World Languages and Cultures
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Our Department's Mission and Goals
The Department of World Languages and Cultures believes language is central to learning, communication, communities, and cultures. In and through the languages of different cultures, we foster substantive engagement with the world, broadening perspectives, shifting paradigms, and emphasizing the interconnected nature of both our increasingly global society and our academic disciplines. Through teaching, research, and service, our faculty cultivate the ability to transfer, migrate, translate, and live in and between different cultures.
We serve our students, the University, and the community at large by:
• providing instruction in world languages, cultures and entrepreneurship;
• contributing to the liberal education mission of the University;
• offering multiple degree programs;
• training students for a broad set of professions with an entrepreneurial mindset, including law, medicine, business, government service, community engagement, non-governmental organizations, tourism, engineering, and academia;
• promoting substantive engagement with world cultures through study abroad opportunities in the target language across the globe;
• expanding knowledge through research and creative work in diverse areas concerning the languages, literatures, and cultures of the world;
• collaborating with colleagues in interdisciplinary curricular and research endeavors;
• advocating for language and culture education;
• serving the developmental goals of the region through its pracademic initiatives consisting of regional issues-focused classroom and field work, practice-led research, and cultural exchange; and
• sponsoring talks, colloquia, conferences, film festivals, performances and symposia that expose the general and University communities to intellectual and cultural trends related to languages, literatures, and cultures.
Student Learning Outcomes
- Students will demonstrate a proficiency level in speaking the target language, at a minimum, of Intermediate (as defined by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages). This means that students can, among other things, converse with ease and confidence in routine tasks and social situations, can exchange basic information, can narrate and describe in different time frames, can use connected discourse of paragraph length, can maintain some consistency in performance albeit with some breakdowns, and can be understood by native speakers unaccustomed to non-native speakers.
- Students will study abroad.
- Students will understand the cultural practices products & perspectives of cultures using the target language.
- Students will make cultural connections across time and space.
- Students will demonstrate higher-level critical reasoning / analytic skills in the target language.
- Students will demonstrate oral presentational skills in the target language.
- Students will demonstrate written presentational skills in the target language.