Fola History

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The FOLA program began at the University of Maryland (UM), in the 1978 summer session with an 18 month pilot grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The FOLA program is accredited with the National Association of Self-Instructional Language Programs (NASILP). NASILP is the umbrella organization which from the early 70's has maintained and developed guidelines, materials and standards in self instructional language programs. The UM FOLA program is a showcase for NASILP as a successful language program offering many critical languages on a self instructional basis. The FOLA program fulfills student demand and need in the area of less commonly taught languages and provides the flexibility to move on to the more traditional classroom instruction format once student demand exceeds the capacity of the FOLA self- instructional tutor based format. Thus the FOLA program has been and continues to be effective in identifying languages for which there was, and could be, a demand in the university community. Four examples of such languages are Korean, Modern Greek, Persian, and Arabic. The FOLA program was instrumental in providing objective criteria to gauge the demand on campus for these languages. The FOLA program is part of The School of Languages, Literatures & Cultures.

Dr. Koji Arizumi
Executive Director NASLIP at Critical Languages,
Univ. of Alabama,Box 870246