Critical Language Scholarship Program | Ankara, Turkey

Ankara, Turkey

Program Dates:

June 15 - August 10, 2023

Hosting Institution:

Ankara University TÖMER

Program Overview

The CLS Turkish Program in Ankara, Turkey provides students with the opportunity to learn Turkish through intensive language study in an immersive environment. The program covers approximately one academic year of university-level Turkish during an 8-week period. The language instruction is designed to meet the needs of students from a variety of language levels and backgrounds, including those who are learning the language for the first time and students at the advanced level.

The CLS Program in Ankara is hosted by the Ankara University TÖMER Institute. The TÖMER Institute was founded in 1984 with the purpose of teaching Turkish to foreigners. At the time it was the only institution in Turkey where Turkish was taught as a foreign language. CLS students attend formal classroom language instruction for an average of three hours per day, five days per week. Classes focus on developing students’ reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills in Turkish and help students to quickly gain skills that are usable outside of the classroom. Formal language instruction is supplemented with cultural activities and excursions. In the past, students have visited local theatres, museums, and met with guest speakers. These supplemental activities are designed to expand the students’ understanding of Turkey’s history, geography and culture and provide opportunities to use Turkish outside of the classroom.

Students in Ankara live with host families, which gives them an opportunity to experience daily life in a Turkish family and further practice their language skills outside of class. Students have daily meals with their host family in Ankara and may also be invited to attend events or celebrate special occasions like weddings, birthdays, and religious holidays. Living with a host family gives students an intimate understanding of the rhythm of daily life in the capital city.

In addition to the relationship with their host family, students have regular one-on-one meetings with language partners. Language partners are typically local university students who are prepared to support students’ language learning in a more relaxed setting and to provide insights into cultural norms and customs. Students can discuss topics related to their own interests with their language partners, play board or card games, and explore Ankara together by visiting markets and cafes. Language partners are also prepared to help students navigate daily life in their host city and can recommend places to shop or assist in signing up for gym memberships or scheduling haircuts.