Overview - Ancient & Modern Languages Department


Dr. Shelby Thacker, Chair

All humans possess the gift of language, and true comprehension of this fundamental aspect of ourselves is not easily achieved by the monolingual. Greatly enhanced understanding of ourselves - our thought processes, our linguistic abilities, our culture - and of those who are unlike us comes through the study of another language. We are richer, more capable persons if we develop the ability to understand and communicate with those in another linguistic and cultural setting. We are better prepared to understand the world and to respond to life’s changing opportunities if we break free from some of the limitations that ethnocentricity and monolingualism tend to impose on any people. The Scriptures, classical texts, and modern works of literature and thought are better understood in the original language and with knowledge of the cultures that produced them. Living cultures and individuals are better understood and closer relations are established if the language barrier is down.


Modern transportation and communication technologies are bringing the world to us and taking us to the world. International business, scholarship, travel, government work, missionary activity, Christian and other organizations, all bring us into contact with speakers of other languages. Today’s instant communications bring to us the documents of the world - past and present - and offer us the possibility of real-time contact with individuals we would never have encountered in the past.


In light of these facts, Asbury University maintains its commitment to foreign language study as a vital part of a liberal arts education. The Ancient & Modern Language Department offers six languages which may be used to fulfill the core foreign language requirement: Chinese, French, Greek, Hebrew, Latin and Spanish. We offer majors in Ancient Languages, French, and Spanish. There are teaching majors in French, Latin, and Spanish, and students may minor in Biblical Languages, Classical Languages, French, Greek, Latin, and Spanish. These programs offer opportunities for students to acquire practical language skills, scholarly tools, and understanding of the literatures, cultures, and linguistic distinctives of the languages studied.



[Note:  Students are advised to take a foreign language in high school.  Students completing two years of a high school foreign language with a grade of C generally place into 102.  Students completing three years of a high school foreign language with a grade of C generally place into 201.]

1. All students pursuing the A.A. or B.A. degree must demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language to the 201 level.

2. A student meets the foreign language requirement in one of the following ways:

a. By completing a 101, 102, 201 sequence of language study at Asbury University.

b. By transferring a 201 level foreign language course from another accredited university.

c. Submitting AP or CLEP scores equivalent to the 201 level.

d. Taking the Department of Ancient & Modern Languages placement test and achieving a placement at the  fourth-semester level (202) or above.  [Placement tests - All students who have had the equivalent of at least one year of a foreign language on the high school level and who wish to continue with that same language will be required to take a placement examination.  Those who achieve advanced placement to the 102 or 201 level are expected to continue their study at the level assigned until the requirement is met.  By-passing any course in the sequence will not be permitted without special petition.

3. Under certain special circumstances, the foreign language requirement for the B.A. degree may be waived:

a. Students with an unusual background in a foreign language may petition for a language requirement waiver, especially if such competency is in a language other than those taught at Asbury. Approval for the waiver will depend upon evaluation by the Department and may include an advanced-level proficiency test.

b. International sstudents whose native language is not English will satisfy the foreign language requirement by successfully completing the Foundational requirements in English and Communication.



For degree seeking traditional undergraduates Eligible language courses are: 101, 102, 201 and the fourth semester course (202, 251 or 291) as listed for the language.

Requirements and procedures:

  1. Take the proficiency examination given and receive a score qualifying for advanced placement.
  2. Take the higher language course at Asbury University as indicated by placement test.
  3. Earn at least a "C-" in that first Asbury language course. If this is not achieved, the student may follow the repeat course policy.
  4. Submit application for credit purchase. Contact the Ancient & Modern Languages Department Office for official application to purchase language credits.
  5. A processing fee of $20.00 per hour of credit received for any eligible language courses will be posted to the student’s account when the application is processed.
  6. Only the listed language courses are eligible for purchase (3.0 to 12.0 credits). 
  7. This purchase option is only available in languages offered at Asbury University.



2014-2015 BULLETIN 8/11/2014