Foreign Language & Area Studies (FLAS) Academic Year Fellowship

Deadline: 3 February 2020 12:00pm EST (NOON)

All applicants will be notified of final decisions by Friday, March 20th. If you have not received notification for the FLAS Academic Year please contact OGSAF at .


The U.S. Department of Education Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship Program provides academic year fellowships to institutions of higher education. The grant to GWU, written by the Institute for Middle East Studies and the Sigur Center for Asian Studies, assists graduate (PhD and Master's candidates) and professional students (JD, MPH, DrPH, MBA and MD) at George Washington University to further language study and area/international studies. (Executive Education students are not eligible. Online programs are also not eligible.) The number of awards is contingent on funding. Information found on this page relates to Academic Year FLAS Fellowships only. For information on the Summer FLAS Fellowship, please go here. For other inquiries, please visit our FAQ page or email .

Committee decisions are final. Due to the high volume of applications received for this fellowship, feedback on decisions cannot be provided to applicants. We will not make exceptions on late submissions.

Targeted Languages

  • Arabic
  • Chinese
  • Hebrew
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Persian
  • Turkish


  • Incoming or current GWU graduate students (PhD and Master's candidates) who will be enrolled for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021. Summer study will not be covered by this award.
  • Preference is for full-time students. Part-time students will be considered, but if awarded, must go to full-time status for both semesters of the academic year during which they receive the award.
  • Citizen or permanent resident of the United States.
  • The applicant must be in good standing in any discipline or program with an international studies focus. Formal language study must also be an important component of the applicant's academic program, and enrollment in a target language class in each semester of the academic year of the award is required.
  • While all applications will be accepted, priority will be given to language study at intermediate or advanced levels. In addition, priority will be given to master's students who are more likely to pursue government service or enter a professional field.
  • PhDs applying for dissertation research or dissertation writing and Master's candidates applying for study abroad research are welcome to apply. (Note that for Arabic, Hebrew, Turkish and Persian, these applicants will not be considered top priority candidates.)
  • While not required to submit a FAFSA to be considered, applicants who have established need by submitting a FAFSA will receive preference.
  • FLAS fellows are required to be engaged in full-time foreign language and area or international studies course work or dissertation research during the academic year, or in intensive language study during the summer award period. Students are permitted to undertake additional part-time work, or work totaling no more than 20 hours a week.


  • Recipients of the FLAS are required to make pre- and post-award reports online to the U.S Department of Education and will be surveyed every two years following their award for a period of up to eight years.
  • Recipients will take pre- and post-award language proficiency assessments.
  • Recipients of the award must:
    • enroll in 1 language course per semester.
    • enroll in 1 area-studies course per semester.
  • (The award is contingent upon the classes listed in the application. If awarded, proposed changes must be submitted to for review.)

Study Abroad/Dissertation Research/Dissertation Writing

Master's candidates may study abroad on the FLAS Academic Year award, but must adhere to the award requirements (one language course and one area-studies course per semester). For PhD candidates, the use of the foreign language in the dissertation research must be sufficient enough to equal language improvement in a formal classroom instruction setting. This is also applicable to dissertation writing here at GWU. Please email if you have questions.

(Overseas airfare must be in compliance with the Fly America Act.)


Awards will cover up to 20 credits for the academic year. Awards are up to $15,000 in stipend for the academic year. (Awards do not cover Summer Sessions and do not cover fees.) (Awards are contingent on renewal of the U.S. Department of Education grant.)

Awardees will be chosen by a GW committee on a competitive basis from eligible applicants based on their academic performance, the relevance of language study to their academic programs, their career and professional goals, and their demonstrated ability in foreign language study .

There is no limit on the number of FLAS awards recipients can receive over his/her academic career, but no more than one fellowship can be awarded for the competition cycle. Applicants may apply for both the Academic Year and Summer FLAS awards.

All applicants will be notified of their award status by no later than March 13th.

Required Documents

All application materials must be submitted via the online fellowships application portal.

Instructions on how to apply through the portal can be found here.
  • Application

  • Statement of Purpose
  • The Statement of Purpose should show how language study will complement your academic program and contribute to your career goals and interests. Please include a statement describing the international studies focus of your degree program. Language must be integral to your academic program. If you are a PhD candidate applying for dissertaton research abroad, you must give details on how your language skills will improve outside formal classroom instruction. This is also applicable to dissertation writing here at GWU. The Statement of Purpose can be up to three pages and should be in 12-point font, 1.5 spacing.

  • Transcripts

  • Incoming students must submit undergraduate transcripts. Current full-time students with at least 9 GW credits completed and part-time students with at least 6 GW credits completed are only required to submit unofficial or official GW transcripts. If you are a current student and do not meet this requirement, you must submit undergraduate transcripts.

  • Resume

  • Two Academic Recommendations

    Your first recommendation should be from a professor familiar with your academic ability and potential. If possible, your second letter should be from a language professor.

  • Recommendations will be submitted via our online system. Applicants in the online portal should enter the emails and names of their recommenders when prompted in the recommendation section of the online application. Recommenders will then receive an email request to complete his/her recommendation. Applicants will be sent an email confirmation from the system when the recommendations have been submitted.

Please email if you have questions about the application process and recommendation letters.

Please submit completed applications via our online system by the deadline (this includes recommendation letters). You will not be able to submit your application until all materials (including recommendation letters) are submitted via the online system. Instructions on how to apply through the portal can be found here.

Committee decisions are final. Due to the high volume of applications received for this fellowship, feedback on decisions cannot be provided to applicants. We will not make exceptions for late submissions.