Students hanging out in New Hall quad


Modern Languages and Cultures

Dr. Helene Laroche-Davis
(650) 508-3558

The Department of Modern Languages and Cultures offers minors in French Studies and Spanish Studies and the opportunity to create Interdisciplinary majors and minors.

Students are encouraged to gain practical experience outside the classroom by engaging in internships with international companies and agencies both in the USA and abroad to prepare for future careers in international business, education, diplomacy, travel, and translation.

Learning Outcomes

By providing a range of courses in the language, culture, literature, film, and business of the French- and Spanish-speaking worlds, the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures enables all NDNU students to:

  • Demonstrate a critical understanding of foreign cultures, including foreign languages, societies, art, religion, history, and politics
  • Develop improved communication skills in a language other than English and acquire proficiency in the target language
  • Understand and respect differences in diverse societies and critically evaluate their personal responsibility and role in working toward a just society
  • Apply information technology skills to research languages and cultures, preparing for professions in a high-tech, global world
  • Understand the personal and professional value of international travel and internships

Please see the Foundations section of the General Education Requirements for more information concerning the Culture and Language Requirement.

Study Abroad

Study Abroad, which may be undertaken for a summer, a semester, or a whole year, is highly recommended and a popular way for students to hone their language skills, experience living in another culture and undergo significant personal growth. Study Abroad programs are available in the French- and Spanish-speaking areas of the world and are open to all Notre Dame de Namur University students. Students minoring in French Studies or Spanish Studies will be encouraged to study abroad for a summer, a semester or a year. Courses taken abroad may be applied to a student’s degree at NDNU as appropriate. Financial aid is usually available.

Culture and Language

Culture and Language Courses are taught in English and offer students basic language content in addition to a study of the cultural heritage of a specific area of the world. They are specifically for students studying for a Bachelor of Science degree who decide that they prefer to substitute two Culture and Language courses for regular language courses in French or Spanish.

Note: BS students may not use the same course work to satisfy both the Culture and Language and the Cultural Diversity General Education Requirements.

Minor in French Studies

French Studies minors have the option of concentrating in literature, culture, or business culture. Students may choose to double-minor, combining French with such disciplines as business, sociology, psychology, communications, political science, or history. These combinations prepare students for future work in companies with ties in Canada, Europe, and Africa as well as in government organizations and teaching institutions.

Minor Requirement
Complete 12 units chosen from the following: 12
     CUL2100      Introduction to French Literature in Film (1-3)
     CUL2108      French Cinema, Culture, and Language
     CUL2124      Modern France: Culture and Language
     CUL2135      Business Culture of France vs. USA (1-3)
     CUL2140      Business French II (CDiv) (1-3)
     CUL2400      African Cinema, Culture, and Language (CDiv)
     FRE2100      Advanced Conversation I (1-3)
     FRE2108      Advanced Conversation II (1- 3)
     FRE2116      Pronunciation in Cultural Context (1-3)
     FRE2124      French Society in Texts and Films
     FRE2126      French Culture and Gastronomy
     FRE2128      Litterature de Jeunesse
     FRE2132      French Today (1-3)
     FRE2134      Introduction to French Civilization (1-3)
     FRE2140      Women in French Literature (CDiv)
     FRE2886      Special Topics (1-3)
     FRE2994      Teaching Assistant (1-3)
     HST2200      History, Culture, and Language of France I
     HST2210      History, Culture, and Language of France II
Total Unit Requirement  12

Minor in Spanish Studies

The Minor in Spanish Studies emphasizes building skills and fluency in the Spanish language, especially for career purposes.

Minor Requirements
Complete 12 upper-division units from the following, of which at least 6 units must be taught in Spanish: 12
     CUL2232      Latino/Hispanic Experience in the USA (CDiv)
     CUL2240      Mexican American Literature, Language, and Film (CDiv)
     CUL2248      Culture and Language of Latin America through Film
     CUL2250      Literature of Latin America
     CUL2500      Service Learning: Spanish Community Service Project (CDiv) (1-3)
      SPA2100      Advanced Spanish: Composition and Grammar Review
     SPA2106      Spanish Conversation through Theatre
     SPA2108      La herencia cultural de latinoamérica
     SPA2124      Spanish for a Bilingual World: Community Service and Business
     SPA2125      Spanish for Professionals
     SPA2134      “Reel” Latin America: A Continent through Film
     SPA2135      Introducción a la literatura latinoaméricana
     SPA2136      Literature and Film of the Spanish-Speaking World (CDiv)
Total Unit Requirement   12


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