Semester in Ecuador
Universidad Internacional del Ecuador

Athlete Friendly

Take your education to new heights in the heart of the Andes.

Live in Quito, the highest capital in the world, while studying with international students at Universidad Internacional del Ecuador, an internationally accredited private university. Your host city sits 9,000 feet above sea level and is a high-altitude haven for all things fun. On Semester in Ecuador, you’ll take in markets, cultural sights, and gorgeous colonial architecture while nearby mountains, beaches, jungles, and crater lakes beckon you. Improve your Spanish through both language and elective courses taught in Spanish.


What to Expect:

  • Language: Spanish and English
  • Average Courseload: 4–5 courses (12–16 U.S. credits)
  • GPA Requirement: 2.5

Highlights:

  • Play soccer, basketball, volleyball, or tennis on one of the university's club teams. (They also have BMX and horse-riding!)
  • Courses taught in both Spanish and English
  • Only a short flight away from the Galapagos Islands
  • The thrilling Teleférico, a ride that gives you a view of the city atop a volcano
  • Discover the vibrant art and indigenous culture of Ecuador at the many artisan markets and open-air art shows in Quito

Program Details

Universidad Internacional del Ecuador

UIDE is an internationally accredited private university located in the heart of modern Quito. Its 36-hectare sustainable campus earned it a place in the International Sustainable Campus Network, among only 4 other South American institutions of higher education.

International students usually take advantage of UIDE’s extensive sports offering, ranging from horse riding and paintball to salsa classes. Find out more by downloading our campus guide.

UIDE offers classes with a maximum of 25 students to ensure personalized assistance for foreign students.

Areas of study with 3 to 7 classes available

  • Communications
  • Engineering
  • Humanities
  • World Languages
  • Natural & Applied Sciences

Don't see your major listed here? There may still be courses available. Browse our programs by major.

Areas of study which have more than 8 classes available

  • Business

Don't see your major listed here? There may still be courses available. Browse our programs by major.

Semester in Ecuador is located at the gorgeous and prestigious Universidad Internacional del Ecuador. UIDE boasts a wide range of classes in English for international students, including:

Administration Total Quality Management
International Business International Management
Administration International Finances
Administration Entrepreneurship Business and Management
Marketing International Marketing
Mechatronics Engineering and Project Implementation III
Mechatronics Research and International Certification Project
Mechatronics Electronic VI (Microprocessors)
Mechatronics Renewable Energy
Communication Public Relations and Lobbying
Law International Justice Systems
Psychology Introduction to Psycho-rehabilitation
International Relations International Cooperation
International Relations Environment (English 70% Spanish 30%)
International Relations European Integration
International Relations Microeconomics (English 60% Spanish 40%)
International Relations American Continental Integration (English 70% Spanish 30%)
International Relations Public Speaking
International Relations Contemporary World Literature
International Relations Humanitarian Law
Biology Sustainable Development

To view the entire English language course catalog from UIDE please click here. Please note that not every course is offered every semester.

Want to challenge your Spanish skills? 

Classes are available in Spanish. According to UIDE, “In the past, students who spoke intermediate Spanish discovered that the language barrier proved to be more fiction than fact, and that classes in Spanish helped them improve their language proficiency in a short period of time.” Talk to your program coordinator for more information.

Why Life in Quito

From lively indigenous festivals to lovely outdoor cafés in tranquil parks, Quito is a city of wonderful contrasts. It has a mixed history of ancient empires and colonialism. This history is visible in the ruins that dot the landscape and in the incredible Spanish-style churches and leafy plazas. UNESCO named the entire downtown a World Heritage site. They described Quito as having “the best-preserved, least-altered historic center in Latin America.”

Quito comprises several distinct neighborhoods. You’ll love the historic downtown with its colorful buildings, cobblestone streets, and street vendors selling everything you can possibly imagine. Equally fun is the Mariscal Sucre, the heart of the traveler scene in Quito. It’s rife with international restaurants, travel agencies, and hostels, and has a very lively dance scene. In other neighborhoods, you can visit an incredible museum that pays tribute to Oswaldo Guayasamin (Quito’s favorite artist), independent cinemas, and bohemian enclaves. If music is your passion, you can tap your feet to live traditional Andean tunes, pulsating salsa, and cumbia. Lastly, you can get lost for hours in the local parks and craft markets set amidst colonial grandeur. Most importantly, it’s all easily accessible by bus, taxi, or foot.

Volcanoes and the impressive Andes mountains surround Quito. Every day, you’ll glimpse stunning views of the Pichincha Valley and the snow-capped peaks of Cotopaxi, an active volcano. At the same time, you can access other amazing opportunities for exploration from the highest capital in the world. Ecuador is packed with adventure and amazing biodiversity, from the Amazonian jungle to crater lakes to the Galapagos Islands. Getting to these locations is easy and quick. Furthermore, you can be on the beach in the morning, Quito in the afternoon, and the Amazon jungle at night, all in the same day!

Live La Vida Local

  • Cooking classes

    Learn how to prepare the local cuisine and surprise your family when you go back home!

  • Metropolitan Park

    Walk through the woods in the middle of the city of Quito.

  • Music concerts at local restaurants / bars

    Enjoy jazz, Blues, Salsa, in a cozy environment while eating a good meal.

  • Dance classes

    Becoming a great salsa dancer isn’t easy...it takes practice!

  • Soccer games

    We love soccer and you will have plenty of opportunities to see a game.

  • Movie theater

    Tuesdays are the best days since it’s two for the price of one!

Homestay in Quito

Location

Truly immerse yourself in Ecuadorian culture with a homestay in Quito. Participants typically say that living with a local family was their favorite part of their experience abroad. Your host family will treat you like a member of the family – and even do your laundry for you every week! This safe, comfortable, secure home will help you integrate into your life abroad.

The photos are of participants Rebecca and Victoria with their host families. Look at those smiling faces!

Meals

Your host family will prepare breakfast and dinner for you, allowing you to get to know (and love) Quiteño cooking!

Inclusions and Amenities

  • BathroomShared
  • Bed linens
  • Laundry
  • MealsHomestay

UIDE Residence Hall

Location

Students looking for a more independent environment might choose to live in the residence halls located right on campus at the Universidad Internacional del Ecuador. These international dorms are filled with students from all over the world, as well as local Ecuadorians!

Inclusions and Amenities

  • CommuteWalking

What's Included

Inclusions

Program fees are in U.S. dollars and include the following:

  • Full-time tuition and fees
  • Medical and accident insurance
  • CIS Abroad support services before, during, and after the program
  • Academic advising
  • Financial aid counseling
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • Pre-departure orientation
  • Airport pickup
  • On-site support
  • On-campus internet access
  • Weekly laundry
  • An optional 4-day Amazon trip to Tiputini Biodiversity Station
  • Three full day excursions over the semester
  • University official transcript
  • University orientation
  • La Vida Local cultural program

Welcome & Orientation

At the airport, be greeted by our onsite staff and/or homestay family (nothing like a friendly face after a long flight!). They’ll help you get settled in your housing and begin your orientation. During your first few days, visit the UNESCO world heritage site of old town Quito, learn about Ecuadorian customs, get tips on how to blend in, learn some common slang words and even how to deal with altitude sickness. (Yes! You’ll be living at more than 9,000 feet in Quito!) Then, there’s the welcome meal: the perfect opportunity to learn about Ecuadorian food. Did you know that in Ecuador there are more than 200 varieties of potatoes as well as a tomato that hangs up from a tree?

Farewell & Re-Entry Program

Going home after all your Ecuadorian adventures and adjusting again to your home culture can be hard. We try to help make this process less abrupt by walking you through what to expect and, also, how to benefit from your newly gained knowledge. During our farewell evening, your site director will give you some ideas as to how to integrate your new experiences into your personal and professional life back home.

Program Excursions

While participating on a CIS Abroad program, you'll be able to take part in built-in day trips at no additional cost. These trips are subject to change from term to term; listed below are excursions that have run in the past.
Pichincha Volcano (by cable car)

Pichincha Volcano (by cable car)

Take a cable car 12,943 feet up to enjoy a magnificent view of Quito. You can walk through the paramo (high mountain vegetation), where there’s a cool but enjoyable breeze.

Otavalo Indigenous Market and Cuicocha Lake

Otavalo Indigenous Market and Cuicocha Lake

Visit one of the biggest and most colorful indigenous markets in Latin America, where you can buy traditional trinkets and eat delicious local food. Plus, take a boat ride in Cuicocha Lake, which is at the foot of a volcano.

Quilotoa Volcano

Quilotoa Volcano

Hike down to the historic crater lake and ride donkeys back up to the top, while admiring the spectacular view!

Site Director

Diana Balarezo
Travel Tip:

Ecuador is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world and home to 14 different indigenous nationalities. Be prepared to experience new landscapes, aromas, tastes, sounds and people. Respect the places and the people you will be with and never stop learning!

Travel Tip:

Ecuador is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world and home to 14 different indigenous nationalities. Be prepared to experience new landscapes, aromas, tastes, sounds and people. Respect the places and the people you will be with and never stop learning!

About:

Diana Balarezo is a trilingual (Spanish, English and French) Ecuadorian that has worked in the tourism industry for many years. An active volunteer of the United Nations World Tourism Organization, she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Tourism Development and Hospitality and a Master’s degree in Social and Environmental studies. Diana was the Ecuador national coordinator of a volunteers’ non-profit organization with more than eighty member countries, as well as the US market leader of the biggest tourism company in Ecuador. She lived in the US as a student and after, as a restaurant manager at a Ski Resort in Idaho, where she learned to snowboard and still misses it. She has traveled extensively around Ecuador, backpacked in Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Guatemala and Mexico. She has camped in some National Reserves in the US and Canada and has visited Spain, France, Italy, Belgium, Austria, among others. Diane’s hobbies include sports such as trail running and mountain biking, as well as watching movies and reading a nice book.

Your Support Staff

Global Advising Team
Travel Tip:

We love what we do and want to talk to you! The Global Advising Center is here to help you decide on a program, and complete the Online Application. From the moment you first hear from us—be it through a text, phone call, email or personal visit—you will find that our passion for international education is contagious. We’re ready to launch you abroad.

Hadley Byrne
Travel Tip:

When in doubt, reach out! More often than not, locals will respect and respond matching the effort that you put into communication. Practice makes perfect, and leaving your comfort zone means expanding your comfort zone!

Alexandra Woolner
Travel Tip:

Expect the unexpected! Sometimes culture shock is stronger in countries where you expect things to be more similar to your home country and environment. Traveling abroad is an excellent way to learn more about your own culture, habits, style, and adaptability.

COVID-19 Plan

COVID-19 Plan

We believe that study abroad is still possible during the COVID-19 pandemic, but certain policies and procedures will need to be in place to ensure every student can be safe and healthy during their semester abroad.

We monitor international indicators and health standards in the country and our risk management team makes decisions based on those and our own policy. We will make a decision no less than 45 days before a program starts what options are available to you and what the contingency plan is for your program. We will do all that we can to support you during this time.

Learn more about CIS Abroad’s Risk Management Team’s three step process for operating  our programs around the world and important program refund policies.

Program Suspended

This program is currently not available for the Academic Year 2020/21. Please consider other options by exploring our Open Spring 2021 Programs or consider a Virtual Internship.

Dates & Prices

ADVISOR TIP: Please WAIT to book flights until you have received confirmed dates in your acceptance paperwork. Dates posted here are subject to change.

  • Application Deadline: May 1
  • Arrival: August 8
  • Departure: December 12
  • Price: $12,290
  • Application Deadline: Oct 15 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: January 31 (Estimated)
  • Departure: June 13 (Estimated)
  • Price: $12,390 (Estimated)
Additional Information:

As with all study abroad programs, you should count on a few additional expenses.

CIS Abroad reserves the right to alter fees at any time due to currency fluctuations and/or fee changes made by our partner universities.