Dive into the colorful world of Southeast Asia by living and studying in Thailand for the summer. While taking your choice of Southeast Asian-related courses – such as holistic health, environmental conservation, and ethnic heritages and tourism – you’ll receive a unique perspective and understanding of the region thanks to comprehensive field trips that bring your classes to life. With the culturally-rich city of Chiang Mai as a base, you can then find yourself traveling to research tree ecology and elephant conservation in northern Thailand’s jungles, practicing holistic Asian health philosophies such as reiki and yoga in the tropical southern coast, or staying in different ethnic hill tribe villages to further connect with the local communities and customs. 


Spend your summer in Chiang Mai, a city that blends a modernizing country with traditional Thai culture, and gain an understanding of Thailand’s past, present and future

Feel the course content come to life with extensive field trips planned throughout the program that take you outside of Chiang Mai

Students can select to enroll in one session for a three-week program (4 credits) or two sessions for a six-week program (8 credits).

Get to know more about your host country with an included Orientation and fun excursions throughout the summer

Learn more about the fascinating histories, belief systems, cultures and issues impacting Southeast Asia by choosing from five diverse courses, each with a strong experiential focus

Benefit from access to TEAN’s Chiang Mai Resident Coordinator and other in-country staff for continued support throughout the summer



This program can be taken as a three-week (4 credits) or six-week (8 credits) experience. Students can take one course from each session.

To request syllabi for any of the below courses, complete this form and indicate the classes you need the syllabus for.


Session One

Asian Approaches to Holistic Health and Wellness
Discover eastern holistic philosophies inspired from Buddhism and Taoism, experience diverse health practices from yoga to reiki, forest therapy to tai chi as well as other mindfulness-based practices that will provide participants with a framework for wellness helping them making conscious and healthy life-style choices and sustainably establish respectful, cooperative relationships with others and the environment.
Learn More

Lived Religion in Southeast Asia – Not available for Summer 2021
An on-the-ground exploration of the religious landscape of Southeast Asia that matches informative readings and lectures with field-site visits to bring course content on Buddhism, Islam, Christianity and indigenous belief systems to life.
Learn More

Tourism, Ethnic Identity and Heritage in Thailand
Through readings and field visits to ethnic Hmong, Karen and Kayan villages, this course introduces students to new sustainable tourism approaches which aim to foster respect and support for the cultural heritage of ethnic minorities in Thailand.
Learn more

Session Two

Environmental Conservation in Southeast Asia
Explore the lush jungle of northern Thailand, participate in grass-roots biodiversity conservation projects, discover local culture and learn about the complexity of sustainable development during a unique immersive learning experience.
Learn More

International Politics of Southeast Asia – Not available for Summer 2021
Discover Southeast Asia’s dynamic politics through lectures, workshops and visits to major international centers of policymaking, diplomacy, trade and civil society in Bangkok.
Learn More


Upon completion of the course you will be issued with an Elmhurst University academic transcript.

Elmhurst University, located in suburban Chicago, is accredited by the Department of Education of the State of Illinois, and by: The Higher Learning Commission, A Member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.



  • 2.5 GPA
  • Students with lower GPAs may be accepted. Contact us for more information.

Program Details

Summer 2021

This program not running for Summer 2021. Please check back for future available terms.


Be introduced to Chiang Mai upon arrival with an Orientation that combines useful informative sessions with intriguing introductory cultural experiences. Experience a sensory overload as you learn about Thai culture and society, jumpstart your knowledge of Thai Buddhism with a visit to one of Chiang Mai’s glittering gold temples, practice speaking key Thai phrases, and sample an array of deliciously diverse Thai cuisine. (All meals are included!)


While in Chiang Mai, students stay in hotel-style accommodation. During field trips, accommodation varies depending on the destination and field trip focus. Click on the course links above for more details on accommodation for each course.

TEAN Staff

Our team works with you start to finish through the study abroad process. Our programs staff will help guide you through the application process to go abroad, then upon arrival in Southeast Asia, you will be met by our on-site team who will provide assistance throughout your time in Thailand. Through informal meals held together and excursions, our staff is readily available and able to assist you with any academic, social, or cultural questions or issues that you may face during your time abroad.

Meet the Team

Program Excursions

Excursions and Events

Each course includes extensive field trips that take students to various areas of Thailand. See links to course itineraries above.  In addition to the extensive field trips in these programs, TEAN offers other included excursions to further introduce students to the beautiful nature and culture of Thailand.

A Day with Elephants

Spend the day at Chiang Mai’s most ethical elephant park, supported by World Animal Protection, observing free-roaming elephants in a natural environment with no hands-on interaction. Here you can observe elephants truly being elephants! (This is included for Thailand summer Session 1 students only.)

Thai Cooking Class

Learn to whip up your favorite Thai dishes such as phad thai, green curry, papaya salad and mango with sticky rice. During this class, you’ll tour a local market becoming more familiar with typical Thai ingredients then head to your cooking station to make a tasty Thai meal. Make sure to go hungry – you’ll be eating everything you make! (This is included for Thailand summer Session 2 students only.)

Program Dates

Application Deadline

TEAN has a rolling admissions process. Late applications may be considered. Contact TEAN if the application deadline has passed.

Session One Deadline March 15
Session Two Deadline April 1

Summer 2021 dates

This program not running for Summer 2021. Please check back for future available terms.

Students taking the 6 week program – Sessions 1 & 2
Arrival Day May 21
Orientation May 22
Ethical Elephant Park visit (all day) May 23
Session One Starts May 24
Session One Ends June 11
Thai Cooking Class (all day) June 13
Session Two Starts June 14
Session Two Ends July 2
Program Ends Jul 3
Students taking the 3-week Session 1 program only
Arrival Day May 21
Orientation May 22
Ethical Elephant Park visit (all day) May 23
Session One Starts May 24
Session One Ends June 11
Program Ends June 12
Students taking the 3-week Session 2 program only
Arrival Day June 11
Orientation June 12
Thai Cooking Class (all day) June 13
Session Two Starts June 14
Session Two Ends July 2
Program Ends July 3

Fees & Inclusions

summer 2021

Session One

  • Tourism, Ethnic Identity and Heritage in Thailand $3,490*
  • Asian Approaches to Holistic Health and Wellness $4,100*

Session Two

  • Environmental Conservation and Sustainable Development in Southeast Asia $3,490*

*This pricing is estimated, final pricing will be released at a later date.

What’s Included

  • Full tuition (4 – 8 credits from Elmhurst University)
  • Guaranteed pre-arranged housing
  • Overseas health insurance, plus evacuation and repatriation insurance
  • Orientation Program with meals, activities and transportation
  • WiFi access in Chiang Mai housing (WiFi may not be available in accommodations while travelling. See specific course pages for details)
  • Airport transfers and all course-related ground transport
  • Cultural events, excursions and field trips throughout the program
  • Ethical elephant park day visit (Session One only)
  • Thai cooking class (Session Two only)
  • Extensive pre-departure counseling and information
  • Readings for all courses (provided as PDFs to download)
  • Staff and resources available 24/7 to provide assistance and recommendations during emergencies


  • International airfares (approx $1,200 – 1,400)
  • Meals (approx $200-300 per session)
  • Local transportation for personal outings (approx $30 per session)
  • Travel insurance ($350)


TEAN Scholarships

Apply for TEAN scholarships – starting at $1,000 – for the chance to receive money specifically for studying abroad. Each year we award thousands of dollars in need- and merit-based scholarships, diversity scholarships, a full ride scholarship and more. Visit our scholarships page for details!

We Love Chiang Mai

Brynne Shannon

Program Manager

Chiang Mai Tip
Wat Phalad Hike

Wat Phalad is one of the first temples along the nature trail that ends at Doi Suthep. It’s an easy half hour hike with a gorgeous reward. From TEAN housing you can walk up Suthep toward the mountain and eventually you’ll see signs for the nature trail – from there it’s all green bliss and tranquility!


Where did you study abroad?
I studied abroad in Chiang Mai, Thailand, with TEAN. I wanted to go as far away as I could and experience something totally different than what I had grown up with. I had always been drawn to Asia, and after some research I decided that Thailand was the perfect place for me. I also lived in Lampang, Thailand upon graduating and I’ve traveled to Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Malaysia and Indonesia.

What inspired you to teach abroad?
I came back from my semester abroad feeling like my time in Thailand wasn’t finished. I knew I wanted to go back to Thailand after I graduated and the more I spoke to people who had taught English abroad the more I knew it was a good fit for me. I wanted to challenge myself and have an even more culturally immersive experience the second go around, and I also wanted to give something back to a country I fell in love with while studying abroad since it had given so much to me.

What makes Thailand a great place to study abroad?
Thailand is great because it forces students to step out of their comfort zone and learn more about the world and themselves as individuals. Not only are you experiencing a new culture, but you’re learning a new language, alphabet, cuisine, social norms, interactions, ways of life, etc. It seriously puts things into perspective. Thai people are some of the kindest and welcoming people you will ever meet – hands down. They make the experience so special and you can learn so much from them. Living in Thailand teaches you to slow down and enjoy what’s happening in the now and be thankful for what you have and who’s around you.

What should be on every student’s bucket list for a study abroad semester in Thailand?
A hike up to Wat Palad. This temple is on the way to the more famous Wat Doi Suthep, which sits on top of a mountain, but Wat Palad is tucked away in the forest surrounded by trees and a rushing waterfall during the rainy season. Students can hike up to the temple from their housing or hire a songteow to take them up the mountain. It is one of my favorite places in the world because of how quiet and serene it is. To me, it captures the essence of what Buddhism is all about. You can sit on the rocks and dip your toes in the waterfall while looking out at the spectacular view of the city that peeks out between the trees.

What is your favorite travel quote?
It’s not necessarily a travel quote, but one of my favorite Thai expressions I learned was “mai long, mai rue” which means “If you never try, you never know”. It inspired me to just say yes to everything and go for things even if I didn’t know what the outcome would be.

Natcha Waisuebkhao

Natcha Waisuebkhao

Resident Director - Thailand

Chiang Mai Tip
Pun Pun

There’s no lack of organic, vegetarian options throughout the city, but Pun Pun Organic Restaurant stands out from all the rest. With two locations, one near Central Airport Plaza and the other behind Wat Suan Dok, Pun Pun’s restaurants are products of a small organic farm, seed saving, sustainable living and learning centre located 50 km north of Chiang Mai. The restaurants were created with the goal of supporting local organic farmers in the region as well as providing healthy dishes (no MSG, GMOs or preservatives) to the community.

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