The foreign language program offers a varied interdisciplinary humanities curriculum, global in scope and designed to increase students’ knowledge about the cultures and traditions, languages, literature and media, history, values, concerns, and aspirations of peoples in different countries and regions of the world. The goal of the program is ultimately also to both broaden students’ comparative intercultural perspectives and develop their cross-cultural communication abilities. Students have the option to pursue a focus or even combination of concentrations in foreign language(s), area studies and/or global issues (in either cinema and/or social justice), depending upon their interests and career plans. Within each chosen concentration or minor, the range of offerings allows for flexibility in configuring each individual’s course of study, which can be organized in a manner that best suits a student’s particular needs.
The Bachelor of Arts in Foreign Language will qualify students to pursue any of a number of career paths, including international communications, business and marketing, aid and development, journalism, or education; government foreign service, international affairs, immigration service or the Peace Corps; nongovernmental organizations involved in development, relief programs, immigration or human rights advocacy; or public relations in a multicultural environment. Graduates of our program will also find opportunities in teaching at home or abroad, as well as in work with a variety of public-service organizations. In addition, an undergraduate degree in foreign language provides excellent background and qualifications for admittance to graduate degree programs in a number of humanities disciplines, including foreign languages and international studies, as well as in international law, business or journalism.
To earn a Bachelor of Arts in Foreign Language, students must complete at least 39 credits within the major, 36 credits of which must be upper-level (300-level or above), with a minimum GPA of 2.25 within the major.
Core requirements for all foreign language majors:
All foreign language majors are required to complete the following core courses (15 credits):
Collateral requirements for all foreign language majors:
Majors in foreign language are encouraged to choose a minor that will broaden their global and cultural perspectives. Foreign language majors are encouraged — but not limited — to complete the course requirements for a minor in one of the following fields: African studies, Arabic and Middle Eastern studies, anthropology, Chinese and Asian Studies, economics, business (general business minor), French, geography, German, history, Italian studies, Mediterranean studies, political science, religious studies, Russian studies, sociology, Spanish, or urban and regional studies. Students also may want to consider a double major. The School of World Studies Advising Office will work with students to explore the benefits of a double major and/or a minor.
All foreign language majors, students transferring credits from study abroad and transfer students who intend to major in a foreign language must take a minimum of two 400-level courses at VCU in the chosen language area. Both credit and distribution (minimum of 10 courses) requirements for the concentration must be satisfied.
Majors must choose an appropriate concentration to fulfill the remainder of the degree requirements.