Environmental Studies in Sri Lanka 

Sri Lanka is home to a rich variety of wildlife, including an important yet dwindling population of Asian elephants, leopards, lion-tailed macaque, an impressive array of tropical fruits, medicinal plants, and more. Despite the island's many national parks and reserves, the environment is under serious threat of human activity and is thus known as a biodiversity hotspot. Due to population growth, the civil war, use of agrochemicals, and extraction of forest products, Sri Lanka's wildlife populations are in grave danger. Join leading environmental scientists and conservation organizations to research and discover the current state of Sri Lanka's ecosystems. 

*Please note that our Environmental Studies course is only offered in the Spring semester. Students looking to study abroad in the Fall may take the Traditional Medicine course, which includes material on environmental studies. 

Program Highlights

"As a science major, I learned so much more during ISLE than I thought possible." -Spring '13 student

  • Take courses with leading environmentalists 
  • Travel throughout Sri Lanka to experience the diversity of the island and its ecosystems
  • Attend field lectures in tea plantations, forest reserves, tsunami-affected areas, and more
  • Work as a volunteer in an environmental organization
  • Conduct a 4-week Independent Study project on a topic of your choosing

Relevant Independent Study Project

  • Glenna Thomas (ISLE '15): "The Impact of Agriculture on Local Ecology and Economy in Batticaloa District, Eastern Province, Sri Lanka"
  • Emma Cutler (ISLE '11): "Deforestation, Pesticides and Compost: Agriculture in the Hill Country of Sri Lanka and its Environmental Impacts"
  • Liza Boles (ISLE '10): "Ethical Tea in Sri Lanka: Investigation of the Private Sector Efforts to Improve Social Conditions in the Supply Base"
  • Luke Savage (ISLE '04): "Peasant Fishermen in a Capitalist Market"
  • Sarah Gravelin (ISLE '00): "Hatching a Plan for Turtle Conservation in Sri Lanka"