Costa Rica Arenal Volcano 5

We invite you to spend your summer with API in charming San Joaquín de Flores, Costa Rica! This program is designed to help you learn to communicate more effectively with Spanish speakers requiring medical attention and how cultural norms can influence interactions between medical professionals and their patients.

Improve your language and intercultural communication skills, earn valuable academic credit, learn more about the unique Costa Rican healthcare system, and explore all this beautiful country has to offer!

What's Included?


Pre Departure Services


APIConnect Platform

Orientation Materials and Resources

Access to International Phone Plans

API Alumni Network

Social Networking


On Site Services

Airport Reception

API Center

On-Site Orientation


Medical and Life Insurance


Resident Directors

Social and Cultural Activities

Welcome and Farewell Group Meals

Volunteer Opportunities


Housing (including meals and laundry)

Language and Culture Tools

Re-Entry Services

Re-Entry Materials and Support

Post-Program Evaluation


Alumni Network and API Ambassador Program

View all opportunities and amenities

Application Requirements

  • Minimum 2.7 G.P.A.
  • Open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors
  • Open to students with four semesters of college-level Spanish or the equivalent
  • Completed API application
  • University Approval Form
  • One official transcript
  • Entry requirement: valid passport with supporting documents
  • Applicants who are not U.S. citizens are encouraged to contact API prior to applying for more specific information about entry requirements.
Session Program Dates Program Cost Application Deadline Extended Application Deadline Payment Deadline
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API students participate in excursions designed to help familiarize them with the culture and surrounding areas of their host city and country. The following is a listing of potential excursions for API San Joaquín de Flores programs. API may need to modify the excursions offered in a given term due to travel restrictions or health and safety concerns.

What You’ll Study

TOTAL CREDITS - 6 U.S. semester credits

Students in this study abroad program will complete two courses and earn a total of 6 U.S. semester credits.

The core course, entitled “Communication for Medical Professions,” is designed to help students to communicate more effectively with Spanish speakers requiring medical attention and to learn how cultural norms can influence interactions between medical professionals and their patients. Students will extensively study the Costa Rican healthcare system. In addition to the core course, students will complete a standard advanced Spanish grammar course.

Students who have already completed advanced grammar courses at their home university are welcome to select a culture course from the Intensive Language and Culture Program. Students are advised, however, that the “Communication for Medical Professions” course is very time-intensive and culture course options may be limited due to scheduling conflicts.


API students will receive a transcript from U.S. accredited University of Massachusetts, Amherst upon completion of the program.

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    Kayla Cole

    Kayla Cole will be your Program Manager and will help prepare you for your API program.


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    Francy Orozco

    Francy Orozco will be your Resident Director in San Jose and a resource for you on-site.

Click Here to Find Classes



The Instituto San Joaquín de Flores operates on the contact hour system; the number of credits earned depends on the time spent in class with a professor. To determine the conversion of Costa Rican contact hours to U.S. semester credits, divide the contact hours per course by 15. Almost all courses at the Instituto are the equivalent of 3 U.S. semester credits.

Courses at Instituto San Joaquín de Flores (Summer Advanced Spanish for Medical Profession)

For the most up-to-date course availability on this program, explore our Class Finder. Sort courses by term, area of study, and more!

Click here to find courses, syllabi, and more!

  • Classes taught in Spanish
  • Great option for pre-med/nursing students
  • Transcript from U.S. accredited institution (University of Massachusetts, Amherst)

Students in San Joaquín de Flores live with local host families. Host families serve as a unique introduction into Costa Rican culture and may be made up of a married couple with children, a divorced or widowed woman with children still at home, or a family with some members living at home and others living outside of the city during the work week. As API places one student per family, all students have a private bedroom. Students are provided with 2-3 meals per day, as well as laundry service once per week.

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