Jordan: Modernization and Social Change

Key Features

“My time in Jordan led to me working with Iraqi refugees for the last year, and now I'll be starting a new career as a foreign service officer. Both came about in part from what I learned and experienced in Jordan.”

—Daniel Acker, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Riding camels to Petra

Being in the heart of the Middle East, students are able to examine Jordanian government and society as they negotiate the underpinnings of the Arab Spring and ensuing political change in neighboring countries.

Students examine development projects on-location and discuss needs and operations with local experts and policy makers.

Two homestays — an extended urban stay in Amman and a shorter rural stay with a Bedouin family — allow students to practice their Arabic language skills and offer the dramatic contrast necessary to contextualize modernization and social change in urban and rural Jordan. Learn more about the program's homestays.

Independent Study Project
Students spend the last month of the program working on an Independent Study Project (ISP) in which they conduct primary research on a selected topic. The ISP is conducted in Amman or in another approved location in Jordan appropriate to the project.

Sample topic areas include:

  • The Arab Spring and public attitudes
  • Political power of tribes
  • Social change through modern art
  • The Christian population in Amman
  • Nationalism in Jordan
  • Women’s participation in Jordanian civil society
  • Islam and state discourses on development
  • Nongovernmental organizations and donor interaction in Jordan
  • Freedom of expression in the Jordanian press
  • Relationships among Jordanian youth
  • Refugees and political change in the region

Costs Dates

Credits: 16

Duration: 15 weeks

Program Base: Amman

Language Study: Arabic

Prerequisites: None


View Student Evaluations for this program:

About the Evaluations (PDF)

Fall 2013 Evaluations (PDF)
Spring 2013 Evaluations (PDF)
Fall 2012 Evaluations (PDF)

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