Study Abroad Program Overview
Summer study abroad in Bangkok offers the chance to explore the traditional beliefs and religious practices of Buddhism, as you learn about the multi-faceted society and culture of Thailand.
This program is offered through the Pridi Banomyong International College (PBIC) Thai Studies Program at Thammasat University. Within easy walking distance of the campus are some of Thailand’s most sacred temples, the Grand Palace (the Emerald Buddha Temple), the National Theater, the National Museum, and many government ministries. Course-related weekend excursions will take you to provinces outside of Bangkok and complement your classroom learning.
The daily experience of living in this traditional and graceful society with its vital, progressive economy will deepen your study and understanding of Southeast Asia.
Check out this video created by the summer 2016 program and a 2013 video for a peek into the life of UCEAP summer students.
Students attend classes with international students.
Language of Instruction
A very limited introduction to Thai language study is required.
Go to the Participants section to see current or past calendars.
mid-June to late July
"First and foremost, be open minded about the culture, language, and practices that you will experience while in Thailand. Don't assume they don't have much to offer. Thai people are one of the most caring people you will ever meet. They will try to teach and share whatever knowledge they have with you, so give yourself a chance to meet them halfway.."
--UCEAP Summer Thai Studies Participant 2016
Students live in local apartments in Bangkok and share space with international students, other UC students, and possibly Thai students. More information on housing
Enjoy cultural activities and excursions arranged by Thammasat University. Past students have visited an elephant camp in the northern city of Chiang Mai, a floating market in Ampawa, and historic temples hundreds of years old in the ancient capital of Ayutthaya.
UCEAP students are supported by UC's network of study abroad offices at every UC campus and partnerships with UCEAP host universities throughout the world. Local faculty and staff abroad help students integrate into Thai culture and provide assistance with academics, housing, safety, and other issues.
See the UCEAP Program Guide
for program-specific details about host institutions, program structure, and courses; academic culture and conduct; units, exams, and grades; orientation; and housing.
Students take three courses in this summer program:
- Thai Language and Culture (2 quarter/1.3 semester UC units)
- Thai Buddhism (5 quarter/3.3 semester UC units)
- Society and Culture of Thailand (5 quarter/3.3 semester UC units)
The courses have an interdisciplinary focus and are offered for credit under a variety of subject areas, including religious studies, sociology, anthropology, and South and Southeast Asian studies, as appropriate.
Use the following resources to learn more:
Field excursions are an exciting, integral and required component of the courses. Journey back in time in a visit to Ayutthaya, the ancient capital of Thailand and one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. On a separate trip to Ampawa you will visit a monastery and various other sites which may include a floating market and firefly watching. During a long weekend stay in the northern city of Chiang Mai, explore some of Thailand’s most famous Buddhist temples, visit hilltribe villages, and enjoy shopping and traditional Lanna performances. All excursions are required as part of the coursework and arranged by Thammasat University.
"Many of our professors or guest lecturers were very knowledgeable and prominent people in Thailand. I was able to have more worthwhile conversations with them in a day compared to professors at UC in an entire quarter."
--UCEAP Participant Summer 2016
12 quarter/8 semester UC units required; 3 courses.
Internships, Research, and Independent Study
Internships, research, and independent study are not an option in this summer program.
Thammasat University, Bangkok
Thammasat University is one of the top universities in Southeast Asia enrolling approximately 25,000 students. Thammasat students are known for their activism and interest in Thai politics.
UCEAP is based on the main Thammasat University campus of Tha Prachan in the Chao Phraya riverfront area of central Bangkok.
Participation in UCEAP is a great value! The cost of studying abroad on UCEAP programs is typically less than that of non-UC study abroad programs. The dollar figures listed in the chart below represent an estimate of: 1) the UCEAP fees for the current year, and 2) the additional amount needed to cover your living expenses in this location. Estimates for personal travel, entertainment and Non-Resident (out of state) Fees are not included.
Keep in mind that on UCEAP you take your financial aid with you. The amount of your financial aid package will take into account the total estimated costs of this experience. One advantage of selecting UCEAP for study abroad is that we facilitate the process by working with your UC Financial Aid Office (FAO), informing them of your UCEAP participation and providing them with your UCEAP budget. Just like your UC Campus billing office, we receive your financial aid and scholarships from your FAO, apply it to cover the UCEAP program fees, and disburse any remaining aid on a set schedule.
* Estimates do not include Miscellaneous Campus Fees or, if applicable, Non-Resident Supplemental Tuition, Graduate or Professional Fees. If you are subject to out-of-state tuition at your UC campus, you will pay Non-Resident Fees on UCEAP.
1 UCEAP Fees: This represents an estimate of UCEAP fees for the current year. Actual amounts will vary due to potential changes to UC fees, exchange rate fluctuation, etc. This figure includes UC tuition and fees for undergraduate, in-state residents. For a detailed breakdown of what’s included in this estimate, visit the Participants Portal and select the appropriate program. Non-Resident Fees apply: If you are subject to out-of-state tuition at your UC campus, you will pay non-resident fees on UCEAP.
2 Additional Costs: Average living expenses include but are not limited to room and board, transportation, books, supplies, and other incidentals and do not include recreational travel or entertainment. The total cost will vary depending on your personal expenses, exchange rate fluctuation, and the program you attend. For a detailed breakdown of the estimate, visit the “Cost” tab of the appropriate program.
All fees are subject to change without notice.
These expenses are estimated for 2015-16. Actual amounts will vary due to potential changes to UC fees, exchange rate fluctuation, etc. For a more detailed breakdown of 2015-16 payment information, visit the Participants Portal
and select the appropriate program. Estimates do not include non-resident supplemental tuition. If you are subject to out-of-state tuition at your UC campus, you will pay the same non-resident fees on UCEAP.
Here’s what is included in the estimate:
While on UCEAP, you are covered by UC’s accident and medical insurance, including non-medical benefits, and 24/7 travel assistance anywhere in the world.
- Predeparture expenses (visa, etc.)
- Round-trip transportation from California
- UC fees
- Tuition at host institution
- On-site orientation
- Room and board
- Two-day excursion to Ampawa including room, board, tours, and lectures
- Weekend trip to Chiang Mai including room, board, and entertainment
- Day excursion to Ayuttaya
- Books and other incidental expenses
- Automatic transfer of credits and grades to your UC transcript
UCEAP scholarships are available. Please visit our scholarships overview page for general information and details regarding eligibility requirements and application deadlines.
Sophomore, Junior, Senior, Graduate
2.50 cumulative GPA at the time of application and maintained through the end of the last term prior to departure.
All applicants must also have:
- Serious academic goals and a clear plan for integrating EAP studies into the student's UC degree program.
- Social, interpersonal, and cross-cultural sensitivity; maturity; willingness to adapt successfully to different living and academic environments; appropriate behavior in a variety of situations.
- A willingness to abide by program regulations.
- Completed all campus- and program-specific requirements.
Application Information and Deadlines
Important: If you are planning to participate in back to back study abroad programs (with UCEAP or any other organization), you must notify your campus study abroad office. There are important things to consider when participating in consecutive programs, such as program dates and visa requirements. Not all program combinations are possible.
Application deadlines and information on the application process are available through your Campus EAP Office. Supplemental pre-departure materials will be required for many programs, including, but not limited to, host institution applications, visa and housing applications, medical clearances, etc.
For participation in the program, you must meet all deadlines and submit complete application materials.
These are minimum requirements. After selection by your UC Campus EAP Office, final admission is determined by Thammasat University.
Visit your Campus Study Abroad website for program-specific deadlines: