Modern Languages (MLG)
College of Liberal Studies
Department Chair: Barbara Rusterholz
315F Graff Main Hall,
Professors: Rusterholz, Stroud;
Associate Professors: Hindson, Poulton, Socha;
Assistant Professors: Calmes, Dorado, Janecki, Kuderer, Lake, Olson, A.;
Senior Lecturers: Denlinger, Hanson, Klein, Wallace;
Associate Lecturers: Brunk, Lo, Roberts, Sherman.
The department offers majors and minors as well as majors with business concentrations in French, German Studies and Spanish, and courses in Chinese, Russian, Japanese, and Hmong. A French Studies certificate program was begun in 2004. A student who plans to continue a language already studied in high school must take the UW System Placement Test in order to determine the appropriate course level. Following the appropriate course placement as indicated by this test should help assure receipt of retroactive credits, but does not guarantee them.
Retroactive Credit and Advanced Placement
The Department of Modern Languages does not offer an exam to establish retroactive credit or advanced placement. Instead, a student may receive retroactive credits provided a grade of "B" or better is earned in the student's first university course above the 101 level in a particular language. However, if a student received college credit for a course taken while still in high school (through Advanced Placement, Youth Options, or other cooperative agreements between secondary schools and colleges/ universities), received a grade of "B" or better (if a grade was given), and did not receive retroactive credits at that time, retroactive credits may be awarded upon completion of the next level course at UW-La Crosse with a grade of "B" or higher. Please consult with the department chair if in doubt about eligibility for retroactive credits.
Retroactive credit may be given in one or more languages. No retroactive credit is given for FRE 220, for FRE or SPA 331, or for FRE/GER/SPA 326 or any course taken in English. The first college level course taken to earn retroactive credits should be one in which several language skills can be evaluated.
- Elementary Language II (102) earns 4 retroactive credits plus 4 course credits for a total of 8 credits
- Intermediate Language I (201) earns 8 retroactive credits plus 4 course credits for a total of 12 credits
- Intermediate Language II (202) earns 12 retroactive credits plus 4 course credits for a total of 16 credits
- Any Advanced Course in the specific language (except 326 and 331) earns 16 retroactive credits plus 24 course credits for a total of 18-19 credits
Language Proficiency for the Bachelor of Arts Degree
A student who demonstrates satisfactory proficiency in an approved language at the 202 level may waive the foreign language requirement for the Bachelor of Arts degree. (Students must complete seven credits in the General Education Program, I, B.: "Mathematical/Logical Systems and Foreign Languages"). The student's proficiency level will be determined by the results of the UW System Foreign Language Placement Test and the department's proficiency examination. The student will not receive retroactive credit in the language for passing the proficiency examination.
Foreign Study and Credit
The chair of the department of modern languages or designee(s) approves equivalencies for university study in other universities, domestic and foreign. Generally speaking, each major language offered in the department rules on which courses taken elsewhere are applicable and how they apply.
A student pursuing a major or a minor in a foreign language at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse may earn up to 66 percent of the credit hours for the major or minor in a foreign country. Thirty-four per cent of the credit hours must be earned at UWL. The student is required to take at least one three credit course in the foreign language at UWL after returning from the country of study. A waiver of this requirement is possible to secure and a form for requesting such a waiver should be completed by the student prior to departure for study abroad. Reentry course requirement waiver forms are available at 315 Graff Main Hall.
A student has the right to petition this policy. In this event, the department chair shall appoint an ad hoc committee to evaluate the case in terms of the following criteria: 1) proficiency examinations, both oral and written; and 2) evaluation of the student's performance prior to the study experience in the foreign country.
Please refer to university residence requirements as described here.
Alvida Ahlstrom Honors Program
- Junior standing
- 3.60 in French, German or Spanish course work at the 300 or 400 level
- Completion of the regular major or minor requirements
- FRE/SPA/GER 495
- Three additional credits of literature or civilization at the 300 or 400 level
- liDepartment approval of seminar paper or project; submission of completed paper to the department
- III. Evaluation
- A cumulative 3.60 grade point average in the major or minor at graduation
- Distinguished performance on a paper or project developed in the French, Spanish, or German seminar course.
- Approval by the departmental staff.
The modern languages department incorporates a significant amount of writing through the required courses instead of identifying particular courses as writing emphasis courses. Students who complete a major in this department will fulfill the university writing emphasis requirement.
Modern Language Courses (MLG)
+ next to a course number indicates a General Education course.
MLG 101 Cr. 4 World Languages: Elementary
Oral and written language study, reading, grammar. A year of high school study in this language is equivalent to the 101 level.
+ MLG 102 Cr. 4 World Languages: Elementary II
Oral and written language study, reading, grammar. A year of high school study in this language is equivalent to the 101 level as a prerequisite.
MLG 109 Cr. 4 English as a Second Language
A course designed to increase the development of four aspects of communication in English to speakers of other languages: understanding, speaking, reading, and writing. Enrollment limited to nonnative English speakers. Prerequisite: ENG 050 or concurrent enrollment. Offered occasionally.
MLG 110 Cr. 3 Introduction to the Study of Language
An investigation of the nature, function, and characteristics of romance and Germanic languages compared linguistically with English and other languages. Offered occasionally.
+ MLG 201 Cr. 4 World Languages: Intermediate I
Third semester oral and written language study, reading, grammar. Prerequisite: two years of high school or MLG 102 in this language.
+ MLG 202 Cr. 4 World Languages: Intermediate II
Fourth semester oral and written language study, reading, grammar. Prerequisite: three years of high school or MLG 201 in this language.
MLG 204 Cr. 4 Heritage Language: Intermediate
Taught in the heritage language specified, this course provides opportunities for students to develop intermediate-level heritage language reading and writing skills. Students learn the heritage language writing system in order to read and write short texts. Additional emphasis is placed on geographical variation within the heritage language. Prerequisite: ENG 110, native or near native speaking skills in the heritage language, consent of the instructor. Offered occasionally.
+ MLG 299 Cr. 3 Foreign Literature in Translation
The primary focus of this course is on major and representative works originally written in French, German, Russian, Spanish and Chinese. The course is team-taught in English by specialists of the respective literatures. Content and theme vary with instructors. Offered Sem. II.
MLG 304 Cr. 4 Heritage Language: Advanced
Taught in the heritage language specified, this course provides opportunities for students to develop advanced-level heritage language reading and writing skills. Students read authentic heritage language manuscripts, practice heritage language narrative and expository writing, translate documents in their fields, and explore heritage language features related to social customs. Prerequisite: ENG 110, native or near native speaking skills in the heritage language, intermediate-level reading and writing skills in the heritage language, and consent of the instructor. Offered occasionally.
MLG 394 Cr. 3 Translating Literature
A study of the theory and problems of literary translation. Students translate literary works from the target language into English. The student translations are used for literary as well as translation technique study in the course. Prerequisite: FRE/GER/SPA 305. (Cross-listed with FRE, GER, and SPA; may only earn credit in one department.)
MLG 398 Cr. 1-4 World Languages: Advanced
Advanced study of less commonly taught world languages. Instruction may be offered on an individualized basis or through distance education when a course is available on another campus. Prerequisite: MLG 202 in the appropriate language. Repeatable for credit - maximum 8. Offered occasionally.
MLG 455/555 Cr. 1-6 Foreign Language Program Development
This course is designed for teachers or prospective teachers working toward teacher certification or recertification in a second or third language and/or in ESL. Program topics include: grammar, conversation, civilization, literature and methods. Prerequisite: acceptance of an approved program by department and permission of department chair. Repeatable for credit - maximum 12.
MLG 491 Cr. 3 Films and Literature
Viewing and criticism of subtitled films and reading their literary sources in translation. Prerequisite: one course in literature from either the foreign languages or English department.