UMD: A Globally Connected University

UMD-Winter: Ecuador: Technology, Education and Society: Ecuador in Context (CPSP/LASC)

Cuenca, Ecuador
Terms offered: 
Program Type: 
Credit Type: 
Minimum GPA: 
Non-UMD Students Eligible to Apply: 
Graduate Students Eligible to Apply: 
EA Advisor: 
Language of Instruction: 

Group at national park
This 3-credit winter course explores technology across diverse social, geologic and ecological contexts of Ecuador, set in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Cuenca, Ecuador.  You will engage in a series of field trips, lectures, guest speakers and service- learning experiences to get a firsthand look at the influence of technology on social issues such as education, energy, food security and public health. Program partnerships with the University of Cuenca and host communities in Shiña provide the opportunity to work, live and study alongside students, families and faculty from the University of Cuenca. In addition, we will have meetings and conversations with government, NGO, academic, indigenous and other stakeholders as we explore technology and society in Ecuador. You will also experience the natural and cultural beauty of Ecuador through visits to various National Parks, museums and communities of the coast, mountains and tropical forests. Don't miss this opportunity to apply your own knowledge and expertise while working with students, teachers and community leaders in the rural indigenous communities of Ecuador!

You must be in good academic and judicial standing and you must not have any registration blocks to participate in this program. The minimum GPA for this program is listed above.

This program is open to all UMD and non-UMD students.

After you commit to the program, Education Abroad will enroll you in one of the following three (3) credit UMD courses:

  • CPSP279T Practicum: Study Abroad: Technology and Society: Ecuador in Context
  • LASC269T Special Topics in Study Abroad II: Technology and Society: Ecuador in Context

The credit you earn during this program will count as resident credit.

Participating students earn General Education credits for both Scholarship in Practice and Cultural Competence.

Prior to departure you are required to participate in meetings and do preparatory work.

You will stay in a variety of housing types including hotels and homestays with host families depending on our location. In Cuenca, you will stay with host families. Depending upon availability, it is anticipated students will also stay with host families in the Shiña communities. In other locations, students will be housed in hotels or hostels.

Costs are current for winter 2018.

Application Fee $50
Billable Costs
Billable costs are charged to your student account. They are due based on the Bursar's payment schedule. Be sure to check your statements when they are available.
Education Abroad Fee $500
This fee is charged to your account when the application status changes from "Accepted" to "Committed." This fee includes Education Abroad services including registration, billing, advising, risk management, and pre-departure orientation.
International Health Insurance $37
Tuition $1,685
This fee is charged to your UMD account upon course registration. This fee includes: Tuition, in-country transportation, course related activities, group meals, and teaching services.
Housing Fee $468
This fee represents the housing provided during the program.
Out-of-pocket Costs
Meals (estimate) $100
Visa $0
Passport $140
Roundtrip Airfare (estimate) $900
Course Materials $0
Optional Activities/incidental expenses $150
Optional trip cancelation/interruption Insurance (estimate) $180

NOTE: If you are a non-UMD graduate student, you will need to pay a $75 application fee to the UMD graduate school to participate in this program.

Please refer to the following resources for more information on funding study abroad

PLEASE NOTE: All University of Maryland study abroad programs are financially self-supporting and, therefore, subject to cancelation due to low enrollment.

Matthew Aruch is the Program Director and the Assistant Director of the Science, Technology and Society Program CP Scholars Program. He is currently a PhD candidate in International Education Policy Program at UMD. Matthew has spent several years teaching and working in Costa Rica, Honduras, the United States and Brazil. He has been collaborating, working, and teaching with the University of Cuenca and the communities of Shiña since 2012. Participating students will be amazed by the incredible biological, geography and cultural diversity we will have the opportunity to explore in our 3 weeks in Ecuador. In addition to the Ecuador winter program, he leads a summer program to Brazil. He has a bachelor's degree in Biology, a master's in Education from Mary Washington College and a master's degree in International Education Policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

For course, itinerary or in-country information, please contact Matthew Aruch at

For course, itinerary or in-country information, please contact the Program Director. For general questions or assistance with applying, contact EA Short-term Programs

As a part of this program, you will engage in the following activities:

  • Meetings and collaborations with academic, government and non-government professionals
  • Service-learning projects in the rural indigenous communities and schools of Shiña
  • Spanish classes at the University of Cuenca
  • Tandem language partner with University of Cuenca students
  • Visits to National Parks that may include hiking in El Cajas National Park in the mountains, the tropical forests of National Park Podocarpus and hiking and snorkeling on Isla de Plata in National Park Machalilla on the coast. 
Term Year Application Deadline Admission Notification Program Start Program End
Winterterm 2018 10/15/2017 10/11/2017 01/02/2018 01/22/2018