NCC in Costa Rica
Costa Rica Spanish Institute
For the first eight weeks of this program, students travel to the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, where they enroll in intensive Spanish courses, take one course with an accompanying North Central College professor, and live with a family in the town of Quepos. Students take Spanish classes for four hours every morning at COSI (Costa Rica Spanish Institute), an intensive language school overlooking the beaches and just a few miles from Manuel Antonio National Park. Local buses bring students from their homes in Quepos to COSI and the nearby beaches.
After a three-day excursion to Nicaragua in the ninth week, students have a mid-semester break before moving to the capital city of San Jose, where they live with a new host family; beginning language students continue language study and engage in volunteer community work, while advanced language students begin a six-week internship. Students learn about and become immersed in Costa Rican culture not only by living with two host families, but also by participating in weekly cultural events and weekend excursions around the country.
Check out COSI's updated facilities in San Jose!
Sophomore, junior, or senior standing; GPA 3.0 preferred.
Language Requirement: no Spanish required, however, two years of college-level Spanish is required for to do an internship
Students earn 12 credits toward their degree. In addition, students are required to complete GLS 277 in the spring term prior to studying abroad in the fall. All grades earned abroad affect your North Central College GPA when transferred back. You cannot take courses pass/fail.
GLS 277 Seminar: Study Abroad (0.00-2.00 credits)
A workshop in intercultural learning designed for students enrolled in North Central College study abroad programs. In this pre-departure course, students explore the concept of culture, compare cultural values, investigate social relations and communication styles, prepare for adjustment, and begin to develop intercultural competence. Journals are kept while students are in their host cultures; required activities and a final reflective essay are completed upon return.
GLS 363: Seminar in Costa Rica (3.0 credits)
Taught by the accompanying North Central College faculty member twice a week for two hours. The topic of the seminar varies according to the expertise of the faculty member and is designed with he assumption that students may not have prior knowledge of the topic.
Intensive Spanish (6.0-7.0 credits depending on language level)
Students take their Spanish course at COSI 5 days a week, 4 hours a day, for the first 8 weeks while in Quepos. Each class consists of 3-5 students and it is not uncommon for the accompanying North Central College faculty member to enroll in a Spanish language course.
Internship or Community Service (2.0-3.0 credits depending on language level)
Internship and Community Service experiences cannot come back as Spanish credit. However, credit is awarded as internship credit through one of the four North Central College divisions (i.e. Arts and Letters, Economics and Business, Human Thought and Behavior, Science) depending on work completed in the internship or community service.
Housing and Meals
Students are required to stay with host families, who live a short distance from the school. Host families provide students with breakfast and dinner. Students are responsible for their own lunches, which can be bought at ICLC.
Please Note: the housing/host family application you complete once you have been accepted to study abroad is quite brief. If you would like to include additional information or details you feel are important regarding your host family placement, it is encouraged that you write an additional paragraph on the application or attach a separate sheet.
Participants pay tuition and a $3,500 program fee to North Central College. Fee includes room and board for 15 weeks, Nicaragua excursion, orientations, weekly field trips, internship placement and guidance and health insurance. Fee does not include airfare, Costa Rica airport departure taxes, books, daily bus fare, spending money and extra personal travel. North Central College-based financial aid does apply.