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.
CIEE Study Center Syllabi
To view the most recent syllabi for courses taught by CIEE at our Study Centers, visit our syllabi site.
Required CIEE Courses
ECOL 3001 TKKU
The Human Perspective on Development and the Environment
This course brings students in contact with people who are directly engaged in socio-political movements in Thailand. It shows how a broad range of development and environmental issues affect local communities, highlighting the relation of these issues to greater development schemes of neighboring countries. Participants study the work of people directly involved, such as grassroots social movement leaders on the community level and broad-based coalitions; representatives from nongovernmental and governmental organizations; farmers’ groups and cooperatives; scholars and social critics; journalists; political advocates and human rights activists; and people living with HIV/AIDS. Since 2007, there has been a strong focus on economic, social, and cultural rights. Given the political turmoil over the past number of years in Thailand, the program has paid more attention to civil and political rights and briefly examined the political situation.
The issues studied are organized into units, with community stays at the core. Units have included agriculture, urban land rights, power and regional development schemes, forest and land issues, mining, industry, water resource management, and community and human rights. The combined study of globalization on a macro-level and communities on a micro-level helps students better understand major global trends and the impact of these trends on local communities, culture, and life. Students are challenged to assess the effectiveness of environmental and development projects; understand the far-reaching implications such projects may have on communities and local ecosystems; and investigate the relationship between international development policies, the role of developed countries, and how our standard of living or lifestyles may be implicated. Participants realize that Thailand’s problems have a global impact and correspondingly, everyone may have responsibility for resolving them.
Issues examined have included integrated and natural farming practices, deforestation and community forestry, national resource management, environmental pollution, community health, economic, social, and cultural rights, civil and political rights, HIV/AIDS, village community empowerment, slums, social activism, NGOs, alternative education, consumerism and garbage, and mining.
There are eight components to each unit of the core course:
1. Readings—For each unit, students typically receive readings that provide a variety of perspectives on the larger global and academic context of each issue, with another section focusing on the regional and local context.
2. Classroom Instruction— provides students a broad outline of issues concerning the environment and development and the finer details of particular case studies.
3. Reading Discussions—These discussions help students bridge the information they receive from the lecture and global readings with the Thai and local context in preparation for the briefing.
4. Research and Vision Consultations—These consultations allow for unit facilitators to talk with instructors about how to work with the group in coming up with a research topic, questions, and vision of how to push the group to work together and create an engaging unit output.
5. Briefing—The briefing occurs before the student group leaves for the unit trip and is facilitated by unit facilitators. Generally, unit facilitators will introduce their visions for the unit output and plan how the group will obtain information on the trip in order to create the unit output. Unit facilitators will discuss plans to use various research tools and how to organize exchanges. Staff will also go over the logistics of the homestays and exchanges.
6. . Community Visits—Community Visits are in many ways the core of the course, providing the main venues for gathering information about local issues in the program. Using a variety of research tools, students will gather information about the issues studied during the unit with villagers and community organizations, NGOs, companies, and governmental organizations. Every community visit needs to have a segment dedicated to “collaborative community consultation” with villagers and NGOs that helps inform potential joint projects for the final course.
7. Unit Production Work Day—The Unit Production Work Day is a time for unit facilitators to organize their peers in the creation of unit outputs that are in line with the vision for the unit.
8. The Workshop—The Workshop is a place where students 1) present their unit outputs, 2) discuss the issues involved with the group process that might have contributed to or hindered the group in creating an engaging unit output and along with how the group can improve group process 3) talk about larger implication of what you have learned on the unit and how it can be beneficial for people in the area, in Thailand, and you as a global citizen.
ECOL 3003 TKKU
Directed Research/Field Study Practicum
This course supplements and runs in conjunction with The Human Perspective on Development and the Environment. Throughout semester, the student group engages in a collaborative consultation with communities and networks visited about possible final projects. Usually, students work in groups on a series of projects resulting from the community consultations. Each group writes up a research proposal that requires approval from a board made up of staff, university lecturers, and student representatives.
Each proposal has to have clearly defined goals and methodology, timetable for completion, a plan for division of labor, expected outcomes, and a target group. The group meets once throughout project time to discuss methodological and other problems encountered. In the final week of the program, each group publicly presents the outcome of the project and turns in a 20- to 25-page paper or the equivalent. Contact hours: 96. Recommended credit: 3 semester / 4.5 quarter hours.
SOCI 3001 TKKU
Social Research Methods
The core course, “The Human Perspective on Development and the Environment,” as well as “Directed Field Study/Practicum,” requires students, individually and as a group, to develop a set of skills by which they can engage themselves with the many communities they visit and with whom they may forge a partnership in various research projects. The Social Research Methods course helps students do just that. Course lecture cover the theories of research and introduces students to a range of research tools. Working in small groups, students will prepare various tools, working in small groups, use them during two field study visits, and then present their findings. The ability of students to conceptualize “community” and “community needs” within a research framework, to make sense of the primary and secondary information they receive, and to find effective ways to lay out realistic research topic, questions, objectives, tools and implement them, are all key to an overall success of this program.
Required CIEE Language Courses
THAI 1001 TKKU
Beginning Thai I
This course introduces students to the basics of the Thai language through conversation, reading, and writing. Within the context of everyday life experiences, students practice dialogues, learn the basic Thai writing system in order to facilitate pronunciation and language acquisition, and engage in interactive homework assignments. When possible, teachers use local communities as the medium for language practice. Contact hours: 65. Recommended credit: 3 semester / 4.5 quarter hours.
THAI 2001 TKKU
Intermediate Thai I
This course is offered for students who can carry on simple conversations in various circumstances with fairly accurate pronunciation, and who can demonstrate a clear understanding of the Thai writing system. The focus is on enhancing vocabulary and grammatical knowledge to increase students’ communicative competence in speaking, reading, and writing Thai. Course materials are taken from current literature sources and articles on focus issues, newspapers, audio, video clips, and movies. Contact hours: 55. Recommended credit: 3 semester / 4.5 quarter hours.
THAI 3001 TKKU
Advanced Topics in Thai Language
This course is offered for students who can demonstrate a diverse use of vocabulary, solid understanding of grammar patterns, and clear pronunciation. Students are expected to advance in verbal and written communication on both casual and academic levels, and be able to discuss with people who are affected by various social and environmental issues in Thailand. Course materials are taken from current literature sources and articles on focus issues, newspapers, audio, video clips, and movies. Contact hours: 55. Recommended credit: 3 semester / 4.5 quarter hours.