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UW-Eau Claire’s languages department is the second largest in the Midwest with 30 faculty and staff and over 700 students studying majors, minors or certificates in a second language. Our goal is to instill the cultural sensitivity and multicultural proficiency that goes along with a bilingual or multilingual degree, making this program the perfect choice for students who want to do more than just learn a language.

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Learning a language is a lifelong challenge. It builds confidence and opens your world to more possibilities. While helping me discover my passion for languages, the professors at UWEC showed me that there's always room for growth and improvement. They're great facilitators who share a passion for languages.

Seth | German


  • French - Liberal Arts
  • French - Teaching
  • German - Liberal Arts
  • German - Teaching
  • Spanish - Liberal Arts
  • Spanish - Teaching


  • Ancient Studies
  • French - Liberal Arts
  • French - Teaching
  • German - Liberal Arts
  • German - Teaching
  • Japanese - Liberal Arts
  • Spanish - Health Professions
  • Spanish - Liberal Arts
  • Spanish - Teaching
  • Spanish - Teaching, Middle Childhood/Early Adolescence
  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)


  • Ancient Studies
  • Chinese
  • Critical Hmong Studies
  • French - Proficiency
  • German - Proficiency
  • Ojibwe Language
  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language

Contact Info

Centennial Hall 4508
1698 Park Avenue

Department website

Prepared for success

Foreign language graduates work in a variety of fields, including working with corporations in cities with significant minority populations, teaching a foreign language in the U.S. or abroad, teaching English as a foreign language overseas, serving in a government agency (Peace Corps, Armed Forces, Foreign Services, etc.), increasing international collaboration in the health industry, or pursuing a master’s/doctoral degree. The opportunities are endless!

Language majors have two years of basic language in French, German or Spanish, followed by coursework in advanced composition and conversation, civilization, literature and linguistics, and languages for the professions. Instruction at all levels emphasizes practical usage combined with a solid liberal arts education and an emphasis on cross-cultural understanding. The department also prepares K-12 teachers in French, German and Spanish and offers a certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL).

Why UW-Eau Claire

Research Opportunities

In addition to presenting research at conferences, the faculty in the languages department have been published in professional publications and have authored books in their fields. Faculty share their passion for research with their students: The department averages 10 faculty/student research grants per year. Students collaborate with faculty in linguistics, international literature, culture, history and politics. Recent research has included analyzing the impact of ethnic diversity within businesses in two Wisconsin cities and studying the German perspectives of the Civil War draft riot in Port Washington, WI.

Going Global

The faculty in the languages department are facilitators for global education. Most language majors take advantage of UW-Eau Claire’s study abroad opportunities with at least a one-semester program (required for Spanish majors/minors). Nearly 50 programs in 30+ countries are offered! There is also a high participation rate in the Spanish living-learning community (one of just a few in the UW System), which provides students with a great immersion experience right on campus.

The department also offers English as a Second Language courses for international students and instruction in Chinese, Latin, Classical Greek, Hmong, Japanese, Ojibwe and Russian. French, German, and Spanish have revised curricula to increase the number of applied language offerings. The German section administers internationally recognized Goethe-Institut certificate exams in German and business German.

Rankings / Reputation / Well-funded programs

In 2015 the German program was chosen as a German Center of Excellence by the American Association of Teachers of German. Taken into consideration were curricular innovation; faculty/staff expertise; program offerings; and student, collegial, and administrative recommendations.

In 2017 the American Association of Teachers of French identified the French program as "Exemplary with Honors" in recognition of course innovation and activities connecting students to real-world opportunities.

Innovative Facilities

Practice in the Roma Hoff Instructional Resource Center, which provides access to foreign language sound and video programs, foreign films, and computer-assisted foreign language instruction, is a part of elementary, intermediate, conversation and phonetics courses. Students also have access to active advising in the Instructional Language Lab.

Student Teaching

Language students have the opportunity to student teach at the department's Bilingual Beginnings language immersion summer camps for students entering grades 1-4.

Program Options

Students may obtain credit for previous non-college language experience by taking a "confirming course." Based on the results of the language placement test and previous language study, the student enrolls in the appropriate course. If the student earns a grade of B or better, he/she can receive credit for work at levels lower than the confirming course.

Special Admission Guidelines

First-year students are advised to take a language course right away to continue their high school language training, further develop language skills, and enhance study abroad options. While not required, students who have taken 2+ years of a language in high school (with no college credit in the subject) are advised to take the foreign language placement test.

Printable APS Sheets | Catalog Links | Degree Plans

Academic Program Sheets
Academic Program Sheets
Academic Program Sheets