term and final examinations. Learning outcomes assessment is continuous through personal reflection, evaluation feedback, self-assessment, and requirements as set out in course syllabi.



    Students need to have a GPA of at least 2.5.


    Volunteer or independent research experience


Program Credit

  • Total credit, semester: 16 semester/24 quarter credits
  • Credit for the Independent Research and Capstone Project course: 4 semester/6 quarter credits
  • Credit for other courses: 3 semester/4.5 quarter credits

CIEE students take five courses:

  • 4 required CIEE core courses
  • 1 introductory language course in Afrikaans or isiXhosa, as appropriate for the student’s service community

Note: This course listing is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a contract between CIEE and any applicant, student, institution, or other party. The courses, as described, may be subject to change as a result of ongoing curricular revisions, assignment of lecturers and teaching staff, and program development. Courses may be canceled due to insufficient enrollment.

Spring 2019 Courses

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Language training provides an entry into the communities where service takes place. Students choose one beginner-level language, isiXhosa or Afrikaans, depending on the most applicable language used in their service placement organization.

Fall 2019 Courses

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Language training provides an entry into the communities where service takes place. Students choose one beginner-level language, isiXhosa or Afrikaans, depending on the most applicable language used in their service placement organization.


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Scholarships & Grants

CIEE offers more than $8 million in scholarships and grants annually to help students like you make your study abroad dream a reality.

Students who apply to this program are eligible for the following scholarships and grants:

  • Ping Scholarships for Academic Excellence
  • Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grants
  • Stohl International Undergraduate Research Scholarships
  • CIEE Gilman Go Global Grant

To be considered, submit the CIEE Scholarships & Grants application within your CIEE program application. Learn more at the Scholarships & Grants section of our website.

See more scholarship info

Dates, Deadlines & Fees

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Dates, Deadlines & Fees

You get more for every dollar when you study abroad with CIEE, because our high-quality programs include everything from excursions to insurance. There are no hidden charges, and no disappointing surprises when you arrive.


  • Tuition
  • Housing
  • Advising before you depart to set goals and answer questions
  • Optional on-site airport meet-and-greet
  • Orientation – an introduction to South African culture, your academic program, the City, and practical information about living in Cape Town
  • Full-time program leadership and support in Cape Town
  • Field trips and cultural activities
  • Overnight excursions
  • Insurance and other travel benefits with CIEE iNext
  • 24/7 emergency on-site support

No Hidden Fees


Application Due

Start Date

End Date

Fees & Housing

Fall 2019 17 weeks May 1, 2019 Jul 12, 2019* Nov 10, 2019*
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Program Fees

CIEE offers the most student support of any provider in its program fee, including an airport greeting, full-time leadership and support, orientation, cultural activities, local excursions, pre-departure advising, and CIEE iNext travel insurance with benefits.

Participation Confirmation = $300 *

Educational Costs = $14,274 **

Housing = $4,565

Insurance = $167

Visa Fees = $144

Total Fees = $19,450

Estimated Costs

Students are responsible and manage costs related to travel, meals, books, and personal expenses. Below are estimates for consideration.

Meals not included in program fee = $1,650

International Airfare = $1,100

Local Transportation = $350

Books & Supplies = $250

Potential travel to consulate for visa = $500

Personal expenses = $2,000

Total Estimated Costs = $5,850

Financial Aid

CIEE offers the most grants and scholarships of any study abroad organization, including $5 million/year in travel grants, merit-based scholarships, MSI grants, Gilman matching grants, and Pell matching grants.

See Scholarships

This breakdown has been prepared from the program budget for the purpose of calculating eligibility for financial aid. During the course of program operations, actual figures may vary. It should not, therefore, be used as a basis for calculation of refunds. CIEE reserves the right to adjust fees at any time.

Students required to study on CIEE programs through a School of Record will be charged a $500 administrative fee in addition to the Program Fees listed.

* non-refundable

** direct cost of education charged uniformly to all students

round-trip based on U.S. East Coast departure

Spring 2020 17 weeks Oct 1, 2019 Jan 31, 2020* Jun 1, 2020*

*Dates for this program are provided as tentative dates. Please consult with your study abroad advisor to confirm dates before purchasing your flights.

To help you budget, keep in mind that students are responsible for the cost of international airfare, local transportation, books and supplies, visas, and personal expenses. In addition, ask your college or university study abroad advisor if your school charges additional fees for study abroad.

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  • 1

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  • 2

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  • 3

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    Send us an email if you still have questions or need information about applying to this program.