PLEASE NOTE ~ UPDATE, 5/3/2020: The Online Summer Tibetan Intensive Is Now Full.  We are no longer accepting any applications and there is not a wait list. 

By order of the State of Oregon, the Maitripa College campus is currently closed. We anticipate a return to onsite activities by September of 2020, if not sooner. Other summer programming (remote only) is in the works and we will be posting details about our summer offerings by May 15. 


In response to COVID-19, the Maitripa College Classical Tibetan Language Summer Program has been updated and moved online.  Please see below and contact [email protected] if you have any questions or concerns. 

 Summer 2020 Classical Tibetan Language Online Course Offerings 

This summer the faculty and staff of Maitripa College would like to send a message of love and empathy around the world by offering Classical Tibetan online and tuition free as a non-credit option for non-degree seeking students. Taught by Professor Bill Magee (of Maitripa College and the UMA Institute), this is a foundational introductory course for all those wishing to translate or to engage in research on a scholarly level. 

Maitripa College will continue to offer graduate school credit hours through our Classical Tibetan language program. The course this summer will be slightly reduced from our usual the intensive model in order to accommodate online distance learning needs and is open to enrollment this summer only for non-credit seeking students.


Course Description 

The goal of this eight-week summer course will be gaining the ability to pronounce and read Tibetan sentences. Specifically, we will read and debate in Tibetan the early chapters of Pur-bu-jok’s Collected Topics. This text introduces logical reasoning within a framework of Dharmakīrti’s Commentary on Dignāga’s Compendium of Valid Cognition and the Buddhist Sūtra School system of tenets.

In the first half of the course we will quickly learn the phonetics of Tibetan as well as Joe Wilson’s presentations of verbs and grammar. In the second half of the course students will memorize definitions, divisions, and so forth while learning to debate the first topic, colors. Magee’s Digital Debate Assistant ( is a useful tool for understanding and practicing Tibetan debate procedures. Debate texts are chosen as a language learning methodology, proven to help develop one’s grasp of grammar, pronunciation, and speaking in complete sentences in Tibetan.

Due to the limitations of interactive on-line classes and the desire to offer an excellent learning experience to all participants, this course will have a limited enrollment and may fill to capacity quickly. 


No prior knowledge of Tibetan language is required, but it is helpful to have some prior experience. Admission to the course is offered based on application to the course and permission of the instructor.

Required Texts

Required texts for this course are:  Joe Wilson’s Translating Buddhism from Tibetan (1998), Paul Hackett’s Learning Classical Tibetan (2019), Paul Hackett’s Tibetan Verb Lexicon (2019), and Daniel Perdue’s Debate in Tibetan Buddhism (1992). Registered students will be asked to purchase these texts (all available through Snow Lion Publications). All other materials will be supplied digitally. 

Course Dates and Schedule

The course, TIB108, lasts from June 8 – July 31, 2020.
June 8 – July 3:  Focus – Pronunciation, Introduction to Grammar  
July 6 – July 31: Focus – Debate, the Collected Topics 


Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday,
9:00-11:00am Pacific Daylight Time (UTC/GMT -7:00) 

Credit Hours

The eight-week course, TIB108, is a four-credit hour course. 


Graduate Credit Tuition: $390/credit hour 
Continuing Education, Non-credit Tuition: $0 

For summer 2020 only, free tuition is offered unless Maitripa College credit required. If Maitripa College credit is required or desired, towards graduation requirements for a Maitripa College degree or if one plans to seek transfer credits at one’s home institution, students must enroll for credit. Scholarship assistance may be available for current Maitripa College students only. Payment plans are available by request for all. Non-credit continuing education students will not necessarily receive any of the rights of credit-earning or degree students, such as grades, transcripts, instructor feedback on progression towards course learning objectives, or ongoing substantive technical or administrative staff support after registration. Non-credit students will receive the best instruction in classical Tibetan language and translation available in the world today, from preeminent and highly dedicated scholar teachers, for free. Donations to Maitripa College are gratefully accepted if and whenever possible.


This summer only, Maitripa College will waive some of our fees associated with access to on-site resources that are currently not available for online students while our campus is closed.  We will not charge library, student services, and facility fees. Our standard tuition and fees policies are detailed here for more information:   For summer 2020, Maitripa College will charge technology and registration fees to all students accepted to the program. 

Degree/ Credit Student Fees: $28 technology fee + $25 registration fee 
Continuing Education/ Non-Credit Student Fees: $28 technology fee + $10 registration fee 

Technology Requirements 

Maitripa College has successfully utilized the Zoom application for Spring 2020 courses, but is continuing to monitor security and other concerns, and may elect alternative comparable technology for the summer. Every effort will be made to inform accepted students of the course platform and usage instructions and to provide set-up tech support as needed prior to the course. 

Zoom Desktop Client Requirements

PC, Mac, or Linux with stable internet connection, speakers, microphone, and webcam.