The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC) is regarded as one of the finest schools for foreign language instruction in the nation. As part of the Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC), the Institute provides resident instruction at the Presidio of Monterey in about two dozen  languages, five days a week, seven hours per day, with two to three hours of homework each night. Courses last between 26 and 64 weeks, depending on the difficulty of the language. 

DLIFLC students are taught by more than 2,000 highly educated instructors, 98 percent of whom are native speakers of the languages they teach.

DLIFLC is a multi-service school for active and reserve components, foreign military students, and civilian personnel working in the federal government and various law enforcement agencies. 

The present facilities at the Presidio of Monterey accommodate approximately 3,500 Soldiers, Marines, Sailors and Airmen, as well as select Department of Defense (DoD) members and the U.S. Coast Guard. To attend DLIFLC one must be a member of the Armed Forces or be sponsored by a government agency.


DLIFLC students are taught by more than 2,000 highly educated instructors, 98 percent of whom are native speakers of the languages they teach. Aside from classroom instruction, faculty also write course materials in the Curriculum Development Division, design tests called the Defense Language Proficiency Test, and conduct research and analysis.

To further advance student knowledge in a particular language, DLIFLC has designed an immersion program which consists of an off site facility where students spend from one to three days in an isolated environment with their instructors and are not allowed to speak English. The facility is equipped with kitchens and sleeping quarters, while the program consists of real-world exercises, from bargaining for food and clothing at a market place, to going through customs, or making hotel reservations. DLIFLC also sends a number of students on 30-day in-country immersions to countries such as Egypt, Korea, China, the Ukraine, etc.

Non-resident, or Post-Basic instruction primarily takes place in the Continuing Education (CE) directorate, which is located near the Presidio at Ord Military Community in Seaside, Calif. Intermediate, advanced and refresher courses are conducted at this facility. DLIFLC also maintains Language Training Detachments (LTD) at 13 sites throughout the continental United States and Hawaii, where DLIFLC instructors are assigned to teach language sustainment and enhancement courses at the demand of the particular military service.

CE is also the home of the Field Support and Special Programs division, which provides pre-deployment basic language and cultural awareness training to service members. Instructor Mobile Training Teams travel year-round to deliver from two days to four weeks of training, depending on the demands of the requesting unit. Additionally, DLIFLC instructors teach within the scope of the Professional Military Education System at military schools such as the Command and General Staff College, the Air War College, and Naval Postgraduate School.

To support the general purpose force, DLIFLC produces Language Survival Kits (LSK) which are pocket size pamphlets with CDs designed to be used in the field and range in topics from search and cordon, to medical terminology. LSKs exist in more than 30 languages and can contain up to 12 different topical domains within one language. Each year the Institute ships more than 250,000 LSKs to deploying forces.

DLIFLC has designed a new program called Headstart, consisting of an interactive 80-hour self-paced DVD which teaches basic language, culture and limited reading and writing. The Avatar characters used in this product are designed to function along the lines of today’s interactive computer games. Headstart is currently available in Iraqi Arabic, and Dari and Pashto spoken in Afghanistan. These language materials can be ordered via DLIFLC’s Language Materials Distribution System 

DLIFLC 1759 Lewis Rd. Bldg 614, Ste. 251 - Presidio of Monterey - Monterey, CA 93944 (831) 242-5119, (DSN-768)