2016-2017 HillBook (Class of 2020) [ARCHIVED HILL BOOK]
Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
Juan Carlos Martín
Office: Duffy Academic Center 244
J. C. Martín
The Department offers majors in French and Spanish, as well as a major in Foreign Languages which allows students to combine two of the following languages: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian and Spanish.
The Department also offers minor programs in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian Studies, and Spanish.
The Department fulfills its mission by teaching languages, literatures, and cultures, by promoting cross-cultural understanding, and by presenting models of effective pedagogy. Members of the Department also serve the College and wider community in areas pertaining to languages, literatures and cultures.
The study of languages is an integral part of a liberal arts education. It gives students a means of breaking through the barrier of a single speech and culture pattern and provides an encounter with some of the world’s great literature, cultural traditions, and social models. It is also invaluable for those seeking careers in business and commerce, civil service, education, international affairs, media, social services, law enforcement, and scholarly research.
The Department offers courses at various levels in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Attic Greek, Biblical Hebrew*, Italian, Latin and Spanish, which meet General Education requirements. Students are expected to develop and increase their proficiency in a foreign language, whether continuing one previously studied or beginning a new one. Proficiency entails communication, cultural understanding, connections with other areas of knowledge, comparisons on the nature of language and culture, and participation in multilingual communities.
Majors in French will complete a program of study that hinges on two equally important goals: increasing the fluency and accuracy of students’ communication in French, and fostering a profound understanding and appreciation of key cultural aspects of the French World (which includes, among other things, history, literature, values, etc.). Majors in French will achieve these learning goals through the completion of two requirements: a) taking eleven (11) courses (three of these courses may be taken abroad), and b) spending at least one (1) semester abroad in an approved program of study or an internship in a French-speaking country.
Learning Outcomes of Language Study
Regarding the students’ interpersonal communication, Language Majors will be able to:
- Successfully express himself/herself not only on familiar topics but also on some concrete social, academic, and professional topics;
- successfully talk in detail and in an organized way about events and experiences in various time frames and modes;
- confidently handle routine situations with an unexpected complication; and
- share his/her point of view in discussions on some complex issues.
Regarding the students’ presentational speaking, Language Majors will be able to:
- Deliver well-organized presentations on concrete social, academic, and professional topics; and
- present detailed information about events and experiences in various time frames and modes.
Regarding the students’ written communication, Language Majors will be able to:
- Write on a wide variety of general interest, professional, and academic topics; and
- write well-organized, detailed paragraphs in various time frames and modes.
Regarding the students’ interpretive listening and reading, Language Majors will be able to:
- Understand the main idea and most supporting details on a variety of topics of personal and general interest, as well as some topics of professional interest;
- follow stories and descriptions of some length and in various time frames and modes;
- understand information presented in most genres, even when not familiar with the topic;
- understand the main idea and most supporting details in texts on a variety of topics of personal and general interest, as well as some professional topics;
- follow stories and descriptions of considerable length and in various time frames and modes; and
- understand texts written in a variety of genres, even when unfamiliar with the topic.
Learning Outcomes of Culture Studies
Majors in French will be able to communicate in French (within the aforementioned parameters) about a wide range of aspects pertaining to the French World. Such topics include, among other things, history, literature and cultural productions.
Majors in Spanish will be able to communicate in Spanish (within the aforementioned parameters) about a wide range of aspects pertaining to the Hispanic World. Such topics include, among other things, history, literature, art, music etc., and are outlined in Spanish Section’s Reading List and Study Guide for Majors in Spanish.