All language majors must petition the International Languages and Cultures Department for formal acceptance into their desired major. This petition should be in letter form and submitted after completion of the first 3000-level language class at Webster.
Successful completion of at least one course in advanced grammar and one course in literature, both in the language of the major. If transfer students have taken these courses at another university, they must complete at least one upper-division course in the language of their major at Webster University before requesting admission. The cumulative grade average in all upper-division courses in the language of the major must be B or better.
Students should demonstrate advanced mid level proficiency in reading, writing, listening, and speaking according to ACTFL guidelines.
Students will be notified in writing of their acceptance. This decision is made in consultation with the students' advisor(s) and the other full-time members of the department.
Upon completion of the program, students should:
- Be familiar with and cultivate an appreciation for the complexities of a culture (or other cultures) different from their own.
- Be familiar with multiple cultural perspectives based on original texts and cultural materials.
- Be able to critically reflect on their own culture and its place in the world.
- Be able to question cultural stereotypes.
- Be able to communicate successfully and sensitively (according to linguistic level), both orally and in writing, with people from another culture through an understanding of their language and culture.
- Be able to express their personality, values and complex thoughts (according to linguistic level) in a language other than their native one.
- Be prepared for graduate studies and/or jobs where they will need to have demonstrated a greater degree of control of the target language
- 45 required credit hours
- 27 general education credit hours
- 56 elective credit hours
- Students must complete a minimum of 45 credit hours in the language of their major: French, German, German Studies or Spanish.
- A minimum of 27 of the 45 required credit hours in the specific foreign language must be at the 3000 level or above.
- A minimum of 12 credit hours must be successfully completed at Webster at the 3000 level or above. These 12 credit hours must include a 3090, 3100 or 4090 course, an introduction to literature course or a culture course, and two 4000-level seminar. These courses may not be taken pass/fail.
- The department requires at least one semester abroad in a country where the target language is spoken or an alternative cultural/linguistic experience approved by the department.
- A cumulative grade average of B or better in courses taken in the language of the major.
- A portfolio review and demonstration of oral proficiency (advanced mid level on ACTFL scale) in a departmental overview (ILC 4700). In the overview, students will be expected to excel in 3 areas: they will have oral language proficiency at advanced mid on the ACTFL scale, give a professional presentation on the topic they have chosen with their mentor, and demonstrate cultural understanding and sensitivity.
Courses completed with a grade lower than C do not count toward fulfilling the specific course requirements of the major. Courses at the 3000 level may only be taken pass/fail with permission of the chair of the department.
Teacher certification courses (e.g., ILC 4060) may not be used to satisfy upper-level coursework in the appropriate language.
Students whose primary language is not English must take English as a Second Language (ESLG) courses until they pass their English Language Proficiency requirements.
In keeping with the mission of Webster University as a whole, the Department of International Languages and Cultures encourages creativity and critical thinking while preparing students to be competitive in today's global marketplace. Personalized instruction from faculty trained in different areas of international languages and cultures increases students' awareness of their own values and paradigms as well as those of others.
The department integrates technology with linguistic and cultural skills that will give students an edge in Webster-based internship and study abroad programs as well as post-graduation job opportunities. In language courses, communication in the target language is the primary goal with all four basic skills (reading, writing, speaking, and listening) practiced from the very first day. Although cultural lessons are also an integral part of the language courses, other interdisciplinary courses (in both the target language and in English) focus on specific themes in regional cultures. Literature courses introduce students to contemporary literary theories in the context of individual socio-historical and linguistic communities.
The International Languages and Cultures Department offers a full range of courses in English as a Second Language, French, German, and Spanish, and courses in Japanese for the minor. When there is sufficient interest, other languages are also offered, such as Arabic, Dutch, Chinese (Mandarin), Italian, Latin, Russian and Thai.
The department has the resource of teaching assistants from Argentina, France, and Germany or Austria, and Japan. There is an exchange of students as assistant instructors between Webster University and the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo in Mendoza, Argentina, and between Webster and the Université de Toulouse, France. Advanced students of Spanish and French have the opportunity to apply for these assistantships. There are summer business internship possibilities in Germany, Japan, and Mexico. Webster University offers a dual degree program with Kansai University in Japan. The department also provides unique study abroad programs in France and Argentina, Austria and France.
Specific scholarships are available for the study of French, German or Spanish. Consult with admissions for more information.