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College Foreign Language Requirements???

CypherXevaCypherXeva Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
edited October 2013 in College Admissions
I'm covered. But my friend is a junior now, and she doesn't want to take Spanish because she doesn't like it. (She doesn't want to learn the language, and there's no other alternative). So she said to me that performing arts can act as a substitute for foreign language (She's been in Orchestra for a long time). Is... This viable?
Post edited by CypherXeva on

Replies to: College Foreign Language Requirements???

  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 73,766 Senior Member
    What level has she completed in any foreign language?

    Does she have heritage knowledge of a foreign language that she can prove proficiency in (perhaps through standardized testing)?

    Is there another foreign language that she is interested in that she can take at a local college?

    Has she checked the colleges she is interested in for foreign language admission or graduation requirements?
  • CypherXevaCypherXeva Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    She has none. Well, she took Spanish 1 for a few days, but she quit. She thinks she can take Performing arts because a friend told her she can. No to questions 2-4.
  • gibbygibby Registered User Posts: 10,621 Senior Member
    Most selective colleges want high school students to take courses in Math, English, Social Studies, Science and Foreign Language every year until they max out with an AP or honors course in a particular subject.

    In addition, most college's have graduation requirements of at least 2 years of a college level Foreign Language if a student has NOT taken the AP Foreign Language test in high school and received a 3, 4, or 5 on the test. Bottom line: Unless your friend doesn't want to go to college, they should take some sort of Foreign Language in high school!
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 73,766 Senior Member
    She needs to check the colleges she is interested in for any foreign language admission or graduation requirements.
  • billcshobillcsho Registered User Posts: 18,405 Senior Member
    She need to check with GC if she can even graduate from HS without a world language. In my state, 2yr of foreign language is required and performing art does not substitute foreign language. Most, if not all, collehe would not do that either.
  • CypherXevaCypherXeva Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    so... her stance now is that she'll take a class senior year, and take another one first year of college. Does... that work?
  • gibbygibby Registered User Posts: 10,621 Senior Member
    Maybe . . . it depends on the college and how her guidance counselor rates her course schedule. Your friend has to understand that her GC must rate the rigor of her course schedule as compared to all other college bound students at your high school. If the majority of students are taking a foreign language class every year and she is not . . . her schedule will be rated weaker (or not as strong). Selective colleges are interested in students who have taken the MOST rigorous schedule of classes. See page 2 of Secondary School Report: http://www.du.edu/apply/media/documents/2012CASSR.pdf
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 39,652 Senior Member
    Check your high school requirements: typically she'll need 2 years of a foreign language (doesn't have to be Spanish - can be Chinese, French, Italian, Korean, Russian, Arabic...) just to graduate.
    Then, if she intends to go to a selective college, she'll need one or two extra years (many applicants to a very selective college will have taken a language through AP.)
    Then, in college, she has to take foreign language classes *in addition to* the 2-4 years taken in high school, unless she scored a 3, 4, or 5 (at some colleges only 4 and 5) on the AP language test.
    Taking one language junior and senior year may fulfill the basic requirement for high school requirement and the least selective colleges but just one year before high school graduation will not cut it, and only two years will not be acceptable for top colleges if your school offers more than 2 years (which apparently it does).
    Your friend should either enroll in a foreign language class this year or take one at the local community college. Be aware though that college classes are much faster paced so it'd be easier for her to take the class at the high school.
  • turtletimeturtletime Registered User Posts: 1,204 Senior Member
    There may still be a few high schools that do the Foreign Language OR arts to fulfill high school graduation but most colleges are going to want at minimum two years for admission. We've only come across one university that doesn't have a language requirement and that is a public school in a neighboring state. All the other public and private institutions we've looked at require 2 years foreign language (recommending more.) Perhaps your state public institutes don't require language and that's why she's saying that but she'll be limiting her choices drastically by not meeting the minimum 2 years.

    I second the recommendation that she look at the options at the local CC if she really can't tolerate Spanish. She also needs to look up colleges that interest her and see what they want.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 30,913 Senior Member
    Doesn't sound like this friend is aiming for a selective college- it's just not the mindset of competitive kids.

    NO, performing arts is not a substitute for a foreign language.
  • rmldadrmldad Registered User Posts: 1,301 Senior Member
    I have heard tech-oriented students joke that their foreign language was Java (or C#, or VB, etc.). However, I would emphasize that they were JOKING.

    Most engineering colleges do not include a foreign language requirement for graduation. However, they do require 2-4 years for incoming freshmen in order to be admitted.

    Hopefully OP's friend is not serious about asserting that Orchestra counts as a foreign language. If so, I would tend to agree with lookingforward and question how committed she is to high-level academics.
This discussion has been closed.