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About the Modern Languages Department

The Modern Languages Department at Ohio University offers a complete series of courses leading to a bachelor’s degree (with or without teaching certification) in French, German, and Spanish. Courses also are taught in beginning, intermediate, and composition/conversation-level Italian.

The diverse course offerings embrace all aspects of language, literature, and culture, including: reading, conversation, composition, language for business purposes, civilization, phonetics, stylistics, dramatic performance, methods of language teaching, audiovisual techniques, film, and the opportunity for study abroad, independent study and internships.

Almost all language classes are taught in Gordy Hall. The Ohio Program of Intensive English (OPIE) and the Linguistics Department also are located in Gordy Hall.

About the Department

The Modern Languages Department is diverse and vibrant, with faculty, staff, and students from many different countries, cultures, and communities. Modern Languages faculty publish top-level cultural, literary, cinematographic, and pedagogic research relating to a variety of languages, cultures, and time periods.

This wide range of expertise means that courses provide students with a base of knowledge not only in language but, just as importantly, in cultural content vital for understanding and navigating the world. Majors, minors, and certificate students learn to think analytically and critically in courses on literature, culture, linguistics, film, and art, and they acquire clarity of thought and expression through frequent writing assignments and speaking activities. Students enhance their technological skills in the Language Resource Center’s audio, video, and computer labs.

Modern Languages faculty are committed to student advising, and to guiding students through the options of double majors, complementary certificate programs, and elective courses. The department limits class sizes so that professors can address the needs of individual learners and encourage dialog, collaboration, openness, and critical thinking. With faculty guidance, seniors have successfully competed for postgraduate awards such as Fulbright and Truman Scholarships as well as for admission to M.A. and Ph.D. programs in a variety of fields.

To complement coursework, student language clubs and national honor societies sponsor events such as weekly conversation meetings and foreign film series. The Modern Languages Department excels at challenging undergraduate students in a supportive environment where they can thrive and prepare themselves for a successful future.

Mission Statement

The study of language is fundamental to the liberal arts tradition of higher education. As a department that offers major, minor, and certificate programs in French, German, Italian, and Spanish, the Department of Modern Languages firmly believes that to study another language and culture adds multiple dimensions to education. Consequently, we are committed not only to developing communication skills in a second language, but also to teaching students to analyze cultural and literary texts, conduct and present original research, access and evaluate multiple points of view, and develop life-long learning strategies. We help students develop the ability to appreciate diversity and think critically from beginning language through M.A.-level literature, culture, pedagogy, linguistics, translation, and film courses. Our study abroad programs provide students the opportunity to experience, analyze, and understand cultural differences while improving their language skills. Students in Modern Languages acquire tools needed for professional success as global citizens.