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All majors are encouraged to apply and the CLS is open to both undergraduate and graduate students.

Critical Language Scholarship Program  

The Critical Language Scholarship Program provides fully funded   group-based intensive language instruction and structured cultural   enrichment   activities overseas each summer   for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students. CLS Program languages include Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Turkish, and Urdu. Levels available for each language are as follows:

•Azerbaijani, Bangla, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Punjabi, Turkish, or Urdu: Beginning, intermediate or advanced level;

•Arabic or Persian: Advanced beginning, intermediate or advanced level;

•Chinese, Japanese, or Russian: Intermediate or advanced level.

The CLS Program is part of a U.S. government effort to expand dramatically the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. Students of diverse disciplines and majors are encouraged to apply. Participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers.

The CLS Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA).


All applicants must be U.S. citizens. Applicants must be enrolled in a U.S. degree-granting program at the undergraduate or graduate level. All candidates must have completed at least their first year of university-level study by the beginning of the summer institute. Students in all disciplines including business, engineering, sciences, social sciences and humanities are encouraged to apply.

The CLS Program welcomes all eligible applications and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability.

Grant Benefits

All CLS Program costs are covered for participants including: travel to and from the student’s U.S. home city and program location, mandatory pre-departure orientation in Washington, DC, applicable visa fees, room, board, seven to ten weeks of group-based intensive language instruction, program-sponsored travel within country, and all entrance fees for CLS Program cultural enrichment activities.

Note: U.S. passport fees will not be paid by the scholarship

Published in Research Scholarships