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The CKS Khmer Language and Culture Study Program offers faculty, post-graduate researchers and undergraduates from U.S. universities with an opportunity to participate in an intensive eight-week study abroad program, between June 13 and August 15, 2011, in Cambodia. This ongoing program is funded through Title VI of the United States Higher Education Act and is administered in collaboration with the Khmer Language Program (ASK) of the University of Hawai’i, Mānoa.

This CKS program is designed for those who wish to advance their Khmer language skills and understanding of contemporary Cambodian society for academic and professional purposes, but who have not completed two years of formal language training. Beginners are welcome to apply. The program is therefore intended to complement the Advanced Study in Khmer (ASK) program and is structured along similar lines.

About the Program

There is a demand among academic researchers for appropriate high quality in-country Khmer language training. However, not all have successfully completed two years of academic training in the Khmer language required for ASK. The CKS Summer Study Program aims to meet that demand and provide the opportunity for those with less Khmer language experience to study in-country. Like their ASK counterparts, participants in the CKS program will receive four hours of intensive language training during morning sessions. In the afternoon, they will take part, alongside the ASK program participants, in field trips and other cultural activities, including visits to local governmental and non-governmental institutions, where the taught language skills can be used in real time situations.

For further information about the ASK program click this link

Program Goals

The program goals reflect CKS’s broader agenda of promoting research and international scholarly exchange through programs that increase understanding of Cambodia and its region:

  • To provide in-country language training for students of Cambodian society and culture,
  • To enable faculty, post-graduate researchers and undergraduates to advance their level of Khmer language skills in preparation for field-work and study in Cambodia,
  • To promote co-operation and educational exchange between individuals and institutions in the United States and Cambodia.

Program Requirements and Instruction

As well attending language classes, participants are required to complete a small individual research project on a topic related to their field of interest. Each participant will present a report of his/her project to the rest of the group at the end of the program. The group will be kept to a maximum of eight individuals. Instruction is given by trained local Cambodian instructors and linguists and follows the ASK curriculum at the appropriate level for the group. Up to 10 credits can be earned. The program uses six instructional modules based on ACTFL proficiency guidelines, amounting to one academic semester of study.


Eligible individuals include:

  • Citizens, nationals or permanent residents of the United States.
  • Heritage (Khmer-American) or non-heritage learners.
  • Those working or studying full time in social sciences, humanities, foreign languages, and area studies.

You considered ineligible if you are an individual who:

  • Has participated in either the US/ED Group Project Advanced Program or Seminar Abroad Program in the past three years (2007-2009); or
  • Has received two awards with either the US/ED Group Projects Abroad Program or Seminars Abroad Program, unless the award was received 10 years ago.
  • Are recurrently unemployed.
  • Are an educated native or near-educated native speaker.

How to Apply

For application details and further information about the program, including fellowships and costs, please contact Dr. Michael Sullivan at:
Tel: (855) 063 964 385
Mob: (855) 012 760 416
Fax: (855) 063 963 035