Study Abroad

Pitzer in Botswana Academics



One of Africa’s most politically and economically stable countries, Botswana is home to 1.5 million people and 226,900 square miles of vast savannas, the Kalahari Desert, and world famous wildlife parks. Botswana’s citizens, most of whom live in the major cities, towns, and villages along the eastern border, enjoy standards of education and economic well-being rivaled on the continent only by neighboring South Africa.

Host Institution

The program is affiliated with the University of Botswana, a comprehensive institution of higher learning with an undergraduate enrollment of 10,000, located in the capital city of Gaborone.

The Core Course

Contemporary Socio-cultural Issues in Botswana
As the headquarters for the Southern African Development Community (SADC), Botswana offers you a singular opportunity to study cultural, historical, social, and environmental issues that shape and connect national and regional development. The core course combines a series of lectures given by university faculty and specialists from governmental and non-governmental organizations, readings, and extensive reflective writing of the Fieldbook with the more experiential program components of family stays, fieldwork, and study trips to provide a high degree of cultural immersion and cross-cultural learning. Course Syllabus

Pitzer in Botswana

Intensive Setswana Language
Setswana, the national language of Botswana along with English, is widely spoken in everyday interactions. You will study Setswana intensively in a course that emphasizes proficiency in speaking and listening. The combination of active classroom learning and daily interactions with your host family and the people in the village allows you to build a level of Setswana that will open doors to communities and relationships throughout your stay in Botswana. Course Syllabus


Directed Independent Study Project
You will explore in-depth an aspect of Botswana through a directed independent study. Projects are guided by local scholars, specialists, and program staff and may take the form of a research tutorial, independent study or apprenticeship in the arts or an internship with a placement in a school, a non-governmental agency or a private sector company. A significant analytical component in the form of a written report provides the documentation of learning. The program strongly recommends you select a project that involves field research, oral interviews, ethnography, and other techniques that facilitate cultural immersion over those involving library research. Topic selection may be limited due to available resources and local conditions. Course Syllabus

Contemporary Socio-cultural Issues in Botswana
Intensive Setswana Language
Directed Independent Study Project
Suggested Preparation
Coursework in Southern Africa area studies or development studies.
Students must be in good academic standing.
Program Dates
Fall: Early August to mid-December
Spring: Mid-January to late May/early June
Full Year: Early August to early June - contact the Office of Study Abroad for details
Students live with families for the entire program except on study trips.