Why major in French or Italian?

Since medieval times, when France and Italy were part of a common linguistic and cultural domain, the French and Italian languages and cultures have been intertwined, sharing a history of mutual exchanges. Our department builds on this history, bringing it into focus in our present era of increased international awareness.

The aim of our undergraduate programs is to help teach, impart, and practice language skills that give you more personal access to French and Italian. Becoming comfortable in a new language takes practice and time—and our faculty has a deep understanding of this process.

In addition to language learning, our courses open up the rich cultures of both Italy and the French-speaking world, unpacking them from a variety of perspectives. Whether you read influential literature, delve into contemporary media, unearth the historical origins of popular cultural trends, or combine language study with travel—you will discover new people, food, historical treasures, and vistas shaped by French and Italian traditions.

Undergraduate engagement

Our undergraduate programs are characterized by a strong foundational language program with innovative teaching that embraces technology. We teach students to produce oral and written language, emphasizing their increased fluency and comfort in a foreign language. We offer a wide range of upper-level undergraduate classes in culture, linguistics, and literature. Some courses are taught in English, both to enhance the programs of our majors and minors and to reach students across the university.

In addition to this broad spectrum of courses, we offer a rich program of extracurricular activities. Join us to explore the many fascinating aspects of francophone and Italian cultures—including media, art, fashion, literature, films, opera, soccer, dance, and cuisine.

We offer several degree options

We are part of the College of Arts + Sciences

A degree in French or Italian provides students with the foundational skills of a liberal arts education, which are prized by employers and vital to a 21st-century career.

Visit the College’s website

Preparation for a meaningful career

Your degree will provide you with a diverse set of skills and knowledge, preparing you for a variety of work environments. We offer and encourage participation in internships.

Learn about career preparation