Foreign Languages and Literatures at MIT

Subjects & Requirements



English Language Studies














Studies in International Literatures and Cultures
In English Translation


All Subjects in Course 21F (Foreign Languages and Literatures)


Exams Administered by Our Section


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The study of foreign languages and literatures provides valuable experience and a potential edge for future career development. Scientists and engineers function in a global market: they rely on primary sources published in other languages, attend international consortia, and often find themselves interacting across national, cultural, and linguistic borders. Government and industry often give preference to job applicants who are proficient in a foreign language. MIT students are encouraged to work and study abroad in conjunction with university, private and public organizations. The faculty of FL&L, the language coordinators, and the Undergraduate Academic Administrator can provide assistance in choosing an appropriate program and granting transfer credit from overseas or domestic programs. Over IAP (MIT's Independent Activities Period during winter break), FL&L offers intensive introductory language subjects in addition to intensive subjects designed to help students plan for living and working in France and Germany. In addition, students have the option to cross-register at Wellesley College or Harvard University throughout the academic year. Relevant subjects taken at qualified institutions here and abroad may fulfill MIT's science, engineering and humanities requirements. MIT provides a unique perspective on foreign languages because of the opportunities available to integrate the study of natural languages with the latest technological advances in multimedia and interactive language learning. FL&L-affiliated faculty are exploring and implementing methods in which multimedia technology can be used to make learning a foreign language a more authentic experience. Using native speakers filmed on location to create documentaries and narratives in French, German, ESL, Japanese and Spanish, FL&L is developing teaching tools through which students can access hypertext linked supporting resources, such as encyclopedic information, transcription, and historical, grammatical, and cultural materials. Although MIT is known throughout the world for its programs in science and engineering, MIT is also a university where the humanities, arts, and social sciences play an integral role in its educational mission. Together they help to make MIT much more than just an institute of technology. Subjects taught at MIT are for registered MIT students only. If you would like to apply to MIT, please try the Admissions Office.

The Foreign Languages and Literatures section is part of MIT's School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

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Last Updated: 4/24/2014