Academics

Requirements

Photo courtesy of Melanie Glass.

Photo courtesy of Melanie Glass.

  • 2 semesters Introductory Biology (BI 107/108)
  • Ecology (BI 303) OR Biology of Global Change (BI 306)
  • 2 semesters college Spanish (or equivalent)
  • Ability to work outdoors in a field research environment

If you are a non-BU student and have questions about prerequisite equivalents, please email cecb@bu.edu.

Courses

The program consists of four 4-credit Tropical Ecology courses taught in block format (in English), plus a 2-credit Spanish and Ecuadorian Culture class:

CAS BI/GE 438/638 Tropical Montane Ecology

Ecology of the montane zone of Ecuador, including grasslands, sub-alpine, and alpine shrub ecosystems. This course examines the interrelationships among the flora and fauna of montane ecosystems, including how these environments are being exploited for natural resources and agriculture. The course includes lectures presented during a two week period, interspersed with several one to two-day field trips to surrounding mountains. Individual and group projects are conducted on field trips. Graduate credit may be awarded for conducting additional research.

CAS BI/GE 440/640 Tropical Coastal Ecology

Ecology of the Coastal zone of Ecuador, including a survey of shallow marine and terrestrial ecosystems. this course examines the ecology of tropical dry forests, mangrove swamps, reefs, rocky and sandy shorelines, and agroecosytems. this course includes lectures presented during a two week period in Quito, followed by two weeks of intensive field studies along the coast of Ecuador, and a one week trip to the Galapagos Islands. Field study includes sampling and observations, and individual and group projects. Graduate credit may be awarded to full-time graduate students by conducting additional research.

CAS BI/GE 439/639 Tropical Rainforest Ecology

Ecology of the Ecuadorian rainforest, including the principles applied to the function of the tropical rainforest, using the Amazon basin as an example. This course examines rainforest habitats, biodiversity, conservation, specialization, and co-evolution of rainforest species. the course includes lectures presented during a two week period in Quito, followed by four weeks of intensive study in the Ecuadorian rainforest. Time in the field is dedicated primarily to individual and group research projects. Graduate credit may be awarded for conducting additional research.

CAS BI/GE 441/641 Studies in Tropical Ecology

Capstone course in Tropical Ecology immediately following the series of three field-based courses. This course focuses on evaluation and statistical analysis of previous data collected in the field, extensive library research, and preparation of written and oral reports.

CAS QU 300 Intensive Spanish

A two-credit Spanish course focused on improving students ability to communicate through mastery of spoken and written Spanish as well as listening and reading comprehension.