Jun 16, 2024  
Academic Catalog 2023-2024 
Academic Catalog 2023-2024

World Languages and Cultures

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The Department of World Languages and Cultures seeks to provide students with awareness of and sensitivity toward the cultural and linguistic diversity of an increasingly interconnected world. The curriculum is designed to improve the proficiency in speaking, writing, reading, and comprehending a modern language.  Six languages are represented in the curriculum: Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Spanish, and American Sign Language. The faculty carry out research or creative writing projects, publish regularly, and participate actively in professional organizations. The faculty of the department is diverse and international, with thirteen faculty members representing various countries and cultures. 

Students select a major in French, German Studies, Japanese, Spanish or Dual Languages and Cultures. The Dual Languages and Cultures Major allows students to concentrate in French, German, Japanese, or Spanish as a primary language, and French, German, Japanese, Spanish or Chinese as a secondary language. Majors are required to complete 8-12 semester credits in an accredited program outside the United States, offered in the language in which the student is specializing. Students majoring in Japanese have the option of completing an approved internship in lieu of the study abroad requirement. Pacific students may apply their financial aid awards to foreign study undertaken through the Study Abroad program of the department. (For more information on studying abroad, see International Programs.)

All courses in the department are open to non-majors who have the appropriate prerequisites. Students are invited to pursue their area of interest within the framework of departmental offerings.

For information about language courses, the major, or the Study Abroad program, contact the Department of World Languages & Literatures Chair.

American Sign Language

Learn an American language that is also used in some 40 different countries around the world. ASL students not only learn a second language that is used right here in our community, but also learn of a rich and diverse subculture that exists within our American society. ASL students also have opportunities to practice their language skills both on campus and at Deaf community events in the greater Portland area. ASL courses can be used to meet the language requirement in the college’s core. Courses offered: ASL 101, 102, 201, and Deaf Culture.

World Languages & Cultures Majors

Majors in World Languages & Cultures must complete all courses with a grade of C- or better.

Students enter the sequence at a level appropriate to their previous preparation and may be exempt from up to 16 credits of the major requirement of lower-division credit unless otherwise noted.

World Languages & Cultures Minors

Students interested in a minor are urged to consult with the professor of the language they wish to pursue. Those who enter with previous foreign language training may be exempt from a maximum of 8 credits of the minor requirement. Students entering the sequence at the 300-level in Chinese, French, German or Japanese complete a minimum of 16 credits selected from upper-division offerings.

A student minoring in any language taught at Pacific must complete all courses with a grade of C- or better.


    Bachelor of ArtsMinor

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