Mission Statement for the SLS Major

The mission of the Bachelor of Arts degree program in Second Language Studies is to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of scholarship and application in the learning and use of second languages. The program addresses theory, research, and practice in acquisition, utilization, and teaching of additional languages, including coverage of formal and informal learning contexts as well as standard and pidgin/creole varieties of language.

This program, in accord with the values of SLS graduate degree programs, takes the broad view that plurilingual and pluricultural societies stand a much better chance (thank those imposed with monolingualism) of getting along and getting important cooperative work done; that language mediates the human experience; that linguistic communication in and across languages enables understanding and appreciation, conflict resolution, and the negotiation of values.

The BA in SLS meets local, statewide, national, and international needs for the development of second language specialists who both understand the nature of second language learning and use in diverse circumstances. These specialists are able to act upon related challenges that emerge at the interface between second language learners/users and the variety of social and educational settings in which they live and act.

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Graduates of the program have a wide assortment of careers. Some graduates contribute locally in the commercial English language education market. Others find work in K-12 and tertiary/post-secondary public/private language institutions by teaching and/or doing research, while others find themselves in social services for child and adult immigrants. Many of our graduates work nationally and internationally as language educators, in materials publishing, and at non-profit and governmental organizations. Finally, the BA in SLS also serves as an excellent preparation for entry into graduate programs in a variety of language-related domains.