The SIT: Ecuador Development, Politics and Languages program analyzes the connections and interplay between language and power in Ecuador.  Students will examine how language shapes politics and how different groups in Ecuador have used languages to instill, reinforce, subvert, and reinvent power relationships, both historically and today.  Students on this program live in three different homestays and participate in educational excursions to sites such as Quichua - speaking villages, Guayaquil, an Amazonian community, as well as a month-long Independent Study Project.

Fields of study:

Intensive Spanish, Quichua, politics and linguistics


Minimum cumulative gpa of 2.8 (Whitman requirement)

Language Prerequisite:

Four recent semesters of college-level Spanish or the equivalent and the ability to follow coursework in Spanish

Semesters Offered:

Fall or Spring Semester (single semester only)


August-December; January-May


16 credits per semester - Required Courses:

  • Paradigms of Development & Political Discourse in Ecuador (3 credits)
  • Languages in Contact: Spanish, Quichua, and Other Languages in Ecuador (3 credits)
  • Advanced Readings on Contemporary Ecuador or Beginning Quichua (3 credits) 
  • Research Methods & Ethics: Approaches to Political and Linguistic Analysis (3 credits)
  • Independent Study Project (4 credits)

Credit Conversion:

1 SIT credit = 1 Whitman credit


Three homestays provide insight into different aspects of Ecuadorian life: Los Chillos, Quito, and an Amazonian community.


During the homestays, students take meals with their host families. During the other periods, students are either provided with meals or given a stipend so that they may purchase their meals.




Rolling admission, students are encouraged to apply early.


SIT Study Abroad Scholarships

Program Link:

SIT Ecuador: Development, Politics and Languages