David L. Boren Awards for International Study

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Boren Fellowship - What Languages Can I Study?

All Boren Fellows must study a foreign language appropriate to the country in which they are studying abroad.  The program will give preference to applicants studying one of the following emphasized languages:

  • Akan/Twi*
  • Albanian
  • Amharic
  • Arabic
  • Armenian
  • Azerbaijani
  • Bahasa Indonesian
  • Bambara
  • Belarusian
  • Bengali 
  • Bosnian
  • Bulgarian
  • Cambodian 
  • Cantonese
  • Croatian
  • Czech 
  • Gan
  • Georgian
  • Haitian 
  • Hausa*
  • Hebrew
  • Hindi
  • Hungarian  
  • Japanese
  • Javanese
  • Kanarese 
  • Kazakh
  • Khmer
  • Korean
  • Kurdish
  • Kyrgyz
  • Lingala
  • Macedonian  
  • Malay
  • Malayalam
  • Mandarin
  • Moldovan
  • Pashto
  • Persian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese*
  • Punjabi 
  • Romanian
  • Russian
  • Serbian
  • Sinhala
  • Slovak
  • Slovenian
  • Swahili*
  • Tagalog
  • Tajik
  • Tamil
  • Telegu 
  • Thai
  • Turkmen
  • Turkish
  • Uighur
  • Ukrainian
  • Urdu
  • Uzbek
  • Vietnamese
  • Wolof* 
  • Yoruba*
  • Zulu*

*These languages are part of the African Languages Initiative. Portuguese can also be studied in Brazil.

French is not a Boren Awards preferred language; however, there is a special option for the study of French under the African Languages Initiative. Students who have achieved an intermediate high or above oral proficiency level in French are encouraged to apply for a Boren Scholarship under this initiative.

Please note that in most cases, study of French or Spanish is only permissible if the applicant is at an advanced level of competency. Students should focus their Boren application on achieving further language proficiency through academic coursework in French or Spanish. However, students at the intermediate level of French or Spanish who are majoring in the sciences, technology, engineering, or mathematics fields are also eligible. Any award granted for the study of French or Spanish will be made contingent upon verification, through testing, of the student's language level. For more information about evaluating your language proficiency, click here.