Program Format

The SLA Grant offers a number of flexible options that allow you to craft your summer language study to specific needs and goals. However, all proposals for SLA study should adhere to the following program format criteria:

  • Language-Focus: All programs must include a rigorous foreign language acquisition component. Programs primarily devoted to foreign language research or cultural study will not be funded. Awardees are not permitted to assume outside employment/internships during their program.   
  • Length & Contact Hours: Proposals should include at least 15-20 hours of classroom dedicated soley to foreign language instruction per week over 6-8 weeks (or 85-120 hours of total instruction). Requests for exceptions should be directed to the Director of the SLA Program, Prof. Brian Ó Conchubhair.
  • One Program & One Language: Proposals are limited to one program and one language of study. Proposals that include the study of multiple languages and/or multiple programs are not permitted.  Additionaly, applicants are not allowed to combine their SLA Grant award with any other funding or study/research focus.
  • Internationally-Focused Programs: Whenever possible, program proposals should be for study abroad, within an immersive environment that maximizes language acquisition and acculturation. If safety or logistical considerations prevent study abroad, a small selection of domestic intensive language study programs may be proposed instead. However, proposals that include an international program are typically funded before proposals for such domestic study.


Award Requirements

SLA Grant awards require recipients to agree to several important program components that are intended to maximize their language acquisition and acculturation outcomes. These include:

  • Journaling: Complete at least 8 assigned blog posts before, during, and after your language study abroad.
  • Images: Submit a headshot and a few photos from your journey for your blog. 
  • Notes of Appreciation: Write 3 postcards while abroad to the Notre Dame alumni sponsoring your SLA Grant award.
  • Student Safety Summit: Participate in one of Notre Dame International's Student Safety Summits before going abroad. For a schedule of safety summits, visit Notre Dame International.
  • SLA Grant Session and CSC Intercultural Training: Participate in a pre-departure sessions intended to prepare SLA Grant recipients specifically for the intellectual, academic, and practical challenges of language immersion abroad.

In addition, undergraduate award recipients must also complete the following: 

  • Post-Program Language Coursework: Complete at least one foreign language course immediately after your SLA Grant study period. If you are proposing to study a language not taught at Notre Dame, this requirement can be satisfied by a program of independent study developed in consultation with the Director of the SLA Program.

Award Restrictions

In addition to conforming to the Program Format described above, SLA Grant awards also include the following restrictions:
  • Transfer Credit: The SLA Grant Program is not designed to provide academic course credit; it is intended, first and foremost, as a means of gaining advanced foreign language competency through supplemental summer immersion study. Although gaining transfer credit for SLA Grant summer coursework is not discouraged, such credit is not awarded by the CSLC, and must be arranged and approved by both the relevant foreign language department and the Undergraduate/Graduate Dean’s office. Any requests for credit must be made and approved prior to your summer language study.
  • Additional Funding: Each student can submit only one SLA Grant proposal. Multiple proposals will not be considered. Students who wish to apply for summer language funding through other campus institutes, centers, or grant programs will still be required to submit a proposal to the SLA Grant Program. The CSLC will coordinate with other campus funding entities for language study abroad in order to ensure that no applicant receives awards from more than one program in excess of the $5,500 maximum—with rare exceptions—and also to guarantee that all applicants receive appropriate funding from eligible programs even if they do not apply to them.
  • Sponsored Travel Approval: All SLA Grant awards are tentative until travel permission has been received from Notre Dame International. Students who do not receive this permission will not be allowed to use SLA Grant funds for their proposed study abroad location. However, accommodations for an alternate location may be made at the discretion of the CSLC. Travel restrictions usually follow State Department travel warning criteria. Please consult the U.S. State Department’s Travel Warnings Section to find out if any travel warnings exist for the country to which you plan to travel.