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The Greek Language, Ancient & Modern

 (GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The Greek Language is one of the earliest attested Indo-European languages, spoken today by approximately 12 million people in Greece, Cyprus, Albania, Bulgaria, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), Italy, Turkey, Armenia, Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Egypt, Jordan and in emigrant communities around the world, including Australia, United States, Canada, Germany and elsewhere.

Modern Greek is easily recognisable as the language of Plato and the New Testament. The Greek language, whether ancient, biblical or modern, can be ideally studied in a Greek speaking environment. Greek language courses are offered at Greek universities, at private schools, through online programmes and during the summer throughout Greece.


                                                             UNIVERSITY COURSES

» University of Athens  

The Athens University “Modern Greek Language Teaching Centre” is a member of the “Association of Language Testers in Europe” and certifies the required level of knowledge of Greek for the matriculation of foreign students in any Greek University. In addition to teaching Greek to foreigners, the Centre oversees a post-graduate training course for teachers of Greek as a Foreign Language that leads to a Master’s degree. 

» Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

The “School of Modern Greek Language” offers courses to foreign students and students of Greek origin, who wish to learn the language or improve their knowledge of Greek history, literature, art and tradition.

» University of Patras

The “School of Modern Greek Language” promotes Greek language teaching for foreigners and Greeks from abroad. Courses are scheduled every year in all teaching levels (beginners, intermediate and advanced).

» University of Ioannina

The “Centre for the Study of Hellenic Language and Culture (HeLaS)” offers winter and summer language courses of Modern Greek as a foreign or as a second language.

» University of Crete

The Department of Philology offers an annual Modern Greek Summer Course in July. This year’s courses will start on June 30 and end on July 25. 

» University of the Aegean

Modern Greek as a foreign language is taught at the University of the Aegean, on the island of Mytilini at the School of Social Sciences.


» The College Year in Athens

The “College Year in Athens,” a study abroad programme focused upon the Greek history and civilization, offers foreign students university-level courses focused on Greece and the East Mediterranean world. In addition to classes taking place in Athens, an interesting annual learning project is held on the island of Paros.

» The Hellenic Language School 

The Hellenic Language School “Alexander the Great” offers courses to all speakers of other languages who want to learn Greek.The school has branches operating at Thessaloniki and Chania in Greece, at Sophia and Plovdif in Bulgaria, at Skopjie in F.Y.R.O.M as well as at Tirana in Albania.

» Hellenic Culture Centre

The “Hellenic Culture Centre” offers Greek language courses to foreigners. While classes are held in Athens, the institute organises an Easter and summer language teaching programme on the Island of Lesvos.

» The Athens Centre

The “Athens Centre” language programme consists of greek language courses held in Athens and a three week summer session on the island of Spetses, which apart from the typical language classes, includes extra cultural activities.

» The Greek House

The “Greek House” in Athens, is a centre for Greek language lessons and Greek culture. The school’s aim is to provide attendants with a wide range of Greek related courses, seminars, lectures and art exhibitions.

» Ikarian Centre

Greek Language courses can be a fruitful experience for foreigners on the island of Ikaria. The “Ikarian Centre” runs a summer Greek Language School combining learning with pleasure, entertainment and vacation.

» Summer Break in Crete

The Drexel University, Philadelphia, USA is organising a summer programme in Crete for those students who wish to spend four weeks on the island, studying the culture of Crete, as of July 6th. Application deadline is April 15th.

» Thessaloniki International Summer School

One of the Institute for Balkan Studies activities is the organisation of Greek summer courses for non native speakers. The courses comprise an intensive language teaching programme plus a special Greek History and Culture class, in which students study contemporary Greek prose and poetry. 


Greece offers numerous opportunities for study holidays. Many international students and professionals from around the world choose to spend learning time in the Greek islands. Athens News weekly suggests a selection of courses, available during this summer and autumn: Tourism breeds culture: study on the islands


» Filoglossia

Learning Greek as a foreign language through Filoglossia, a multimedia programme based on the communicative approach, could be a handy tool for those who want to use the language in real every day life situations. Filoglossia is promoted by the Institute for Language and Speech Processing. (VISIT THE LINK IN OUR WEBSITE ON THE LEFT COLUMN To start learning)

» Speak Greek – Live Greek

Speak Greek – Live Greek“, is a free e-learning programme realised by the World Council of Hellenes Abroad with the cooperation of the Hellenic Regional Development Centre, aiming at teaching anyone wishing to learn the Greek Language and to discover the Greek Culture and History no matter where they are.

» Hellas Alive

The Hellenic American Union offers a full range of courses in Modern Greek. It also produces and publishes materials for learning Modern Greek and organises teacher training seminars. Through its pioneering programme Hellas Alive, anyone who wants to learn or improve their Greek can navigate this rich multimedia platform where learning becomes a playful experience.

» Odysseas Online Greek Language Project

An online Greek Language tutor, Odysseas, surpasses the limits of a simple e-learning programme, through an interactive process, where students, apart from instructed properly, receive customized feedback on their performance.

» 100 plus Greek Language Lessons

Registering to this free of charge online Greek language course, offers 105 Greek lessons combined with students notes, dictionary and spell checker.  

» Ancient Greek

For the study of Ancient Greek, the Greek Language and Linguistics site provides dictionaries and grammatical aids available online or in print version.


Greece stands at the geopolitical crossroads of Europe, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Studying in Greece, among other things, offers employment opportunities in business, commerce, finance, technology, travel, banking, journalism, media, education, law, and gives a competitive edge in many professions. Many foreign students choose to study in Greece for various reasons, one of them being the attraction to classical civilisation as that by which all other civilizations are measured. Its roots are still present in modern-day Greece. 

Greece’s research institutes, university laboratories and the private sector are forging relationships with partners from around the world, aiming to meet challenges in areas such as medicine, energy, the environment and information and communication technologies.

Researchers who wish to move to Greece may look at the National Research Foundation Researcher’s Mobility Portal for assistance, information on research policies, fellowships and grants. The Practical Guide for Foreign Researchers is an essential manual for non-Greek scientists who visit and work in the country, assisting them in all matters.

Greek News Agenda: Special Issue – Studying in Greece


 The Hellenic Foundation for Culture serves as a point of reference for the Greek language and its teaching abroad. The Greek language is taught at all levels at the HFC branches in Berlin, Alexandria and Odessa.

“Φρυκτωρίες” [Fryktories, an ancient communication system based on fire] website (www.komvos.edu.gr/fryktories/) supports the teaching of modern Greek language and literature in foreign universities (in Greek).


Greek Language Portal [in Greek]: www.greek-language.gr

National Book Center: www.ekebi.gr

European Center for the Translation of Literature and the Human Sciences: www.ekemel.gr

An annotated gateway to New Testament in Greek: ntgateway.com/greek/ 

Translation portal: www.translatio.gr

Links and background information regarding the study of Greece and Hellenism worldwide: www.mediainfo2004.gr/cgibin/hweb?-A=1029&-V=specials&-w


The Centre for the Greek Language, a co-ordinating and advisory body of the Ministry of Education on issues of language education and teaching of Greek to non-Greek speakers, holds annual exams for the Certificate of Attainment in Greek (Εξετάσεις για την πιστοποίηση ελληνομάθειας).

More info: Centre for the Greek Language, Guide to the Examination for the Certificate of Attainment in Greek

Modern Greek evaluation tests are also available at: www.linguanet-europa.org

Children of Greek descent (8 -12 years), who wish to be taught Greek as a foreign language, may have their learning needs assessed via a Questionnaire designed by the Centre for the Greek Language.