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May 22–June 15, 2018

This study abroad program centered on sustainability will examine the natural history and environmental conservation of North Queensland, Australia. Students will visit three contrasting ecosystems including the Great Barrier Reef and a tropical rainforest.

Using North Queensland as a case-study, this course aims to improve your understanding of the relationship between human societies in the natural environment by exposing you to these relationships through the different perspectives of the natural and social sciences. Assessment will be delivered through online assessments, educational travel, field trips, active participation, presentations and seminars, and coursework exercises.

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Approximately 30 students from 2 schools (UR and Wake Forest) will participate in this program.

  • GEOG 250 Introduction to Earth Systems and Physical Geography (cross-listed with ENV 250), 1 unit
Field and Study

This program is made possible through our partnership with American Universities International Programs (AUIP). For nearly 40 years, AUIP has been providing programs that combine rigorous academic study with opportunities for experiential learning outside of the classroom. By combining study at prestigious universities around the world with field and community based activities, AUIP offers students unique ways to explore the cultural and natural environments of the country they are visiting. AUIP offers an ideal combination of outstanding academic quality, true cultural immersion, extensive extracurricular and leisure activities, and the social opportunities of a university environment.

What's Included

The program starts with students flying to Brisbane, Australia, where students will learn about Aboriginal culture, visit a koala sanctuary, and learn about local ecosystems from University of Queensland faculty. The program will continue with explorations of the network of national parks, reserves, offshore islands, and coastal areas of North Queensland, including a stay in Hidden Valley (a ranch in a dry sclerophyll ecosystem), and snorkeling on some of Australia’s reefs, including the Great Barrier Reef. It finishes with a couple of days in Townsville, including nocturnal crocodile spotting.

In the field, we will snorkel and explore the marine diversity of the Great Barrier Reef, learn about Aboriginal Maon culture and history through interactions with indigenous communities, investigate natural resource management and ecotourism, and hike through the tropical rainforest of the Paluma Wet Tropics to study the diverse wildlife and flora of Australia. These activities are all included in the program cost.

Reasons to Choose this Program
  • North Queensland is world renowned for its spectacular natural environment and unique culture, and we will help you discover its many wonders.
  • Fulfill your Field of Study Natural Science requirement with hands-on learning in some of the world’s most prized ecosystems. Where else would you have the chance to snorkel the Great Barrier Reef, study rainforest diversity, and learn about Aboriginal culture?
  • You will spend much of your time (75%) out in the field, visiting and observing Australia first-hand. We believe that students learn from study abroad experiences both in and outside of the classroom.
  • You will learn from leading Australian academics and professionals with expertise in subjects related to the humans and the environment theme.
Application, Timeline & Fees

Application & Deposit: $300 nonrefundable deposit with application

  • Application DeadlineExtended to Friday, February 23, 2018!
  • 1st Payment: March 16
  • Final Payment: April 16

Cost: Approximately $6,200 (not including round-trip airfare to/from Australia)

Submit payments in the Student Accounts office (payable to University of Richmond, designated Australia Study Abroad).

Associate Professor of Biology
Associate Professor of Geography and the Environment
Landscape Ecology
Protected Areas Management
Natural Resource Monitoring Design and Assessment
Forest Community Ecology
Application Information

All interested students, both UR and non-Richmond, may apply online using Gateway Abroad, the same online application system used for semester- and year-long study abroad programs.

Follow this link to begin your online application:

  1. Select the Apply Now button/link
  2. UR students may log into the system using your UR netID and password
  3. Non-UR students should review the Non-Richmond Students instructions
  4. complete the online application and select your program

Contact Us

Office of Summer Studies
Professional & Continuing Studies
Special Programs Building
28 Westhampton Way
Univ. of Richmond, VA 23173

Phone: (804) 289-8133
Fax: (804) 289-8138

Monday-Friday: 8:30am–5pm
Closed for University holidays