The School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures seeks to investigate and engage with linguistic, cultural, cinematic and literary worlds, as well as questions surrounding language learning itself.
The School's units are organized into 7 departments (Arabic; East Asian Languages and Cultures; French and Italian; German Studies; Persian; Russian; Spanish and Portuguese), 3 programs (Cinema and Media Studies; Hebrew; and Second Language Acquisition), 2 centers (the Center for East Asian Studies; the Roshan Institute for Persian Studies); and the Language House, UMD’s oldest Living-Learning Program. We also offer Flagship Programs in Arabic and Persian, as well as Summer Institutes and Project GO for both Arabic and Persian. The SLLC both hosts and receives courses in less commonly taught languages through the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA) CourseShare Program.
Our Departments, Programs, Centers and Institutes
Arabic Studies at the University of Maryland consists of courses and programs that help students explore and become skilled in the extraordinary language, literature, and culture of the Arab world. Students in the program pursue either a B.A. or minor in Arabic. Through participation in the Arabic Flagship at UMD, students from any major are also offered the opportunity to earn an advanced certificate in Arabic demonstrating both a superior and professional level of proficiency in the Arabic language.
The program in Cinema and Media Studies is an interdisciplinary unit focusing on the history, theory, and analysis of cinema and other audio-visual media. Our Faculty represent a wide swath of the College of Arts and Humanities, including the Departments of English, History, and Art History, and the School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures.
The Program has teaching and research strengths in the world cinema, film and media theory, early cinema, feminist and women’s cinema, the history of American cinema, science and the moving image, and various national cinemas throughout the world.
The Undergraduate Major in Cinema and Media Studies takes a capacious view of cinema and media studies, and requires students to choose classes among four subject areas: Film Theory; National & International Cinema; Documentary, Animation, and Experimental Cinema; and Genre & Auteur Cinema. An in-depth two-semester study of the history of cinema is also required. In addition, students can elect to add courses in digital film production.
The Department of East Asian Languages combines the strengths of three programs, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean, offering a B.A. in Chinese, a B.A. in Japanese, and minors in all three languages and cultures, as well as potential for research and teaching collaboration across programs.
The Department of French and Italian, which offers a B.A. in French Language and Literature, a B.A. in Italian Studies, a Minor in French Studies, a Minor in Italian Studies, a Ph.D. in Modern French Studies, and an M.A. in French Language and Literature, is also a contributing unit to the B.A. in Romance Languages. Its Education Abroad lineage is long and deep, and students are encouraged to make use of all the resources the Capital area provides.
The German Studies Department offers a B.A. in German Studies, a Minor in German Language, Literature, and Culture, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in German Literature and Language, as well as Education Abroad programs.
The minor in Hebrew is an interdisciplinary program offered through the cooperation of the School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures (SLLC) and the Jewish Studies Program.
The minor in Hebrew will prepare students to function in a wide variety of communicative situations in Hebrew-speaking settings. Students will hone their skills in reading, writing, listening, speaking and cultural understanding. The minor consists of 16 or more credits from five courses and includes required advanced language courses and electives in topics such as Israeli literature, Israel studies and Zionism, Israeli cinema and Hebrew Bible.
Undergraduate students may pursue a B.A. in Persian Studies or a Minor in Persian Studies. Students wishing to achieve advanced proficiency in Persian should also consider the Flagship Scholar Certificate through the University's Persian Language Flagship program. This certificate can be combined with many other majors.
The Russian Department offers a B.A. in Russian Language, Literature, and Culture and a Minor in Russian Studies, as well as opportunities to study abroad. The major and most classes are small, and students enjoy a high degree of faculty-student interaction. The current faculty are well-known in Russian literature, culture, film and language curriculum and design, and include the authors of the popular textbook series Russian in Stages.
Second Language Acquisition (Ph.D., M.A., Certificate) has a strong cognitive science and research focus for students working in languages other than English. There are four areas of specialization: second language learning, second language instruction, second language assessment, and second language use. The program draws upon the expertise of a distinguished cadre of faculty in the SLLC, and in affiliate departments such as Linguistics; Measurement, Statistics, and Evaluation; Hearing and Speech; Philosophy; Psychology; Sociology; and Curriculum and Instruction.
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese offers a Ph.D. and M.A. in Spanish and Portuguese Languages and Literatures, including an M.A. track in Hispanic Applied Linguistics, a B.A. in Spanish Language, Literatures, and Cultures, courses toward the B.A. in Romance Languages, a Minor in Spanish Language and Cultures, a Minor in Spanish Language, Business, and Cultures, and a Minor in Portuguese Language, Literatures, and Cultures, as well as opportunities for study abroad, community involvement, internships, and professional training.
Originally founded in 1969 as the interdisciplinary Committee on East Asian Studies, the Center for East Asian Studies (CEAS) is made up of faculty, staff, students, library personnel and others with academic, professional, and personal interest in the region of East Asia (China, Japan, and Korea). The Center's goal is to expand the University's East Asian curriculum, library resources, and teaching materials. In addition to administering the undergraduate Certificate Program in East Asian Studies, the Center provides information on courses and public events and presents lectures (including the bi-annual Thomas Kang Lectures), creative performances and exhibitions, scholarly conferences, and film series for the University and larger community. The Center also engages in fund raising for library resources, staff expansion, outreach programs, non-print teaching materials, and student scholarships and internships.
Established in Fall 2004, the Institute aspires to be the premier venue for the study and appreciation of Persian culture in the United States. The Roshan Institute seeks to provide stimulating course offerings and programs in Persian language, literature, history, and culture; foster communication and community ties among people of Persian heritage and those interested in Persian cultural heritage; and serve as a model for encouraging intercultural communication among people of varying backgrounds.