Nepal: Geoscience in the Himalaya (Summer)

Conduct Earth science fieldwork in the spectacular setting of the Nepal Himalaya.

Witness a broad range of Earth processes and rock types. Gain experience with a variety of field observational methods.

As the tallest mountain range in the world and home to diverse and vibrant cultures, the Himalaya are a preeminent place to study geoscience. The geological contrasts within the country of Nepal are dramatic and unequalled: from the flat Ganges River plain near sea level to the highest point on Earth—Mt. Everest.

In this program, students will engage in classic field geologic skill development and innovative inquiry of human-Earth systems. The program focuses on field geoscience, geohazards, and environmental science in the context of human interactions and sustainable development in Nepal.

  • Study how immense mountain ranges form and continually transform.
  • Investigate the hazards and benefits of living in a dynamic natural environment.
  • Conduct field research and acquire proficiency in geologic field techniques.
  • Analyze human interaction with Earth systems.
  • Examine how societal decisions affect the geohazard risks faced by human populations.
  • Analyze steps for risk reduction that align with sustainable development practices.

Students will explore a range of Nepal’s astonishingly varied landscapes: lowland hills, fertile valleys, deep gorges, rain-soaked jungles, towering icy peaks, arid steppes, and waterfalls.

Students will witness the power of active tectonics that underpins the development of the tallest mountain range on Earth, the extremely varied climate zones within a small area, and the myriad geohazards that face the region.

In-country resources
The program draws on numerous resources within Nepal such as:

Throughout the program, students will interact with Nepali faculty, professionals, students, and local residents. Tribhuvan University geology students will join the program for the field portion. Students will have many opportunities to learn about Nepali culture and history.

Students will spend the majority of the program conducting Earth science fieldwork in the High Himalaya and Middle Hills regions of central and western Nepal. The program begins and ends in Kathmandu.

Costs Dates

Credits: 9

Duration: 7 weeks

Program Base: Kathmandu

Prerequisites: At least two upper division (above the 100-level) geoscience, environmental science, or physical geography courses. Read more...

View Student Evaluations for this program:

About the Evaluations (PDF)

Summer 2013 Evaluations (PDF)

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