Modern Languages

About Modern Languages at Leicester

At Leicester we have teaching and research expertise related to the languages and cultures of the Francophone, Italian, and Hispanic worlds, and in translation and interpreting. We also offer courses in languages for non-specialists through our extracurricular Languages at Leicester programme.

In its annual survey of UK universities, the Guardian's University Guide 2020 ranked Modern Languages at Leicester the 10th department of its kind in the country, and 1st amongst those for ‘Overall Course Satisfaction’ amongst our students. The survey examined all three language areas offered at Leicester (French, Italian, and Spanish) and encompasses other key factors such as staff-to-student ratios and evidence of graduate employability.

We provide our students with an outstanding learning experience. We are also committed to widening participation. In 2015 Dr Michelle Harrison (French) and Dr Maria Guarnieri (Italian) were announced as the inaugural winners of the University of Leicester’s Widening Participation Award, recognising their strong commitment to engaging young people from disadvantaged backgrounds in modern languages.

Excellence in teaching

Our students enjoy a challenging and stimulating programme of study that enables high-level achievement through the development of varied skills and areas of knowledge. Since its initiation in 2005, we have achieved consistently excellent results in the annual National Student Survey exercise. Our average score for ‘Overall Satisfaction’ for the last 3 academic years is 95%. So, whichever languages and subject combination you study at Leicester, you can be sure of the highest level of teaching and pastoral support from our staff.

Excellence in research

Underpinning the quality of our teaching is our wide-ranging research activity. Leicester Modern Languages tutors are experts in their fields, and their detailed knowledge of diverse areas of study such as contemporary Italian literature and photography, South American documentary film, French minority studies, and translation pedagogies, for example, inspire and inform the optional modules available to our students.

Language learning opportunities

We offer a range of learning methodologies and experiences to enable you to gain confidence and fluency in your language(s), including a hugely popular summer school scheme for our undergraduates at the end of their first year. You will also spend a year studying or working abroad – an experience that is essential to developing the linguistic and cultural fluency that characterise the Leicester Modern Languages graduate.

Employment potential

Research has shown that graduates in Modern Languages enjoy excellent employment opportunities. Many of our graduates go on to work in education and in the translation professions, but also other very diverse career paths ranging from business positions and work in human resources, to jobs in the media or the social and political sectors.

Additionally, a significant number of our graduates move on to postgraduate study, including PGCEs and Masters programmes in translation, international business, law, human rights, gender studies, journalism… And some then go on to pursue PhDs in their individual specialisms.

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