CENTRO LINGUISTICO CONVERSA
Centro Linguistico CONVERSA, a language institute dedicated to teaching Spanish and English as foreign languages, has campuses in San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica, and Santa Ana, about 15 minutes outside the capital city.
Known for its mild climate and its national parks, volcanoes, fine beaches on both the Pacific and Caribbean coasts, rain forests, and wildlife refuges, Costa Rica offers a rich cultural and environmental backdrop for intensive students of the Spanish Language. The main campus in Santa Ana, on a former six acre mountainside farm named El Pedregal, provides intensive Spanish language instruction in a serene setting.
Academic Program Highlights
The Intensive Spanish Program at CONVERSA follows the teaching methodology of the Peace Corps and the Foreign Service Institute. No previous study or knowledge of Spanish is required, and on arrival, students are given a placement test in Spanish to determine the appropriate level of study.
The program is offered in four week sessions, and classes have no more than four students each. Students are taught by different instructors each week to strengthen their conversation and oral comprehension skills. Intensive instruction for five-and-one-half hours per day is entirely in Spanish, and individual tutorials on Saturday mornings and additional conversation practice are available upon request.
Students are generally awarded a maximum of 6-8 credits per four week cycle, and a 2.5 GPA is required, as well as transcripts and a minimum age of 18 for admission.
Housing is an important aspect of the Intensive Spanish program, and students studying at the Santa Ana campus are placed in a Costa Rican homestay, one student or married couple per family, in the surrounding neighborhoods. Students are provided with a private room and laundry service, breakfast and dinner on class days, and transportation to campus. Breakfast and lunch are also provided on campus as part of the program, which allows students to interact informally with other students and faculty.
The main campus offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountains, a dining hall and lounge, swimming pool, and tennis, volleyball, and basketball courts. All on-site program coordinators are bilingual, and arrange airport pick-ups and returns, arrangements with host families, and all cultural excursions to museums and markets.
For those students who prefer to live on campus, CONVERSA offers lodging on campus at an additional costs. CONVERSA also offers student discounts on weekend tours, such as white-water rafting, excursions to volcanoes, biological reserves, and private island tours. Students who choose to study at the center in San Jose may choose either a homestay or other housing options.