Alaska Ethnobotany
Alaska Ethnobotany

Alaska Ethnobotany

Exploring the Relationships Between People and Plants

Alaska Ethnobotany Program (EBOT)

Ethnobotany is the study of the relationships between people and plants. Ethnobotany as an academic discipline is relatively young and it is interdisciplinary; it builds on concepts and methods from both, the humanities and the...

Funding and Partners

The Alaska Ethnobotany Program is part of the Drumbeats Consortium funded by the Alaska Native-Serving and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions Education Competitive Grants Program [grant no. 2019-38426-30390/project accession no. 1020604] from the USDA National Institute of...

Why study Ethnobotany?

Ethnobotany has a broad range of applications. No matter what their professional backgrounds and motivations to study ethnobotany are, our students share a common interest in plants and the multiple roles they play for human...

EBOT Courses & Degrees

EBOT Courses & Programs

Our new degree, the Occupational Endorsement Certificate (OEC) in Ethnobotany as a replacement for the Certificate has recently been approved and added to the UAF catalog. Currently, all courses are distance delivered. We hope to be able offer EBOT 100, Introduction to Ethnobotany as a field course again in the future. Our College, CRCD, offers in-state tuition to all of our online students, no matter where they live! Thanks to our generous funder, USDA NIFA, we are able to offer a limited amount of tuition scholarships. Please contact us for details.

Apply to the Ethnobotany Program

Student Projects

View some highlighted final projects from Applied Ethnobotany Fall and Spring (EBOT 250/251). Find more project posts here.

Wild Plants in Alaska’s Food System

My third project for Applied Ethnobotany is a research project about wild plants within Alaska’s food system.  This blog post is an adaptation of my...
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Cattail Baskets

Cattails There are three species of cattails in the family Typhaceae growing in North America.  Of these three species, only Typha latifolia L., or the...
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Pine Needle Basket

At the beginning of the year I was shopping in an antique store and found two pine needle baskets. They were beautiful so I took...
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Cottonwood Oil

Description Populus balsamifera Linnaeus is a deciduous tree in the Salicaceae (willow) family. Populus comes from Latin “of the people” which shows how relevant and...
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EBOT 100 — Introduction to Ethnobotany


EBOT is a blended online and face-to-face field course. After four weeks of online assignments, students meet for a week-long field course in Bethel, Alaska. Students get introduced to the basics of the interdisciplinary field of ethnobotany, conduct their own hands-on ethnobotanical projects and learn from Elders. More…

What do previous students say?

“Ebot was an enjoyable class that has made me appreciate how plants play an important role in cultures. I especially enjoyed those ahh-hah moments that occurred many times as I learned about plants within the Yup’ik Culture. I can’t wait to use what I learned in Ebot 100 in my own Elementary classroom!”
~Renee Green, Hooper Bay, AK. EBOT 100 Student, 2019

“My favorite part of the class, aside from being able to learn about new plants and eating my weight in berries on the tundra, was spending time with the Elders and others in the community- listening to what they had to share as well as bearing witness to the resilience of a language and people who are still here despite settler colonialism.”
~Taisia Yamamura, Waianae, HI.  EBOT 100 Student, 2019

“The EBOT100 course is an irreplaceable, life-changing opportunity that allows students the hands-on experience of conducting Ethnobotanical research and to learn indispensable knowledge about Alaskan culture concerning plants in person from Yup’ik Elders in the realms of health, nutrition, and functional use (…)”
~ Derek Zeller, Manhattan, KS. EBOT 100 Student, 2019.


See what's new with the Ethnobotany Program! Access the news archive here.

Ethnobotany popular at 2021 ONC Science and Culture Camp

In late July 2021, EBOT instructor Lisa Strecker joined the Ethnobotany instructor team, Sara Murray and Gloria Simeon, to work with local Elders and youth...
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Congratulations to our 2021 Graduates!!

In the 2021 UAF Kuskokwim Campus graduation ceremony, 23 students were awarded a Certificate in Ethnobotany; three students who had earned their certificate in 2020...
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2021 KuC Graduation Keynote Speaker: Gloria Simeon

Watch the 2021 UAF Kuskokwim Campus graduation keynote address by Yup'ik Elder and 2021 EBOT Certificate graduate Gloria June Al'apacuuk Simeon: Gloria Simeon keynote address....
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