Foreign language competency is essential for a successful career in international relations and diplomacy and graduate studies. It is strongly recommended that students pursue a chosen language beyond the minimum requirement set by the department. In addition, it is highly suggested that more than one additional language be pursued. Students arrive at Dominican University at different levels and it is our job to maximize student success in the field by tailoring every student’s program to his or her skills. Therefore, students will complete one of the following three options for completion of the language requirement in the major. Language proficiency for the major is considered completion of two years of university coursework or equivalent. It is important to note that this is the major language requirement, and students are also responsible for the university language requirement.
Option #1: Zero or Limited Second Language Proficiency
Students without proficiency in a second language, as determined by the modern foreign language department placement test, must take at least 16 credit hours (through the second-year sequence) in an available language. Students who test into a language beyond 101 (first-semester, first-year language), but not through the end of the second-year sequence, must complete the second-year sequence or 7 credit hours in the language—whichever is more earned credit hours. In other words, students who test into second-semester, second-year language must complete the second-year sequence and take an additional course in the language.
Option #2: Second Language Proficiency With a United States Secondary Education
Students with proficiency in a second language, as determined by the modern foreign language department placement test, must complete either 9 additional credit hours in the language of proficiency or 8 credit hours (the first-year sequence) in a third language. If students believe, in consultation with their major advisor, that their English skills are in need of improvement, they may be approved for option #3.
Option #3: Second Language Proficiency with a Non-English-Speaking Country Secondary Education
Students whose first language is not English, and who have completed their secondary school education in a non-English-speaking country, must take either 8 credit hours (the first-year sequence) in a third language or 9 additional credit hours of course work. Students choosing the 9 additional credit hours must take ENGL 190 , CAS 150 , or CAS 155 , and an additional English (beyond university requirements), communications, or world politics course.
Language proficiency in languages that are not offered at Dominican may be accepted for the language requirement in consultation with the department advisor. This is generally approved if the student verifies academic training at accredited institutions or third-party objective testing in the language at the appropriate level of competency. This “exception” does not include English as a second language or a native language; both these circumstances fall under options #2 or #3 above. The department, in consultation with language experts, is the final arbiter on language proficiency for purposes of degree completion.