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The International Conservation Society - A Nonprofit Environmental Organization (NGO)

Environmental Studies/ Conservation Certificate

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The International Conservation Society, is now offering a 4 week, 160 hour residential certificate course in conservation and environmental studies. The courses are held in and around the Gunung Leuser National Park and the Bohorok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center in Bukit Lawang, which many believe to be the center of the conservation universe. These conservation and environmental studies certificates provide a diverse and immersive environmental experience, and are recognized by environmental employers throughout the world because of the comprehensive, diverse, and hands-on experiential nature of our curriculum and program. Moreover they impart the knowledge necessary to pass state exams throughout the USA for those interested in careers in park service or other government conservation agencies. We therefore guarantee employment, either by a government or private employer or NGO, for all of our graduates. Each of our candidates will also have the opportunity to participate in 12 – 20 hours of volunteer work in a conservation related project, to gain real life experiences which can be documented on one’s resume and further bolster our guarantee of job placement for our graduates.


The course fee is $699.99 USD and includes free, first class ecologically responsible accommodation at the International Conservation Society headquarters, free meals, and free outings, ecotours, and recreational activities as outlined below:


The course is also available online without all the practical elements and outings for $199.99 USD.




Free Outings and activities include:


  • Whitewater Rafting
  • Mountain Biking
  • Snorkeling and/or Diving (additional fees may be required for optional diving)
  • Canoeing
  • Trekking (Mountain and rainforest)
  • 4 by 4
  • Outbound confidence course and rappelling
  • Sunrise mountain climbs
  • Indonesian Cultural tours and performances
  • Observing monkeys and other wildlife in natural habitat
  • Surfing
  • Sea turtle egg laying observation
  • Camping with campfire and s’more roasting.




Syllabus and Curriculum:  


Module 1: Introduction to Ecology and the Environment


  • Components of the Environment
  • Interrelation
  • The food chain
  • The food web
  • Trophic levels
  • Communities and populations
  • Introduction to ecosystems
  • Biomes
  • Biodiversity
  • The Wallace Line
  • Biogeochemical cycles (oxygen, water, hydrogen, nitrogen, phosphorous, carbon, salinity, etc.)
  • The ozone layer


Module 2: Introductory Geology and Vulcanology


  • Rocks and Minerals
  • Mineral Properties
  • Landforms
  • Fossils and fossil fuels
  • Plate tectonics and subduction
  • Vulcanology
  • Seismology
  • Volcano and Earthquake emergency response


Module 3: Forest Ecosystems


  • Introduction to forestry
  • Components of a forest ecosystem
  • Interrelations within the forest ecosystem
  • The forest floor and canopy
  • Types of forests and distinguishing aspects
  • Flora and fauna
  • Introduction to primate studies
  • Applicable biogeochemical cycles
  • The impact of vulcanology on rainforests within the ring of fire
  • Forest Management strategies and practices
  • Erosion
  • Runoff
  • Soil and water conservation strategies
  • Ecological succession within the forest community
  • Deforestation and forest conservation


Module 4:Wetlands Ecosystems 


  • Components of a wetlands ecosystem
  • Interrelations within the wetlands ecosystem
  • Flora and fauna
  • Applicable biogeochemical cycles
  • Wetlands Destruction  and Conservation and  Management strategies
  • Erosion
  • Runoff
  • Soil and water conservation strategies
  • Ecological succession within the wetlands community


Module 5: Marine Biology and Oceanography


  • Components of marine ecosystems
  • Marine mineral cycles
  • Applicable biogeochemical cycles
  • Flora and fauna
  • Marine ecological succession
  • Introduction to coral reefs
  • Components of a coral reef ecosystem
  • Reef succession
  • Reef destruction and conservation
  • The impact of runoff on marine ecosystems
  • Sea turtle studies and conservation project
  • The impact of vulcanology on marine ecosystems.
  • Estuarine ecosystems



Module 6:Freshwater Ecosystems:


  • Components of freshwater ecosystems
  • Riverine ecosystems
  • Lake ecosystems
  • Flora and fauna
  • The water cycle in detail
  • Interrelation between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems
  • Applicable biogeochemical cycles
  • Runoff
  • Eutrophication
  • Freshwater conservation problems and solutions


Module 7: Cultural Resources and Indigenous Peoples:


  • Introduction to cultural resources
  • Types of cultural resources
  • Cultural resource management and conservation
  • Indigenous people
  • Overnight field trip to indigenous village
  • Day trips to indigenous villages
  • Conflicts between indigenous people and industry
  • Other impacts of modern society on indigenous populations
  • Indigenous rights and affairs
  • Conservation/Preservation of indigenous peoples and their traditions


Module 8: Urban Ecology and Management:


  • Urban development
  • The impact of urbanization on natural resources
  • Urban planning
  • Urban ecosystems
  • Urban environmental management
  • Crowding and overpopulation
  • Urban sprawl
  • Urban pollution issues
  • Third world urban environmental field trip and case study
  • Sustainable urban development
  • Urban environmental problems and solutions





Module 9: Introductory Park Management


  • Introduction to park management
  • Types of parks
  • History and evolution of parks
  • State and national parks
  • Purposes and functions of parks
  • Park services organizations and careers in park service
  • Park visits


Module 10: The Impact of Man on the Environment:  


  • Industry
  • Corporate impact on environmental law and conservation
  • Politics, Economics and the Environment
  • Fossil fuels
  • Ozone depletion
  • Mining
  • Illegal logging
  • Greenhouse gases
  • Pollution – point source and non-point source
  • Overpopulation
  • Sustainable vs. Unsustainable development
  • Ecotourism
  • Solutions





Click below for the optional, week-long supplementary excursion to the peerlessly pristine undersea gardens of the Pulau Weh Marine Reserve. The focus is on Oceanography, Marine Biology and Marine Conservation and the price is just $249.99 inclusive of transportation, guide, park admission fees, and accommodation.

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Thank you so much for your generous donations which have enabled us to deliver these exclusive programs at such an affordable cost. We couldn't do it without you :)

Buy Now using Revolution MoneyExchange


We welcome and appreciate all donations. Please feel free to give as much or as little as you like.

Buy Now using Revolution MoneyExchange

Online TESOL Certificates from $69 w/Placement




We are currently located at:
Indra Valley Inn,
Bukit Lawang
Near the entrance to the Gunung Leuser National Park's Bohorok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center
North Sumatra, Indonesia
Yangshuo, Guilin, China