Guidelines for the Certificate in Language and Culture
The Program in Language and Culture is administered through the individual language and literature departments. It allows concentrators in any discipline to earn a Certificate in a specific Language and Culture. Certificates can be earned in Classics, East Asian Studies, French and Italian, German, Near Eastern Studies, Slavic, and Spanish and Portuguese Languages and Cultures.
The program is open to undergraduates in all departments. Students concentrating in Language and Literature departments, including Comparative Literature, as well as those pursuing Area Studies Certificates, will be eligible for the Program in Language and Culture provided that: (a) the linguistic base for the Language and Culture Certificate is different from the linguistic base of the concentration or the Area Studies Program; and (b) the work required for the Certificate in Language and Culture does not duplicate the requirements of the major or the Area Studies Program. For example, students majoring in Comparative Literature with French as their major foreign language cannot obtain a Certificate in French Language and Culture, but can do so in Italian.
Interested students are welcome to consult our Departmental Representative at any time. To enter the Program in French and/or Italian Languages and Cultures, students must complete an application form and return it to the Undergraduate Coordinator (Sam Evans) in East Pyne 303. A separate application must be completed for each language in which a Certificate will be pursued. See “Timetable” below for details and application deadlines.
To obtain a Certificate in French & Italian, students must fulfill the following requirements:
1. A minimum of four departmental courses in the relevant language, linguistics, literature, or culture, excluding courses that do not have a language prerequisite. At least three of these courses must be at the 300 level (or higher). At the 200 level, the course must be chosen from among the following eligible courses: FRE 211, 215, 221, 222, 224; ITA 208, 209, 220, 221, 222. Courses below these levels are not eligible. At the discretion of the departmental representative, a student may substitute one course satisfactorily completed in a departmentally approved program of study abroad, or one course taken in summer. A 200-level course is a prerequisite for taking 300-level courses in French or Italian.
2. A piece of written independent work displaying genuine intellectual commitment to the relevant language and culture. This important requirement can be satisfied in one of several ways, depending on the student's concentration and interest:
a. Through a substantial paper on a topic agreed upon with the student's appointed adviser.
b. Through a substantial paper growing out of one of the courses taken to fulfill the Certificate requirement. This paper will be in addition to the work required in the course. The subject and scope of this paper will be agreed upon with the student's appointed adviser.
c. With the agreement of the student's home department, a student may submit a junior independent work (JP) or Senior Thesis that satisfies the requirements of both the home department and the Department of French and Italian. A JP or Senior Thesis of this sort should be based in substantial part on foreign language sources, and it should display competence in the language for which the student is requesting certification. Students interested in this option should consult our Departmental Representative as early as possible to ensure that the paper or thesis will satisfy the Certificate requirements.
Papers of types (a) and (b) are of approximately 4,000 to 5,000 words in length . Students are urged to compose them in the appropriate foreign language. If they choose not to do so, the paper must be prefaced by a 700/1000-word précis in the foreign language. The Independent Work can be rejected if these summaries are not written in grammatically correct, idiomatic French or Italian. This same requirement applies also to independent work of type (c).
Members of the junior and senior classes are encouraged to apply to the Program in Language and Culture. Students who wish to do their Independent Work before their senior year should contact the Departmental Representative as early as possible in order to be assigned an adviser. All students must submit an application form by the start of their senior year.
Following admission into the Program, students meet with their appointed advisers to discuss their Independent Work. By the middle of senior year, all students must submit to their adviser a brief document giving their name, the type and topic of Independent Work, and a list of the courses taken in satisfaction of the Certificate requirement.
The completed Independent Work must be submitted to the Department, regardless of home department deadline, by 4:00 p.m. Wed, April 30th, 2014. Requests for extensions for medical reasons must include a letter from a doctor or Dean. Requests for extensions recommended in consultation with the student’s adviser must include a letter from the adviser.
Although not required, it is strongly recommended that students spend some time in the country, or one of the countries, whose language and culture they are studying. This may be done through a study abroad program approved by the Department or through a similarly approved summer program of work and/or study. NOTE: One course taken and passed in an approved program of study may be counted toward the requirements for the Certificate.
Certificate of Proficiency
Students who have met all the requirements of the Program as outlined above will receive upon graduation, with their diploma, a Certificate of Proficiency in the appropriate Language and Culture.