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Programs : Brochure
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Ethnographic Field Studies
Zanzibar, Tanzania
Program Terms: Summer
This program is currently not accepting applications.
Homepage: Click to visit
Budget Sheets Summer
Dates / Deadlines:
There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction: English
 Class Eligibility:
1-First Year, 2-Sophomore, 3-Junior
Minimum GPA: 2.8 Maximum Credits Earned (per semester): 1.0
Course Prereqs: Anthropology course
Program Description:

Tentative dates: June 1 - July 15, 2014

The six-week Ethnographic Field School in Tanzania offers students a thorough understanding of nutrition and health challenges faced by people in East Africa in cultural, economic, and political contexts. The program offers this understanding through practical training in field research that specifically examines interactions between cultural traditions and practices, regional environments, changing political landscapes, and local, national, and international economic trends.


The field school covers three locations in Tanzania: Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar, and the Rungwe and Kyela districts in rural southwest Tanzania. Dar es Salaam, the nation's historic Indian Ocean capitol, is a center of economic, medical, and social activity and home to the University of Dar es Salaam. Zanzibar has long been an entrepôt connecting mainland Africa with the wider Indian Ocean World, important for the history of Islam in eastern Africa and the development of Swahili language and culture. In the rural southwest areas of Rungwe and Kyela, most people engage in small-scale farming and grow a diverse variety of crops for both subsistence and sale. Despite favorable conditions for agriculture, many families are susceptible to malnutrition and subsequent health challenges.


Tanzanian Fisherman

Students with a minimum 2.8 GPA who have taken an anthropology course are encouraged to apply. Students who do not meet these requirements should schedule an appointment with the program directors.


ANTHR 396: Field School in Cultural Anthropology
This program offers an ethnographic field study of selected topics in Tanzania. Ethnographic methods will be taught, including participant observation, interviewing and use of surveys and questionnaires, GPS technology to understand the spatial distribution of sites and cultural practices, and nutritional and health measures. Included in the program are pre-departure orientations, lectures by and discussions with specialists in Tanzania, research exercises in all locations, guided independent research projects in rural Tanzania, student presentations of preliminary findings, and a post-fieldwork write-up.

Program activities focus on the themes of nutrition, culture, environment, and health; and how scholars, professionals, and the wider Tanzanian population address such issues. Students will tour sites and visit people who have direct involvement with these topics in order to consider connections between scholarship, fieldwork, lived experience, and practical knowledge. Research exercises will teach a variety of ethnographic methods, and in the final weeks, students will design and conduct guided independent research projects relating to the themes of the program. Each student will work with a Tanzanian peer translator, arranged by the directors, to conduct his or her project. A typical pre-fieldwork day will have morning meeting sessions and afternoons for lectures, discussions, research exercises, and visits/tours. Once fieldwork begins, typical days will involve morning and afternoon fieldwork periods, along with periodic workshops to develop strategies to further student research goals. Students will present their preliminary findings before leaving Tanzania and submit a final written research paper to the directors after returning to the US.

Please note that there is no language pre-requisite for the program. Students will receive basic Swahili language training that will help them learn greetings and simple vocabulary. It is recommended that students complete an introductory course in anthropology, and preferably also a course on the anthropology of Africa.

How many credits will I earn?Coast of Tanzania

Students who successfully complete this program will earn one course credit (the equivalent of four semester hours).

Will the courses count towards my major? Will they count in my GPA?

The course is offered for a letter grade and will count in your Dickinson GPA. For anthropology and sociology majors, this program fulfills the qualitative methods course requirement. For anthropology majors, this program will provide opportunities for the required original research for senior theses. The program also counts towards the Division II requirement. Students from other institutions are advised to consult with their Registrar regarding credit transfer prior to applying to the program.

What expenses are covered during excursions?

Students’ lodging costs and meals will be covered during overnight excursions. Group transportation to and from the excursion site, as well as group travel for all group activities will be covered.

When will I find out where and when we’re travelling?Tanzania walking forward

Specific dates for excursions and local site visits will be organized and announced throughout the program.

Can a friend or family member who is not on the program also travel with us?

No, unfortunately, for logistical and academic reasons non program participants are not able to join the program for excursions.

Are excursions optional?

No, these excursions are linked to your academic program and content delivered through the excursion will be relevant to a student’s studies and assessment. All students should plan to participate in all excursions.

When is orientation?

Pre-departure orientation will be held on Thursday, April 24, 4:30 p.m. in the Stafford Auditorium, Rector Science complex. Additional program specific orientations will be held by the faculty during the spring semester. An on-site orientation will take place when students arrive in Tanzania.

Is there a group flight?

A group flight from the east coast will be arranged for this program by Advantage Travel of New York. Students will be contacted by Advantage Travel when the flight has been arranged. Advantage Travel will also arrange connecting flights from the U.S. to meet the group flight. International students, in consultation with CGSE, may arrange their travel to meet up with the group at the same time as the U.S. group arrives in Tanzania. Students will be me at the airport in Tanzania by a Dickinson faculty member.

When will I have time to travel? Can I arrive early or stay after the program ends?

Students may arrive early or stay late if they wish to travel on their own. Please note that if you choose to arrive early or stay late, you will not be able to stay in your program housing. You should also consider your visa validity when you make the decision of whether or not you may arrive early or stay late.  No student may arrive late for the start of the program.

How much does the program cost?

The comprehensive program fee for summer 2014 is $5,700. Airfare is not included; however, a group flight will be arranged. Primary medical and accident insurance purchased in the U.S. is not included.

What is included in the program fee?

The comprehensive fee includes tuition (one course credit), room and board, in-country transportation, and entrance fees for group excursions. Financial aid is available for Dickinson students. Non-Dickinson students should consult their financial aid offices. Airfare and visa fees are not included. The budget sheet also lists additional fees students should anticipate.

How will I access my money while in Tanzania and how much extra money do I need to bring?

This depends on you. An estimate of personal expenses is included on the budget sheet, but it really depends on you and your spending habits.

Will I receive a stipend?

Generally speaking, your meals will be arranged in each location. You will receive a stipend for meals when appropriate.

Where will I live?

In all locations, students will be staying in university or guest house/lodge facilities. All meals will be arranged for students.

Do I need vaccinations?

You should be up to date on your routine vaccines. While proof of vaccinations are note required for a visa, you should consult the Center for Disease Control and speak to your physician about recommended vaccinations for travel to Tanzania.

How do I access health care?

If you need medical treatment, the program directors will assist you in locating a doctor or hospital. Dickinson students may also access AssistAmerica for medical referrals and advice while on the program. See the link below for more information.
Health and insurance abroad

The nature of this program is field work on health and nutrition which is a part of an overall body of research in Tanzania conducted by Dickinson professors and past students. This is a unique opportunity for undergraduate students to engage in academic field work.

What is a visa?

A visa is a document, normally affixed within your passport, which allows you to enter the country and stay for the duration of your program.  The requirements for the visa and visa process are controlled by the government of the country you are entering, are non-negotiable, and can change regularly.  If you arrive without the proper visa, you will be sent home by immigration officers at your own expense.

Do I need a visa?

Yes, you will need to obtain a visa for this program. We have produced visa guidelines to provide you with an overview of what you will need to do to obtain a student visa.

How do I get a visa?

We highly recommend using a visa processing service such as Washington Visa and Passport Service to obtain your visa. While there is a charge for this service, WVPS staff will check your documents to determine that everything is in order and will submit your documents on your behalf to the Tanzanian consulate. You are not required to use a visa processing service; however, at this time, please note that you will be required to make an appointment to go to the the Tanzanian consulate to submit your documents that are required for the visa.

Do I have to go to the consulate/embassy?

Yes, if you do not use a visa processor, you will need to make a visa appointment at the Tanzanian consulate in order to submit your student visa application.

How long does it take to receive my visa?

It will take approximately 10 days to obtain a student visa. You will need to relinquish your passport to the consulate in order to obtain your visa; do not make plans to travel internationally during this time.

If I’m not a U.S. passport holder, are there any additional requirements?

If you are NOT a U.S. citizen, it is your responsibility to research and familiarize yourself with any special requirements for a student visa. Also, you are responsible to secure any special entry papers or documentation that may be required for the visa.  Please contact the Tanzanian embassy or consulate in the U.S. or your home country for further guidelines and assistance.  You may need to apply in person at the embassy or consulate in your home country.  If a visa is required, the cost of the visa is not covered by the program and will be the responsibility of the student. The CGSE may be able to help you with the required documents.

May I use a visa service to get a visa?

Yes, there are visa services that can assist you in obtaining the student visa. We recommend Washington Passport and Visa or Travisa. You will need to research these providers and their fees and timetables.

Global Ambassadors

Global Ambassadors are returning study abroad students who serve as peer advisors for their program. Please feel free to contact them for a student perspective.

For more information, contact CGSE.


Advisors (Please call for an appointment)

Center for Global Study and Engagement
Dickinson College

Associate Professor Karen Weinstein
Department of Anthropology
Dickinson College
Tel.: 717-245-1281

Associate Professor James Ellison
Department of Anthropology
Dickinson College
Tel: 717-245-1902

On-Site Administration

The course will be administered by Professors Karen Weinstein and James Ellison of the Anthropology Department, with guest lecturers and interactions with various Tanzania specialists from the University of Dar es Salaam and other institutions. The directors are professional anthropologists with specializations in eastern Africa, cultural anthropology, history, and biological anthropology.

This program is currently not accepting applications.