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World Languages and Cultures

Program Options

World Languages and Cultures department web site

Program Overview

The program currently offers seven languages: American Sign Language, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, and Spanish. Beginning Italian is also offered every other year. The faculty of the program mentor students as they gain functional competence in a language other than English, develop cultural understanding, and become responsible global citizens. Students prepare to study or live abroad, enhance professional development, and pursue personal interests while working alongside the faculty and, in most courses, native speakers who lead conversationally focused sessions.

Spanish Minor

A minor in Spanish complements many majors. The minor in Spanish at Drake includes components of significant community engagement in all upper-level courses.

Rather than simply requiring students to complete a certain number of courses, this minor requires students to demonstrate their linguistic and cultural competence in real-world applications. Classroom assignments necessitate that students demonstrate critical-thinking skills and maintain an electronic portfolio in which they self-reflect on the development of those skills.


  • Minimum 18 credits of coursework
    • 15 of the 18 credits must be in Spanish
      • Minimum of nine of the 15 credits must be above SPAN 140
        • Minimum of six of the nine credits must be completed at Drake
  • The Director of World Languages and Cultures must approve courses taken abroad or at other U.S. institutions of higher education
  • In addition to 15 credits of Spanish, WLC 148 - Intercultural Communication (or an approved equivalent as determined by the Director of World Languages and Cultures) is required
  • Minimum grade of "C" in each course required for the minor
Eligible Courses Credits
SPAN 052 - Intermediate Spanish  
SPAN 140 - Practical Speaking and Writing  
SPAN 150 - Topics (may be repeated with a different topic)  
SPAN 151 - National Identity  
SPAN 152 - Film  
SPAN 153 - Multilingual Societies  
SPAN 160 - Language and Literature  
SPAN 165 - Spanish for Healthcare Providers  

Interdisciplinary Minors

Interdisciplinary minors are available in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, and Spanish.  They require the same number of hours as a minor, but they require that students take courses from a variety of academic areas.


  • To allow students to earn transcriptable recognition of their work in language and culture beyond a listing of individual courses
  • To allow students to demonstrate their ability to communicate competently in another language and culture

Successful completion of all required courses shall indicate that a student has successfully achieved the desired outcomes. Prior to declaring a concentration through the Department of World Languages and Cultures, students must meet with a tenured or tenure-track faculty member from WLC and obtain a signature from that WLC faculty member and from their primary advisor. The signed form must then be turned in at the Arts & Sciences Dean’s Office (268A Fine Arts Center).


The interdisciplinary minors require that students complete a minimum of 18 credit hours, plus have a study abroad experience approved by a WLC advisor.

In order to reach the required 18 hours for the interdisciplinary minor, students must successfully complete the following:

Requirement Credits
Three semesters of language studies beyond the fourth semester (LANG 052) regardless of placement 9
WLC 148 - Intercultural Communication (or equivalent) 3
WLC 080 - The Study Abroad Experience I 1
WLC 081 - The Study Abroad Experience II 2
WLC 082 - The Study Abroad Experience III 3

2016-2017 Drake University Undergraduate Catalog
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