STUDY THE LANGUAGE. LEARN SPANISH IN COSTA
NEW! - Survival Spanish Language Program
Our Survival Spanish Program is crash courses for those visitors looking to jump start their visit to Costa Rica with a quick two day refresher course. The course is available each week, Monday and Tuesday, six hours each day at both of our campuses in Playa Dominical and Turrialba. The first four hours of each day are level appropriate group lessons. The final two hours students go out into the community with their teacher and learn situational specific terms, phrases and vocabulary. You will visit the local bank, supermarkets, the bus stop, souvenir shops and restaurants. Survival Spanish can be added to the first week of the Standard 4 hour Spanish Program for $95. The Relaxed Spanish Program is specifically designed for longer term visitors who would like a less intense Spanish language option. The program consists of 6 hours of classes a week, three afternoons; Monday, Wednesday and Thursday for two hours/time. These programs are a great avenue for both travelers and especially surfers in Playa Dominical looking for some Spanish but not committing to a more intensive language program.
Standard Language Program
A person can study at thousands of
Spanish language schools throughout Spain, Mexico, Central
and South America as well as the United States. So why study
the language with AEC Spanish Institute? In two words, “our
teachers”. They are the overall umbrella for the entire
AEC Spanish language program. They are the glue and soul of
AEC’s varied and proven featured programs. As Costa
Rican nationals they bring a great pride and caring to their
The inception for the language program was through the University
of Texas Spanish program. AEC has permission to use the renowned
copyrighted "University of Texas’s Spanish Immersion
Program” and its accompanying manuals and study guides.
With nine levels of Spanish taught from beginner to advanced,
each student’s progress is AEC staff’s greatest
When evaluating a language school, being a college accredited
program should be one of the first aspects when researching
the school. Without accreditation then one is lead to ponder
the capabilities and overall competency of the language program.
AEC Spanish Institute is accredited by Brookhaven College
in Dallas, Texas. This institution is accredited by SACS,
the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. These are
undergraduate, degree seeking Spanish credits for college
and university students wanting to fulfill their institutions
Spanish requirements. With an accredited language program
at AEC Spanish Institute this speaks volumes for the staff
and teachers that support and make this language program succeed.
The Standard four hour Language program at AEC Spanish Institute
is four complete hours of language a day. Class hours in Turrialba
are from 8:00am to 10:00am and from 10:30am to
12:30pm. There is a half-hour break in the middle and classes
are no larger than four students. In Dominical they start
and end an hour later and the maximum class size is six students.Arenal hours are determined by agreement of student and teacher.
Each week all will also have the option of participating in
two different afternoon activities: Latin Dance and Cooking
classes. The Intensive 4-hour +
Private has the same group schedule in the morning, followed
by two hours of private lessons Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
and Friday for a total of 28 class hours a week.
Accredited Spanish Program Information
As a participant in an AEC Spanish
Institute,Spanish Immersion program in Costa Rica you have
the opportunity to earn undergraduate Spanish credit from
Brookhaven College in Dallas, Texas . This institution is
accredited by SACS, the Southern Association of Colleges and
These are undergraduate, degree seeking
Spanish credits for college and university students wanting
to fulfill their institutions Spanish requirements. Obtaining
advance approval from your institution is necessary, as each
district, college, or state has its own policies regarding
the types of credit it will accept.
Also, as a participant in an AEC Spanish
Institute, Spanish immersion program in Costa Rica you have
the opportunity to earn Professional Development Credits from
Loyola Marytmount University of California, accredited by
WASC, the Western Association of Schools & Colleges. These
courses have graduate-level accreditation and are designed
primarily for students who have baccalaureate degrees &
appropriate teaching credentials. These semester hours of
credit are used for professional advancement and to satisfy
certain degree and credential requirements. Obtaining advance
approval from your institution is necessary as each district,
college, or state has its own policies regarding the types
of credit it will accept. For more detailed information concerning
college credits and a description of the courses offered through
Brookhaven College or Loyola Marymount College please contact
us via our e-mail address.
Intensive 4 Hour Plus Program
For those who require a truly intensive
Spanish immersion program, AEC offers it's expanded daily
program. We call it our "4 Hour Plus" program. The
program is designed to aid those students desiring to maximize
their Spanish immersion experience, and for those students
seeking additional college credits for a shorter time invested
in our programs. Students enrolled in intensive 4 hours +
program will attend the standard 4 hours morning classes which
will be followed up, after lunch break, by two hours of private
lessons four days per week. Tuesdays will not be included
for private lessons to allow students to participate in the
Classes begin every Monday of the year
except on Costa Rican National holidays and the last week
of the year. In the case of Monday holidays, classes will
begin on the following Tuesday. The following Costa Rica Holidays
are observed by the school; January 1st, April 5th, 6th and 11th, May 1st,
July 25th, August 15th, September 15th and December 25th.
The school is closed Thursday, April 5th and Good Friday, April 6th.
There are no refunds for missed days because of holidays.
Classes begin each Monday and last
through Friday. During periods of peak enrollment, some students
will be placed in afternoon sessions in order to preserve
the optimum class size. At Turrialba classes begin
at 8:30 am, while in Dominical they start at 9:00 in the morning.
Both schools take two 15 minutes breaks in between lessons.
Classes then end at 12:30 p.m. in Turrialba and 1:30 p.m.
in Dominical. Students receive four full hours of instruction
in classes no larger than four students (six in Dominical).
Each week all students will also have the option of participating
in different afternoon activities: Latin Dance classes, Cooking
classes, community service projects, and half-day excursions
to nearby cultural attractions. In the event that we are unable to place you in a group class because of differing skill levels, you shall automatically be provided three hours of individual private lessons instead. If the following week a group class does become available, you will be switched back to the group classes.
Once in Costa Rica if one wishes to relocate from one campus to another any changes are subject to a $25.00 processing fee.
Homestays at AEC's Turrialba
and Arenal campus are with local Costa Rican families, mostly
in walking distance. Every student will have a private room
with a bathroom that they share, although some houses do have
private baths as well. Weekly laundry service is provided
along with two meals a day, breakfast and dinner and all homestays
are within a 15-minute walk from the school. In Turrialba,
furnished homes without host families are available for family
use. Arenal students may conduct classes at their hotel room.
The Playa Dominical campus has four lodging options with some of the best pricing in all of Costa Rica near the beach. These options consists of homestay with local Costa Rican families, School stay standard room, Beach stay Standard and Superior rooms. All lodging except for home stay option is based on double occupancy with shared lodging arrangements. Private rooms can be available based on time of year and with an added cost. A limited amount of host families are located a short walk from campus along the Baru River and in the nearby beach community south of the town of Dominicalito. Walking to the host family from campus takes between 10 and 35 minutes depending on the host family location. If housed in Dominicalito you will be picked up in the morning by staff on their way to work but you will have to make arrangements back to your host family later in the day via taxi or bus or by foot.
The School stay housing option is located right on campus with some of the best pricing available in town and in Costa Rica. This housing option is only open to our students and not the general public. We have only six rooms available that are designed for double occupancy. They are quaint wth there own bathrooms and with communal kitchen facilities on site they are a great option for our students on a budget. Located right in town you are close to all activities from entertainment and restaurants to yoga classes’ a couple doors down.
The Beach stay options are at our cabinas known as Montanas de Agua, on the outskirts of Dominical 75 meters from the ocean, a five minute walk from the school campus and a two minute walk from the main surfing beach. Montanas de Agua has two housing options with a Standard room with fan and bathroom. The Superior room has an air conditioning option, larger rooms and with newer bathroom facilities. A Special larger furnished apartment is available for family use or larger groups with AC option. The apartments and Superior rooms give students a quieter study environment, than our on campus housing, which are closer to all the activities of this beach community.
A limited number of air conditioned Superior rooms are available at Montanas de Agua at an additional cost of $40 per week. Those students wishing air conditioning should include a request for A.C. in the "special requests" section of your registration form. Every effort will be made to secure one for you dependent upon availability.
Locations and Information:
a typical Costa Rican pueblo of over 40,000 people on the
Atlantic Slope between the colonial capital Cartago and the
Caribbean coast. The area surrounding the town is rural with
verdant green mountains, river valleys, farms, coffee plantations
and rainforest. The area is very Tico (Costa Rican) and few people
speak any English, so it is very immersive.
a small beach community on Costa Rica's central pacific coast
with about 400 permanent residents. The area around the town
and up and down the coast is not very developed, which means
that its location is truly in the rain forest. The schools
campus is right on the river in the middle of town and about
a 5-minute walk from the ocean. The beach if famous for its
world-class surfing and the abundance of wildlife in the area.
Arenal is one
of the world's true natural wonderlands. The Arenal area is
northwestern central highlands. The area is marked with small
rolling green hills and small farms, until one comes face
to face with its dominate feature, the 1663 meter Arenal Volcano;
everyone's picture book idea of what a volcano is supposed
to look like.
this point the area becomes one of lush tropical rainforest.
Turrialba is very active both during the day and at night
and is the center of the region's social life as well as its
economy. There are many different restaurants, bars, discos,
markets, shops, a movie theater and a nice Central Park. Even
though many tourists pass through town to ride the rivers,
there are not many foreigners living in the area. This makes
for a very good environment for students wishing to practice
every weekend they have dances that attract the locals from
all over the surrounding area. It is not unusual to have over
300 people come for the disco on a Saturday night, twice the
resident population of the town. There are a number of different
really great restaurants in town. The real attraction of Dominical
though lies in the surrounding natural wonders of the beach
and rain forest.
Arenal La Fortura
is concidered the gateway to the natural wonders of Costa
Rica. It is the gathering point for those visiting the Jurassic
styled Monteverde Cloud Forest, wind surfing on Lake Arenal,
and experiencing all the facets of a volcanically active area.
The main street of La Fortura is one of hotels, restaurants,
and tour outfitters that service the tourist trade. Once removed
from its bustling main street, La Fortura regains the flavor
of its Costa Rican origins.
Main Points About the Adventure Education Center
- Small intensive groups classes of
no more than 4 students at Turrialba with 6
students at Dominical.
- Campuses in three completely different
locations, each with its own cultural feel and outdoor activities.
- The Turrialba campus is in a picturesque
location on the Atlantic Slope, with the best aspects of
the city, countryside and mountains.
- The Dominical campus is right on
the beach with lots of wildlife in the surrounding countryside
and in the town itself.
- Dominical is one of the best surfing
beaches in Central America. • The area surrounding
the Turrialba campus is very rural with lots of farms, ranches
and coffee plantations.
- Arenal/La Fortuna is the gateway
to Northern Costa Rica's most famous natural splendors;
the spectacular Arenal volcano and hot springs, Monteverde
Cloud Forest and Cano Negro wildlife refuge.
- Dominical and Turrialba campuses have great afternoon
and weekend activities such as: dance and cooking classes,
kayaking and horse back riding.
- Arenal students have the chance
to view the awesome, nighttime natural splendor of one of
the worlds most active volcanos up close and personal.
- The best Adventure program in Costa
Rica from mountain biking down from the top of a volcano
to sea-kayaking and snorkeling in Marina Ballena National
- Extra benefits for those on the
Adventure program include- airport pick up assistance and
daily Internet access.
- Comprehensive Medical Spanish programs,
combining in classes curriculum with afternoon hospital
and clinical visits.
- Extremely safe area, perfect for
families and those traveling on their own.
- AEC Spanish Institute is a small
school so it is very flexible and willing to set up special
programs or group packages.
- Turrialba is a fun and lively town,
both by day and by night with a definite country feel.