summer session I

Costa Rica

Coffee and Chocolate: A Taste of Sustainability


This academically rigorous program follows a six-day/week schedule. The interdisciplinary curriculum is designed to help students actively discover and understand the complexities of environmental, social, and economic issues in Costa Rica.

Major academic themes include:

  • Coffee and cacao ecology
  • Social and economic impacts of coffee and cacao crops
  • Organic and mono-crop farming methods
  • Land-use strategies
  • Social justice issues surrounding sustainable food systems


On the Coffee and Chocolate: A Taste of Sustainability program, you will take one 4-credit course. This course is participatory in nature and is designed to foster inquiry and active learning combining lectures, field exercises, assignments, and tests. This course is taught in English.

Click on the course to view a description and download the syllabus

SFS 3141 Coffee, Chocolate, and Sustainable Development 4 credits

Core Skills

You will gain practical skills in the field such as: agricultural impacts assessment, research design and implementation, water quality testing, songbird mist-netting, quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis, approaches to carbon sequestration, research presentation, and Spanish language skills.

Field Sites

You will visit different ecosystems and communities, which may coffee farms, cacao plantations, other agroecosystems and farms, agrotourism businesses, and the forests and rainforest ecosystems around agricultural areas.

Spend your summer with SFS!

Get more out of your SFS experience when you take back-to-back summer sessions. More time to explore the ecosystems and communities, more time to learn about complex environmental issues, and more time to build practical skills. Each summer session focuses on a different topic, and you’ll have time to travel independently between sessions.

Costa Rica Session II: Fundamentals of Sustainability Research

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All program components are subject to change.