The Department of Modern Languages and Cultures offers an interdisciplinary major that requires in-depth study of Arabic, French, German, Japanese and Spanish and emphasizes work in literatures, history, and political science. Students of Modern Languages and Cultures thus take a variety of courses aimed toward acquiring knowledge not only of a foreign language, but also of the literature, culture, history, economics, and politics of the country or area where the foreign language they are studying is the major tongue. Since the curriculum allows for 18 hours of unrestricted electives, the department encourages cadets to double major or to minor in another curriculum or to study other foreign languages (a minimum of two years study of each language). The Modern Language and Cultures Department does not accept transfer credit of internet-based or distance learning courses at any level.
The curriculum is designed to provide a student with skills to function effectively on a shrinking planet. The countries and geographical areas that combine to shape the modern world, while becoming increasingly interconnected and geographically accessible, nevertheless remain far apart in their linguistic, cultural, economic, and political systems. The Modern Languages and Cultures curriculum enhances an understanding of global issues and fosters in-depth knowledge of a country or area. Graduates of the curriculum should thus be well-prepared to pursue advanced study in a variety of fields or to find positions in teaching, the armed forces, government, the foreign service, or in multinational firms. The curriculum of Modern Languages and Cultures lays the groundwork for an individual to assume a leadership role in an increasingly internationalized world.
A cadet may earn a bachelor’s degree in two ways (please consult the “Synopsis of the Modern Languages and Cultures Curriculum”):
(1). He or she must take all prescribed courses and acquire a minimum of 24 credit hours above the 200-level in one foreign language. A minimum of 9 credit hours must be earned in 400-level language courses.
(2). He or she must take all prescribed courses and acquire a minimum of 12 credit hours above the 200-level in one foreign language (a minimum of 3 credit hours must be earned in a 400-level language course). In addition, cadets must earn 3 credit hours above the 200-level in another language. Students who choose this option are required to take all history and political science courses that correspond to their principal language and must also complete 9 additional hours of free electives.
Majors must either study abroad or participate in a foreign intern program in a country where their primary foreign language is a principal tongue. Upon completion of all requirements, majors will be awarded a B.A. degree in Modern Languages and Cultures, with their language (s) specified (i.e., B.A. in Modern Languages and Cultures - French; B.A. in Modern Languages and Cultures - French and Arabic).
Honors in Modern Languages and Cultures
A cadet wishing to graduate with Honors in the Department of Modern Languages must be a Modern Language major, have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 in courses taken in the major (exclusive of subjects taken in the Fourth Class), and have permission of the Department Head. Cadets must complete ML 498 and ML 499 and produce a thesis which is written in the student’s major foreign language, as appropriate. The thesis must achieve a language ranking of “Advanced-High” and adhere to MLA specifications.