Salvador da Bahia, Brazil

January Intensive Language + Culture

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Information for term January Intensive Language + Culture

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

The application deadline has passed.

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Dates: Jan 3 – 31, 2017 (4 weeks)
  • Credit: 4 semester hours / 6 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA

Application Deadline

The application deadline has passed.

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Dates: Jan 8 – Feb 4, 2018 (4 weeks)
  • Credit: 4 semester hours / 6 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA


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Walk along the cobblestone streets and past the brightly-colored buildings of Salvador Da Bahia, while chatting with locals in their native Portuguese. In a city that combines African and Brazilian cultures, you will spend four weeks immersed in the distinct culture of one of the oldest European-founded cities in the Americas.

Unique Experiences

  • Go on a walking tour of Pelourinho,

    a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the historic city center.

  • Travel to the small coastal town of Praia do Forte

    to visit Castelo Garcia D’Ávila, which dates back to 1552.

  • Attend a capoeira performance

    a unique mix of dance and martial arts - at a local cultural event called “Lavagem do Bonfim,” or “Washing the stairways of Bonfim’s church.”

  • teams in Salvador Da Bahia’s basketball league

  • visitors celebrating Carnival

  • miles of beaches


Location & Culture

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In Salvador Da Bahia, modern skyscrapers surge above palm fronds swaying in the tropical breeze. Its African influence began evolving with the slave trade. Today, Salvador Da Bahia is a booming city, and its historic and ethnic diversity can be noted in the city’s architecture and layout. Historic buildings are located next to modern business complexes. The CIEE site is located in the neighborhood of Barra, a few blocks from Brazil's first lighthouse (Farol da Barra).


  • Visit the museum of Afro-Brazilian history and a Candomblé house, where traditional African religious dance is practiced.  
  • Take a percussion class from a local musician.
  • Enjoy a wide variety of local cuisine reflecting both Brazilian and African ingredients and techniques.
  • Perfect your Portuguese while gaining a deeper understanding of the cultural distinctions of Brazil’s northeastern coastal region.
  • Gather at the Museum of Modern Art with CIEE staff and your host families.

Daily Life

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    During orientation, students are housed together. For the remainder of the program, students are placed in Brazilian homestays. The homestay is essential to the students’ learning process and integration into life in Bahia. The opportunity to live with a Brazilian family allows for additional dialogue about issues discussed in class and for practicing Portuguese language skills.


    Three meals a day are included in the study abroad program for the students in homestays.

Salvador da Bahia, Brazil

Where You'll Study

  • A


    Barra Neighborhood

  • B

    Universidade Católica do Salvador


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What you need to know

The program details

Established in 1961, Universidade Católica do Salvador (UCSal) is the highest-ranked private university in northeast Brazil. The University offers courses in many departments including communications, education, geography, social work, literature, law, philosophy, and music. The UCSal campus is housed in renovated monasteries and modern buildings with several campuses around the city.

Portuguese language courses are taught by faculty from the graduate school at UCSal. As students gain proficiency in Portuguese, resident staff encourages them to use their language skills in everyday settings. This fosters a learning community that contributes to both Portuguese language proficiency and understanding of Brazilian society.


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    Participants take classes with CIEE study abroad students and international students enrolled in the UCSal Portuguese language program.


    Language classes: In Portuguese language courses, student work is assessed through reading, writing, and oral comprehension quizzes and exams, much like the U.S. CIEE converts Brazilian grades into U.S. letter grade equivalents.


    Class size is small and includes both lectures and excursions. Classes are held at the host university campus, providing students the opportunity to be part of a Brazilian university system. All language instruction is by native Brazilians. Brazilian universities convey knowledge through unique strategies and methods. Innovation, design, participation, memorization, and expositive lectures are all part of the in-class academic culture.



    Students need to have a GPA of at least 2.5.


    2 semesters of college-level Spanish or equivalent and/or 1 semester of college-level Portuguese or equivalent


Program Credit

  • Total credit, 4 semester/6 quarter hours
  • Contact hours: 60

All study abroad students take one intensive Portuguese language and culture course at their level.

Note: This course listing is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a contract between CIEE and any applicant, student, institution, or other party. The courses, as described, may be subject to change as a result of ongoing curricular revisions, assignment of lecturers and teaching staff, and program development. Courses may be canceled due to insufficient enrollment.

January 2018 Courses

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Upon arrival, students take a language placement exam to determine which language course they will take. A special section of beginner-level Portuguese for Spanish Speakers may be offered for students who have proficiency in Spanish and have had no previous Portuguese instruction. Not all sections are offered each session, with specific offerings dependent upon student enrollments and results of the language placement exam.

  • PORT 1501 BBAH Intensive Beginner Portuguese I
  • PORT 1502 BBAH Intensive Beginner Portuguese II
  • PORT 2501 BBAH Intensive Intermediate Portuguese I
  • PORT 2502 BBAH Intensive Intermediate Portuguese II
  • PORT 3501 BBAH Intensive Advanced Portuguese I
  • PORT 3502 BBAH Intensive Advanced Portuguese II

This course is designed to prepare students linguistically and culturally for all aspects of the semester abroad. It provides students with an intense introduction to or continued study of Portuguese language, as well as an orientation to the culture and contemporary issues of Brazil. The course includes language classes (divided at appropriate levels with an emphasis on grammar applied through oral production); lectures, readings, and discussions on contemporary Brazilian life; community exploration activities; and an introduction to Brazilian academic culture. Students will learn/refine their language skills and construct a basic cultural literacy as background to their coursework.


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Scholarships & Grants

In 2016, we awarded over 1,000 scholarships totaling more than $5 million, helping more students get on planes and live their dreams in faraway places than any other organization. This year's no different. In fact, every year we give this unrivaled amount of funding, because we’re on a mission to help YOU go abroad, too! Explore your options today.

Students who apply to this program are eligible for the following scholarships and grants:

  • Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grants

To be considered, submit the CIEE Scholarships & Grants application within your CIEE program application. Learn more at the Scholarships & Grants section of our website.

See more scholarship info

Dates, Deadlines & Fees

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Dates, Deadlines & Fees

You get more for every dollar when you study abroad with CIEE, because our high-quality programs include everything from excursions to insurance. There are no hidden charges, and no disappointing surprises when you arrive.

  • Tuition
  • Housing
  • Three meals per day meals
  • Advising before you depart to set goals and answer questions
  • Optional on-site airport meet-and-greet
  • Two-day orientation – an introduction to Brazilian culture, your academic program, and the city, plus practical information about living in your host city.
  • Full-time program leadership and support in your host city
  • Field trips and cultural activities
  • Overnight excursions
  • Insurance and other travel benefits, with CIEE iNext

To help you budget, keep in mind that students are responsible for the cost of international airfare, local transportation, books and supplies, visas, and personal expenses. In addition, ask your college or university study abroad advisor if your school charges additional fees for study abroad.

Our Staff

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Get Started

Here's what you need to do to take the next steps:
  • 1

    You're one step closer to an amazing study abroad experience! 

    Apply Now
  • 2

    Share your plans and confirm you're on track to meet all required steps to go abroad. 

  • 3

    Contact an Advisor

    Send us an email if you still have questions or need information about applying to this program.