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  • Locations: Atherton Tablelands, Australia
  • Program Terms: IOP Fall, IOP Spring
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Program Sponsor: The School for Field Studies (SFS) 
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year UCM Deadline Campus Decision Date Start Date End Date
IOP Fall 2020 05/07/2020 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA
IOP Spring 2021 09/07/2020 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Click here for a definition of this term Minimum GPA: 2.80 Language of instruction: English
Housing options: Dormitory / affiliated residences Click here for a definition of this term Areas of study: Anthropology, Biological sciences, Earth and space sciences, Economics, Environmental studies, International studies, Zoology
Program Description:




  • Terms: Fall, Spring
  • Credits: 16 semester-hour credits
  • Prerequisites: One semester of college-level ecology, biology, or environmental studies/science; 18 years of age
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions. Early applications encouraged
  • Financial Aid: All accepted students can apply for need-based scholarships, grants, and loans


Spend a semester in the heart of an ancient rainforest. This program addresses regenerating and restoring the once extensive tropical rainforests of the Atherton Tablelands, particularly the upland remnant forests threatened by climate change, as well as riparian forests that play an important role in the health of downstream ecosystems like the Great Barrier Reef. Students work with local stakeholders and indigenous groups to understand the livelihoods of local communities, natural resource management by these groups, and the connection of these communities to the surrounding environments.


  • Rainforest ecology and conservation
  • Community landscape management
  • Restoration ecology
  • Climate change
  • Indigenous knowledge and histories
  • Threatened species conservation
  • Sustainable tourism practices


  • Visit World Heritage listed rainforests to learn about the ecology, geology, and historical biogeography of  Queensland’s Wet Tropics
  • Explore the traditional lands of local Aboriginal groups, gaining an understanding of indigenous peoples’ use and management of natural resources
  • Study the threat that climate change poses to tropical rainforests and use modeling tools to predict its impact in the Wet Tropics
  • Use spatial tools, such as GPS and GIS, to assess land use change and habitat use by different species
  • Work alongside citizen volunteers to regenerate rainforest in critical riparian and high elevation sites.


Through Directed Research (DR)—as opposed to basic, applied, or independent research—students conduct research on a specific topic that is part of the SFS Center’s long-term strategic research plan, which has been developed in partnership with local community stakeholders and clients.

The course, taught by resident SFS faculty, provides students with the opportunity to apply the scientific process in a mentored field research project that addresses a local environmental issue. Through the DR project, students contribute to a growing body of scientific research that informs local conservation and resource management decisions.