For students who wish to see more of Southeast Asia, the South East Asia Comparative Semester (SEACS) doesn’t disappoint. From the green hills of Northern Thailand, to the bustling streets of Cambodia’s Phnom Penh, to the majestic ruins of Angkor outside of Siem Reap, this program splits time amongst both fascinating countries. After gaining a better understanding of the region during two months in Chiang Mai, Thailand, the program continues to Cambodia where coursework emphasizes the recent history of the country, while also bringing students face-to-face with dynamic Khmer civilization.


Semester Program
(August-December, January-May)


Application Deadlines:
Spring - November 1
Fall - June 30

2.5 to apply


Chiang Mai University, Thailand
Pañña-sa stra University, Cambodia

Off-campus Student Apartments
Guesthouse or homestay in Cambodia

12 - 15 credits


Obtain a unique perspective on the region, including its history, traditions and prospects for the future, by living and studying for two months in Thailand and two months in Cambodia through a partnership between the Institute of Southeast Asian Affairs (ISEAA) at Chiang Mai University and Pañña-sa-stra University of Cambodia (PUC)

Study on campus in both locations surrounded by local students, yet feel the course content really come to life with field trips planned throughout the program, including excursions to the Golden Triangle and majestic Angkor Wat, the largest religious monument in the world

Participate in TEAN’s comprehensive three-day Orientation upon arrival in Chiang Mai, including a day with Southeast Asia’s majestic elephants, cultural activities and informative sessions designed to help you feel adjusted and ready to jump into your semester in Southeast Asia. An additional Orientation will be held in Cambodia by program staff

Benefit from TEAN’s Thailand and Cambodia-based staff who meet with you regularly for meals and further cultural activities

Study at the top regional university in Thailand and the English-speaking campus of Pañña-sa-stra University of Cambodia (PUC) meeting with the country’s academic elite and future leaders

Spend a weekend in the tropical south soaking up the sun, boating and experiencing the exotic Thai islands everyone raves about

Program Details


Be introduced to this vibrant and engaging country with our extensive three-day Orientation Excursion in Thailand. Combining informative academic sessions with introductory cultural experiences, each activity helps students ease into their semester abroad. Over the three days, we provide helpful information to prepare you for the semester, including tips on cultural customs, how to seek medical support and other matters to ensure you have a successful semester.

Providing a soft landing into Southeast Asia, upon arrival into Chiang Mai you will be transported to your accommodation, where you will meet up with other TEAN students. Over the next three days, experience sensory overload as you visit a local market, enjoy your first tastes of Thailand’s culinary offerings, visit historic Buddhist temples and spend a day with Southeast Asia’s magnificent elephants. For these first few days in the country you won’t need to think about meals or transport, as we have it all sorted for you!

Additionally, upon arrival in Phnom Penh, ISEAA and TEAN staff will provide an Orientation to the city and university introducing you to ISEAA Cambodia alumni to jumpstart your in-country network.


Enjoy a unique living experience developed to help facilitate cultural immersion on a daily basis by living off-campus in a modern student apartment complex with Thai Program Assistants. Each participant has their own room and shares a small common living area with their Thai or TEAN student roommate. Thai roommates are Chiang Mai University students specifically engaged as TEAN Program Assistants who are on hand to assist all program participants assimilate into the new culture. TEAN students can apply to live with a Thai roommate.

Just a five-minute walk to campus, each apartment has built-in furniture, a walk-in closet, refrigerator, air conditioner, TV, bathroom and Internet. Within the complex you will find a lobby, meeting room, study room, fitness center and male/female swimming pools. Washers and dryers are also located in each apartment building and on the apartment grounds students can take advantage of convenience stores, restaurants, bakeries, laundry and ATM machines. The housing is located in a vibrant university area, with cool student cafés, awesome street food and restaurants all a short walk from your front door.

In Phnom Penh you have the option of an immersion experience by living with a homestay family, or more independent guesthouse living with other TEAN students.

thailand’s southern islands excursion

A stay in Thailand wouldn’t be complete without visiting the country’s stunning tropical islands. While studying in Chiang Mai, spend one weekend down south staying on the popular Railay West Beach, a lush oasis only accessible by boat. After a speedboat journey exploring the islands of Andaman Sea, known for its unbelievable turquoise waters and striking karst cliffs, fill the rest of your days relaxing on Railay Beach, kayaking to Phra Nang Beach, lounging by the pool and simply soaking up the island vibes.

The weekend includes all flights, transportation, accommodation, island excursions, special group meals and more. Get ready for your island getaway!

TEAN Staff

Upon arrival in both Thailand and Cambodia, you will be met by our on-site Resident Directors who will provide assistance throughout your time in the countries. 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.


Every TEAN student will be provided a Thai buddy who studies at Chiang Mai University. During the first few weeks of semester your Thai buddy will introduce to the local area and Chiang Mai from a student perspective.


About the Academic Program

  • Students split their time between Chiang Mai, Thailand and Phnom Penh, Cambodia in this Southeast Asia Studies Comparative Semester (SEACS) program.
  • In Thailand the program is based at Chiang Mai University, founded in 1964 as Northern Thailand’s first institution of higher education and is now home to approximately 36,000 students
  • TEAN students are hosted by the Institute of Southeast Asian Affairs (ISEAA) at Chiang Mai University that offers courses on the history, culture and society of Thailand and Southeast Asia. The ISEAA courses are transcripted by Portland State University (PSU) in the U.S.
  • Nestled at the foot of Suthep Mountain, just minutes from Chiang Mai’s city center, Chiang Mai University is surrounded by an eclectic student-focused hub of affordable hip cafés, street food and night markets.
  • Through a partnership between ISEAA and Pañña-sa-stra University of Cambodia (PUC), students continue their studies through ISEAA- based instruction on the Phnom Penh campus of Pañña-sa-stra University.
  • PUC is based in the busy city center of this quickly developing capital just a few minutes walk from the Independence Monument, considered the heart of the city.


Required Courses
All students take a 3-credit Thai language course and a 3-credit Khmer language course. While for most students these will be the introductory language courses, students who have some proficiency will be placed in a course at the appropriate level .

Thai Language 1 (3-credits)
This course focuses on spoken and aural Thai language competency as it relates to daily life, with additional skills in elementary reading and writing.
Taught in the first half of the semester while in Thailand.

Khmer Language 1 (3-credits)
Taught in the second half of the semester while in Cambodia.

Cambodia: History, Politics and Development (3-credits)
Taught in the second half of the semester while in Cambodia.

Elective Courses
Students must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credits. In addition to the above three courses, students must select a minimum of another three credits from the below list.

Buddhism in Southeast Asia (3 credits)
Instructor: Dr. Brooke Schedneck

International Relations of Mainland Southeast Asia (3 credits)
Instructor: Dr. Paul Chambers

Where are all the Women? Religion and Social Change in Asia (3 credits)
Instructor: Dr. Brooke Schedneck

Sex Work, Trafficking and Rescue in Southeast Asia (1 credit)
Instructor: Adam Dedman

For detailed course information refer to Step 2 – Get Schooled – of our 6 easy steps to studying abroad under Already Applied.

Program Excursions

Village Homestay

After your initial orientations with TEAN and ISEAA, you will be transported to a rural village for a five-day homestay experience. While Thailand is modernizing at a rapid rate, at least 70% of the country’s population still lives in rural villages and a true introduction to Thailand could not be complete without experiencing and understanding Thai village life. Students travel to the village, along with Chiang Mai University staff, and live with a local family for five days. During your stay, you will begin your Thai language studies while also becoming involved in community life by working on a service project within the village.

Academic Excursions

Each semester students take two multi-day excursions to various parts of the region. In Thailand students typically travel to the Golden Triangle to stop at relevant historical and religious sites, and visit NGOs in the region to learn more about their work often related to sex trafficking or supporting Burmese refugees.

In Cambodia, students travel to Siem Reap and its famous Buddhist temple complex, Angkor Wat – the largest religious monument in the world and one of the most important archaeological sites of Southeast Asia.

These excursions are not just trips, they bring the content of your academic courses to life.



  • 2.5 GPA
  • Sophomore standing at a two-year or four-year degree-granting institution at the time of enrollment.

TEAN Events

Activities / Immersion

Our local staff arrange various activities during the semester designed to help immerse you in the local culture. In addition, at least once a month in Thailand the group meets up to explore Thai culture through the delicious cuisine with TEAN dinners. In Phnom Penh, you meet weekly for a dinner with the TEAN Resident Director. These events are included in your semester program. Below are examples of previous cultural activities arranged for students. Note that activities may change each semester.

Thai Cooking Class

We can’t send you home without first making sure you have learned how to make all those delicious meals you’ve been ordering from your favorite street food vendors. Spend a fun day with your fellow TEAN students cooking up a storm at a local cooking class. Don’t forget the included recipe book so you can recreate a Thai feast for family and friends once you return home.

Cambodian Traditional performance

Experience a traditional Cambodian performance one evening at Cambodian Living Arts. This organization is focused on reviving Cambodia’s arts and culture that was wiped out by the Khmer Rouge.

Program Dates

Spring 2017

Application Deadline Nov 1
Arrive in Chiang Mai Jan 11
TEAN Orientation Jan 12 Jan 14
Housing Move-In Jan 14
University Orientation Jan 15
Thai Village Homestay Jan 16 Jan 20
Classes Begin Jan 23
Travel to Cambodia Mar 19
Classes Begin in Cambodia Mar 20
Semester Break Apr 8  Apr 23
Last day of exams May 19
Program Ends May 20

Fall 2016

Arrive in Chiang Mai Aug 9
TEAN Orientation Aug 10 Aug 13
Housing Move-In Aug 13
University Orientation Aug 14
Thai Village Homestay Aug 15 Aug 19
Classes Begin Aug 22
Semester Break Oct 8 Oct 23
Travel to Cambodia Oct 23
Classes Begin in Cambodia Oct 24
Last day of exams Dec 16
Program Ends Dec 17

Fees & Inclusions

Spring 2017

  • Tuition & Services: $7,380
  • Housing: $1,320

What’s Included

  • Full Tuition
  • Guaranteed pre-arranged, off-campus student housing in Chiang Mai
  • Guaranteed pre-arranged housing in a guesthouse or home-stay in Phnom Penh
  • Overseas health insurance, plus evacuation and repatriation insurance
  • Services of local Resident Directors
  • Three-day TEAN Orientation Program with all meals, excursions, accommodations and transportation in Chiang Mai
  • Thailand’s Southern Islands Excursion
  • One-day Orientation with meals, excursions and transportation in Phnom Penh
  • Cultural events and group meals scheduled throughout the semester
  • Wireless internet access in housing
  • Cell phone provided upon arrival with initial credit
  • Five-day Thai village home stay
  • Golden Triangle multi-day academic excursion
  • Siem Reap / Angkor Wat multi-day academic excursion
  • All course readings provided as pdfs
  • Flight from Chiang Mai, Thailand to Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  • Extensive pre-departure counseling and information packets
  • Official academic transcripts at conclusion of program
  • Credit approval and transfer assistance
  • Help with student visa preparation
  • Financial aid transfer planning
  • Airport pickup and transfer to orientation hotel in Chiang Mai, airport transfer mid-semester for flight to Cambodia, airport pickup in Cambodia
  • Farewell Dinner at conclusion of program
  • A truly one of a kind adventure!

What’s Not Included

  • International airfare ($1,200 – 1,800)
  • Student visa ($150)
  • Electricity for housing when in Thailand ($100, but depends on usage)
  • Meals during the semester ($700)
  • Local transportation ($100)
  • School uniform for Thailand ($30)

*Numbers are estimated based on previous student experience and budget. Actual amounts will vary depending on student.


TEAN Scholarships

In addition to the current financial aid you receive, you may want to consider one of our many scholarships. Each year we award thousands of scholarship dollars to qualified program participants, including a full ride scholarship for a Fall or Summer program. Refer to our Scholarships information for details.

We Love Southeast Asia


Megan Dethlefs

Resident Director - Cambodia

Phnom Penh Tip
Market Foods

The Russian market has some great shopping, but also some delicious food. Try the Banh Xeo (“ban chow”)- a savory crepe filled with fried pork and veggies, or the Lort Cha- short fat noodles fried with meat (or no meat) and topped with a fried egg.

Shannon Diegel

Shannon Diegel

Program Manager

Phnom Penh Tip
Weekend Trip

If you only have a day, go for a bike ride on Silk Island, it’s only 30 minutes away from town. If you have a weekend, take a van to Kampot, a beautiful riverside town where you can kayak, bicycle, and just hang out by the water.

Lauren Gabell

Lauren Gabell

Marketing Director

Phnom Penh Tip
Best Study Spot

Brown cafe has great coffee and is popular with Cambodians, expats, and tourists. There’s a new branch located right by the university. It’s a bit noisy though so if you like somewhere a little more quiet, check out Artillery, located in a quaint little alleyway near the Royal Palace.

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