Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

Government & International Orgs

CLS designs and delivers language and cross-cultural training programs tailored to the needs of diplomats, civil servants, military personnel, and those working in international organizations.


We focus on mid- to high-level language and intercultural communication skills using field-specific content as a vehicle for instruction. Our content-based instruction (CBI) model combines critical skills development with simulations in content areas that target participants’ professional needs. Topics are introduced through the use of authentic real-world multi-media materials and field-specific terminology that can be combined with a professional guest speaker series and expert interviews.

CBI is a model that can be adapted in a variety of ways and to a variety of contexts but ultimately offers a relevant and meaningful approach to second/foreign language skills development. We have found CBI to be an ideal fit for those working in government, NGOs, and international organizations because of the diverse multicultural environments in which they are required to communicate. CBI essentially immerses the learner in contextually rich environments while targeting specific skills sets relevant to the learners’ communication needs. CBI also helps learners develop critical thinking skills and communication strategies in the target language.

Skill Areas

  • Diplomatic Negotiation  
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Conference Presentation/
    Public Speaking     
  • Diplomatic Protocol
  • Cross-Cultural Communication 
  • DLPT Preparation
  • Conversational Strategies
  • Critical Thinking and Analysis 
  • Field-Specific Terminology      


Content Areas

  • Commerce and Trade
  • Energy Policy
  • Travel and Tourism     
  • International Public Policy                                          
  • Cyber Security
  • Environmental Policy
  • Human Rights 
  • International Law
  • Media Relations
  • Export Control and Regulations                
  • Nuclear Safety and Security    


Custom Language Programs

The following programs have been designed for onsite, offsite, and/or online contexts. Any of these programs can be modified to accommodate length and content requirements.

*CLS does not offer these programs in an open enrollment format.

Language Training for Diplomats: Academic Year or Semester

English, Arabic, Russian, Chinese, Spanish, or French  possible
1-2 Semesters; High-Intermediate and Advanced Levels
This program was designed for mid-level diplomats who wish to fine-tune their language skills through simulations and authentic interactions at the graduate level. This program combines language skills coursework with graduate-level coursework in content areas such as international policy and diplomacy, trade and commerce, environment and energy, nuclear safety and security, and sustainable development providing participants opportunities to interact with graduate students and faculty who are working directly in the field of diplomacy and international relations.

English for Diplomatic Negotiation

3-day Workshop, 3-week Course, or Online Format; High-Intermediate to Advanced Levels
This program was designed for international relations professionals seeking to enhance their language and intercultural skills in high-level diplomatic contexts. Participants focused on developing appropriate language forms for the various phases of negotiation, negotiation procedures, relationship and rapport building, as well as competitive bargaining and collaborative problem-solving all culminating in a final negotiation simulation.

English for Conflict Resolution

3-day workshop or 6-week course; High-Intermediate to Advanced Level
This program was designed for non-native speakers of English who work in diplomatic or conflict contexts. It takes an ethnographic approach, in which trainees target a conflict, collect data on the language people use to talk about that conflict, analyze authentic texts regarding the conflict, and analyze the conflict and its potential change through linguistic, social, and cultural lenses.

DLPT Assessment Preparation

Chinese, Arabic, Korean, Farsi, Pashtu, Dari,...
3-4 week intensive; 0, 0+, 1, 1+, 2, 2+, 3, 3+, 4
DLPT prep courses are designed with a particular focus on developing skills sets specific to the DLPT 5 assessment categories. Small groups of military personnel are chosen to work together to refine their receptive and/or productive language skills with field-specific contexts and terminology aligned with military task force training.

Arabic for Diplomats

1-2 Semesters: Intermediate and Advanced Levels
This program was designed for mid-level professional diplomats looking to hone their oral and written skills in Arabic with a focus on current events in the Arabic world, religion and society in the Arabic world, current trends in journalism, and media relations with the Arabic-speaking countries.

Dual Language Programs

Multiple Languages
One-on-one or Small Group
A dual-language program, a customized curriculum including two languages of study, allows participant(s) to hone skills in a language in which they are relatively comfortable but not completely proficient, while building skills in another common or less commonly taught language of their choice. We recommend that at least one of the languages be at an intermediate level or higher. Language offerings include English, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, Spanish, French, Japanese, as well as less commonly taught languages such as Farsi, Dari, and Pashtu.

Individualized Training Programs

Multiple Languages
One-on-one and Small Group Instruction Our customized programs for diplomats are a fully tailored approach to instruction in which participants can define their program objectives and focus on what they need to reach their professional and personal goals. This option offers a flexible schedule, open program dates, and a completely customized curriculum. Language offerings include English, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, Spanish, French, Japanese, as well as less commonly taught languages such as Farsi, Dari, and Pashtu.