Department of World Languages and Literatures Programs

Foreign language skills are essential to some of today’s promising global fields, including tourism, translation, language interpretation, and international relations. Opportunities exist in education, business, government, social services, and more. Students at Southern can major or minor in Spanish, French, Italian, or German and are encouraged to enhance their coursework by studying abroad. Courses in Arabic and Chinese are also offered, as are options for students interested in teaching a world language (WLT); Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL); and Bilingual Education (BE), including a master's of science degree and cross-endorsement certification.

The Master of Science Degree in Bilingual, Multicultural Education & TESOL is designed for those who are interested in teaching English to speakers of other languages in the U.S. and abroad at any age and school level. The program provides students with a comprehensive introduction to linguistics, second language acquisition theory, bilingual education, methods of teaching English as a second and foreign language, immigration issues, and multiliteracy and multiculturalism. Upon program completion, graduates receive a credential in teaching Engilsh to speakers of other languages that is globally accepted and in-service teachers are eligible for additional certification in ESOL and/or Bilingual education.

The BS in French is designed for students interested in developing linguistic fluency and high levels of cultural proficiency in French who want to become teachers of the language at the high school level. All French classes develop students' ability to speak, read, write, and comprehend French, while increasing their understanding of French film, literature, history, geography, and culture. Concurrently, students will fulfill the courses associated with earning certification through the College of Education, and will do one semester of student teaching.

The Post-baccalaureate program in French is designed for students who already possess a Bachelor’s degree, linguistic fluency in French (minimum of Advanced Low on the ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview and Written Proficiency Test), high levels of proficiency in Francophone culture; and who are looking to obtain state licensure to become certified teachers of French at the high school level (Grades 7-12). Coursework in linguistics, education, second language acquisition, and world language teaching methods as well as a range of fieldwork experiences prepare students to work as French teachers in Connecticut public schools.

The BA in French is designed for students interested in developing linguistic fluency and high levels of cultural proficiency in French, while also refining their skills in critical and analytical thinking. Throughout the program, our students engage with French and Francophone cultures through the study of film, literature, art, popular culture, history, and geography. Our program prepares students to explore and investigate not only the French and Francophone world, but also to examine critically global issues like language, community, immigration, gender, sexuality, and social justice. Students selecting to complete a BA in French have many personal and professional opportunities available to them, including careers in business and finance, fashion, graduate study, public relations, engineering and science, tourism and entertainment, medicine and health professions, and government and non-government organizations, among others. Students seeking a career in education (grades 7-12) should select the BS in French.

The Post-baccalaureate program in German is designed for students who already possess a Bachelor’s degree, linguistic fluency in German (minimum of Advanced Low on the ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview and Written Proficiency Test), high levels of German cultural proficiency; and who are looking to obtain state licensure to become certified teachers of German at the high school level (Grades 7-12). Coursework in linguistics, education, second language acquisition, and world language teaching methods as well as a range of fieldwork experiences prepare students to work as German teachers in Connecticut public schools.

The BS in Italian prepares students interested in teaching the language at the high school level. Classes are grounded in Italian authentic materials that include cinema, literature, food, music, art, and history among other areas and are designed to develop and enhance students’ ability to speak, write, listen, and comprehend Italian. The classes are devised to ensure that students achieve the highest levels of linguistic fluency and cultural competence. Concurrently, students will fulfill the courses required to earn a teaching certification through the College of Education; students will also complete one semester of student teaching.

The Post-baccalaureate program in Italian is designed for students who already possess a Bachelor’s degree, linguistic fluency in Italian (minimum of Advanced Low on the ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview and Written Proficiency Test), high levels of Italian cultural proficiency; and who are looking to obtain state licensure to become certified teachers of Italian at the high school level (Grades 7-12). Coursework in linguistics, education, second language acquisition, and world language teaching methods as well as a range of fieldwork experiences prepare students to work as Italian teachers in Connecticut public schools.

The BA in Italian prepares students not interested in teaching the language for a variety of careers, including translating, marketing, business, fashion, arts, public relations, and foreign service among others. Designed to enhance learners’ cultural awareness through Italian cinema, literature, art, music, and history, classes also develop and hone students’ ability to speak, write, listen, and comprehend Italian.

The minor in French is designed for students interested in developing linguistic fluency and cultural proficiency in French, while also refining their skills in critical and analytical thinking. Throughout the program, our students engage with French and Francophone cultures through the study of film, literature, art, popular culture, history, and geography. Our program prepares students to explore and investigate not only the French and Francophone world, but also to examine critically global issues like language, community, immigration, gender, sexuality, and social justice. Students selecting to complete a minor in French have many personal and professional opportunities available to them, including careers in business and finance, fashion, graduate study, public relations, engineering and science, tourism and entertainment, medicine and health professions, and government and non-government organizations, among others.

Students pursuing a minor in German will gain linguistic proficiency in German while learning about Germany's history, culture, customs, literature, and geography. Students will take 18 credits of German to complete the minor. All courses focus on building language skills, while increasing students' understanding of Germany and its culture. 

A minor in Italian enhances career opportunities in fields that include marketing, business, fashion, arts, public relations, and education among others. It consists of 18 credits and is designed to broaden students’ cultural awareness while developing their speaking, listening, writing and reading skills.

Linguistics is a science of language. It helps us understand how language is organized, how we are able to communcate with each other and encode our thoughts into a linguistic form. It explains how meaning is encoded in words, phrases, sentences, sounds, and letters. Linguistics has many areas of study, including sociolingusitics that tackles communication issues; psycholinguistics that examines the working of the brain in language acquisiiton and use; discourse analysis that explores our ability to produce cohesive and coherent texts; computational lingusitics that has become essential in the development of computer translations and speech recognition. Majoring in a related discipline and minoring in linguistics can prepare students for a variety of careers, including teaching, translating, foreign service, and social work, or graduate study in linguistics and any of its related sub-fields.

The Minor in Medical Spanish for Health and Human Service Professions is a sequence of courses designed to prepare future professionals to serve Spanish-speaking clients in a clinical setting by developing functional and technical Spanish language skills and cultural awareness. Although the minor is designed to complement programs such as nursing, exercise science, public health, psychology, social work, and communication disorders, any student interested in becoming proficient in conversational Spanish for health and human service is welcome to enroll in this minor.

Students pursuing a minor in Spanish will gain linguistic proficiency in Spanish while learning about the history, culture, customs, literature, and geography of the Spanish-speaking world, including the United States. Students will take 18 credits of Spanish to complete the minor. All courses focus on building language skills, while increasing students' understanding of Spanish speakers and their diverse cultures.

The Master of Arts degree in Romance Languages is designed for students interested in French, Italian, Spanish, or any combination of two of these. It provides advanced training for those who plan to complete their graduate studies in literature, language, literary, and cultural theory at the master's level, and for those who anticipate continuing graduate work up to the doctoral degree. The program is tailored to the needs of those who wish:

  • To teach these languages at the elementary, middle school, or high school levels, whether they are seeking initial certification or cross-endorsement;
  • To teach these languages at the college level;
  • To work in related fields, such as foreign service, other government service, private industry, translation and interpreting, librarianship, etc.

The program is built on three premises:

  • The teaching of language and culture requires mastery of cultural awareness in the target language, as well as, literary works from different periods and genres.
  • Scholarly research and writing, such as is required in graduate courses, is essential for exploring and understanding such production. This kind of explorative activity culminates in a capstone experience (i.e., thesis, comprehensive exams, or special project).
  • Use of the target language at all times in classroom discussion and the research and writing of examinations and papers, assures fluent, correct, and idiomatic mastery of the language.

The Master of Arts degree in Romance Languages is designed for students interested in French, Italian, Spanish, or any combination of two of these. It provides advanced training for those who plan to complete their graduate studies in literature, language, literary, and cultural theory at the master's level, and for those who anticipate continuing graduate work up to the doctoral degree. The program is tailored to the needs of those who wish:

  • To teach these languages at the elementary, middle school, or high school levels, whether they are seeking initial certification or cross-endorsement;
  • To teach these languages at the college level;
  • To work in related fields, such as foreign service, other government service, private industry, translation and interpreting, librarianship, etc.

The program is built on three premises:

  • The teaching of language and culture requires mastery of cultural awareness in the target language, as well as, literary works from different periods and genres.
  • Scholarly research and writing, such as is required in graduate courses, is essential for exploring and understanding such production. This kind of explorative activity culminates in a capstone experience (i.e., thesis, comprehensive exams, or special project).
  • Use of the target language at all times in classroom discussion and the research and writing of examinations and papers, assures fluent, correct, and idiomatic mastery of the language.

The Master of Arts degree in Romance Languages is designed for students interested in French, Italian, Spanish, or any combination of two of these. It provides advanced training for those who plan to complete their graduate studies in literature, language, literary, and cultural theory at the master's level, and for those who anticipate continuing graduate work up to the doctoral degree. The program is tailored to the needs of those who wish:

  • To teach these languages at the elementary, middle school, or high school levels, whether they are seeking initial certification or cross-endorsement;
  • To teach these languages at the college level;
  • To work in related fields, such as foreign service, other government service, private industry, translation and interpreting, librarianship, etc.

The program is built on three premises:

  • The teaching of language and culture requires mastery of cultural awareness in the target language, as well as, literary works from different periods and genres.
  • Scholarly research and writing, such as is required in graduate courses, is essential for exploring and understanding such production. This kind of explorative activity culminates in a capstone experience (i.e., thesis, comprehensive exams, or special project).
  • Use of the target language at all times in classroom discussion and the research and writing of examinations and papers, assures fluent, correct, and idiomatic mastery of the language.

The BS in Spanish is designed for students interested in developing linguistic fluency and high levels of cultural proficiency in Spanish who want to become teachers of the language at the high school level. All Spanish classes develop students' ability to speak, read, write, and comprehend Spanish, while increasing their understanding of Spanish film, literature, history, geography, and culture. Concurrently, students will fulfill the courses associated with earning certification through the College of Education, and will do one semester of student teaching.

The B.S in Spanish 7-12 - Concentration: MA Accelerated Pathway is designed for students interested in completing both their bachelor’s degree in Spanish with teacher certification and their master’s degree in Romance Languages (Spanish concentration) in only five years. This accelerated pathway program creates a bridge between the undergraduate-level teacher certification program and our M.A. in Romance Languages program by embedding seven credits of graduate coursework into the undergraduate degree and replacing seven credits of free elective undergraduate coursework with graduate-level courses. This program allows motivated undergraduate students to complete all the credentials required for regional teachers at one time. Students are expected to complete their bachelor’s and master’s degree requirements typically within five years, gaining a competitive advantage in their career, while saving time and expense.

The Post-baccalaureate program in Spanish is designed for students who already possess a Bachelor’s degree, linguistic fluency (Advanced Low on the ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview and Written Proficiency Test), high levels of Hispano-American cultural proficiency; and who are looking to obtain state licensure to become certified teachers of Spanish at the high school level (Grades 7-12). Coursework in linguistics, education, second language acquisition, and world language teaching methods as well as a range of fieldwork experiences prepare students to work as Spanish teachers in Connecticut public schools. 

The certificate in Spanish and Latino Cultures for Health Professionals is a 12-credit sequence of courses designed to prepare future professionals to serve Spanish-speaking clients in a healthcare setting by developing functional and technical Spanish language skills and cultural awareness about US Latinos. Students must take 9 credits from the following sequence of courses, depending on their level at the time they begin the program: SPA 220-Medical Spanish; SPA 210 - Spanish IV: Latino America; SPA 301- Spanish Conversation; SPA 305-Spanish Composition and Conversation for Heritage Learners, and SPA 410 - Theory and Practice of Translation. All students are required to take SPA 315-Spanish for the Professions.

Students may earn 3 waiver credits by proving an intermediate-low proficiency level on STAMP test and 6 waiver credits by proving an intermediate-mid proficiency level on STAMP test. An exit exam proving an intermediate-high level proficiency is required to earn the certificate.

This program is not eligible for financial aid (Title IV and/or State funds).

Please note: The certificate in Spanish and Latino Cultures for Health Professionals is not a VA approved program. This means that veterans or other eligible persons will not be able to use VA benefits to supplement the cost of this program.

The BA in Spanish prepares students who are not interested in pursuing teacher certification but want to gain linguistic proficiency in Spanish. The program builds students' speaking, reading, writing and listening comprehension skills, which open job opportunities in university teaching, translation and interpretation, marketing, business, public relations, and foreign service, among others. Building students cultural dexterity is an integral part of the Spanish program; as such, students are encouraged to study abroad in a Spanish-speaking country and to interact with the large Spanish-speaking population in Connecticut. Learning Spanish and studying the broad range of cultures of the Spanish speaking world at SCSU builds a solid foundation in the liberal arts, while increasing students' employability in the US, home to 40.5 million Spanish speakers*, and in the twenty-one countries where Spanish is spoken.

*Source: Hispanic Map 2017 at cervantesobservatorio.fas.harvard.edu