The Program in Global Languages & Communication's Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program is designed as both a supplement to more formal language learning within the classroom and as a means for students not enrolled in language classes to maintain their language skills. It is offered for the three languages offered by the Program: Arabic, Persian, and Vietnamese. Language mentors and mentees work together to enhance and develop each other’s language skills. Each language mentor is paired with one to five mentees. Mentor and mentee(s) meet for at least one hour each week and engage in various activities conducted in the target language. These activities may include (but are not limited to) conversations in the target language; watching a film, television show, or news program in the target language; cooking a meal or snack that is typical of the culture of the target language; attending an appropriate cultural event, museum exhibition, or performance; producing a creative work (including dance) that is appropriate to the target culture; presentation of specialized vocabulary by the mentor (e.g., medical vocabulary); listening to music of the target culture; going to an ethnic grocery store or restaurant, etc. All conversation revolving around these activities should be in the target language to the greatest degree possible.

Mentors and mentees may choose to meet in-person or remotely via Zoom. Both the mentor and the mentee(s) are required to keep a journal in which participants reflect upon the weekly activities. These journal entries are submitted to the coordinator of the program on a weekly basis. It is expected that the language mentor will take the leadership role in determining what activities will be done, but should do so in consultation with the mentee(s) so as to make the mentee(s) a partner in the undertaking.

Both mentor and mentee will receive one P/NP unit for participation in the program and students may repeat enrollment as desired. Students wishing to participate in the program must submit an application for either a mentor or mentee position.

Those applying for a mentor position will also be screened by program staff. It is expected that mentors will have high-intermediate to advanced-level language skills (particularly oral language skills). It is not required that mentors be heritage speakers.

Requirements for Mentees:

  • Enrollment in a language (Arabic, Persian, or Vietnamese) is desirable, but not required
  • Freshman to senior standing
  • Commitment to improving speaking skills in target language
  • Active participation in weekly activities
  • Ability to meet with mentor on a weekly basis

Requirement for Mentors:

  • High-Intermediate to Advanced-level language skills (particularly oral language skills) in target language
  • Sophomore to senior standing
  • Sincere interest in fostering the development of language skills of mentee(s)
  • Leadership skills
  • Active participation in planning of weekly activities
  • Ability to meet with mentee(s) on a weekly basis

Course Numbers:

Arabic 10A: Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program (for Mentor)
Arabic 10B: Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program (for Mentee)

Persian 10A: Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program (for Mentor)
Persian 10B: Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program (for Mentee)

Vietnamese 10A: Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program (for Mentor)
Vietnamese 10B: Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program (for Mentee)

For more information about the Peer-to-Peer Language Mentor Program, please contact Neda Sahranavard at nsahrana@uci.edu.