Department of Modern Languages and Classics

The Department of Modern Languages and Classics seeks to empower learners to better interact in and understand a dynamic, global environment. We feature an undergraduate Spanish (SP) major and a foreign languages and literature (FLL) major with concentrations in classical civilization, French, German, Greek, Italian, and Latin. We offer undergraduate minor concentrations in Arabic, Chinese, Classical Civilization, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies, Russian, and Spanish. Our courses are affiliated with the Asian studies minor, comparative and world literature minor, linguistics minor, and the medieval and early modern European studies minor. Our Critical Languages Center offers instruction in ASL (American Sign Language) and additional less commonly taught languages, many of which are vital for national security. Many of our courses are applicable to the Global Studies Certificate.

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The department of modern languages and classics offers two majors leading to the bachelor of arts (BA) degree: one in Spanish and one in foreign languages and literature. The major in foreign languages and literature offers six tracks: Classics, French, German, Italian, Latin and Greek. Also offered are minors in Arabic, Chinese, Classical Civilization, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino Studies, Russian and Spanish. Extensive coursework is offered in Arabic. The department of modern languages and classics also houses the Critical Languages Center. Students pursuing majors or minors in a language are strongly encouraged to take advantage of study abroad opportunities.

Critical Languages Program

Through the critical languages program, the College of Arts and Sciences offers a variety of less-commonly-taught languages (LCTL) not available at many other institutions in the USA. These languages are offered through our membership in the National Association of Self-Instructional Language Programs (NASILP). Students can take these courses to obtain practical communicative ability of the languages, or for personal interests. Some of the languages currently offered include American Sign Language, Farsi (Persian), Hebrew, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Portuguese (Brazilian), Swahili, Thai, Turkish and Vietnamese (subject to availability of native/near native speakers and number of students interested in).

The unique directed-self-study system consists of each student’s self study using assigned textbook and visual/audio materials (CDs, DVDs or computer sound files) and required class session with a “language trainer” who is a native/near native/ (or equivalent level) speaker of the target language, to develop his or her communicative ability. The student’s language ability is evaluated at the end of the semester by a qualified professional.

During the sessions, students will actively participate using the target language. English use will be kept to a minimum in class. Language trainers will provide some measure of assessment through the semester by use of the student performance sheet reports sent to the director of the CLC and the final examiner.

Placement into Language Courses

The course level at which students begin their study is determined by several factors, including the following: the number of high school units completed, language placement examination scores, AP score, and/or faculty evaluation/consultation.  For more information, consult the College placement website, the departmental website, or an advisor. 


Chair and Professor
  • Toman, Cheryl
  • Carvalho, Susan
  • Corbalán, Ana M.
  • Fox, Thomas C.
  • Summers, Kirk
Associate Professors
  • Cipria, Alicia B.
  • Drewelow, Isabelle
  • Drozd, Andrew M.
  • Edmunds, Bruce
  • Janiga-Perkins, Constance G.
  • Koronkiewicz, Bryan
  • Lazda-Cazers, Rasma
  • Lightfoot, Douglas
  • Mayer, Carmen
  • Moody, Sarah
  • O'Rourke, Erin
  • Robin, Jean Luc
  • Rodeño, Ignacio F.
  • Romanelli, Claudia
  • Shannon-Henderson, Kelly
  • Summers, Tatiana
  • Worden, William
Assistant Professors
  • Elnaili, Safa
  • Feminella, Matthew
  • Goethals, Jessica
  • Granja, Xabier
  • McKay, Micah
  • Montalbano, Alessandra
  • Range, Regina
  • Stamm, Gina


Elementary Arabic

This is an introductory course to the Arabic language and is intended for those with no prior knowledge of the language.

Foreign Language
Elementary Chinese

Contemporary Chinese Language (Mandarin): speaking, listening, reading and writing of simplified Chinese characters. The class meets five hours per week with an instructor. This course is intended for students with NO PRIOR KNOWLEDGE of Chinese. Native speakers or near native speakers of the language are NOT allowed to enroll. Any students with background knowledge of this language must see the program director before enrolling.

Foreign Language, Humanities

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