Romance Studies Major

About | Course Requirements | Language Requirements | Advising

In an increasingly global world, many students arrive at OSU with a desire to learn languages, and many already have background in one or more Romance languages (Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian) or Latin.  This major is designed for students who are interested developing skills in three languages, Romance languages or Latin, and want to interact with ease in multiple cultures. In addition, Romance Studies majors have time in their schedule to complete a second major or one or two minors. Students are not required to have a background in a foreign language before starting this degree, but it is recommended. In order to be successful in this major and finish the degree in four years, students need to commit early and organize their course work carefully.

The Picos de Europa National Park in Spain, Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

The Romance Studies major begins with the elementary language sequence: 1101, 1102, 1103. In most cases, students will be able to finish the language sequence in less than three semesters due to previous experience in the language and through additional courses and placement options at the 1100-level:

French: Individualized Instruction, Placement Exam for students with previous experience in another Romance Language, Combined Courses, Departmental placement testing (EM).
Spanish: Placement Exam for students with previous experience in another Romance Language, Combined Courses, Departmental placement testing (EM).
Latin: Intensive Language course that allows students to complete 1101-1102-1103 in one semester, Summer workshop for completion of sequence and additional credits.
Italian: Placement Exam for students with previous experience in another Romance Language, Intensive Language course that allows students to complete 1101-1102-1103 in one semester.
Portuguese: Individualized Instruction, Departmental placement testing (EM), two semester intensive elementary language sequence  for students with a background in Spanish or another Romance language.
Romanian: Departmental placement testing (EM).

Beyond the 1100-level Elementary Language Sequence

French, Spanish and Italian: Students complete a 2000-level “bridge” reading skills course as prerequisite to the intermediate and advanced levels.  The 2000-level in these languages does not count toward the primary or secondary field.  As with the Spanish major, students who select Spanish as their primary language will have to take a senior seminar, see ’Tracks available and requirements’ below).

Quebec City, Canada, Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Pursuing the Romance Studies Major

Upon admission to the university, students can declare a major in Romance Studies within the College of Arts and Sciences. If you have taken a Romance language in high school or have language skills because you have lived in a country in which a Romance language is spoken, you should take a placement test in that language (or those languages) in order to test out of courses and accelerate your time to degree.  The following is a brief summary of the requirements for the Romance Studies major:

  • Total 41-48 hours. This does not count the prerequisites for the primary and secondary language. However, note that the 1000-level language course prerequisite hours for the primary or secondary language count for the GE language requirement. In addition, many students test out of any number of elementary-level language courses.
  • Choose one primary field, one secondary field, one tertiary field. (Romanian can only count as a tertiary field.)
  • One required course taught in English taken in the Junior or senior year:  Classics/Italian/Romance Linguistics 5051. This course is offered every two years.
  • Nine credits of study abroad are required for all primary fields except Latin. Students who select Latin as their primary language are required to study abroad to satisfy their secondary language. If a language program only has six-credit SA options, students may take the remaining three credits on the OSU campus.
  • Students who take service learning credits in one of their languages for the GE may also count these credits in the major.

Requirements for the Primary Field (8 courses, 24 credits: 15 credits at OSU, 9 credits abroad):

  • Five courses (15 credits) beyond the 2000-level.  (Latin: 7 courses at or beyond the 2000-level). For a detailed description of the course requirements for each language, see below..
  • Three courses (9 credits) of study abroad in the primary field to be taken after the 2000-level has been completed at OSU. With this type of language preparation before departure it is expected that students will take content courses in the foreign country. (Student who select Latin as their primary language do not study abroad in the primary field but rather in the secondary field. See below.)

Requirements for the Secondary Field (9 credits)

3 courses beyond the 2000-level (Latin: Students study abroad to satisfy their secondary field requirement. As indicated above for the primary language, these are content courses, not language courses.) 

Requirements for the Tertiary Field

Basic language proficiency (depends on the options offered and the level into which a student tests: maximum number of credits: 12; minimum number of credits: 5).

All students are required to take Italian/Classics/Romance Linguistics 5051: Latin and the Romance Languages. The goal of this course is to give students the opportunity to bring the work that they are doing in the courses taught in the target language together and examine how the Romance languages are related and how they differ. This course does not require background knowledge in linguistics. 

NOTE: Although this is not likely to occur frequently, students may also opt to do a second study abroad experience in their secondary or tertiary field. It is recommended that students who study abroad for credit for their secondary (or tertiary) field do so at the 1000-level.  

Italy signs

Specific Language Requirements for the Primary Language

Note that courses beyond the 5000 level are included here because once students study abroad their language skills are such that they are able to take these courses. 

Latin

Literature/Culture Courses: All courses at the 2000- and 5000-level

7 courses at or beyond the 2000 level.

Portuguese

Required: 3450; Choose 8 from: 3402, 3403, 4611, 4510, 4560, 4561, 4595, 4597.01, 4597.02, 5510, 5520, 5530, 5650, 6750 or 3401, 6730.

Three 3000-level courses (as described above); Five additional courses above the 3000-level; not more than one course taught in English may count. (The equivalents of three of these courses are taken abroad.)

Spanish

All Spanish courses at the 3000-, 4000- and 5000-level count toward the major. Students take three courses at the 3000-level, four courses at the 4000-level, one course at the 5000-level SENIOR SEMINAR or higher (this last course must be taken on campus); not more than one course taught in English WITHIN THE CONCENTRATION may count.

French

Select from: 3101, 3201, 3202, 3401, 3402 [francophone culture], 3403, 3701, 4101, 4103, 4102, 4401, 5201, 5202, 5203, 5204, 5205, 5206, 5207, 5401, 5402, 5403, 5701, 7102, and linguistics courses above the 4000-level.

Students must take two courses at or above the 3000-level and three courses at or above the 4000-level taught in French. (Students may always opt to take courses at a higher level to satisfy these requirements. For example, if instead of two 3000-level courses a student who selects French as their primary language may opt to take one 3000-level course and four courses at a higher level.) A total of 9 credits beyond the 2000-level are taken abroad and selected in consultation with the adviser. If a student selects a program that only offers six credits, the remaining three credits may be taken on campus.

Italian

All Italian courses taught in Italian at the 3000-, 4000- and 5000-level and graduate literature and culture courses above the 5000-level taught in Italian with permission of the instructor and the graduate school count toward the major.

Students must take two courses at or above the 3000 level, three courses at or above the 4000 level taught in Italian. (Students may always opt to take courses at a higher level to satisfy a particular requirement. For example, if instead of two 3000-level courses a student who selects Italian as their primary language may opt to take one 3000-level course and three 4000-level courses.) The remaining three courses (9 credits) are taken abroad and selected in consultation with the advisor.

Note: courses beyond the 5000 level are included here because once students study abroad their language skills are such that they are able to take these courses.

Sibiu, Romania, Photo credit: Pixabay

Advising

Upon enrolling in the Romance Studies major, students will be assigned an ASC advisor as well as an advisor in the department of their primary language. This advisor will be responsible for answering curricular questions and approving course changes.

The ASC advisors for the primary languages are

Andy Spencer – French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese

Mary Katherine Ramsey - Latin

The faculty advisors for each primary language are

Italian – Janice M. Aski

French – Jennifer Willging

Latin – Director of Undergraduate Studies

Spanish and Portuguese – Jonathan Burgoyne

 

If you are interested in a degree in Romance Studies, contact the undergraduate advisor in the department of your primary language as soon as possible in order to organize your course work.

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