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Critical Language Scholarship Program

Pace Institutional Deadline: Friday October 5, 2012

Deadline to apply: mid-November 2012 (for summer 2013)

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program offers intensive summer language institutes overseas in thirteen critical need foreign languages for summer 2013. Countries may include: Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Japan, Jordan, Morocco, Oman, Russia, South Korea, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, or others where the target languages are spoken. Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) institutes provide fully-funded group-based intensive language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences for seven to ten weeks for U.S. citizen undergraduate, Master’s and Ph.D. students.

The CLS Program is part of a U.S. government effort to expand dramatically the number of Americans studying and mastering critical need 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. 


  • All applicants must be U.S. citizens.
  • Applicants must be currently enrolled in a U.S. degree-granting program at the undergraduate or graduate level.
  • Current undergraduate students must have completed at least one year of general college course-work by program start date (one year is defined as two semesters or three quarters).
  • Be in acceptable mental and physical health. Grantees will be required to submit a satisfactory Medical Information Form and Physician’s Statement.
  • Applicants must be 18 by the beginning of the 2012 CLS Program.

Please see 2012 CLS Institute Language Levels for more information on language pre-requisites for individual institutes. Students in all disciplines, including business, engineering, law, medicine, sciences, and humanities are encouraged to apply.

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, a mandatory Washington, D.C. pre-departure orientation, applicable visa fees, room, board, group-based intensive language instruction, program-sponsored travel within country, and all entrance fees for CLS Program cultural enhancement activities. Please note that U.S. passport fees will not be paid by the scholarship, and you will be required to cover transportation to and from your U.S. home address and the airport for CLS Program travel. Selected applicants must have a U.S. passport valid through 2013 with at least two blank visa pages by early February 2012. Please plan in advance to avoid visa delays.

Selection Process

  • Award recipients will be selected on the basis of merit with consideration for:
  • Academic record and potential to succeed in a rigorous academic setting;
  • Ability to adapt to a different cultural environment;
  • Diversity;
  • Plan for continuation of study of the language; and
  • Plan to use the language in future career.

All applicants are initially read by two outside academic readers, and the top applications are reviewed by panels of academic and experts in the area and language. Applicants will be notified of the results of their application to the CLS Program by mid- to late February. After notification, selected participants will be required to complete a language evaluation. Selected applicants will be assigned to a CLS institute site by mid- to late March based on language evaluation results along with information provided in the online application.

To learn more, visit the CLS Institutes page.

Pace University Education Abroad