Modern Language Studies Department

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The study of modern languages enhances international understanding and prepares students for life and work in a highly connected global society. As many Guilford students compete for jobs internationally, foreign language skills are essential.

Guilford offers Modern Language Studies courses in French, German, Japanese and Spanish. Students learn to listen, speak, read and write in their chosen language, and their skills are honed to make them exceptional communicators who are culturally aware and competent.

Modern Language Studies majors are required to study abroad for a semester, an experience that gives them an invaluable opportunity to immerse themselves in their chosen course of study. Studying abroad gives students an authentic cultural experience — from food to art to talking with locals and picking up on their intonation, facial expressions and colloquialisms.

Guilford students must take one semester of a modern language or pass the placement test upon arrival. In their final senior seminar, seniors complete a project that bridges their interests in their chosen language and their second major or minor. This project consists of a research paper and an oral presentation, both in the target language.

In almost all industries, bilingual employees are becoming increasingly more valuable. Industries where your bilingual skills will come in handy include health care, hospitality, education, law enforcement and communications, just to name a few.


Majors and Minors

I'm thrilled to return to Germany, a country and people I have grown to love and admire, and I hope to continue the tradition of sharing experiences and exploring knowledge in a passionate, engaged and intentional way.

Hannah Brewer Jensen '17
Fulbright Teaching Assistant Award Winner, German and Environmental Studies double major
  • French Major: The bachelor of arts in French immerses students in the language and literatures of France and French-speaking cultures and requires a semester abroad in a French-speaking country, 32 credit hours and a 400-level course.
  • French Language and Society Minor: The French Language and Society minor exposes students to various aspects of French-speaking cultures and highlights the importance of language acquisition as part of a practical liberal arts education. It requires 16 credit hours, typically four courses, all taught in French.
  • German Major (German Studies Track or German Language and Literature Track): The bachelor of arts in German immerses students in the language and literatures of Germany and German-speaking cultures and requires a semester abroad in a German-speaking country, 32 credit hours and a 400-level course.
  • German Language and Society Minor: The German Language and Society minor exposes students to various aspects of German-speaking cultures and highlights the importance of language acquisition as part of a practical liberal arts education. It requires 16 credit hours, typically four courses, all taught in German.
  • Spanish Major: The bachelor of arts in Spanish immerses students in the language and literatures of Spain and Latin America and requires a semester abroad in a Spanish-speaking country, 34 credit hours and a 400-level course.
  • Spanish Language and Society Minor: The Spanish Language and Society minor exposes students to various aspects of Spanish-speaking cultures and highlights the importance of language acquisition as part of a practical liberal arts education. It requires 16 credit hours, typically four courses, all taught in Spanish.
  • Japanese Language and Society Minor: The Japanese Language and Society minor exposes students to various aspects of Japanese-speaking cultures and highlights the importance of language acquisition as part of a practical liberal arts education. It requires 20 credit hours, typically five courses.

Modern Language Studies Department News and Events

Quaker Values in Motion - Pursuing Global Justice

Quaker Values in Motion - Pursuing Global Justice

Heather Scavone '03 impacts the lives of students and refugees alike as the Director of the Humanitarian Immigration Law Clinic at Elon University.

Mutual Learning

Mutual Learning

Taryn McFadden ’17 developed a number of meaningful relationships on campus that have led to her uncovering her passion for travel and science.

Social Student

Social Student

Outgoing and talented, Chloe Williams ’17 is the ultimate Social student.

Contact Us

Alfonso Abad Mancheño

Alfonso Abad Mancheño

Associate Professor of Spanish

Maria Bobroff

Maria Bobroff

Associate Professor For Foreign Languages/Early College Liaison

Hiroko Hirakawa

Hiroko Hirakawa

Associate Professor of Foreign Languages

Dave Limburg

Dave Limburg

Professor of Foreign Languages

Liliana Lira-Rivera

Liliana Lira-Rivera

Visiting Lecturer for Foreign Languages

Karen Spira

Karen Spira

Assistant Professor of Foreign Languages

Janet Starmer

Janet Starmer

Visiting Instructor of Foreign Languages

Sylvia Trelles

Sylvia Trelles

Part-Time Lecture for Foreign Languages