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Modern Languages

Majors are offered in French, German, Spanish and Romance Languages (a combination of French and Spanish). Minors are offered in Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian and Spanish. Language courses are offered for the major and minor in Asian Studies and Russian Studies and for the minors in Latin American and Caribbean Studies, European Studies and International Business. Transfer students are not accepted as majors until they have completed at least one course at the 200 level or above at DePauw. Courses taken for a major or minor may not be taken pass/fail.

The department encourages all majors and minors to spend at least one semester in an approved off-campus program in a country that speaks the target language. Students may apply credit from these programs to their major or minor as follows: two courses per semester may count toward the major, but only one course taken off-campus may count toward a minor. The International Center may assist students in locating an appropriate off-campus study program. See descriptions of programs in Section V, Off-campus Studies. Placement beyond the two-semester elementary level fulfills DePauw's language requirement. The language requirement may also be fulfilled with the two semesters of the elementary sequence in any language. In French and Spanish, successful completion of the "Review of Elementary" course (FREN 110, SPAN 140) fulfills the language requirement in a single semester. International students who are native speakers of any language other than English and who are degree candidates will be judged to have already satisfied the language requirement.

Placement and retroactive credit policies: Students who enter DePauw with previous experience in a language are assigned to the appropriate level by a required placement examination. They may not continue their study of the language at a lower level than the assigned one, but may move up one level with the department's approval. In no case may a student with more than two years of foreign language study in high school (grades 9-12) start at the beginning level in the same language. If assigned to the second-semester intermediate level or higher, students will receive extra credit on completion of that course with a grade of C or better, according to the following patterns. (See special regulations for heritage speakers of these languages.)

  • Chinese: CHIN 262=one course credit extra; one full credit of CHIN 361=two course credits extra.
  • French: FREN 202=one course credit extra; FREN 300+=two course credits extra.
  • German: GER 212=one course credit extra; GER 300+=two course credits extra.
  • Japanese: JAPN 252=one course credit extra; JAPN 300+= two course credits extra.
  • Russian: RUS 222, 224 or 263=one course credit extra; RUS 300+=two course credits extra.
  • Spanish: SPAN 232=one course credit extra; SPAN 300+=two course credits extra.

Placement for Heritage Speakers: Heritage speakers - those students who use an additional language other than English with their families and home communities - may major or minor in their language (see the appropriate sections under these language headings) and should consult with faculty of their language and with the department chair regarding placement. Heritage speakers of Spanish or French that place into the 300 level should begin with SPAN 333/FREN 315.

An interdisciplinary major is offered in East Asian Studies. See Section III, Asian Studies for additional information.

Course Catalog

Requirements for a major

French

Total courses required Eight (exclusive of FREN 101, 102 and 110)
Core courses FREN 305, FREN 327, FREN 413, FREN 420 and additional courses in French to complete the major.
Other required courses
Number 300 and 400 level courses Six
Senior requirement and capstone experience The senior requirement consists of the completion of FREN 420 with a grade of C or better.
Additional information

A student may elect a French major with a minor in International Business, which must include FREN 316 or 318 and 320.

Heritage speakers of French majoring in the language must complete a minimum of six courses at the FREN 315 level or higher, including FREN 327, FREN 413 and FREN 420.

When heritage speakers successfully complete their first three classes at the 300-level or higher, with a grade of C or better in each, they receive two retroactive credits for FREN 202 and FREN 305 toward completion of the eight-course major.

Writing in the Major In order to satisfy the Writing in the Major requirement for French, students must complete French 413: Advanced French Stylistics in addition to the senior seminar (French 420). In both French 413 and French 420, students will have a variety of writing assignments and opportunities to revise and reflect on their writing. Upon completion of the major, students should be able to write in French clearly and elegantly for a wide range of audiences and in varied contexts, from informal correspondence through professional and academic discourse.

German

Total courses required Eight (exclusive of GER 111 and 112)
Core courses GER 211, GER 212, GER 304, GER 307, GER 415 and additional courses in German to complete the major
Other required courses
Number 300 and 400 level courses Six
Senior requirement and capstone experience The senior requirement consists of the completion of the senior seminar with a grade of C or better.
Additional information A student may elect a German major with a minor in International Business, which must include GER 309.
Writing in the Major In order to satisfy the Writing in the Major requirement for German, students must complete one 400-level course in German (German 411, 412, 447, or 448) in addition to the senior seminar (German 415). In these 400-level courses, students will have a variety of writing assignments and opportunities to revise and reflect on their writing. Upon completion of the major, students should be able to write clearly in German for a wide range of audiences and in varied contexts, from informal correspondence through professional and academic discourse.

Romance Languages

Total courses required Eleven
Core courses Students must meet the requirements for a major in either French or Spanish and take at least three courses at the 300-level or above in another Romance language (French, Italian or Spanish) or two courses at the 300-level or above in another Romance language plus one course at any level with an ML prefix on a topic related to the secondary language.
Other required courses
Number 300 and 400 level courses Eight
Senior requirement and capstone experience The senior requirement consists of the completion of either FREN 420 or SPAN 456 (depending on the primary language studied) with a grade of C or better.
Writing in the Major In order to satisfy the Writing in the Major requirement for Romance Languages when the primary language studied is Spanish, students must complete Spanish 430: Advanced Composition in addition to the senior seminar (Spanish 456). In order to satisfy this requirement for Romance Languages when the primary language studied is French, students must complete French 413: Advanced French Stylistics in addition to the senior seminar (French 420). In all these courses, students will have a variety of writing assignments and opportunities to revise and reflect on their writing. Upon completion of the major, students should be able to write in Spanish or French clearly and elegantly for a wide range of audiences and in varied contexts, from informal correspondence through professional and academic discourse.

Spanish

Total courses required Eight (exclusive of SPAN 131, 132 and 140)
Core courses SPAN 330, SPAN 332 or SPAN 233, SPAN 335, SPAN 430, SPAN 456 and additional courses in Spanish to complete the major
Other required courses
Number 300 and 400 level courses Six
Senior requirement and capstone experience The senior requirement consists of the completion of SPAN 456 with a grade of C or better.
Additional information

A student may elect a Spanish major with a minor in International Business, which must include SPAN 338 or 339 and 340.

Heritage speakers of Spanish majoring in the language must complete a minimum of six courses at the SPAN 332 level or higher, including SPAN 332 or SPAN 333, SPAN 335, SPAN 430, SPAN 456.

When heritage speakers successfully complete their first three classes at the 332-level or higher, with a grade of C or better in each, they receive two retroactive credits for SPAN 232 and SPAN 330 toward completion of the eight-course major.

Writing in the Major In order to satisfy the Writing in the Major requirement for Spanish, students must complete Spanish 430: Advanced Composition in addition to the senior seminar (Spanish 456). In both Spanish 430 and Spanish 456, students will have a variety of writing assignments and opportunities to revise and reflect on their writing. Upon completion of the major students should be able to write in Spanish clearly and elegantly for a wide range of audiences and in varied contexts, from informal correspondence through professional and academic discourse.

Requirements for a minor

Chinese

Total courses required Five
Core courses None
Other required courses Five credits in Chinese language courses at the 200-level or above. Only one of these courses may be taken off-campus.
Number 300 and 400 level courses Two

French

Total courses required Five
Core courses None
Other required courses The minor requires a minimum of five French courses, starting at the 200-level. Only one of these courses may be taken off-campus.

Minor for heritage speakers of French: When students successfully complete three classes at the level of FREN 315 or higher, with a grade of C or better in each, they receive two retroactive credits for FREN 202 and FREN 305 to complete the five-course minor.

Number 300 and 400 level courses Three

German

Total courses required Five
Core courses None
Other required courses The minor requires a minimum of five German courses, starting at the 200-level. Only one of these courses may be taken off-campus.
Number 300 and 400 level courses Three

Italian

Total courses required Five
Core courses
Other required courses The minor requires a minimum of five courses, including either five courses taught in Italian, starting at the 200-level, or four courses taught in Italian, starting at the 200 level, and one course taught in English on Italian cinema, literature, and/or culture (ML 164C or ML 295). Only one of these courses may be taken off-campus.
Number 300 and 400 level courses

Japanese

Total courses required Five
Core courses None
Other required courses The minor requires a minimum of five courses in Japanese language at the 200-level or above. Only one of the courses toward the minor may be taken off-campus.
Number 300 and 400 level courses Two-three

Spanish

Total courses required Five
Core courses None
Other required courses The minor requires a minimum of five Spanish courses, starting at the 200-level. Only one of these courses may be taken off-campus.

Minor for heritage speakers of Spanish: When students successfully complete three classes at the level of SPAN 332 or higher, with a grade of C or better in each, they receive two retroactive credits for SPAN 232 and SPAN 330 to complete the five-course minor.

Number 300 and 400 level courses Three

Courses in Arabic

ARAB 191

Beginning Arabic I

This course employs the communicative approach to language learning, stressing correct pronunciation, aural comprehension, and basic speaking ability. The major components of each chapter are vocabulary, story, culture, grammar, reading comprehension, listening comprehension, writing and speaking activities, and snippets of colloquial conversation in the widely used dialects of Egypt, the Levant, and North Africa. Grammar is learned inductively with special attention given to morphology.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

ARAB 192

Beginning Arabic II

This course is a continuation of Beginning Arabic I, the first course in Modern Standard Arabic. The course employs the communicative approach to language learning, stressing correct pronunciation, aural comprehension, and basic speaking ability. The major components of each chapter are vocabulary, story, culture, grammar, reading comprehension, listening comprehension, writing and speaking activities, and snippets of colloquial conversation in the widely used dialects of Egypt, the Levant, and North Africa. Grammar is learned inductively with special attention given to morphology. Prerequisite: ARAB 191.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language ARAB 191 1 course

ARAB 291

Intermediate Arabic I

This course introduces students to Intermediate Arabic, the third course in Modern Standard Arabic. The course employs the communicative approach to language learning, stressing correct pronunciation, aural comprehension, and speaking ability. Grammar is learned inductively with special attention given to morphology. Prerequisite: ARAB 192.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language ARAB 192 1 course

ARAB 292

Intermediate Arabic II

This course is a continuation of Intermediate Arabic I; it is the fourth-semester course in Modern Standard Arabic. The course employs the communicative approach to language learning, stressing correct pronunciation, aural comprehension, and speaking ability. Grammar is learned inductively with special attention given to morphology and syntax. Prerequisite: ARAB 291 or equivalent.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
ARAB 291 1 course

Courses in Chinese

CHIN EXP

Chinese Conversation

Designed to improve communication skills in Mandarin Chinese, with special focus on the four tones and on acquiring useful terms and phrases for daily conversation. Prerequisite: CHIN 262 or permission of instructor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
CHIN 262 or permission of instructor 1 course

Courses in French

FREN 183F

Off-Campus Extended Studies Course

May or Winter Term off-campus study course with a theme related to the French language.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
variable

FREN 302

Discussing Difference: Diversity in Post-Colonial France

This course will proceed thematically through an array of current topics of tension in postcolonial France organized in three units on race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, religious practices, integration and immigration status, economic and cultural privilege, linguistic identity and diversity. Over the course of the semester, you will engage with introductory works in French (books, media, film, documentary, social media, among others) to gain a better understanding of France's diversity as well as begin to understand the cultural and political dynamics that could help to explain events such as the Charlie Hebdo attacks or the recent Paris attacks. Because many of these tensions exist in both an American and Francophone context and because many of you may have been exposed to these topics in other courses at DePauw as well as through media and social media, you will be encouraged to continue to make meaningful connections, comparisons between two seemingly different cultural contexts through the use of a wide array of diverse materials (books, graphic novels, documentaries, films, comic strips, media and social media). In addition, you will be exposed to a wide range of linguistic registers from francophone authors of different backgrounds, which will provide increased confidence in reading, listening, and speaking abilities especially for those who anticipate spending a semester abroad. Pre-requisite: FREN 202 or 300-Level Placement

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
FREN 202 or 300-Level Placement 1 course

FREN 303

Topics in French and Francophone Literature and Culture

Topics in French and Francophone literature and culture.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

Courses in Modern Languages in English

M L 164

The Cinema

A. France; B. Spain/Latin America; C. Italy; D. Germany; E. Russia; F. Japan; G. China; H. World. Screening and study of representative masterworks of cinema, the film as art and a product of culture. No knowledge of the foreign language is required. Credit toward a major or minor may be given at the discretion of the department.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

M L 183M

Off-Campus Extended Studies Course

May or Winter Term off-campus study course with a modern languages theme.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
variable

M L 194

Arabic Literature in Translation

In this course we will study modern and contemporary works of Arabic literature in a variety of genres: the novel, novella, short story, and poetry. Basic principles of literary analysis will be covered at the beginning of the course, with special attention given to the development of the mentioned genres in their various Arab settings and in the context of particular literary movements. The bulk of the reading will be in the primary sources themselves (novels, novellas, short stories, and poems). Among the authors covered are the Nobel laureate Naguib Mahfouz, Abdulrahman Munif, Elias Khoury, Hanan al-Shaykh, Etel Adnan, Adonis, and Mahmoud Darwish. We will look at film adaptations of a number of Arabic novels. Knowledge of Arabic is not required, but issues of translation will often be presented and discussed.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities 1 course

M L 197

First-Year Seminar in Modern Languages

A seminar focused on a theme related to the study of modern languages. Open only to first-year students.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

M L 225

Russian Culture: From Icons to Faberge

Cultural expression in Russia from its beginnings through the 19th century, with focus on music, art, architecture, high culture and folk crafts, folk and popular culture, and religious and pagan elements. No prerequisites. May count towards European Studies, Russian and Russian Studies minors.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities None 1 course

M L 227

Nineteenth-Century Russian Literature

The classics of Russian literature, including Alexander Pushkin, Nikolai Gogol, Fedor Dostoevsky, Leo Tolstoy and Anton Chekhov. Relationship of the writer with society, the state and ethical questions. Familiarization with literary terms and movements of the period. No prerequisites. May count towards European Studies an Russian Studies minors.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities None 1 course

M L 260

Topics in French Literature

Reading and analysis of the translated works of various authors, genres and/or periods of French literature. Not applicable toward a major or a minor in the department. Student may repeat for credit with a different topic. May count towards European Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities 1 course

M L 264

Topics in Hispanic Literature

Reading and analysis of the works of Spanish and/or Latin American authors or of U.S. Latino authors. Not applicable toward a major or a minor in the department. Student may repeat for credit with a different topic.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities 1 course

M L 290

Topics in Latin American Culture

Study of topics in the Hispanic culture of Latin America. Not applicable toward a major or a minor in the department. Student may repeat for credit with a different topic.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

M L 295

Topics in Modern Languages

Courses in specific topics, such as culture, literary movements or genres, linguistics or film. Taught in English. May be repeated for credit with a different topic. May count towards European Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

M L 300

Practicum for Language Department Assistants

Development of skills related to the pedagogy of teaching modern languages. Experience, under direct supervision, will include assisting in the classroom, designing and implementing activities, directing lab sessions, working with students outside of class, tutoring, and assessing students' work.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1/4 - 1 course

M L 301

Twentieth-Century Russian Culture

A survey of the major Russian contributions in art, architecture, music, dance, literature, film and popular culture during the 20th century. From the Ballets Russes to avant-garde film, from Rachmaninov to Shostakovich, from Chagall to parodies of socialist realism, modern Russian culture is examined in relationship to the society, history and politics of its time. No prerequisites. May count towards European Studies and Russian Studies minors.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities None 1 course

M L 326

Twentieth-Century Russian Literature

This course examines some of the major works of 20th-century Russian literature, as well as the literary and social trends connected with them. Russian perceptions of the world and individual artistic choices in terms of message, style and ethical values for each era are discussed. Writers as diverse as the symbolist poets Blok, Sologub and Gippius; socialist realist writers Gorky and Sholokhov; futurists Mayakovsky and Khlebnikov; and dissidents Tertz and Solzhenitsyn are considered in this framework. No prerequisites. May count towards European Studies and Russian Studies minors.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities None 1 course

M L 395

Advanced Topics in Modern Languages

Courses on specific topics, such as culture, literary movements or genres, linguistics or film. May address multiple areas, such as a course on European literature or culture. Taught in English. May be repeated for credit with different topics.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

Courses in Portuguese

PORT 181

Elementary Portuguese I

Introduction to Brazilian Portuguese with emphasis on development of proficiency in speaking, listening, reading and writing.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

PORT 182

Elementary Portuguese II

A continuation of PORT 181. Prerequisite: PORT 181.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language PORT 181 1 course

PORT 190

Intensive Elementary Portuguese

Intensive Portuguese is an intensive review of elementary Portuguese which assumes prior knowledge and some experience with Portuguese and/or Spanish. The course uses a variety of language teaching approaches to help students achieve proficiency in all four basic language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. At the same time students will become familiar with some of the most important cultural currents of Brazil. Not open to students with credit for PORT 181 and/or PORT 182.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

PORT 280

Readings and Projects in Portuguese

Open to advanced students in Portuguese with permission of chair. Student may repeat for credit with different topics. May count toward European Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language 1/2-1 course

Courses in Russian

RUS 121

Elementary Russian I

Introduction to the Russian language with emphasis on development of proficiency in speaking, listening, reading and writing. Includes work with CD's and video supplements. RUS 121 is open only to beginners in Russian or those with two years or less of high school Russian.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

RUS 122

Elementary Russian II

A continuation of RUS 121. Prerequisite: RUS 121 or qualifying score on the placement test.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language RUS 121 or qualifying score on the placement test 1 course

RUS 221

Intermediate Russian I

Continued development of proficiency in Russian with focus on key points in style, word formation, grammar and speaking. Includes work with CD's and video supplements. Prerequisite for RUS 221: RUS 122 or qualifying score on the placement test. May count towards Russian Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language RUS 122 or qualifying score on the placement test 1 course

RUS 222

Intermediate Russian II

A continuation of RUS 221. May counts towards Russian Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language 1 course

RUS 224

Reading Russian

This course develops a number of reading techniques and provides intensive work in word-formation and syntax. A wide variety of non-fiction texts--including journal and newspaper articles, scientific and popular works--are examined. Prerequisite or co-requisite: RUS 221. May count towards Russian Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Global Learning or co-requisite: RUS 221 1 course

RUS 263

Spoken Russian

Designed to improve communication skills in the Russian language, the flexible curriculum includes the following: conversation (use of everyday idiom), comprehension (understanding at a native Russian pace), applied phonetics (specialized instruction in pronunciation and intonation). May be repeated for credit with permission of instructor. Prerequisite or co-requisite: RUS 221. May count towards Russian Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language or co-requisite: RUS 221 1/2-1 course

RUS 321

Advanced Russian

Offers advanced work in grammar, stylistics, reading, conversation and composition. Prerequisite: RUS 222 or permission of instructor. May count towards Russian Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Language RUS 222 or permission of instructor 1 course

RUS 324

Topics

Supervised study of a subject of interest chosen in consultation with the instructor. May be repeated for credit with different topics. May count toward European Studies minor.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1/2-1 course