Mission Statement

The Department of Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (MLLC) is a new department that combines the former Departments of French and Spanish and German and Russian, and oversees the delivery of a broader range of language courses in Irish, Italian, and Japanese.  It may occasionally offer other modern languages, when it is practical to do so.

Mission of new Department

Rooted in the traditions of major European and world languages (French, German and Spanish) and in Canada’s own French language and culture, the Department’s mission is to advance the linguistic and cultural competencies of students in one or more modern languages.  This mission is based on the notion that language, literature, and culture are deeply intertwined, and that the study of other cultures through language offers a student new perspectives. Mastering another language not only includes speaking and writing proficiency in the target language, but also increasing one’s appreciation and critical analysis of the literatures and cultures that share that language.  By stressing the interconnectedness of language, literature, and culture, as well as the critical skills to assess them, the Department prepares students to succeed in further study and gives its graduates an important advantage as they pursue their careers in the multicultural Canadian landscape as well as the increasingly competitive international and global environment.

The importance of languages for students

The private and public sector, and national and international organizations view knowledge of modern languages and the cultural awareness that goes along with it as a feature that enhances the value of a potential employee. Our graduates have found careers in, for example, education (translation, research, teaching, library work, graduate studies in Education, French, German and Spanish), business and industry (banking, journalism, export/import, advertising, publishing), social work (police work, hospitals, courts), government services (customs, civil service, external affairs, immigration), travel (interpreter, restaurants, airlines), and the arts (museum and art curator, critic, stage director, cinema, translator).

Undergraduate programs

At the undergraduate level, the Department of Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures offers the following programs: a Major and Minor, as well as an Honours and Joint Honours program in French; a double Major in French and Spanish; a Major, Minor, an Honours, and Joint Honours program in German; and Major and Minor programs in  Spanish.  The Department also oversees the delivery of language courses in Irish, Italian, and Japanese.

Graduate programs

At the graduate level, the combined Department offers a Master of Arts in French, a joint Master of Arts in French and Education (MA & Ed), as well as a Master of Arts and a Master of Philosophy in German.

Field Schools

The Department of Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures strongly encourages students in all of its disciplines to participate in one of several immersion or international study opportunities that are supported by Memorial University. Students of French have the opportunity to attend the Frecker Program in Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, to participate in the Canadian Third Year in Nice program, the Bordeaux exchange, or attend l’Université de Bretagne Sud. Summer Field Schools are offered on a biennial basis for German students in Berlin/Heidelberg.