Academic Information

Course Structure 

This program is 6 credits (FES 499) at the undergraduate level or 3 credits (FES 599 ) at the graduate level; credits valid during Summer Term.

Click the links below to see a sample syllabus and itinerary from 2022. Stay tuned for 2023 updates! 

2022 Syllabus | 2022 Itinerary



  • At least sophomore class standing by beginning of program
  • 2.75 OSU GPA or higher
  • Satisfactory OSU Conduct Record
  • All applicants must successfully complete an interview demonstrating academic purpose and maturity.
  • Physical requirements include extensive walking/hiking in rainforest field conditions - high temperatures and humidity.


Natural Resource Majors: See how this program fits within your major requirements!



  1.  Complete the application through the OSU GO Application Portal. Applications require one faculty recommendation, so ask early!
  2. All students will be interviewed by the program leaders as the final step in the application process. Applicants will be individually contacted for interviews.
  3. Check out our page with tips and recommendations for submitting a strong application!

NOTE: After beginning your application, you are permitted to save it and return to it repeatedly. Just make sure you submit before the deadline!


Application deadline: February 15



The Danum Valley Conservation Area is comprised of primary lowland dipterocarp forest set aside for preservation and research. The Conservation Area contains many different species of wildlife, including charismatic species such as orangutans, elephants, gibbons, deer, and more. The Conservation Area also hosts many researchers visiting and conducting research on the exceptional biodiversity found in the area, away from the impacts of logging and oil palm plantations.

Prepare for Oil Palms and Orangutans by reading this article about oil palms and orangutans and learn more about the environmental cost of palm oil in Borneo. Can the palm oil industry strike a balance between profits and environmental protection?

Read about the experience of a student on the 2018 program on our blog

Check out this video of Datuk Sam Mannan, director of the Sabah Forestry Department, discussing conservation in Sabah Borneo and raising the value of rainforest.

Learn more about the work of young conservation scientists at the Danau Girang Field Center in this short video

A TED talk on rainforest reforestation in Borneo by Conservationist Willie Smits, which has been critically challenged by forest conservation scientist Erik Meijaard. The exchanges between Smits and Mijaard reveal the complexities and potential problems raised by proposed solutions, and the importance of an interdisciplinary approach to conservation.