September 18, 2009

Foreign Language Requirements for College

We are still waiting for certain soap supplies to arrive, so our adventures in soap making are on hold at the moment. Today I'm thinking through what college Meg is interested in and what major she is considering. Even though she has been pursuing a pretty arts-heavy curriculum, she is seriously considering Consumer and Family Science. That's a major at our local college that prepares kids for careers in social work, counseling, etc. It sounds like a very good fit for her, and she can still try out for musicals and take theatre as an elective.

Anyway, looking at the admissions requirements, I think she has a pretty good chance at being accepted. Looking at the courses required for graduation, I think she will love it. But they have a foreign language requirement, and I wonder what is going to happen there. She has studied American Sign Language pretty intensively, and I wonder if they will accept that or make her take Spanish or something before she graduates. I know she won't be too thrilled about that.

I did a little online research and found this list of US colleges that accept ASL to fulfill their foreign language requirement. It might be a good idea to include the list with her transcript.

For those of you still early in your homeschooling, keep this in mind. It would be good to have your kids study a foreign language during their high school years so you can put it on their transcripts. You can always hire a tutor or buy a curriculum or let them take it at the public high school. Any recommendations out there? The earlier you start the better because, as we all know, young kids are expert language learners. Do as much as you can before they hit puberty and their high school studying will be so much easier.

Peter has had to take a foreign language in college, but he likes that sort of stuff. He's taking German. So that's the conclusion: if your child does not have at least two years of foreign language study before he gets to college, he'll just have to take it when he gets there. And I hear rumblings of requiring four years of high school foreign language, so who knows what the requirements will be when your kids are ready.

There. My thoughts for today.


Penny said...

Thanks for your thoughts! Do you think Latin counts?

Amy @ Experience Imagination said...

My daughter is only 4, so we're just getting our feet wet with the homeschooling deal this year. One of the thoughts I had about foreign language was to have a Spanish-immersion day once a week. I'd have to brush up on my own language skills, but they could use the brushing up.

We could do our Bible lesson in Spanish that day using Bible Gateway, we could practice writing a letter to a friend who is a translator. Several of the online sites for children have Spanish and other foreign-language sections (French, Russian, German), and our library offers a small selection of children's books in Spanish and a dozen or so other languages.

Math would be pretty much the same in any language, though if you're working on Latin, all those roman numerals might get to be a hassle. :)

Traci said...

I took Latin for a year in high school. If I had had another year of it it would have counted. I took way too many years of Spanish to speak it as poorly as I do. LOL

Anonymous said...

Both my boys have shown interest in foreign language, thankfully. Andy is doing an online course in Japanese, and I'm working with Perry on Spanish. I always LOVED foreign language, so I'm glad they took after me, in that regard!

Rena said...

One curriculum for ASL is the Signing Naturally series. It is published through DawnSign Press. That publishing company has many resources which could be useful for learning and practicing ASL. For instance, there is a workbook which goes with the story by Ben Bahan, Bird of a Different Feather. Both have accompanying DVDs.
I expect the college will accept ASL to meet the foreign language requirement. ASL is a true language. If she had learned SEE (or a similar signing system) instead, that wouldn't count because systems such as SEE are not true/natural languages.

Karen said...

Thanks for the heads-up, Jena.
I really want them to learn a foreign language, just because I think it's a good idea - my mom is bilingual and I have a good deal of French (from her) and some Italian also (from living there for six months).
I recently read a book, The Global Student, that blew my mind - I want to go live somewhere else while the kids are young and they can just absorb the language and culture by being immersed in it!

Thanks for this post -

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