College of Charleston
Center for International Education
Charleston, SC 29424
Spring: November 1
Summer: March 15
Fall: April 1
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South Africa

CofC in South Africa 2017: Geology

Term To Study: Summer 2017
Application Deadline: Feb 14, 2017
Program Starts: Jul 08, 2017
Program Ends: Aug 02, 2017
Program Category: One-Country
Program Type: Faculty-led
Program Fee: $5,500
Program Locations: Johannesburg, Cape Town
Contact Phone: 843-953-7661
Contact Name: Center For International Education
Contact Email:
What is Included: - Round-trip international airfare
- Lodging
- Meals
- Entrances into sites
- Ground transportation
- Overseas medical insurance
- $50 non-refundable application fee (will only be reimbursed if a student is not accepted into the program or the program is cancelled)

* Program fee subject to change
What is not Included: - Tuition for four credits and associated fees
- Vaccinations
- Passport fees
- Personal expenses
Estimated Costs: In addition to the program fee, students will be charged for tuition and fees as follows:
* 2016-17 in-state tuition rate for four credits is $1,896 (plus Library, Technology and Part Time Fees)
* 2016-17 out-of-state tuition rate for four credits is $2,464 (plus Library, Technology and Part Time Fees). The out of state tuition for classes associated with travel are discounted from the Fall and Spring rates.

Program Description


Students take one of the following courses:

GEOL 240: Geology and Environmental Field Experience - South Africa - 4 credits (for non-majors)
GEOL 395: Geology and Environmental Field Experience - South Africa - 4 credits (for majors)


The Geology and Environment Field Experience: South Africa is designed to broaden students' geology and environmental experience by providing an opportunity for them to see firsthand some of the best geology in the world and some current environmental issues facing South Africa. This field camp will allow students to gain international field experience and learn about geology in new settings. The course will focus on the geology of South Africa in the vicinity of Cape Town and northeastern Johannesburg. Students will specifically study sections of South Africa, looking at rock exposures ranging in age from Proterozoic to Paleozoic to Modern, and perhaps a few sites in Namibia. There will also be visits to various sites of natural, cultural, and historical significance, including Sterkfontein World Heritage site and Kruger National Park.

The course is designed to teach students the fundamentals of geologic mapping using modern tools and methods. They will use GPS and GIS as well as apps from iPhones, iPads (or equivalent devices) to map rocks and sediments quickly and efficiently. They will learn about earth history, including the evolution of humankind. The Western Cape in South Africa has excellent exposures of rocks ranging in age from Proterozoic to Paleozoic (Ladismith in the Karoo) to Modern (Langebaan on the Atlantic Coast). This course will also include an environmental component, where students will be involved in collecting and analyzing data around issues impacting the African continent, such as water quality and availability, population growth, deforestation, and climate change. Through these "hot-button" issues, the students will inherently be introduced to other disciplines, looking at history, culture, socioeconomics, etc.

A third component of the trip is to develop an educational K-12 component, a virtual field trip. The virtual field trip will showcase African culture, history, and way of life through a series of videos, which can be shared with a primarily underrepresented Charleston area K-12 school. In addition, while in South Africa, the program will visit an urban school and a rural school, observing the differences in their instruction.

Students should expect cold and windy weather (40 degrees Fahrenheit- typical conditions near higher elevations), trail hiking, and limited access to Western-style facilities.


Dr. K. Adem Ali
Department of Geology and Environmental Geosciences

Dr. Ali is an African native with an in-depth understanding of Africa, its people, cultures, and geology. Before coming to CofC, he has led multiple field camps looking at volcanoes and other geological features in Africa. Dr. Ali teaches the Geographic Information Systems course and an Environmental science course. His research involves looking at water quality issues in the Great Lakes and coastal waters. He has active research going in Lake Erie, OH, coastal Carolina waters, and in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Dr. Ali co-led this program with Ms. Humphreys in 2016.

Ms. Lauren Humphreys
Department of Geology and Environmental Geosciences

Ms. Humphreys is an adjunct lecturer in the Department of Geology and Environmental Geosciences at CofC. A graduate of the College, she received the Distinguished Adjunct Faculty Teaching Award in 2016. She co-led this program with Dr. Ali in 2016.

Note: For questions regarding on-site program details and course content, please contact Dr. Ali. Any inquiries regarding application processing, billing, or financial aid opportunities can be directed to the Center for International Education (contact information listed above).

Quick Facts

Population: 48810427
Capital: Pretoria
Per-capita GDP: $ 11100
Size: 1219090 km2
Time Zone: (GMT + 02:00 hours) Kaliningrad

US State Department

Travel Warning: NO

See :
Country Specific Info.

College of Charleston Center for International Education