Modern Foreign Languages

Dr. Jamie Mattison, Chairperson

The Department of Modern Foreign Languages has the principal goal of promoting the study of modern foreign languages, cultures, and literatures. The department currently offers Spanish, American Sign Language, French, German and Japanese. In support of this primary aim, it also endeavors (l) to emphasize in all curricula the development of both oral and written proficiency in the foreign language according to guidelines published by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL), (2) to provide the highest quality, most up-to-date, practical instruction in foreign languages and cultures and in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), (3) to produce majors able to meet requirements for Spanish teacher certification in Texas (TExES), (4) to introduce students to the experience of reading Spanish literature in the original language, (5) to produce students able to read the Bible in a foreign language with relative ease and able to perform ministry in a foreign culture, and (6) to provide students with insight into the culture of the language through an interdisciplinary perspective.

A Bachelor of Arts degree requires 14 hours (4 semesters or the equivalent level of achievement) of a foreign language. All four semesters must be in the same language. See the catalog for requirements for other degrees. Some courses have course fees.

Elementary and intermediate foreign language courses emphasize the development of both oral and written communication skills. Small group conversational practice, on-line workbooks, computer programs, and peer tutoring, are offered as reinforcements. Additionally, study abroad programs, summer intensive programs and professional Spanish courses may be offered.

SPAN 3330 and SPAN 3340 are open to departmental credit by examination. The CLEP exam is available for students who wish to challenge the elementary and intermediate levels of Spanish, French or German. A placement test for Spanish and French is available for students with previous experience in formal or informal Spanish or French. Students can place out of, but not receive credit for, SPAN 1410/ SPAN 1420 or FREN 1410/FREN 1420. Exams are also available for selected other languages through the Foreign Language Achievement Testing Service (FLATS). AP (Advanced Placement) and IB (International Baccalaureate) credit is accepted for Spanish, French and German.

The department also offers courses in “English for Speakers of Other Languages” (ESOL) to incoming international students. Further details as to placement, course requirements, and regulations may be obtained from the department. ESOL courses designated as upper-level can count for elective credit.