About the Department and Its Mission



The study of languages, literatures and cultures is an essential and intrinsic component of the mission of Villanova University and of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, committed to the Augustinian and Catholic values of diversity, liberal and international education.

In addition to gaining skills in critical and creative thinking, students are able to communicate with people from other parts of the world, and gain self-confidence, professionalism and a new perspective on themselves and the world through the understanding of other cultural practices. Students are aware of the many benefits and opportunities that knowing a foreign language and culture offers them, particularly in a global environment such as ours. These tools are critical in a variety of career paths, including but not limited to medicine, business, education, law, and the arts.

Brief History of the Department

The Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, as it was called then was established at Villanova University in 1960, with Dr. Stack being its first Chair. The Department through the years housed over ten languages, until 2007 when it became the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, with French, Italian and Spanish being the languages offered.  At present the Department offers majors and minors in French, Italian and Spanish. Portuguese was introduced in Fall 2010 and we hope that a major and a minor in Portuguese can be offered in the near future.


Entering a Rich Cultural World 

Studying French, Italian, Portuguese and/or Spanish languages and cultures opens the door to new perspectives, which in turn provides students with a deeper understanding of their own culture in relation to other traditions.

Better Job Opportunities

Given that these languages are so important in Western Society, students can participate in our globalized world in a vital manner.  Students who speak one of these languages and are versed in the many aspects of the cultures involved have better job opportunities both in the United States and abroad.  In the fields of medicine, law, international business, education, psychology, political sciences, and many others, knowing a second language and its culture will be a great asset.

Gain a Deeper Understanding and Self-Confidence

Our language majors are confident as they gain knowledge and a new perspective of their lives that will enable them to feel comfortable in different parts of the world.

Acquiring a Second Language

Students will be taught using the most advanced language methodologies, strategies and technologies available, and assessed according to performance-based procedures, in small language classes.

* The power of the bilingual brain - Times article.pdf
Article: The Power of the Bilingual Brain

Faculty Highlights: