Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships

FLAS Application Process & Guidelines

Eligibility Requirements | Application Materials and Process | Summer Fellowship Details | Academic Year Fellowship Details | FLAS Program Priorities

Center Guidelines: Canadian Studies Center | East Asia Center | South Asia Center | Southeast Asia Center

Eligibility Requirements

  • Must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or U.S. national
  • Must be a current or incoming student to a full-time program of study at the University of Washington.  Applicants to full-time UW programs may apply simultaneously for the FLAS fellowship.
  • Undergraduates are:
  • Graduates are:
    • Eligible for intermediate- or advanced-level study of the languages supported by the four UW Centers
    • Eligible for beginning-level language study in exceptional circumstances.   Special approval is required, and is considered on a case-by-case basis.  If you already have advanced proficiency in another language related to your studies, you are eligible to apply for a FLAS to support beginning-level study of another language related to your studies.
    • Ineligible for beginning-level language study of French

Application Materials and Process

What materials do I need to apply for a FLAS fellowship?

  1. A written proposal, in essay format, of approximately two single-spaced pages detailing your academic plan and how the FLAS fits in with your education and/or career plans.  The proposal should answer the following questions: (1) How will receipt of the fellowship contribute to your academic and career goals? ; (2) What is your planned course of study pertaining to the region for which you are applying? ; (3) What is your proposed language training? ; (4) How will your proposed language and area studies training contribute to your academic and career goals?
  2. Official or unofficial transcripts from all colleges or universities attended (in electronic format; no hard copies accepted)
  3. Letters of recommendation; applicants for graduate FLAS fellowships must submit 2 general and 1 language recommendation. Applicants for undergraduate FLAS fellowships must submit 1 general and 1 language recommendation. Each recommendation must be from a different person (one person cannot complete both your general and your language recommendation).  Note that each recommendation submitted will be attached to each application submitted. Additional recommendations can be added if you feel it will strengthen your application, including additional language recommendations if applicable.  The application system will ask if you want to waive your right to see the letters of recommendation.  While it is not required, note that most applicants choose to waive the right to view the letter of recommendation because confidentiality strengthens letters of recommendation.
  4. Federal student aid report (SAR) or UW Office of Financial Aid award letter

Summer Fellowship Details

  • Summer FLAS Fellowships support intensive foreign language study (no area studies coursework is required)
  • Applicants must propose intensive summer language programs that are a minimum of six consecutive weeks and 140 classroom hours for beginning/intermediate level or 120 classroom hours for advanced level
  • Fellowship may be used at UW, another U.S. institution, or at an overseas institution
  • Students should apply to their summer programs as soon as possible.  Many programs have deadlines that are earlier than the FLAS application deadline.
  • To study abroad, students must be at the intermediate or advanced level unless an appropriate beginning-level language program is not available in the U.S.  Study abroad must be undertaken in an established program, institute or university.
  • The UW Study Abroad Office is available to help applicants find summer programs abroad.  Per UW policy, students planning curricular travel abroad, whether intending to transfer credit back to UW or not, must register their plans with the Office of Global Affairs.
  • All applicants should carefully read the guidelines specific to the Center to which they are applying (listed below)

Academic Year Fellowship Details

  • Awardees must be enrolled full-time for the duration of their fellowship (Graduate 10 credits per quarter, Undergraduate 12 credits per quarter, Professional 12 credits per quarter)
  • Applicants must propose a program of study that includes at least 3 credits per quarter in the language of their award and 3 credits per quarter in either area or international studies or the area or international aspects of professional or other fields of study.  The area studied must match the Center applied to–i.e. a student applying for French through the Canadian Studies Center must be studying Canada, not Europe.
  • PhD candidates may propose dissertation research abroad. See FAQs for more details.
  • All applicants should carefully read the guidelines specific to the Center to which they are applying (listed below)

NOTE: The application form and this page contain the most current information available at the date of publication. Applicants should be aware that changes in federal funding, language eligibility, or availability of languages at the University of Washington may occur in the future and affect their accuracy.

FLAS Priorities

  • Priority will be given to applicants with a high level of academic ability and with previous language training.
  • Priority will be given to applicants who are most likely to pursue government service or enter a professional field.
  • Priority will be given to applicants who show potential in meeting critical national security needs.
  • Priority will be given to those with financial need, as demonstrated by the Expected Family Contribution on the federal or UW financial aid forms
  • Low priority is given to applicants who have achieved language fluency equivalent to educated native speakers in the language for which the award is sought.
  • Low priority is given to applicants proposing dissertation research or writing.

If you have questions, contact

Center Guidelines

Canadian Studies Center


French and Inuktut (the Inuit language)

  • For summer 2024, graduate students may apply for French (intermediate or advanced levels only)
  • For the 2024-25 academic year, graduate students may apply for French (intermediate or advanced levels only) or Inuktut (beginner level only). To be eligible for Inuktut, applicants must possess fluency in another foreign language and articulate in their application statement a commitment and dedication to gaining language proficiency

FLAS Information

The Canadian Studies Center is particularly interested in areas of study and research that have policy relevance for the Canada-U.S. relationship or that address Canada’s role in the world. These include environmental management, urban planning, issues emerging in the Arctic region, Indigenous self-determination in Canada, civil engineering, human security and capacity, public health, and the promotion of nations within a nation. Applicants must articulate a clear interest in integrating Canadian content into their research.

Graduate students may apply for French and are strongly encouraged to apply for Inuktut. Undergraduate students are not eligible to apply for French and may apply for Inuktut when appropriate course levels are available, i.e., intermediate or advanced levels. For more information on current and past Center FLAS Fellows click here.

Undergraduate students interested in studying abroad in Canada can apply to the Corbett and/or Killam Fellowships.

East Asia Center


Chinese, Japanese, Korean

FLAS Information

East Asia Center academic-year FLAS fellowships are comprehensive awards that encompass both area studies training and language training at the UW, while summer FLAS fellowships are for intensive language training only. For this reason, the East Asia Center considers summer quarter the most appropriate time for study abroad, and typically does not permit FLAS fellowships to fund study abroad during the academic year (autumn, winter, spring).

South Asia Center


Bengali, Hindi, Urdu, Persian

FLAS Information

Academic Year Fellowships support language study and area studies coursework at the University of Washington. The South Asia Center strongly recommends fellows take the following courses when they are offered in order to satisfy the area studies requirement: JSIS A 508, JSIS A 509, JSIS 511. For more examples of South Asia area course offerings, visit the South Asia Center Courses page. (Note: an “area studies” course is one which is directly focused on your world region, or a course in which 25% or more of the content is focused on the world region. The South Asia Center and Fellowships Manager will work with fellows to determine course eligibility.)

Summer Fellowships support intensive summer language study only (no area studies coursework required). Fellows typically attend summer language programs at the South Asia Summer Language Institute (SASLI) in Madison, Wisconsin, or one of the American Institute of Indian Studies (AIIS) centers in India, or another approved program. Students should apply to their summer programs as soon as possible. Many programs have deadlines that are earlier than the UW FLAS application deadline.

Other South Asian languages: In rare circumstances, students may be awarded to study other South Asian languages. Please note that the South Asia Center reviews each of these requests and will make a determination on whether a student may apply for another language on a case-by-case basis. All academic year and summer fellowships in other South Asian languages must be approved by the U.S. Department of Education.

Other funding opportunities: For information about the Frank F. Conlon Fellowship, the Indian American Community Services Scholarship, and other South Asia Studies opportunities, consult the South Asia Center student funding page.

Center for Southeast Asia and its Diasporas


Burmese, Filipino/Tagalog, Indonesian, Khmer, Thai, Vietnamese

FLAS Information

Academic Year Awards: Applicants should carefully note that academic-year fellowships are comprehensive awards that encompass both area and language training.  The Center for Southeast Asia and its Diasporas requires that FLAS Fellows take at least two of their three area studies courses with a CSEAD faculty member (consult  You must also fulfill the coursework requirements by taking regular courses at UW if they are available at your level, rather than independent study.  Exceptions will rarely be granted.

Summer Awards: Summer FLAS fellowships are for intensive language study and may be used at the University of Wisconsin Southeast Asian Studies Institute (SEASSI) or at an overseas institution. Whether you plan to study domestically or abroad, please note that many host institutions have early registration deadlines.  You must apply to the language program in addition to applying for the FLAS.  For SEASSI details and deadlines see

For information about the Gething and Keyes awards for graduate student travel, consult the CSEAD funding page: