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Off-Campus Study

ACM Jordan: Middle East and Arabic Language Studies

The fall ACM Jordan program, operated in partnership with AMIDEAST, is designed to provide students with the distinctive opportunity to study the complex issues which dominate the region, such as the Arab-Israeli conflict, contemporary Islamic thought, ethnic and minority relations, Jordan’s experience during the Arab Spring, and much more.  

Program Type

Associated Colleges of the Midwest


Amman, Jordan

Program Dates

Fall 2018: Late August to mid-December

All dates are tentative and may change.  ACM will alert all accepted students of final dates.


To be eligible to participate in this program, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Good academic and judicial standing during time of application AND time of participation in program
  • Undergraduates must have completed at least two semesters of study at Lake Forest College AND have second-semester sophomore status before participation. (Transfer students may participate after the first semester on campus) Students with junior status or higher are strongly preferred.
  • At least 18 years of age by the program’s departure date
  • Be able to stay at the host program for the duration of the semester, including through the exam periods
  • Minimum GPA of 2.75 


The program includes four courses. To obtain the full Lake Forest semester credit equivalent of 4 credits, ensure that you enroll for a minimum of 16 semester hours:

  • Arabic Language
  • Two elective courses
  • Independent Study Project


Elective courses can be found in anthropology, art, Islamic World Studies, economics, and much more. More information on course offerings can be found here.  

In Jordan, students will earn letter grades (A/B/C/D/F) for courses and for the internship.


Academic Environment and Teaching Style

As this program was designed in conjunction with a US liberal arts college consortium, the professors understand the unique higher education system and culture of US students. Some professors, especially for the language course, will be native of Jordan.  Other ACM courses may be taught by a visiting faculty member from one of the ACM member institutions.

Throughout the semester, each ACM student plans and completes an independent study project under the direction of the visiting ACM faculty member.  Projects may be conducted in a wide variety of fields in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities should be connected to the location of the program site, and are expected to emphasize interviews and field observation.  At the end of the program, students will typically prepare written reports and present their projects to the group.  Students are encouraged to formulate projects to fit their individual interests and/or their program of study at their home campus.


Course Approvals

(Coming soon)

Experiential Opportunities

As one of their elective courses, students may take Community-Based Learning in the MENA Region (MENA Studies 390).  This course is designed to enhance students’ critical and analytical intercultural communication skills with the aim of developing intercultural competence. This is accomplished through course work and practical engagement and interaction with host country society in private, official, and semi-official spaces. Guided and facilitated by the course instructor, students are expected to spend approximately six hours at their community placement work-site each week and submit journal entries reflecting on their experiences. At the end of the semester, they design and deliver a final service learning project to be shared with a larger audience. Through their intercultural experiential education, students develop their intercultural competence which is a valuable asset in the global marketplace. 

Housing and Meals

All students enrolled in the ACM Jordan program will live with a host family, giving students the opportunity to learn directly from Jordanians.  They will enjoy the culinary delights of traditional Middle Eastern foods such as mansafmalkoubacarafeshwarma, and falafel, and can practice their classroom learning with their Arabic-speaking host families.  Jordan’s famous hospitality provides deep engagement with the local culture and helps expose students to a Jordan most visitors never have the privilege to experience.

Families generally host two students at a time, and while all host families are Arabic-speaking, English is also spoken in most of the homes.  All host families have been carefully screened by AMIDEAST, and students are matched with host families using a variety of criteria. While all placement preferences may not be met in every case, AMIDEAST will strive to make the best match to ensure a rewarding and pleasant living experience.  Students will be provided with all meals by their host families but may find that some days it is not possible to return to the family for lunch because of class schedules.

Financial Information

For all programs, students pay their Lake Forest College tuition plus a program fee.  The program fee for the ACM Jordan program includes orientation, housing, several day excursions, and insurance.  Most meals are included.

Here is an estimated budget for your Fall 2018 program:

Budget Item


Lake Forest College Tuition


Program fee 


Program Deposit (credit)


Total Expected Billed by Lake Forest College


Program Deposit (non-refundable)


Additional Meals not included in program fee


Estimated Airfare


Estimated Personal Expenses (passport, visas, immunizations, books, supplies, personal expenses, local transportation, additional travel etc.)


Total Out-of-Pocket Expenses




Tuition rates and program fees are subject to change each year, but this information was up-to-date on February 2018.

There will be an additional $149 liability insurance fee for students choosing one of the Masters & Workshops artisan classes or participating in an internship.

Keep in mind that you may spend more or less in certain areas like personal expenses, travel, meals, or airfare, depending on exchange rates and your own spending habits. Classroom or lab fees are not included in this estimate.

Don’t forget to apply for scholarships! A great listing can be found here.  Students studying in Jordan highly competitive for Gilman and Boren awards, among others!

Do check your student account on My.Lakeforest for your aid awards, as much of this will go with you. If you want to compare your program to the cost of being on campus, those numbers can be found here: https://www.lakeforest.edu/admissions/tuition/fees.php