Summer in South Africa is a 4-5 week program at Stellenbosch University during the month of June. Field trips, hands-on community service projects, and expert guest lecturers make Summer in South Africa a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
GPA Required: 2.8. If you find your GPA is lower than the requirement, do not despair! Use the "Contact An Advisor" button on this page or call us to let us know your situation. We'll do all we can to find the right program for you.
How to choose your courses
Now the fun part! As part of the application process you will be required to complete the CISabroad Course Selection Worksheet found in the CISabroad Application Page. The following instructions will guide you through the steps of choosing your courses. You can select from 6 summer courses.
Course load: 2–3 classes (4–7 US credits). You can take up to 3 classes during the summer.
Course approval: It is best to get 4–5 classes approved before you go abroad. This gives you some flexibility in setting up your class schedule. Think about courses required for your major, but also courses that fulfill your elective requirements.
Course descriptions and catalog
There are 3 distinct program offerings in Summer in South Africa:
1) General summer program (take up to 3 of the 6 general courses listed below)
2) Service-Learning program (7 credits)
3) Doing Business in Southern Africa (7 credits).
If you choose the general courses, please note that Course 1 is mandatory. Also, general courses are 2 US credits; you can take up to 3 courses for 6 credits.
If you choose the service-learning program, you will need to write an additional essay for your application. You will take both courses listed below for a total of 7 US credits.
Course 1: Introduction to South Africa’s Political History (mandatory)
This course will introduce you to South Africa’s unique 20th-century history and the interplay of the country’s political, social, and economic issues. In particular, the focus is on South African identities and how they were and continue to be shaped by the country’s past.
Course 2: Biodiversity: Plants for the People in the Western Cape (elective)
An introduction to South Africa’s incredible biological diversity, with special focus on the plants of the Cape Floristic Region (a global biodiversity hot spot). It starts with an evaluation of people as threats to biodiversity, and of the conservation efforts being applied to help people use of the flora sustainably.
Course 3: Visual Controversies in South Africa, Past and Present (elective)
This course will track major developments and changes in South African art and media from the Union years (1910 – 48), through the Apartheid era (1948-1994) and after (1994- present). The point of this broad historical perspective is not so much to provide a condensed history of South African art and media, as it is to explore the relationship between South Africa’s turbulent socio-political landscape and its visual culture.
Course 4: HIV and Aids: A South African Perspective (elective)
This course aims to nurture and develop in students—as leaders and future professionals—the knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to manage HIV prevention and care in the workplace, both locally and abroad. You will develop a global understanding of HIV and AIDS through the South African experience of the HIV epidemic.
Course 5: Growth, Unemployment, and Inequality in South Africa (elective)
Economists usually view development from two perspectives. Firstly, we wish to understand more broadly why some economies are poor and why others have performed so well. Secondly, we consider how broad economic trends and policies impact households and individuals. The literature on economic growth is vast, and seeks answers in many focus areas: from the relationship between aid and growth, to the more long-term influences of geography, the slave trade, and legal and informal institutions. The lectures of this component of the forum will give a broad overview of the theoretical and empirical literature on economic growth, and hopes to understand a large spectrum of likely causes and influences.
Course 6: Present Imperfect: Negotiating Identities in Film and Literature (elective)
This course focuses on the way in which literature and film in South Africa have registered and reflected the social and political conflicts and tensions of the Apartheid years, and how, since the first democratic elections in 1994, these fields of cultural production have served—and continue to serve—as a means of questioning and negotiating identity, not only nationally, but also at the level of the community and the individual.
Course 7: Challenges for Democratic Consolidation (elective)
This course builds on some of the issues introduced in Course 1. Its focus is contemporary South Africa—a society in transition, characterized by elements of both change and continuity. You’ll explore some of the most urgent policy challenges facing the country (like crime, poverty, and social delivery) and further investigate the politics of identity, race, and nation building. In light of the 2010 Soccer World Cup, the course will specifically focus on sport as a driver of national identity and also take a look at the role the South African state plays in Africa and internationally.
Course 8: Ethics, Science, and Culture in Philosophical Perspective (elective)
The three main themes that will be covered during the course are:
Science: We will discuss the question of what science is and why it matters to answer this question. We will focus on the different answers that Popper and Kuhn gave to this question.
Ethics: We will discuss utilitarianism, deontology and virtue ethics as three prominent ethical theories. We will also look at the relation between selfishness and altruism, the relation between ethics and science and the relation between ethics and evolutionary theory.
Culture: Culture is largely a matter of the institutions that a society adopts. We will look at the nature of institutions and discuss the status of questions like ‘capitalism v. socialism’.
Course 9: China in Africa (elective)
During this course, you will be introduced to China’s growing role on the African continent. While China engaged with African liberation movements during the Cold War, it was only from the 1990s onward, following its shift to a market economy, that the Chinese presence in Africa became a topic of widespread public debate. Understanding the nuts and bolts of how China engages with Africa is crucial to grasping a much larger phenomenon, namely the rise of East Asia and the geopolitical realignment of global power which is currently taking place.
Course 10: Multilingualism and Intercultural Communication (elective)
The three main themes covered during this course are:
Intercultural Communication as a field of academic reflection: This theme will cover the historical background, and the reasons for scholarly and popular interest in the phenomenon of intercultural communication. It will also give definitions and general features as well as the main research themes currently covered in Intercultural Communication. In the course of introducing this theme, key concept in the field, such as ‘language’, ‘multilingualism’, ‘culture’, ‘communication’, ‘miscommunication’, ‘misunderstanding’, etc. will be introduced.
Theoretical approaches to the study of Intercultural Communication phenomena and methods of research in Intercultural Communication: This theme will introduce a number of theoretical approaches and the associated methodologies within the field. These will include the contrastive approach, the interlanguage approach; the interactive-intercultural approach; pragmatic approaches; sociolinguistic approaches; ethnographic approaches, (critical) discourse analysis; linguistic analysis (e.g. structural features of codeswitching; pragmatic features such as irony and truism).
Intercultural Communication in social interaction: Here two broad themes will be covered, namely (i) Intercultural Communication which involves minority language groups, and (ii) Intercultural Communication in the workplace.
Course 11: Introduction to Marketing (elective)
The module provides the student with an introduction to marketing and will focus on marketing dynamics in a rapidly changing environment. The main aim is to assist students in understanding the discipline of marketing management from a brand building perspective, as well as the variables that are important when making marketing decisions. A strong focus will be placed on marketing in the South African environment, but the module also includes a section on marketing in global markets.
Course 1: Introduction to South Africa’s Political History (mandatory)
An introduction to South Africa’s unique 20th-century history and to the interplay of its political, social, and economic issues. In particular, the focus is on South African identities and how these were and continue to be shaped by the country’s past.
Course 2: Learning for Sustainable Community Development (mandatory)
This program is an opportunity to demonstrate and develop your global citizenship through community engagement. You will come to understand the impact of both history and current issues on community life and problems in South Africa and experience it firsthand through engaging in a South African community—while earning academic credits.
Doing Business in Southern Africa
This course aims to help students investigate the unique institutional and policy conditions in Southern African countries which will not only allow future entrepreneurs and managers to understand the challenges that will confront their businesses, but also allow them to identify the opportunities that this rapidly growing region offers.
Course 1: Introduction to South Africa's Political History - 1 week, 2 USA credits (mandatory)
Course 2: Doing Business in Southern Africa - 4 weeks, 7 USA credits (mandatory)