Monteverde, Costa Rica

Program Website Type: ,   |  Minimum GPA:
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  • Fall Semester - Mid August - Early December
  • Spring Semester - Early February - Mid May

Application Deadline

  • Fall Semester - March 15
  • Spring Semester - October 1


Study Abroad Coordinator: Lane Marder (

This intensive laboratory science program offers students the opportunity to live, study, and conduct research in an ecologically diverse environment with a community of professional scientists. After an orientation in San Jose, students embark on an academic field trip exploring Costa Rica's different ecosystems, ranging from dry tropical forests to lowland rain forests. Upon returning, students are immersed in an intensive study period at the Biology Station of Monteverde. Toward the end of the program, students live with a local Costa Rican family and conduct individual research projects. Before final exams, students participate on another program-sponsored field trip.


  • Students participating in this program are required to take five courses. Students will be charged Northeastern undergraduate tuition for 16 credits.  Should a student decide to transfer back a fifth course, he or she will then be charged an overload fee as defined on the Northeastern University Registrar’s website.  Please note: See Cost section for additional Study Abroad fees.
  • Program participants are required to take all of the courses offered: Tropical Diversity Tropical Community Ecology Independent Study in Biology Humans in the Tropics Spanish Tropical Diversity & Tropical Community Ecology, will satisfy upper level Biology electives. Courses taken abroad may satisfy college and departmental core requirements. Students should consult with their advisor to discuss the specific requirements that may be satisfied abroad.

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Host University

The Monteverde Institute is a nonprofit educational association initiated by the people of Monteverde to administer cultural, scientific, and educational programs and to share Monteverde's natural beauty and biological richness with the rest of the world.

Eligibility Requirements

  • 2 completed terms at NU, one of which may be a summer term
  • GPA of at least 2.5
  • Transfer students and spring admits, please contact OISP for eligibility
  • Students must also have completed an introductory biology sequence and one of the following electives: Ecology, Evolution, or Behavior

Application Procedure

    • Completed online OISP application
    • Completed online CIEE application

      Please submit the following directly to OISP:

    • Personal Statement
    • Photocopy of Passport ID Page
    • Official Transcript
    • Home School Nomination forms will be completed online (Completed by your OISP advisors).
    • One evaluation. If a program has a language prerequisite, the evaluation must be a language evaluation. The CIEE online application will prompt students and will send an email to their evaluator to as
    • Photocopy of Passport ID Page
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Fall 2015 or Spring 2016: $22,660

Includes: Northeastern University (NU) tuition for 16 NU credits ($22,310), and International Security and Emergency Support ($100). Please note that this program requires students to take five courses. Should students choose to transfer back the fifth course, the student will be liable for an additional 4 credit overload fee ($5,577.50). Students are responsible for all other expenses, including housing and other non-academic costs for which they will be billed directly by the program provider or host institution. Students are also responsible for arranging and purchasing their own flights.


For much of the program, students are housed in the Biology Station of Monteverde, which is bordered by a lovely primary forest. Men and women stay in separate four-person rooms with bunk beds. The field station also has a large classroom, small library, and laboratory work space. Meals are provided for the duration of the program. A cook prepares basic meals that are served in a large dining room. A cash allotment is made to each student during travel sufficient to cover simple meals at restaurants. Towards the end of the program, students will move in with a local, rural Costa Rican family for a 26-day home-stay experience.


Monteverde is located in northwestern Costa Rica and is reached by a 40-kilometer winding dirt road off the Pan American Highway. The community lies at the crest of the Cordillera de Tilar+