About World Languages & Literatures

The Department of World Languages and Literatures offers instruction in the following languages:  Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.  The Department has thirty faculty members actively engaged in research, instruction, and service.

The University of Memphis offers a bachelor's degree in World Languages, with single-language concentrations in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish; more limited programs are offered in Arabic, Korean, Latin, Portuguese, and Russian.  The Master of Arts is offered in Romance Languages, with a concentration in either French or Spanish.  Courses are available in literature, linguistics, civilization, and language for specific purposes.

The study of a world language is central to the international mission of the University, since it offers the student a deeper appreciation of a different culture.  As the United States continues to increase its involvement in foreign trade, tourism, and international cooperative ventures, an awareness and an understanding of the culture and civilization of those countries become indispensable for the enlightened and literate individual.

In addition to the basic language courses at the lower level, the Department also serves the wider, humanistic goals of the University as a whole by providing courses in advanced language, literature, linguistics, culture, and civilization.  These courses provide one of the bases for a liberal education by broadening the intellectual and cultural horizons of the student and by introducing him or her to a more profound perception of what is meant by the term "humanity":  world language courses accomplish this by illustrating the different ways that human beings of different nationalities look at and react to reality.

What other opportunities can you enjoy in our department?

Study Abroad: Semester, full-year and summer abroad programs for academic credit
Language Media Center (Jones 220)
Weekly language conversation tables
Language clubs and international film festivals
Award-winning teaching and research faculty, many of them native speakers
Assisting with the annual Language Fair competition for high school students
Student Ambassador Program
Eligibility for the Mary Pettus Thomas Scholarship for world language majors

Visit the various pages of our website for more information about our many programs.