CET Jordan: Intensive Language

Video and Photos

CET, cooking day
CET, cooking day
Jaresh
Jaresh
Wadi Rum
Wadi Rum
Exploring Wadi Rum!
Petra with the roommates! Sujood (on the left) is a student at the University of Jordan and lived in our apartment for the summer.
Historical mosaics in the city of Madaba.

About

Want to improve your Arabic fluency by leaps and bounds? CET Jordan provides just the context. The program features rigorous courses in both formal and informal Arabic, language partners, local roommates, and a full-time language pledge. You'll take an official Oral Proficiency Interview at the end of the term, perfect for adding to a résumé or grad school application. Arabic-based content courses and excursions—around Amman and throughout Jordan—will challenge your preconceptions and teach you to speak diplomatically about issues ranging from corruption to women in the military. From filming a tourism video to learning a folk dance, CET Jordan will give you chance after chance to experience the diversity and vibrancy of Arab culture. This program is for serious students with at least 2 semesters of previous Arabic language study.

Highlights
  • Local roommates & language partners
  • Intensive Modern Standard Arabic & Jordanian Dialect
  • Content-based language classes
  • Full-time language pledge
  • Official Oral Proficiency Interview score

Questions & Answers

Reviews

9.07 Rating
based on 27 reviews
  • Academics 9.2
  • Support 9
  • Fun 8.1
  • Housing 7.7
  • Safety 9
Showing 1 - 8 of 27
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Joe
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Rigorous and Rewarding

Without a doubt or exaggeration, CET Jordan is the best Arabic program in the world. The level of immersion and support the program allows for is truly exceptional--within days you'll be speaking Arabic around the clock and studying advanced topics (Arab politics, the history of conflict, religion and identity, and more!) all in the target language, flipping seamlessly between Modern Standard Arabic and the Levantine Dialect.

To be clear, it's a hard program, but the staff work really hard to pepper classes with exciting and rewarding excursions. During my semester, we spent a night camping in the gorgeous Wadi Rum desert with a Bedouin tribe, hiked through the carved stone city of Petra, swam in the Dead Sea, toured the historic Ajloun Castle, picked fruit at a local citrus farm, did yoga at an Ammani studio, met with the leader of a national political party, and relaxed at an authentic Turkish Bath House--and that's the abbreviated list!

Getting off the plane in Amman for the first time, I barely spoke Arabic and knew nothing of the country. By the end of the program, I'd written half a dozen academic papers in Arabic, made more friends than I can count, and gained a language I love. Cannot recommend highly enough.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Stick to the language pledge as much as possible. It's a powerful tool for language learning, and CET is the only program I know of that takes this that seriously. It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn a rich, challenging language, and you deserve the full experience!
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Annaliese
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A Complete Experience

CET provides a really complete experience. The academics are really challenging, of course, but we were able to explore a wide variety of topics in class that were really relevant to the culture, both in Jordan and in the wider Middle East. Combining that with the conversations I had with my Jordanian language partner meant that I could learn about almost any aspect of the environment and the people. Plus, we were able to visit places like Wadi Rum, Petra, Jerash, or do cultural events like cooking Jordanian dishes and visiting a Turkish bath. Overall, a fantastic experience that really complemented our language education. Plus, the teachers really, really care about their students and how they are doing, both academically and mentally/emotionally.

What would you improve about this program?
I will say that overall, it was a really great program. It would have been nice to do more local activities, like the Turkish bath, but I also understand that our time is limited, especially as the academics are so challenging.
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Isabel
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Exceptional Experience Learning Arabic in Jordan

CET Jordan is hands down the best program for students who care about Arabic language acquisition. I felt challenged to step as far outside of my comfort zone as I could, but I was never overwhelmed because I had the support of the program staff at each step. The teachers were all extremely friendly and prioritized getting to know the students as people, rather than solely as language learners. That resulted in a positive learning environment, and class became a time to spend time with friends rather than a stressful or boring space. CET is also really concerned with connecting students to Jordanian youth culture, and its location at the University of Jordan, as well as the language partner/roommate programs, gave me a great in to make local friends. I loved my experience during this semester so much that I decided to stay and participate in CET Jordan's Internship Program. My review of that can be found here: https://www.gooverseas.com/study-abroad/jordan/program/38096

For students who are hoping to improve their Arabic, learn about life in Jordan, and have fun doing it, CET is the best study abroad option.

P.S. If any women are concerned about what is okay to wear in Jordan, I wore T-shirts, skinny jeans, and leggings all the time. Maxi skirts and dresses are fine, too, but no need to buy a pair of elephant pants if that's not your style!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
The CET Jordan team is so ready to help students have the best time that they can in Jordan. They want each student to achieve their personal goals, and literally stay up at night trying to find ways to do that. However, they are not mind readers. So, if I could offer one piece of advice, it would be to communicate with the CET Jordan team about what your goals are and what obstacles you are facing. If you are open and honest with them about your experiences, they will bend over backwards to help you make it as beneficial as it can be.
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John
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The most influential Summer of my life!

It's difficult to express how amazing this summer is by writing it all out. I'm usually better talking in person but here we go!

Jordan - specifically Amman - is a beautiful place. Thousands of years of culture and history found in one city is something beautiful. I wouldn't have wanted to go anywhere else to spend two months learning Arabic. From the city of Petra to the Mars-like desert of Wadi Rum to the ruins of old castles from the Umayyad era...what's not to love (and I haven't even mentioned the food)?

The best complement to exploring Jordan, broadening my cultural experience, and also learning a language starkly different from my own was the CET program. Hours of classroom instruction paired with real-life, on-the-street homework assignments meant that I was learning relevant material that actually helped and prepared me to live in Amman for two months, not just learning a weird jumble of vocabulary from Al-Kitaab that you can't really use on the streets. By the end of my time here I could successfully negotiate prices with butchers and vegetable sellers, to navigating "almost" flawlessly in another country, like Palestine. This was only because of CET, and how much effort they actually put in to not only the program itself, but also to you. They honestly care so much about your education that they were willing to work with you in any way necessary. If I was with any other program in Jordan, I am certain I wouldn't have learned as much.

Additionally, I've made lifelong friends here. Truly. Jordanians and Americans.

Thank you to everyone at CET in Amman, and if you're trying to learn Arabic, this is the place/program to do it!

What was your funniest moment?
Oof. Not reading up enough on border crossings from Palestine into Jordan.
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Tiffany
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

New but Amazing Experience

The CET program here in Jordan is very eyeopening. You have the opportunity to meet so many new people all while being nestled in a lively little street in the capital. But this program is very different from what you may see some of your friends that study abroad in other parts of the world because the coursework is heavy and often found myself in my apartment or in cafes working on papers and homework. But the support given by the staff and teachers is truly helpful. It is a challenging program but it is planned to give the students breaks to explore and learn the culture along with the language. I came to the program knowing none of the dialect and it was extremely challenging at first but being surrounded by the language and being able to speak to other students at your same level is really great and very different from what I experienced at my university. To any future CET students, I would say to keep a very open mind because the country is so beautiful but very different. If you want to improve your Arabic from speaking to writing and just overall getting out of your comfort zone, this program is a good path.

What would you improve about this program?
The workload is very heavy, specifically the number of research papers assigned and it became very difficult to balance the papers, studying, and experiencing the country. It came down to having to decide between these three things everyday instead of having clear free time. I understand the necessity for an intensive program but the length and amount of papers seemed liked added stress that did not help overall with my quality of writing. I would make the paper for the language class the main paper and maybe 2 or 3 pages for the content courses.
Emi
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Best Way to Improve Your Arabic

CET Jordan: intensive language is the only study abroad program that I have participated in, but after speaking with others who have gone on similar study abroad programs, I am convinced that this is the best one for improving your Arabic language skills. It's called intense for a reason, and I was academically pushed like never before. But for the sleepless nights and the tears shed over homework, my Arabic skills grew exponentially. The teachers are all incredible; they are tough but their main goal is to support you and help you grow. The administration is disorganized at times which can be frustrating, but it gets easier if you learn to go with the flow. It's not perfect, no program is, but if you are looking to improve your language skills CET is a great way to go. And you'll fall in love with the country, I promise it. Word to the wise though: observe the language pledge!

What would you improve about this program?
On an administrative level, planning and communication could be improved, as this would help decrease stress on students who are already struggling to keep up with academics. Communicating more regularly with students would also be a plus- I've seen "weekly meetings" mentioned on some reviews and would agree that this would be fantastic. Further, increased support for students with health issues (mental or physical) should definitely be looked into.
Zoie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Study abroad in Jordan

I came into the program knowing no Arabic at all, and with such limited knowledge that I didn't even know what to be apprehensive about. While my time in Jordan constituted the first time in my life that I ever experienced culture shock, CET has a strong support system that really helps the American students readjust. The teachers and Jordanian roommates in the program were all so genuinely willing to help in whatever way they could. Classes were demanding and balancing the workload with making friends and getting accustomed to local norms was something that I definitely struggled a bit with, but I feel that I came out of the program a more confident person. Looking back on my experience, I am so glad that I had the opportunity to go to Jordan, and would not change my decision of study abroad location for the world.

What would you improve about this program?
I think students should be required to attend an information briefing the moment they get to the dorms, and that classes should start immediately the day after. Time is limited, and I would rather start learning immediately, rather than spending time exploring the city or getting situated in the dorms for the first couple days.
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Emma
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

CET Jordan: Amazing experience

I studied abroad in Jordan last semester (Spring 2018) and had a spectacular experience. In fact, the challenges of living in a new place, speaking a foreign language, and acclimating to a new culture made me appreciate the experience even more. I met amazing people (Americans and Jordanians alike), learned a ton, and pushed myself in ways I didn’t think possible. The 4-month intensive immersion program improved my Arabic skills in tremendous ways and provided me with a greater insight into the culture. You will work hard, but it’s all worth it. Highly, highly recommend!

What would you improve about this program?
It would be great if CET provided us with more information about places to visit and events happening in Amman. There is always more to explore!