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Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures

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Mission Statement

The mission of the Department is to offer curricula, services and research leading to proficiency in language, literature and culture that will enable individuals to function effectively in the international communities in our geographical area and throughout the world. The Department’s Programs serve and promote all academic divisions of the University in providing students the language and cultural training necessary to support international and intercultural endeavors.

Department Programs

The Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures offers a wide variety of courses and Programs in the fields of foreign languages, literatures and cultures. They are designed for those students who intend to major or minor in languages other than English; for students who seek a broad liberal arts education in preparation for a variety of professions; and for students whose careers will be furthered by the knowledge of another language and culture. In addition to the Majors and Graduate Degree, the Department offers Minors in Armenian, Classics, French, Italian, Japanese, Russian and Spanish, and a number of courses in Chinese, Farsi, German, Hebrew and Korean.

Since many students are not able to read many great works of literature in the original language, Foreign Literature in Translation (FLIT) offers students access to them in English.

Credential Information

Students interested in teaching Spanish in the secondary schools should seek advisement as soon as possible. The Spanish Program currently offers a Subject Matter Program that has been approved by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing and that meets the Subject Matter Competency Requirement for a Single Subject Credential. Students wishing to teach Spanish must choose the Language and Culture option of the major, which is designed to meet the requirements for the Single Subject Teaching Credential. For details on the Single Subject Credential program, see the Credentials and Department of Secondary Education sections in the Catalog.

Academic Advisement

The Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures Department helps students select the program and courses that best satisfy their individual needs and interests. Advisement for specific languages is handled by the language section heads as follows:

  • Armenian: Vahram Shemmassian, (818) 677-3456
  • French: Ahmed Bouguarche, (818) 677-3586
  • Italian: Anthony Costantini, (818) 677-7226
  • Japanese: Drake Langford, (818) 677-3467
  • For Spanish, Contact the Department office at (818) 677-3467.

Faculty advisors for the Single Subject Credential are Brian Castronovo, (818) 677-5799; Adrian Perez-Boluda, (818) 677-2092; and Elias Ramos, (818) 677-3581.

The College of Humanities (COH) Student Services Center/EOP reviews students’ progress to ensure that the requirements of a major or minor are fulfilled. Call (818) 677-4784 or (818) 677-4767 to schedule an appointment with the COH Student Services Center/EOP.

Credit By Challenge Examination

See individual course descriptions to find out which courses may or may not be challenged. For procedures governing the challenging of language classes, please consult with the Department Office.

Cooperative Program in Foreign Languages and Literatures

The Cooperative Program in Foreign Languages and Literatures gives CSUN students the opportunity, without additional fees, to take courses in foreign languages not available on this campus but offered at UCLA. In order to take advantage of this cross-enrollment option, students must be academically qualified and must have valid reasons for wanting to take the courses. Students are strongly advised to enroll in the Fall semester when beginning classes are offered. The enrollment process must be completed prior to September 10. Questions regarding qualifications and enrollment procedures should be referred to the Chair of the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures.

International Studies

The Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures supports the concept of international education and encourages students to investigate opportunities for overseas study. Certain courses taken at CSU International Program Study Centers abroad are equiva- lent to courses in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures and may be used to fulfill some of the requirements for Degree Options offered by the Department and/or certain General Education requirements. Please see the appropriate language advisor in MCLL prior to traveling abroad to determine these equivalencies. Students also should consult the International Programs Bulletin avail- able in the Office of International and Exchange Programs, or the campus International Programs Advisor for more information.

Barbara Ann Ward Language Center

The Barbara Ann Ward Language Center, located in Jerome Richfield (JR) 316, serves as a language acquisition and teaching-resource facility, primarily for the faculty and students of MCLL and the College of Humanities. Through multimedia, equipment, group and individual training available at the center, faculty and students are encouraged to use technology to enhance the language-acquisition experience. For more information, contact Director Patricia Miller at (818) 677-3452.

The Major in Languages and Cultures

The Languages and Cultures Major prepares students for an increasingly globalized and interdependent world that rewards knowledge of lan- guages and cultural literacy. The major provides students with advanced proficiency in language skills and cultural competency that will enable them to expand career opportunities and enhance their personal lives in an international and intercultural environment. In addition to studies in a primary target language, students take courses in comparative study of cultures and literatures to gain insight into the interrelation of language, culture and human nature. The 2 required seminars in cultural theories and methodologies constitute the capstone experience for intercultural studies. Students also are encouraged to study abroad, take a secondary target language and select from a rich array of courses offered in other Departments that deal with interactions among peoples, cultures and regions.


Donald Lilly, Jennifer Lu, Patricia Miller (Director of the Barbara Ann Ward Language Center)