Ecuador (May - June)

The University of Toronto will offer one course in Ecuador, worth one full-year credit. The course has limited space and is contingent on adequate enrolment. Students will be in classes or on field trips every day, including weekends, except for travel days and some (minimal) free time during the program. Where possible, students will be involved in group research projects. 

ENV395Y0 Special Topics Field Course: Ecology and Conservation in the Amazon, Andes and Cloud Forest

This course examines fundamental concepts in ecology, evolution, biodiversity, geology and conservation biology through lectures and fieldwork in the highland, montane, and tropical ecosystems in Ecuador. The complex relations between these environments and the people who depend on them will also be examined through analysis of the social, cultural, and economic transformations that have taken place in recent years. Suitable for all School of the Environment programs.

Prerequisites: none
Recommended preparation: ENV200H1 or equivalent, BIO120H or equivalent

2023 Final Course Outline 



Christoph Richter is an Associate Professor, Teaching Stream, in the Department of Biology at University of Toronto Mississauga, where he teaches courses on biodiversity, ecology, marine mammal biology and the historical and ecological impacts of the Columbian exchange. Working on a M.Sc. at Memorial University of Newfoundland, and a PhD at Otago University in New Zealand, his research focused on the influence of human activities on the behaviour of cetaceans. Currently, he is involved in research on the ecology of urban coyotes with Dr. Havelka, students’ perceptions of plagiarism, and the long-term impacts of team-teaching. He has taught field courses in the Bay of Fundy, Gulf of Maine, and Ecuador, and has been a study leader on cruises to the Arctic, Haida Gwaii and the Antarctic.

Monika Havelka is an Associate Professor, Teaching Stream and Director of the Programs in Environment in the Department of Geography, Geomatics & Environment at UTM.  She teaches courses in environmental science, experimental design, and restoration ecology. Her research interests include studies with Prof Richter on pollinator networks in Galapagos, on the behaviour and ecology of urban coyotes, and the use of benthic invertebrates in biomonitoring of urban stream quality.  She has taught the field course in Ecuador several times since 2012.