Turkish

Turkish Summer Program

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The Turkish summer program offers students the opportunity to increase their Turkish language skills through intensive language classes and experiential learning opportunities. Classes focus on improving speaking, listening, reading and writing in Turkish. Host family stays provide participants with valuable opportunities for Turkish conversation and insight into Turkish culture. Cultural activities and excursions complement the formal language classes and give participants a deeper understanding of Turkish history, society, and culture.

Program Location: Turkey
Program Dates: Summer programs last six to eight weeks and typically start in mid-June to early July and end in early to mid-August.
Accommodations: Host families

Why Turkish? “Approximately 75 million people speak Turkish as their first language, making it one of the world’s 15 most widely spoken first languages. Another 15 million people speak Turkish as a second language. In addition to Turkey, Turkish speaking people live in the Balkans, the Caucasus, and in Western Europe. The largest Turkish immigrant community lives in Germany, where Turkish is the second most widely spoken language after German.” Read more!

Good to know: The Turkish language is remarkable for grammar concepts such as vowel harmony and six noun cases. Turkish uses the same alphabet as English but with six additional characters. During Ottoman times, Turkish was written in Arabic script. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the father of modern Turkey, initiated the use of the Latin alphabet.

Turkish Academic Year Program

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The Turkish academic year program seeks to improve participants’ Turkish through an intensive immersion experience. Upon completion of the program, students should be able to understand clearly, speak smoothly, read comfortably, and write creatively in the Turkish language. Participants learn Turkish culture and customs first-hand by living with a host family. Local trips to places of cultural and historical interest will be arranged to reinforce lessons learned in school.

Program Location: Turkey
Program Dates: September through late June
Accommodations: Host families

Why Turkish? “Because they are closely related, studying Turkish also lays a solid foundation for learning other modern Turkic languages, like Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Tatar, Uzbek, and Uighur. While these languages may sound exotic, they are languages that are spoken in regions of strategic importance, like the Caucasus, the Balkans, China, and the former Soviet Union.”  Read more!

Good to know: Turkey’s location at the crossroads of Europe and Asia creates a unique blend of Eastern and Western traditions and culture, apparent in the customs, dress and language of the Turkish people. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk is known and revered as the father of modern Turkey. The name Atatürk means father of the Turks.

Fun fact! Many Turkish food terms have made their way into the English dictionary, including şiş kebap (shish kebab), and yoğurt (yogurt).

Pre- and Post-Program Expectations

All participants will be required to participate in pre-program language learning programs, as guided by their implementing organization. All participants will be required to complete a pre-program survey, pre-program language assessments (if requested), and several post-program surveys and language tests.

Find more information on Turkey on the U.S. Embassy site!



Explore multimedia stories about the NSLI-Y Turkish summer and academic year programs on NSLI-Y Interactive!


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