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Learn a language in the British Armed Forces

Updated: Sep 27, 2023



If you're interested in joining the military (or already a member) you might want to consider the Defence Centre for Languages and Culture (DCLC). The DCLC provides language training and cultural awareness to military personnel, enabling them to communicate more effectively with foreign militaries and civilian populations. In this blog, we'll explore how to get accepted into the DCLC and what you can expect from the program.


First, let's talk about how to get accepted into the DCLC. The DCLC offers language training to military personnel from all services and ranks. However, acceptance into the program is competitive, and not all applicants are selected. To be eligible, you must meet the following criteria:

  1. Active duty military or civilian employee of the Department of Defence

  2. Meet the prerequisites for the language you want to study

  3. Obtain a recommendation from your unit commander or supervisor

Once you meet these requirements, you can apply to the DCLC through your military education office. Your application will be reviewed, and if you meet the requirements, you'll be invited to take the Modern Language Aptitude Test. Your results will determine which language program you're eligible for.


So, what can you expect from the DCLC? The DCLC offers language training in over 60 languages, including Arabic, Chinese, Russian, and Spanish. The program is intense and immersive, with classes running from morning until late afternoon. You'll receive classroom instruction, as well as opportunities for cultural immersion through field trips, guest speakers, and social events.


The DCLC program is divided into three phases: basic, intermediate, and advanced. The length of each phase depends on the language you're studying and your proficiency level. Each phase builds on the previous one, with a focus on developing your language proficiency to a level that will enable you to perform your duties in a foreign language environment.



In addition to language training, the DCLC offers cultural awareness training. This includes learning about the customs, beliefs, and practices of the cultures you're likely to encounter while on deployment. You'll also receive training in intercultural communication, which is essential for building relationships and achieving mission success.


Overall, the DCLC program is designed to provide military personnel with the language skills and cultural awareness needed to communicate effectively with foreign militaries and civilian populations. The program is rigorous and challenging, but it's also highly rewarding. You'll develop skills that will not only enhance your military career but also benefit you in your personal and professional life.


In conclusion, the Defence Centre for Languages and Culture offers a valuable opportunity for military personnel to develop language skills and cultural awareness. To get accepted into the program, you must meet the eligibility criteria and pass a language proficiency test. Once accepted, you can expect a challenging but rewarding program that will enable you to communicate more effectively in a foreign language environment.


So if you'd like paid language study and the subsequent language allowance, why not apply?


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