Your potential career opportunities also offer a very practical reason for learning a foreign language, because the knowledge of a foreign language in connection with other college training can set you apart from monolingual job candidates.
It is common for students to double major or minor in a foreign language and another field of interest. A minor in German, French or Spanish is only a commitment of 17-18 hours above the 100-level.
Why Take a Foreign Language at College?
Language classes are both an excellent introduction and complement to your studies at college. Foreign language classes are very social, with lots of group work, fun classroom activities and homework exercises which help you develop the good daily study skills you’ll need in college.
Many people have found that studying a language makes them better all-around students, and developing those skills which you began in high school can help smooth the transition to college. Whenever you decide to study a language, you will learn not only that second language, but also a great deal about the structure of your own language and the values of your own culture. A foreign language is the key to foreign cultures, because you not only learn how others express themselves, but you will also learn through reading and discussions much about the traditions, customs and values of the cultures in which these languages are spoken. Once you have gotten to know one foreign culture better, you have a new perspective from which to understand and appreciate many other cultures.
Many students have discovered that it is not difficult to combine foreign language learning with other areas of study. For example, you need only two courses in the same language to fulfill the International Studies core requirement, and literature classes in any foreign language satisfy the Humanities Fine Arts core requirements. A significant number of BW students with various majors also study abroad each year.