Academic Courses of “Pursuing Sustainable Development in Latin America: An Experiential, Urban and Rural Program”

COURSES AT ICDS

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT AND SUSTAINABLE HUMAN DEVELOPMENT: A SERVICE-LEARNING COURSE 

Community Engagement and Local Development is a course based on service-learning as a pedagogic methodology that prepares college graduates to be active, informed global citizens. This is a credit bearing educational experience that provides students with the opportunity to participate in community work complemented with reflection spaces that open the possibility of making the proper connections with personal values and course contents: social justice, intercultural understanding, sustainability, global citizenship and civic responsibility.  The community work takes place in the context of local human development processes, mainly in urban Costa Rica.

ENVIRONMENTAL DIMENSION OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: THE COSTA RICAN EXPERIENCE 

This course will explore the unique conditions that make Costa Rica a rich open-air laboratory for the study of sustainability, and an excellent case study of sustainable development issues. The course includes de analysis of successful and failed policies and programs, discuss their strengths and weaknesses, and propose potential new ways to improve, study, and evaluate the environmental dimensions of sustainable development.

SPANISH LANGUAGE

Whether students are just starting to learn Spanish or are advanced Spanish speakers, ICDS’ six levels of Spanish language allow them to improve their language skills in grammar, vocabulary, writing, and conversation according to their level determined by the placement test taken at the beginning of the course. 

COURSES AT EARTH UNIVERSITY

SUSTAINABLE LIVELIHOODS: INTEGRATING COMMUNITY, ENTREPRENEURSHIP, AND NATURAL RESOURCES

This course provides an overview of sustainable development within a rural context – combining an in-depth theoretical and experiential focus on sustainability and local communities, sustainable livelihoods, entrepreneurial possibilities and the management of natural resources. During the four-week program, students will experience and analyze first-hand sustainable development practices and their impacts on the environment, society and economy. This course will provide students with theoretical conceptual perspectives on various models of sustainability and sustainable development, particularly within a rural setting.  In addition, students will gain hands-on experience of the actual multi-dimensional practices of sustainable development, which will be incorporated into a final project. The emphasis in the course is to enable students to apply the theoretical concepts and practical lessons learned to contexts other than their own, as well as to their own realities.

ENVIRONMENTAL AND SOCIAL ASSESSMENT: HOW TO MEASURE, MANAGE, AND MITIGATE OUR IMPACT 

This course provides practical tools, technical skills and a theoretical foundation for the examination and measurement of environmental and social impacts of business and other economic activities on the local environment.  It seeks to ensure that various externalities are valued within economic enterprises, exploring different theories and methodologies for evaluating sustainability and assessing the social and environmental impact of our actions as individuals, organizations and businesses. The course offers students a unique opportunity to identify and directly assist in the development of decisions to control, mitigate, and compensate for the environmental and social impacts of businesses and individuals within a real-world Costa Rican rural context.

SPANISH LANGUAGE

Whether students are just starting to learn Spanish or are advanced Spanish speakers, the Spanish language courses allow them to improve their language skills in grammar, vocabulary, writing, and conversation according to their level determined by the placement test taken at the beginning of the course.