Foreign Language Requirement?

<p>Hey y'all! Okay, so I have a question about what exactly is needed for the foreign language requirement at Vassar. What does it mean by "proficiency?" I have taken 5 years of Spanish and 5 of Latin, though I am rather awful at Spanish and am only "okay" in Latin, while I am also pretty interested in possibly taking a Russian course or two next year. I am a rising Freshman into Vassar, and I was just wondering what course of study I should do in regard to my foreign language. Thanks! :)</p>

<p>From the web site of the dean of freshmen:</p>

<p>All students whose first language is English are required before graduation to demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language by one of the following six ways:</p>

<p>1) SAT II achievement test score of 600 or above in a foreign language</p>

<p>2) Advanced Placement score of 4 or 5 in a foreign language</p>

<p>3) the passing of a proficiency examination administered by one of the foreign language departments, the Self-Instructional Language Program, or, for languages not in the Vassar curriculum, by the Office of the Dean of Studies</p>

<p>4) successful completion of one year of introductory foreign language study (105-106) or one semester beyond the introductory course at Vassar</p>

<p>5) the equivalent of #4 at an approved summer school or academic leave program (which may include languages not taught at Vassar)</p>

<p>6) completion of both Old English and Beowulf (English 235 and 236).</p>

<p>The departmental proficiency examinations will be given in the afternoon on the first day of classes in the fall semester; the exact time and locations will be listed in the New Student Orientation schedule.</p>

<p>So what should you do? If you don't have an SAT II or AP score, and if you are better at spanish than latin, I'd take the spanish test at the start of the year just to place out of the requirement. Then feel free to take any other language class, or upper level spanish or latin, at your leisure. If you are SURE you are going to be taking an intro language or an upper level spanish or latin class, then really you don't even have to take the test because you are going to meet the requirement (although I think some language programs still want you to to make sure you are placed correctly... i never did it, I only took new languages).</p>

<p>Also, I have question. How difficult is Russian at Vassar? :P</p>

<p>as difficult as Russian is anywhere else...</p>

<p>It is a more intense language than some of the others - I think it's offered as 1.5 units/semester instead of the usual 1 (Chinese and Japanese are also 1.5, I think). Oh, and it's one of the languages that has the option of an intensive course where you can do the whole intro year in one semester for 2 units (I think the others are German and Italian).</p>

<p>Know anything about Latin? :)</p>

<p>The Latin classes are small but Latin is alive at Vassar. My D is now a Senior and has greatly enjoyed her Classics major.</p>