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Jordan: Language + Culture (CIEE)
Amman, Jordan (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Academic Year,
Homepage: Click to visit
Program Sponsor: CIEE 
Program Dates &
Click here to view
Restrictions: AU- applicants only
Budget Sheets Fall,
Fact Sheet:
Housing: Homestay, Shared Apt. Internship: Yes
Advisor: Kelly Jo Bahry Minimum GPA: 2.75
Class Level Required for Admission: Junior standing
Program Type:
Not Direct Enrollment
Program Description:

Is this program right for you?

The program is designed for students who have an interest in Jordan and the Middle East. There is no language pre-requisite, but students are required to take colloquial Arabic and Modern Standard Arabic courses. Topics courses are focused on the region in the areas of anthropology, history, economics, literature, religion, archaeology, environment, political science, and the media. Students take 15 credits a semester.

student with two ciee staff


CIEE Language and Culture students study at the Princess Sumaya University of Technology (PSUT), located in downtown Amman. PSUT is the only private and nonprofit university in Jordan and is known as a center of educational excellence both in the country and the surrounding region. The institution’s strong connections with a variety of public- and private-sector organizations will allow students to take advantage of internship (full year students), independent research, and community engagement opportunities.

The program is academically rigorous and offers focused students an opportunity to make great strides in their language and overall knowledge of the region. Students attend Arabic language courses five days per week in the morning.

Required Courses
Modern Standard Arabic: 6 credits
Colloquial Jordanian Arabic: 3 credits

The CIEE Language and Culture program offers students a series of specially designed area studies courses in such fields as archaeology, economics, history, international relations, literature, politics, and religion. Area studies courses provide an overview of issues relevant to Jordan and the broader Middle East region.
  Area studies courses are held in the afternoon. Area studies classes are relatively small, and lectures tend to be the method of teaching, however instructors welcome questions and discussion.

Elective Courses
Area studies courses are worth three credits each. Students are expected to take two of these courses: 6 credits

Courses and course descriptions can be found here.

Course Equivalency: Click here to find out which courses on this program have already been equated to AU courses. Please note that you are NOT limited to just these courses. Students will need to request equivalency for courses which have not been previously reviewed.

Students are encouraged to bring wireless-enabled laptops and budget for purchasing pay-as-you-go internet data plans from local service providers. Internet cafés are a convenient and inexpensive option, and Wi-Fi is also available throughout the PSUT campus.

Internships Are for Academic Year Students Only

Internships are not required, but are possible for academic credit in the spring semester only for academic year students.  Qualified students in the spring semester are placed in pre-screened internships with a non-governmental organization involved in community development, public opinion, social welfare, women's rights and political participation, environmental protection, or women's studies. Students record their experiences in a journal, which is evaluated monthly during the internship, and complete a final research paper that uses their experience at the organization to make inferences about issues in the region. In addition, students meet for weekly seminars and complete an assigned reading list. Approval for participation in the Internship Course must be obtained from the Resident Director and the student's home institution during the application process.


AU Abroad provides students the opportunity to apply for the AU Abroad Mobility grant, in which students can earn up to $2500 per semester towards their tuition and program fees.  CIEE also provides students the ability to apply for several different scholarships for their programs.  It is the responsibility of the student to find out how to apply for these opportunities.

Student Life

Amman has a history that reaches back at least 5,000 years. Despite the ancient ruins that dominate the downtown skyline, much of the city only dates back to the 1970s. Draped over several hills, Amman is a study in contrasts. A traditional downtown souk (marketplace) is a taxi ride away from massive, American-style shopping malls. It is a very accessible, cosmopolitan city with numerous museums, art galleries, theaters, and cinemas. With its reputation for security and hospitality, Amman is home to inhabitants from all over the Middle East. The city provides a safe and stable environment for students to learn about the region. Please read over the student blog for current happenings with this program.

Students begin their study abroad experience in Amman even before leaving home by participating in a CIEE online pre-departure orientation. Meeting with students online, the resident staff share information about the program and site, highlighting issues that alumni have said are important, and giving you time to ask questions before leaving home. The online orientation allows students to connect with others in the group, reflect on what you want to get out of the program, and learn what others in the group would like to accomplish. The CIEE goal for the pre-departure orientation is simple—to help students understand more about the program and site, as well as your goals for the program, so that you'll arrive to the program well-informed and return home having made significant progress towards those goals.

During the program abroad students are paired with local Jordanian students, both to practice Arabic and to get acquainted with local culture.

Housing and Meals

Study abroad students have the option of living with a Jordanian host family or in an apartment with other CIEE program participants. Homestay placements are made on the basis of compatibility between families and students, and in some cases a suitable homestay may not be available for every interested student. Students in homestays generally eat two meals a day with their families and most meals on the weekends. Students are responsible for weekly lunches. Students selecting the apartment option need to budget for all meals, as they are not included in the program fee. All CIEE housing options in Jordan require students to make adjustments to the host culture, including curfews, limits on guests, and decorum. Apartments have limits on visitors and quiet hours for safety purposes and deference to local norms. Students receive some meals during orientation and during CIEE-sponsored excursions.

For students planning to stay for the academic year, meals between the fall and spring semesters are not included in the program fee unless they continue to reside with their homestay family.

Jordan - Amman PanoramaField Trips & Activities

The academic program is supplemented with excursions to Jordan’s archaeological, historical, and natural wonders. Each semester students will have an overnight trip to Petra and Wadi Rum and a day trip to one of Jordan’s famous archaeological sites. Students will also have the opportunity to attend a community service trip to one of Jordan’s rural areas. Trips vary between the fall and spring semesters depending upon the weather. Resident staff will keep students up-to date on local cultural events, including films, concerts, and conferences.

A range of volunteer options are available to study abroad students, many involving helping others with their English language skills. Previously, students have volunteered with local and international NGOs, and organizations in the for-profit sector. CIEE dedicates several weekends each semester to the cleaning, painting, and general maintenance of a school in an underdeveloped community in Jordan. Program participants are encouraged to volunteer their time on these weekends to help improve the learning environment at an adopted school while also learning more about the host community. Volunteer service does not receive academic credit and is subject to availability.

CIEE organizes a variety of cultural activities that complement students’ language studies. These activities give participants the opportunity to learn new skills, including Arabic calligraphy, folk dancing, and Jordanian cooking. CIEE also invites distinguished guest speakers to give talks on topics such as interfaith relations and environmental protection in Jordan.

Visa Requirements

All American citizens can obtain a visa upon arrival at the Amman airport. CIEE will help each student obtain a residence permit after they are in the country.

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Academic Year 2015-2016 02/25/2015
Varies by program TBA TBA
NOTE: please note the start and end dates of this program are approximate and will be determined after acceptance.
Fall 2015 03/01/2015
Varies by program TBA TBA
Spring 2016 09/23/2015 ** Varies by program TBA TBA

** The time it takes to receive an admissions decision varies greatly by program; it can take as little as two weeks or as long as several months. Contact AU Abroad for further details on your program's admissions timeline.

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