Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures
Debbie Avila, Chair
Peters Building, Room 393
Degrees and Programs Offered
BA in French, B.A.
BA in Spanish, B.A.
CRED in Single Subject Credential - French
CRED in Single Subject Credential - Spanish
MA in Spanish, M.A.
MN in French, Minor
MN in German, Minor
MN in Spanish, Minor
MN in Classical Studies, Minor
Because of increasing mobility in our modern world, it takes no time at all to travel to places where people speak a language other than English. If you visit or go to work in another country you will quickly learn the fallacy of the phrase, "Everyone speaks English there; don't worry!" Even in California, scarcely a day goes by that you do not hear people conversing in a language other than English, because the United States has a wealth of different heritage languages. Whether you travel overseas or stay in the United States, you will be more culturally sensitive if you are bilingual and bicultural. For example, agricultural, health, and music professionals benefit from knowing another language. It is never too late to acquire another culture and language.
The goal of the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures is to encourage multiculturalism and multilingualism in the Central Valley. That includes preparing students for communication in some of the important heritage languages of the area: German, Spanish, French, Italian, and Portuguese. These are also important languages of Mexico, Central and South America, and the European Union, so students are able to travel or work overseas with greater ease. The department also offers Greek and Latin, as well as Classical Studies and Humanities.
The department has programs for those who wish to be middle and high school teachers of French and Spanish. We offer courses to prepare those who wish to be bilingual/ cross-cultural teachers in elementary schools. We also offer courses in Italian, Portuguese, and other languages to the surrounding community. The department offers a major and a minor in French and Spanish, a minor in German, a minor in Humanities, and a minor in Classical Studies. We collaborate with the Department of Linguistics to offer the B.A. Option in Language Studies.
Students completing the M.A. in Spanish often teach at high schools, community colleges, or go on to Ph.D. programs. Our Master of Arts program in Spanish is one of the largest and best in the California State University system. Students come from all over California to study with our prestigious faculty members. Our faculty members are well-recognized for their expertise in Spanish language pedagogy; Golden Age literature; contemporary Mexican, South American, and Peninsular literature; Spanish linguistics and dialectology; creative writing in Spanish; and Hispanic culture. M.A. students may apply for a limited number of teaching assistant positions.
Study Abroad Programs: Apply as a Sophomore
Sophomore students having a minimum GPA of 3.0 are eligible to apply for participation during their junior or senior years in one of the International Programs organized by the California State University System under agreements with universities in 18 countries, including France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Spain, and Peru. See International Programs (Overseas). Students may find it useful to consult with a professor in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures. A small scholarship is available for qualified study abroad scholars.
Credit Allowance in Foreign Language
Students may begin a study of any language they desire to learn. However, if they want to continue study of a language they recently studied in high school, they must adhere to the following guidelines:
A. Students who have had less than two years of that language in high school will enroll in either a 1A or 1B class in that language, depending on the quality of the high school language experience.
B. Students who have studied a language for two years in high school will enroll in a 1B class in that language.
C. Students who have studied a language for three years in high school will enroll in a 2A class in that language.
D. Students who have studied a language for four years in high school will enroll in a 2B class in that language.
E. Students who have passed an AP test in a language, or who have five or more years of language study, should consult a department adviser for appropriate placement.
F. Students who have taken Greek and Latin in high school should consult a department adviser for appropriate placement. G. Spanish-speaking students who have appropriate oral language skills will enroll in Spanish 4A.
H. Credit may not be awarded for a lower-division language course if the student has
received credit for an upper-division course in that language, other than SPAN 110T, SPAN
125, SPAN 129 and courses taught in English: FREN 149, GERM 103T, LATIN 132.
Credit by Examination
Students who have taken one or more years of a language in high school may not challenge a 1A course in that language. Students who have taken two or more years of a language in high school may not challenge a 1B course in that language. Students who have taken three years of a language in high school may not challenge 2A in that language. Students who have completed the equivalent of ninth grade or more in the native country may not enroll in or challenge lower-division courses. Such students are not exempted from meeting General Education requirements.
General Education Foreign Language Credit
The following courses are applicable to the General Education requirement: HUM 10, 11, 15, 20; FREN 1B, 2A, 2B, 109, 149; GERM 1B, 2A, 2B; GRK 1A, 1B; ITAL 1A, 1B, 2A, 2B; LATIN 1A, 1B; PORT 1A, 1B; SPAN 1B, 2A, 2B, 3, 4A, 4B, 125, 129. See also Department of Linguistics.
Spanish Minor Requirements
Depending on the specific minor, the student is responsible for 18-21 units. The minor also requires a 2.0 GPA and 6 upper-division units in residence. Consult a departmental advisor for planning your program.
Note: The minors also require a 2.0 GPA and 6 upper-division units in residence.
For faculty phone numbers and e-mail, see the campus directory.
For more on the faculty, see the faculty pages.
The faculty pages are updated by the department or program.