World Languages & Cultures

Skip Sub Menu

Courses


American Sign Language

ASL 001: BEGINNING AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE I, 3 credit hrs.
The central focus of this course is the development of basic expressive and receptive ASL communication skills.  The course introduces ASL syntax, grammar and idiomatic usage.  Students begin to develop the visual-spatial acuity and non-manual skills necessary for communication in ASL. Students will be exposed to Deafness and Deaf Culture.  A Levels of Competence specific for ASL linguistic development will be available on Blackboard.  Students are encouraged to video themselves practicing their signs as it will help them expressively and receptively in their practicing on their own time.  Students are also encouraged to use the book’s DVD for additional receptive practice as well as research several online signing clips for additional practice and use of technology.  Mango is utilized by the Department of World Languages and Cultures and provides critical opportunity for ASL language acquisition.  At times, the online course will be incorporated within class practice but, at all times, students are encouraged to utilize this language tool through the Cowles Library at Drake.

ASL 002: BEGINNING AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE II, 3 credit hrs.
This course introduces students to American Sign Language (receptive and expressive), the Deaf Community and Deaf Culture.  Instruction is given using the “natural” approach, which allows learners to develop communicative and cultural competence very quickly.  Class activities will include class conversations and collaborative activities, study and analysis of vocabulary and idiomatic expressions, discussion of information given in the Signing Naturally Student Workbook and other distributed reading assignments, signed questions and answers to questions based on course content.  Supplemental video tapes, written materials and occasional Deaf guest speakers (as can be arranged), will be used to reinforce and augment class content.  Prerequisite: ASL 001 or equivalent.

ASL 070: DEAF CULTURE, 3 credit hrs.
In this course, students will develop the ability to understand how Deaf people perceive themselves; appreciate the differences between the traditional views of Deafness held by hearing people (medical model) and those held by Deaf people (socio-cultural model); understand the criteria for membership in Deaf Culture; understand the rules of behavior, values, beliefs and etiquette of Deaf Culture; relate to Deaf people with the attitude that they are equals; reject paternalism as a basis for dealing with Deaf people; and recognize the diversity of individuals within the Deaf Community.  There is no prerequisite.


Arabic

ARAB 001: BEGINNING ARABIC I, 3 credit hrs.
This course is an introduction to basic Arabic. Students are expected to be part of an interactive and integrated presentation of listening, speaking, reading and writing skills, including the alphabet and basic syntax. Various cultural topics are also addressed. There is a focus on standard Arabic with basic skills in spoken Egyptian and/or one other colloquial dialect.

ARAB 002: BEGINNING ARABIC II, 3 credit hrs.
This course is proficiency oriented and is designed for students who have taken ARAB 001 or the equivalent. Students are expected to be part of an interactive and integrated presentation of listening, speaking, reading and writing skills, including the alphabet and basic syntax. There is a focus on standard Arabic with basic skills in the spoken Egyptian dialect. Culturally, students will examine how learning a language and its grammar enables access to, or exclusion from, institutions and individuals because of the ability or inability to communicate in the language and consider this (often unquestioned) type of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Through a series of self-reflective exercises, students will become aware of their own cultural biases to become more competent intercultural communicators. Prerequisite: ARAB 001 or equivalent.


Chinese

CHIN 001: BEGINNING MANDARIN CHINESE I, 3 credit hrs.
CHIN 001 will help you develop functional language ability – the ability to use Mandarin Chinese in linguistically and socially appropriate ways by covering the topics in daily life. A Chinese environment will be created in the classroom setting and through communicative group activities so that you will develop confidence with your language skills. Specifically, the course will be taught in a proficiency-oriented and task-based communicative approach. Students will also focus on learning Chinese characters. This approach helps to build two dimensions of competency: linguistic and cultural. By the end of the semester, students are expected to possess the linguistic competence to ask and answer questions to obtain/provide information related to daily activities and immediate needs and also to take part in simple face-to-face conversations.

CHIN 002: BEGINNING MANDARIN CHINESE II, 3 credit hrs.
This course is a continuation of CHIN 001. Students continue to engage in and enhance their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills. Students become more experienced in using Chinese to interact with classmates. In addition, the course will continue to focus on various aspects of Chinese culture. This approach helps to build two dimensions of competency: linguistic and cultural. By the end of the semester, students are expected to possess the linguistic competence to ask and answer questions to obtain/provide information related to daily activities and immediate needs and also to take part simple face-to-face conversations. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Prerequisite: CHIN 001 or equivalent.


French

FREN 001: BEGINNING FRENCH I, 3 credit hrs.
This course is designed for students with no previous experience with French. Students develop abilities in speaking, writing, reading, listening and intercultural competence. Cultural topics include those from both France and the Francophone world.

FREN 002: BEGINNING FRENCH II, 3 credit hrs.
This course builds on the skills introduced in FREN 001. An emphasis is placed on interpersonal speaking, presentational speaking, reading, writing and listening in French. Additionally, the cultures of France and the Francophone world are examined with a specific focus on how differences and similarities between cultures affect how one experiences the world. Students will thus become aware of their own cultural biases and realize the power dynamics behind being able to or not being able to communicate in a language other than their native one. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Prerequisite: FREN 001 or equivalent.

FREN 051: INTERMEDIATE FRENCH I, 3 credit hrs.
Designed for those with one year of college-level French or the equivalent, this course develops all the language skills with an emphasis on listening and speaking. Activities include role playing, self-expression and discussion of cultural and literary texts. Emphasis on grammar review and acquisition of vocabulary. Frequent audio and video exercises. Prerequisite: FREN 002 or equivalent.

FREN 052: INTERMEDIATE FRENCH II, 3 credit hrs.
The goal of this course is that students will be able to read, speak and understand French and will develop enhanced understanding of the cultures in which French is used. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Prerequisite: FREN 051 or equivalent.

FREN 150: TOPICS, 3 credit hrs.
This course is open to those who have successfully completed five semesters of French study (the equivalent of FREN 052). It concentrates on further developing and refining proficiency in all four skills: speaking, listening, reading and writing, in addition to strengthening overall cultural competency. Students will acquire vocabulary and usage for more complex interactions with native speakers as well as skills that will allow them to approach and analyze a wider range of texts. Topics vary depending on the instructor’s and the students’ interests. Students may repeat this course as the topic varies. Prerequisite: FREN 052 or equivalent.


German

GERM 001: BEGINNING GERMAN I, 3 credit hrs.
A beginning content- and task-based course that focuses on the acquisition of spoken and written communication skills as well as on the development of cultural awareness and of foundations in grammar and vocabulary. Topics include areas such as school, family life and housing. Course materials include a variety of authentic readings, a feature film and shorter video clips.

GERM 002: BEGINNING GERMAN II, 3 credit hrs.
This is a content- and task-based course that focuses on the acquisition of communicative competence in speaking, reading, writing and listening as well as on the development of strong cultural awareness. As students realize what their competencies are or are not, they will become aware of how speaking another language provides one with significant privileges. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Topics include areas such as multiculturalism, food, childhood and travel, units on Switzerland and Austria, etc. Course materials include a variety of authentic readings and short video clips. Prerequisite: GERM 001 or equivalent.

GERM 051: INTERMEDIATE GERMAN I, 3 credit hrs.
This course builds on and expands knowledge acquired in GERM 002. It is a content- and task-based course that helps students improve their oral and written linguistic skills and their cultural awareness through a variety of materials related to German literature, culture, history and politics. Course materials include authentic readings, a feature film and shorter video clips. Prerequisite: GERM 002 or equivalent.

GERM 052: INTERMEDIATE GERMAN II, 3 credit hrs.
This course builds on and expands knowledge acquired in GERM 051. It is a content- and task-based course that helps students improve their oral and written linguistic skills and their cultural awareness through a variety of materials related to literature, culture, history and politics of German-speaking countries. The history of Germany renders it one of the best examples demonstrating the role of language in terms of power dynamics and privilege. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Prerequisite: GERM 051 or equivalent.

GERM 150: TOPICS, 3 credit hrs.
A course for language learners with advanced skills that aims to enhance fluency in the target language and develop greater knowledge of its culture. Students research a specific topic in the language under study, then present and explore their findings. Students may repeat this course as the topic varies. Prerequisite: GERM 052 or equivalent.


Italian

ITAL 001: BEGINNING ITALIAN I, 3 credit hrs.
A beginning course with extensive practice in speaking, reading, writing and listening and a thorough introduction to Italian grammar. Activities include work in groups and pairs, role-playing and conversation. Introduction to Italian culture through readings and films.

ITAL 002: BEGINNING ITALIAN II, 3 credit hrs.


Japanese

JAPN 001: BEGINNING JAPANESE I, 3 credit hrs.
Japanese 001 is for students with no previous experience with the Japanese language. The course covers hiragana, katakana, greetings, self-introductions, basic Japanese structures and expressions used to describe directions and locations. Students have opportunities to explore Japanese life and culture through Japanese cultural learning weblogs.

JAPN 002: BEGINNING JAPANESE II, 3 credit hrs.
This course is designed for students who have successfully completed Japanese 001 or students with the equivalent Japanese proficiency. This course focuses on basic communication skills in modern Japanese with an emphasis on grammatical accuracy and socio-cultural appropriateness. Emphasis is also placed on cultural learning and critical thinking skills. Students will read about and analyze socio-cultural and sociopolitical issues related to modern Japan, including power dynamics, institutional exclusion and a self-examination of cultural biases. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Prerequisite: JAPN 001 or equivalent.

JAPN 051: INTERMEDIATE JAPANESE I, 3 credit hrs.
Japanese 051 covers the last four chapters of the beginning level Japanese text book, Nakama 1. Thematic foci include: restaurants, invitations, family members, seasons, weather, annual events, and past experiences. While exploring the given themes, students learn vocabulary and sentence structures related to making choices, making proposals, making inferences, expressing opinions, expressing hearsay, and so on. This course introduces over 70 new Kanji related to the assigned themes. Emphasis is also placed on cultural learning through assignments and activities both in and out of the classroom. Prerequisite: JAPN 002 or equivalent.

JAPN 052: INTERMEDIATE JAPANESE II, 3 credit hrs.
This course is designed for students who have successfully completed Japanese 051 or students with the equivalent Japanese proficiency. This course will reinforce and expand on communication skills acquired through elementary level courses with an emphasis on linguistic accuracy and socio-cultural appropriateness. Emphasis is also placed on cultural learning and critical thinking skills. Being able to communicate interculturally in a culturally appropriate fashion is a key concept of this course. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Prerequisite: JAPN 051 or equivalent.

JAPN 150: JAPANESE LANGUAGE & CULTURE, 3 credit hrs.
Japanese 150 is for students who are prepared to move to advanced level Japanese. Through given themes, students will explore variety of expressions, sentence structures, and socio-cultural issues in comtemporal Japan. Thematic foci include: complaints, environments, and other selected current social topics. Students may repeat this course as the topic varies. Prerequisite: JAPN 052 or equivalent.


Spanish

SPAN 001: BEGINNING SPANISH I, 3 credit hrs.
Spanish 001 is the first semester of an introductory course to Spanish language and Hispanic cultures. This course emphasizes communication and the improvement of your listening, speaking, reading and writing skills in Spanish. You will also become increasingly familiar with the cultures of Spain and Latin America. The approach used to reach these goals requires consistent participation and interaction with your classmates, your native speaker and your professor. Class time will be used primarily to engage in activities that will include active physical participation, dialogues, skits, group work and conversations with classmates.

SPAN 002: BEGINNING SPANISH II, 3 credit hrs.
This is the second semester of an introduction to Spanish language and Hispanic cultures. This course emphasizes communication and the improvement of listening, speaking, reading and writing skills in Spanish. The approach used to reach these goals requires consistent participation and interaction with your classmates and the professor. Class time will be used primarily to engage in activities that will include active physical participation, dialogues, skits, group work and conversations with classmates. Students will also become increasingly familiar with the cultures of Spain and Latin America. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Students will examine cultures other than their own and simultaneously examine their own cultural biases and ethnocentrism. Prerequisite: SPAN 001 or equivalent.

SPAN 051: INTERMEDIATE SPANISH I, 3 credit hrs.
This is a course designed to promote communicative competence. Students are expected to learn to use Spanish for communication in real, meaningful situations and to develop an appreciation of all the different cultures of the Spanish-speaking world, including the United States. To attain these goals, this course focuses on using Spanish as much as possible during the seminars with the professor and also when interacting in small groups with a conversation tutor (a native speaker). Prerequisite: SPAN 002 or equivalent.

SPAN 052: INTERMEDIATE SPANISH II, 3 credit hrs.
This course is content-based and designed to promote communicative and cultural competence. Students will develop their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills as they discuss current affairs, short films, films and literary prose. This course focuses on using Spanish as much as possible during class with classmates and the professor, and it encourages students to apply Spanish outside the classroom setting. Students will also develop an appreciation of all the different cultures of the Spanish-speaking world, including the United States. Students will examine how learning a language enables access to, or exclusion from, various types of privilege. Course materials, exams and assignments will also enable students to reflect on how becoming a new language learner encourages empathy and understanding in a variety of local and global contexts. Prerequisite: SPAN 051 or equivalent.

SPAN 140: SPANISH PRACTICAL SPEAKING & WRITING, 3 credit hrs.
Spanish 140 is a course in Spanish spoken and written communication that emphasizes the development of reading and writing skills necessary to comprehend, discuss and produce authentic Spanish texts. Students will be able to fully express in Spanish after being introduced to a series of readings about literature and culture, and convey what is on their minds, both in writing and speaking. Emphasis is also placed on technology-based learning, learning strategies and critical thinking skills that will enhance your language learning. Prerequisite: SPAN 052 or equivalent.

SPAN 150: TOPICS, 3 credit hrs.
A course for language learners with advanced skills that aims to enhance fluency in the target language and develop greater knowledge of its culture. Students research a specific topic in the language under study, then present and explore their findings during practice sessions which are held 3 hours per week with a native-speaker language partner. Students may repeat this course as the topic varies. Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or equivalent.

SPAN 151: NATIONAL IDENTITY IN A TRANSNATIONAL AGE, 3 credit hrs.
Spanish 151 is a course designed to introduce students to the history and culture of Spanish-speaking countries. Students explore the cultural issues in the Spanish-speaking countries that arise as their national identities are challenged by the strengthening of transnational and sub-national identities. As students explore Spanish- speaking countries' historical development, they will analyze aspects and issues of their social, economic, artistic, intellectual, and political life in an attempt to build global awareness and understanding among citizens of the world. This course is taught in Spanish. Students may take this course twice as the topic varies. Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or equivalent.

SPAN 152: SPANISH FILM, 3 credit hrs.
Students view, discuss, and write about Spanish-language films in Spanish. Students demonstrate knowledge of the culture necessary for a broader understanding of the films through discussion and writing. Students may take this course twice as the topic varies. Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or equivalent.

SPAN 153: CULTURE AND SOCIETY, 3 credit hrs.
The Spanish language interacts with many languages around the world, such as Mayan, Amerindian and other indigenous languages in Latin America; and Basque, Catalan and Galician in Europe. In the United States, multiple varieties of Spanish interact with English. This course explores societal, religious, historical and political contexts that arise within the shared spaces and cultures. Students may take this course twice as the topic varies. Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or equivalent.

SPAN 154: SPANISH FOR HEALTHCARE, 3 credit hrs.
This course aims to arm future healthcare providers with the communicative strategies and cultural and linguistic competency necessary for effective communication with Hispanic populations to create positive health outcomes and to eliminate health barriers and disparities. Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or equivalent.

SPAN 155: SPANISH FOR BUSINESS, 3 credit hrs.
Spanish 155 is a contemporary Spanish business language course that seeks to develop written and spoken language skills of intermediate to advanced students, focusing on real business situations from the Spanish-speaking world. This course provides functional vocabulary and discourse used in Spanish for relevant business-related topics, including protocol, international markets, labor organizations, banking, health systems, customer service, import-export, mass media, tourism, real estate, and social responsibility. Students in this course participate in formal and informal conversations on practical and socio-cultural topics about the Spanish language and relevant themes from authentic readings and listening materials from the business environment of Spain and Latin America. Emphasis is also placed on technology-based learning, cultural learning, learning strategies, and critical thinking skills that will enhance students’ language learning. Student final projects will include an experiential component that applies socio-cultural themes studied during the semester. Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or equivalent.

SPAN 160: SPANISH LITERATURE, 3 credit hrs.
This course aims to develop a deeper understanding of language, literary analysis, terminology and concepts of literature in Spanish. Literary texts, oral tradition and genres such as narratives, poetry, drama, testimonials, mythology and legends and urban literature will provide a basis to explore social and historical contexts of Spanish-speaking regions and cultures. Students may take this course twice as the topic varies. Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or equivalent.

SPAN 170: INDEPENDENT STUDY, 1 to 3 credit hrs.
Students enrolled in this course utilize their language skills to pursue an area of interest while working directly with a professor of the language.


World Languages & Cultures 

WLC 080: THE STUDY ABROAD EXPERIENCE I, 1 credit hr.
This course prepares students for their study abroad experience through familiarization with the 10 most important cultural stress factors (cultural differences, ethnocentrism, cultural immersion, cultural isolation, language, prior cultural experience, expectations, visibility and invisibility, status and power and control; Paige [1993]). Students' examining their own identity and culture is integral to this familiarization process. Students will also examine their own learning styles so as to facilitate their increased competence in language and culture. Finally, students plan ahead for their re-entry into the Drake environment.

WLC 081: THE STUDY ABROAD EXPERIENCE II, 1 credit hr.
This course encourages students studying abroad to interact with members of the culture by requiring them to complete a variety of functions. Completion of each of the functions will be required for passing the course. The students then blog about their experiences and read the blogs of other students studying abroad and taking the course. Prerequisite: WLC 080.

WLC 082: STUDY ABROAD EXPERIENCE III, 3 credit hrs.
Students enrolled in the course engage in interdisciplinary work while examining global/local issues with a holistic approach. Students attend weekly class meetings; prepare, present and attend end-of-term student presentations on their capstone projects; and write a reflective report relating their internationally-oriented coursework, language courses, study-abroad experiences, capstone project and related studies to their overall education and personal and career goals.

WLC 147: CAPSTONE FOR WLC MINORS, 1 credit hr.
This course is the culmination of the previous work you have completed for your minor. Primarily reflective in nature, the course requires you to compile an electronic portfolio that should include a collection of your best work. The portfolio should provide evidence of developmental progress and, most importantly, reflective writing that addresses the minor's learning outcomes. Prerequisite: Junior or Senior standing.

WLC 148: INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION, 3 credit hrs.
The discipline of intercultural communication deals with human interactions between and among culturally different individuals in the context of the globalizing world as well as U.S. co-cultures. The purpose of this course is to raise students' awareness of "cultural relativity" as an ethical guiding principle, which prompts them to recognize the danger of ethnocentric arrogance and come to respect other cultures. It is also important for students to understand that their usually unconscious absolute dogmatism to view their own culture as superior to others (e.g. "the greatest nation on Earth") will hinder their foreign-language acquisition, because any foreign language they attempt to learn has a unique configuration of denotations and connotations, which is quite different from their own. In short, students must strive to learn how to see "reality" from within the culture of a foreign language rather than from their own. Three major components of the course are intercultural communication theories, foreign language language acquisition and mass media images.

WLC 150: TOPICS, 1 to 3 credit hrs.
The topic of this course will vary. Students may take the course more than once if the topic has changed.

WLC 170: INDEPENDENT STUDY, 1 to 3 credit hrs.
Students enrolled in this course utilize their language skills to pursue an area of interest while working directly with a professor of the language.

WLC 196: CONTEMPORARY URBAN MEXICO, 3 credit hrs.
This course examines the social dynamics of urban Mexican society through field site visits, guest lectures, critical readings, service learning and facilitated discussion/reflection. Students will explore questions of social inequality, cultural identity, ethnic diversity, and economic development as well as current political and social issues.


A&S News