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Cervantes Institute – Espanola anybody?

17 September, 2008 14:26  EasyExpat EasyExpat

In this week’s article, the spotlight is on the Cervantes Institute. Established in 1991, the Cervantes Institute is a non-profit organization created by the Spanish government to spread Spanish language and culture to the rest of the world. Named after Miguel de Cervantes, the author of Don Quixote and seen as one of the most noteworthy figures in Spanish literature, this institution has earned itself an excellent reputation. In 2005, along with the Societe Dante Alighieri, the British Council, the Goethe Institute, the Alliance Francaise and the Instituto Camões, the Cervantes Institute was awarded the Prince of Asturias Award for outstanding achievements in communications and the humanities. Modeled on the principles of the Goethe Institute, it is now the largest organization in the world responsible for promoting the Spanish language and culture. With over 54 centres in over 20 countries, it’s easy to see why.

Activities offered at the Cervantes Institute

The primary focus of the Cervantes Institute is to teach Spanish as a second language. There are three main levels of courses offered: Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced and exams are conducted to gauge if participants have satisfactorily completed their course. Diplomas of Spanish as a Secondary Language are recognized and offered by the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport. In keeping with the times, the Cervantes Institute also has a strong online presence and offers many online language training courses.

Spanish language is not the only focus of the Cervantes Institute. It also plays an important role in promoting the country’s culture. The Institute hosts many cultural programmes including the famous Spain Film Festival and the Festival of Flamenco. It also regularly holds concerts, art exhibitions, book presentations and lectures on Spanish culture.

The Cervantes Institute also offers automated free translator service via the telephone and boasts of over 580,000 successful translations to date.

Courses offered

There are a number of different courses offered. From short intensive courses to longer courses, individual programmes to group programmes, you can choose what’s best for you. Courses run throughout the year and a short exam will determine your level at the start. If you opt for a course at one of the Cervantes locations in Spain, chances are that you can tailor it to specific needs like ‘Spanish for Lawyers’ or ‘Spanish for Teachers’. Or for those looking for a more fun alternative, you can combine you language sessions with flamenco classes. Also expect much socialization, partying, tapas, salsa and sporting action from your language holiday.

Fees and Schedules

Fees vary widely as there are a number of options available. In general, lessons cost between 150 euros and 250 euros per week (excluding accommodation) along with an enrolment fee. Accommodation varies from 100 to 175 euros per week depending on season and kind of accommodation chosen. For more details on fees, schedules and courses available, visit http://www.cervantes.to/

For a complete listing of worldwide Cervantes Institutions, click here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instituto_Cervantes

Sidd Lobo 


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