Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

Program Overview

The mission of the Summer Intensive Language Program (SILP) at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey is to provide high-quality, rigorous instruction that prepares students to solve real-word problems using knowledge of a foreign language and cultural awareness. This principal goal is attained by means of a flexible, student-centered curriculum that cultivates critical thinking skills, promotes autonomous learning, and provides ample opportunities for students to use the target language in meaningful, contextualized situations both inside and outside the classroom.

Course Curriculum

The program offers a well-rounded curriculum that allows students to acquire and strengthen reading, writing, speaking and listening skills, develop lexical and cultural knowledge of the target language, and develop fluency through an integrated skills-based and content-based approach to learning.

Classes are in session 4.5 hours per day, from 9:00AM to 12:00PM and 1:00PM to 2:30PM. In addition to the daily in-class work, students should expect 4-5 hours of homework each night. Recommended tutoring sessions and co-curricular activities are also offered each week. 

The demanding nature of this program requires students' full commitment, and we strongly discourage participants from working or taking other classes during the course of the program.

Core Component

The three morning hours make up the Core Component, in which students focus on structural and lexical acquisition and competency through communicative student-centered tasks. The core component is supported by a textbook to help students follow the course curriculum and to strengthen their skills through self-study out of class. Supplemental materials accompany the text to provide varied and interesting course content.

Fluency Component

The afternoon sessions make up the Fluency Component, which offers the student a topic-driven approach to learning aimed at improving fluency. Content areas relevant to the target culture are introduced as a means to promote discussion and stimulate project-based learning at all levels. Textbooks are not used in the Fluency Component, but rather a variety of authentic real-life resources are employed to encourage a holistic understanding of the target language and culture. Critical thinking in the target language is especially emphasized in this part of the curriculum.

Language Specific Information

For more information about each of the programs offered, please visit the language-specific pages linked in the right side bar of this page.

Life after a Summer of Language in Monterey

We believe that the true measure of our success lies in the number of students who continue studying their target language after they graduate from our summer program.

Participants use the language skills acquired during their summer study in a number of ways:

Return for additional study in a graduate degree program at the Institute

Study or travel abroad to deepen understanding of language and culture

Use the language to advance professionally

Fulfill language requirements at other educational institutions