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While CU offers many world languages, it is impossible to offer all of the 8000 major and minor languages of the world. If you are interested in a language that is not offered in our course catalog, it may still be possible to study it through the CU Education Abroad program. Additional on-campus options include ALTEC non-credit language classes as well as Directed Independent Language Study (DILS).

CU Boulder has over 25 different languages to study through department-run courses, ALTEC non-credit language classes, the Directed Independent Language Study (DILS) program, and through the School of Continuing Education. There are also many study abroad opportunities available at CU Boulder, where students can develop language skills in a country where the language is spoken. Here are some reasons why students are choosing to study a foreign language at CU:
  • CU Boulder Education Abroad has over 400 different programs for students who want to travel abroad to improve their foreign language and intercultural skills.
  • Many language departments provide B.A./M.A., M.A. and PhD programs to further their students’ academic and professional careers.
  • CU offers courses in the less commonly studied languages that are only available at very few universities in North America.
  • There are numerous scholarships offered through CU Boulder, language departments, and cultural organizations to help students afford study abroad programs.
  • Most departments offer tutors to help students on their language learning journey.
  • The Modified Foreign Language Program (MFLP) and Disability Services Office offer alternatives to help to make foreign language classes accessible to students with disabilities.
  • ALTEC’s multimedia library has numerous film, audio, and text resources for students wanting to improve their language skills.
  • All language departments and many student organizations host events that help students improve their language skills and build a global community on campus.
  • Many departments offer culture and literature courses taught in a foreign language and this allow students to develop interdisciplinary skills in that language.
  • CU Boulder Career Services has many useful resources to help students find a job related to their area of study.

CU Boulder candidates for secondary teaching licensure in Spanish, French and Japanese must pass an oral proficiency test as one of the requirements for licensure. For information about required proficiency levels, test formats, and practice please select the language you wish to teach:

While CU Boulder does not offer specific courses to prepare travelers for their journey abroad, one of the best ways to prepare for such an adventure is to enroll in one of the non-credit language courses provided by the Anderson Language and Technology Center (ALTEC). These non-credit courses are taught with the goal of helping students learn some language basics or to freshen up their language skills without the pressure of being in a formal university course. These courses are available to community members and CU Boulder faculty, staff, and students and are offered every fall and spring semester. More information can be found on our Language Classes page.

Languages at CU Boulder are taught at the 1000, 2000, 3000, and 4000 levels. One complete level will equate to two semesters or one full academic year. Some departments also offer intensive courses for the first year that are only one semester long. Most language courses are taught in traditional classrooms settings, however, there are different alternatives to this method such as Modified Foreign Language Program (MFLP) and Directed Independent Language Study (DILS) courses.

With the world getting smaller and smaller, knowing another language is more beneficial than ever. Visit our Career Resources page for a full list of opportunities to use and grow in your language skills.

To learn about current openings, visit our Join ALTEC page.