Coronavirus information

Visit the UA coronavirus information website to learn how the University of Alaska is responding to the novel coronavirus/COVID-19 situation and find links to communications, policy guidance and resources.

Languages B.A.

  • Students write on a white board

    Languages B.A.

    Choose a primary concentration in French, German, Japanese or Spanish and study language, culture and literature in one of the country’s best and most affordable degree programs in foreign languages.

Explore the languages bachelor’s degree at the University of Alaska Anchorage

Study language, culture and literature to understand and communicate in the cross-cultural diversity of North America and the world. UAA’s Bachelor of Arts in languages promotes a comprehensive understanding of cultural diversity through flexible program options that fit your academic interests and your professional goals.

Language and cultural literacy
Develop and refine valuable professional skills such as critical thinking, problem solving and interpretive thinking while gaining extensive cultural knowledge. You’ll also develop advanced communication skills related to listening, reading, speaking and writing in one or more languages.

Dual languages option
Choose one of two program options in languages to earn your bachelor’s degree:

Scholarships and financial aid
The Department of Languages leads UAA in international awardees and scholarship recipients. Led by faculty mentors in languages, UAA has earned recognition as one of the top producers of U.S. Fulbright Scholars who receive awards for international educational exchange. Learn more about financial aid opportunities at UAA.

Exams for course credits
Placement exams such as AP, CLEP and DSST for military personnel can help you earn course credit that can be applied toward degree program requirements. Visit the UAA Testing Center to learn more.

Clubs and activities for languages majors
Explore over 100 student clubs on campus, from honors societies to social inclusion and equity-related organizations. The following groups and activities are especially popular among languages majors:

  • Kaffeeklatsch, the weekly conversation table organized by the German Culture Club
  • La Table Française, the language department’s French conversation table
  • La Tertulia, the UAA Spanish student club
  • Nihon Bunka, a Japanese culture club

Education abroad programs at UAA
If you’re interested in fully immersing yourself in another culture by studying abroad, UAA’s Office of International and Intercultural Affairs is available to help you through the entire process, including petitioning to earn course credit for your time spent abroad.

Honors in languages
Graduate with honors from UAA by maintaining a 3.80 overall GPA and a minimum GPA of 3.90 in primary language courses beyond A302. The honors distinction recognizes your academic achievements and increases the value of your languages degree.

Languages B.A.

Degree Type:

  • Baccalaureate

Concentration: Single language (French, German, Japanese, Spanish) or dual languages

Program Length: Four Years

Availability:Anchorage campus

Other program options: Minors in French, German, Japanese, Spanish

Did you know..

Enhance your linguistic skills and deepen your cultural knowledge while working with trained peer tutors in UAA’s Center for Language Learning. All UAA students enrolled in languages classes can visit the Center for help increasing language proficiency.

What can you do with a languages degree from UAA?

The languages program teaches you to communicate effectively in English as well as one or more other languages, making you even more qualified for graduate school studies in a language-related discipline or a successful career in the U.S. or abroad.

Languages graduate programs

Jobs for languages majors
Work in fields directly related to foreign languages, such as teaching, translating or tutoring, or build a career using your heightened linguistic skills in a wide variety of other fields such as these:

  • Foreign or civil service
  • Health and social services
  • Hospitality and tourism
  • Human resources
  • Humanitarian aid
  • Media and public relations
  • Educational travel and tourism
  • International business

By the numbers..

95%
UAA German majors who are employed immediately after graduation.
UAA Department of Languages
98%
UAA Spanish majors who are employed or accepted to a graduate program immediately after graduation.
UAA Department of Languages

Languages bachelor’s degree program highlights

UAA’s Bachelor of Arts degree in languages opens up academic and extracurricular opportunities for students who are pursuing increased cultural competency and language proficiency.

  • Participate in immersion experiences in the classroom, throughout the community and abroad. You can teach abroad through ambassadorial programs or the Peace Corps or participate in internships, service learning, job shadowing and undergraduate research.
  • Benefit from community partnerships. These include national and international organizations such as consulates, the Alaska Immigration Justice Project, hospitals, translation and interpretation firms, language camps and the Anchorage School District.
  • Discover enriching opportunities through guidance from faculty mentors. Nationally recognized for excellence in teaching, research and service, program faculty facilitate academic, networking and professional development opportunities through their leadership on language and teacher associations, peer-review panels and editorial boards. Mentorships often lead to undergraduate research opportunities, which could help you get published in the UAA Showcase Competition or peer-reviewed journals.
  • Stay on track to earn your degree by taking advantage of additional academic resources. Student support services are available through language coordinators and academic advisors in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Amazing stories from languages majors

At UAA, I fell in love with language. The enthusiastic and passionate faculty have supported me throughout my education, and they continue to support me in all my endeavors — almost six years later! — giving me advice, writing letters of recommendation, informing me of career opportunities and generally cheering me on. More than teaching me a language, my courses taught me how to look at the world through the lens of another culture, an invaluable skill in an incredibly diverse world.

Meneka Thiru
B.A. Languages, Spanish ’12; Digital Archives Intern, CNN
A UAA professor reads from a textbook

The Montgomery Dickson Center for Japanese Language and Culture hosts programs and events on the UAA campus and throughout Alaska, facilitates Japanese student and faculty exchanges and promotes cooperation between Alaska and Japan.

Monty Dickson Center

Languages bachelor’s degree curriculum

Build a foundational understanding of language and culture through coursework in listening, speaking, reading and writing, then increase your proficiency and cultural knowledge in French, German, Japanese or Spanish. Through the department’s dual degree option, you can also complete coursework in a second language at elementary and intermediate levels.

While earning your languages degree, you can study a variety of interdisciplinary topics such as medieval studies, historical linguistics, film studies, drama, comparative literature, literary theory, interpretation and translation, business, religious studies and more.

Top classes for languages majors

  • Study the historical and cultural context of authors, literary movements, periods and genres in 20th century French Theatre.
  • Learn about Turkish-German writers and their societies in German Migrant Literature.
  • Explore cities and their traditions by solving mysterious crimes in German Detective Fiction.
  • Understand and analyze the impact of history in today’s society and the nuclear era through skits and other tools in the award-winning Hiroshima course.
  • Trace more than 200 years of Japan-Alaska encounters through films, documents and narratives in Studies in Japanese Culture and Society.
  • Study Spanish in Action to examine contemporary works from multiple Spanish-speaking communities.