Online Application
  • Khmer Language 
  • COSA in Cambodia: An Introduction to Khmer History and Culture
  • Introduction to COSA (Course Offered Online)
  • Sustainable Tourism
  • Peace and Reconciliation in Cambodia
​​* Some courses may not be offered during a given term. Please inquire. 

Travel and Excursions that Broaden Your Perspective
Travel is an essential part of studying abroad. Taking knowledge from the classroom and applying it through direct observation allows for greater classroom comprehension and cultural understanding.


Excursions MAY include SOME of the following:


    •    Angkor Wat  The greatest attraction in Cambodia and one of the most spectacular spiritual sites on earth, The Angkor Archaeological Park is a vast complex scattered with hundreds of ancient temples, including several former capital cities of the Khmer Empire, from the 9th to the 15th century AD. These include the famous Angkor Wat, the world’s largest single religious monument, the Bayon temple (at Angkor Thom) with its multitude of massive stone faces and Ta Prohm, a Buddhist temple ruin entwined with towering trees.  


  •    Rural Homestay. Over 80% of the Cambodian population lives in rural communities, and most rely on farming to survive. Experiencing and learning first hand about the realities of life in rural Cambodia is crucial to developing a well-rounded understanding of Cambodia as a whole. During this weekend excursion you will stay in a rural community for two nights, learning about the challenges posed by the climate crisis and rapid development while exploring magical corners of Cambodia rarely visited by tourists.

    •    Tonlé Sap is the largest freshwater lake in South East Asia and is of major importance to Cambodia. The lake expands and shrinks dramatically with the seasons. Tonlé Sap is home to many floating and / or silted communities, large portions of which are populated by Vietnamese or other ethic minority groups.

IPSL students in Cambodia may also work with program staff on-site to arrange for independent travel to other areas. As with all travel, weather and other travel hindrances can affect the exact destinations of excursions. In such cases, IPSL program staff make every effort to find suitable replacement itineraries.


Academic Immersion Focused on Real Cultural Understanding


IPSL programs are curated for a complete and holistic experience where you can begin your exciting journey to understand Cambodia. IPSL values knowledge from many different local people and as such have a mix of scholar practitioners and development professionals that teach and interact with you. An official transcript for all courses is issued by The Natural University of Natural Medicine (NUNM) , the academic home of the IPSL Global Institute at NUNM. Unless otherwise noted, courses are at the 300 level or above except for any foreign language course that will vary. 



Required Courses

Khmer Language

This beginners course is intended for those who do not have any knowledge of the Khmer language. The course begins with elementary lessons such as greetings and self-introduction, and finishes with lessons of self-expression in everyday life for example at the local market, taking a tuktuk, making telephone calls, etc. This course will provide students with a set of communication tools to comprehend and communicate in typical social situations. The student will be able to discuss basic personal history, leisure time activities, work situations and use Khmer for day-to-day activities such as visiting the market and other basic transactions. Essential skills such as asking and answering simple questions will be mastered, allowing students to converse in Khmer with their host families and other community members.

Contact Hours: 45

Recommended U.S. Credits: 3

COSA in Cambodia (Community Organizing and Social Activism): An Introduction to Khmer History and Culture

The are of the Khmer-Mon people once stretched over a wide expanse of central Southeast Asia and developed a rich culture and civilization over thousands of years. This course will offer a comprehensive introduction to the people of the region, their beliefs, practices, arts and literature to give you a solid foundational understanding of this important culture. You will engage in discussions of the history of the ares during Pre-Angkor, Angkor and Post-Angkor periods. You will examine the civil war and its consequences, specifically the dark period from 1975-1979 (commonly known as the Khmer Rouge era). Importantly, you will learn about the rebuilding and reform efforts after 1993. This course also includes an overview of the social institutions and examines the ethics of international service-learning. You will learn the theories and practical applications of service in a Cambodian context. This course complements your service work and helps you make meaning of and deepen your understanding of development while helping you to increase your intercultural competency.

Contact Hours: 90

Recommended U.S. Credits: 6

Introduction to COSA - Undergraduate Course

This course is delivered virtually and begins before departure and completes after returning. The content includes both pre-departure and post departure information, discussion and reflection and serves to compliment the IPSL COSA in Cambodia course. The course explores the theories and practical realities of intercultural service-learning to help make sense of the international experience and to develop intercultural competence. One credit will be awarded for 15 hours of academic reflections work and 2 credits for the hands-on service-learning volunteering.

Contact Hours: 45

Recommended U.S. Credits: 3 


Elective Courses

Sustainable Tourism

The world is not such a lonely planet anymore but the very resources we promote through tourism are in danger of degradation. Tourism done poorly can harm people, cultures and the environment and we have a responsibility to re-invent tourism into a sustainable, ethical experience. This course will cover many of these aspects across a range of topics involved in researching or implementing sustainable tourism projects. The major topics to be discussed include general knowledge on tourism and sustainability, operations and marketing for sustainable tourism. Discussions will aim to bring understanding into alternative forms of tourism such as ecotourism and community based tourism approaches.

Contact Hours: 45
Recommended U.S. Credits: 3

Peace and Reconciliation in Cambodia 

This course introduces students to Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge history. The Cambodian Genocide committed by the Khmer Rouge (1975-1979) is the defining catastrophe of SE Asian and caused the loss of nearly 2 million Cambodian lives. Believing in an obligation to preserve the memory of the Khmer Rouge history, Documentation Center of Cambodia (DC-Cam) provides Khmer Rouge history education to diverse students both from Cambodia and around the world. IPSL has partnered with DC Cam to provide an integrated and intensive course utilizing the classroom, gallery, theater, and the field classroom of Cambodia's capital city Phenom Penh. Students, and researchers  can immerse themselves in learning the Khmer Rouge history from these unique programs designed with exhibition curating, film screenings, lectures and meeting forums with experts and guest speakers and personal testimonies and stories. With this multi-disciplinary approach students will broaden their understanding of what happened during the Khmer Rouge period and the aftermath up to present day politics, policies and government of Cambodia.

Contact Hours: 45
Recommended U.S. Credits: 3