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FAQ: Foreign Language


Replies to: FAQ: Foreign Language

  • oak2mapleoak2maple Registered User Posts: 143 Junior Member
    Is it okay to use a FL teacher as one of your teacher recommendations?
  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 38,469 Super Moderator
    Would taking two years of two languages count as two years or four years of Foreign language? Does this look worse than taking three years of a single language or be an application breaker?
    When a college "suggests" X years of a foreign language, they generally mean the same foreign language. Once you get into different permutations, it's best to ask the college what their opinion is. My opinion is that 3+1 or 3+0 is better than 2+2, and each is weaker than 4+0 for those colleges that ask for for years. Again, as mentioned many times, the level achieved also comes into play, so if 2 years gets to level 4, and the student wants to then do 2 years in another language, that's fine.
  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 38,469 Super Moderator
    Is it okay to use a FL teacher as one of your teacher recommendations?
    Yes, unless the college dictates otherwise. Although personally, unless that rec is going to be stellar, I would not use a FL teacher below AP/level 4. But that's just me.
  • sm2002sm2002 Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    So I took Spanish 4 Honors sophomore year. For the ivies, do they count it as 4 years? I don’t want to take AP Spanish junior year because I find it a boring subject so instead I wanted to take engineering because it is more related to what I will major in. Will this look bad to colleges?
  • blue1516blue1516 Registered User Posts: 22 Junior Member
    Where is a good place in the common app to explain fluency in a heritage language?
  • isla701isla701 Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    I'm a ways off from applying, but here's something I've been wondering about for a while: is there an appropriate place on the app to explain "extenuating circumstances" in course selection?

    I tried to enroll in French 1 in middle school, but my school scheduled the classes in a way that prevented orchestra students from taking French. It was hard to decide between the two but I ended up picking orchestra because I am interested in ensemble playing and representing my schools in that respect.

    Now I'm in French 2 as a 10th grader, and while I do plan to continue to level 4 as a senior, I will be missing out on AP (unless I investigate ways to bypass level 4). I know a lot of colleges really want you to take advanced levels, and a lot of my classmates are in level 4 right now. Level 2 is going great grade-wise but it is easy. To compound this issue, ever since starting French, I've developed an interest in international relations that may continue into college. But my level doesn't exactly match up with that.

    I didn't have a lack of motivation or caring for FL back in middle school- there was a conflict with another important interest of mine. I think it would be important to explain that... can I?
  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 Registered User Posts: 3,360 Senior Member
    I wouldn't bother explaining. You made a choice. Schedule conflicts are a routine part of school. Many many school districts don't offer middle school foreign language. Even the most selective schools are just looking for four years of foreign language.
  • isla701isla701 Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    momofsenior1- Okay, thanks, that helps!
  • highschoolparent1highschoolparent1 Registered User Posts: 11 New Member
    I asked this of a friend whose son struggled in foreign language but is a genius otherwise. They decided to drop spanish after two dreadful years and he got into a top engineering program at a highly regarded school. She said none of those programs cared at all about foreign language in high school. So, depends on what your child is going for. My daughter's counselor called a few of her choices and they urge 3 years of same language but it's not a deal breaker anywhere.
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