Revised curriculum leads to two new tracks for language minors

by Susan Sullivan | Jan 31, 2019

With the start of the 2019-20 academic year, Marian University undergraduates who minor in a foreign language can choose from two tracks.

Wendy Westphal | Marian University

Dr. Wendy Westphal says the move better aligns the university's language minors with a focus on building effective cross-cultural communication knowledge and skills. 

Thanks to a newly revised curriculum, students can add these minors to their plans of study:

According to Dr. Wendy Westphal, chair of the Department of Languages and Cultures and director of the university's study-abroad program, "In increasingly globalized industries like healthcare and business, employers want and need employees who can speak more than one language."

What are the major differences between the two tracks?

The "for the professions" minors train students to be effective written and verbal communicators in the workplace. Students will explore industry-specific language, words, and phrases and learn how to interact with colleagues, customers, and patients in a variety of professional contexts. They will also produce relevant business documents, like resumes and correspondence.

Westphal says students who choose for the professions minors will participate in project-based experiential learning, like investment simulations on the DAX, Germany's blue-chip market for stocks that are traded on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. They will visit organizations like the German American Chamber of Commerce and the Goethe Institut in Chicago. Locally, they will tour German-owned firms like Indiana Veneers Company.

In comparison, the "studies" minors are focused on the literature, film, history, art, and general cultural aspects of each language. Courses in these minors are focused on building general cross-cultural knowledge and awareness in addition to developing language proficiency.

Westphal notes both tracks are focused on continuous improvement and proficiency in four key areas: speaking, listening, reading, and writing.

"Students who study a language at Marian learn to appreciate the impact and importance of other cultures. In Indiana, for example, foreign investment makes a big impact on the state's economy. The number of international businesses with French, German, and Spanish owners and investors in our state is impressive. Faculty emphasize local connections in their courses," Westphal adds.

For more information about language minors at Marian University, contact the Office of Undergraduate Admission at (317) 955-6300, (800) 772-7264, or admissions@marian.edu.

During the 2019 Undergraduate Research Symposium in Alumni Hall, faculty and staff judges evaluated nearly 120 students on the quality of their research and poster presentations.
During the 2019 Undergraduate Research Symposium in Alumni Hall, faculty and staff judges evaluated nearly 120 students on the quality of their research and poster presentations.
During the 2019 Undergraduate Research Symposium in Alumni Hall, faculty and staff judges evaluated nearly 120 students on the quality of their research and poster presentations.
During the 2019 Undergraduate Research Symposium in Alumni Hall, faculty and staff judges evaluated nearly 120 students on the quality of their research and poster presentations.

News Media Contact

Mark Apple
Vice President of Marketing Communications
(317) 955-6775
mapple@marian.edu

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