St. Olaf Sponsored Semester Programs

The following semester programs enable a student to complete intensive Chinese language and culture study in China, or biological research or student teaching in India under the supervision of St. Olaf faculty. Students travel independently to China or India for fall semester, and are not accompanied by a St. Olaf faculty member. See the International and Off-Campus Studies website for program details and for general education requirements the courses fulfill.

Term In China (Fall Semester)


An exchange agreement enables participants to spend fall semester living in the foreign students’ residence hall and studying at East China Normal University (ECNU) in Shanghai, People’s Republic of China. Students receive four credits: one from Chinese Culture and Society, taught by an ECNU professor, and three in Chinese language taught by the ECNU School of Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language.

Biology in South India (Fall Semester)


After a four-week introductory course in Chennai and a rural village, which exposes them to India and Indian life, students (juniors or seniors) undertake projects in the areas of rural health care, leprosy, tuberculosis, vector-borne diseases, molecular biology, agriculture, elephant/wildlife ecology, mountain ecology, medicinal plants, and sustainable development. The program fulfills two biology electives and meets the experiential requirement for the environmental studies major or concentration.

India offers tremendous opportunities to study ecology and consider ways in which humans practice agriculture and health care. Participants in the Biology in South India Program complete two independent research projects on topics related to rural health care, leprosy, emerging diseases, agriculture, mountain ecology, and human/wildlife interactions. Prerequisites: BIO 150 Evolutionary Foundations of Biodiversity.

Student Teaching Abroad (Fall Semester)

Under the direction of licensed teachers, participants can complete student teaching assignments in these international schools: