Core Curriculum Language Requirement

Language study is encouraged at Villanova, whether you are continuing on with a language you have taken in high school or would like to begin a new language.  In addition to the intrinsic benefits of learning another language and culture, language study helps to make one an impressive candidate for professional schools, such as law school or medical school, for graduate programs, which often require proficiency in certain languages, and even for prospective employers who would value such knowledge in a global economy.

Starting in Fall 2011, students may fulfill the Core Curriculum Language Requirement in one of three ways:

2 courses beyond the Introductory level.
Students who studied French, Italian, Portuguese, or Spanish in high school must complete an online language placement test to be placed into the appropriate level course sequence. For additional information on the online placement exam and to take the online test, please refer to the website or contact

(Students who have not studied a language in high school must complete the two-semester introductory course prior to registering for a two-semester sequence in the same language at or above the intermediate level. Note:  students with no high school language must successfully complete 4 semesters in a language.  They do not need to take an online language placement exam).


Students may satisfy the Core Curriculum language requirement by attaining a score of 4 or better on the high school Advanced Placement Exam.

Students may satisfy the Core Curriculum Language Requirement through satisfactory performance of a proficiency Intermediate examination administered by the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures.  Students may demonstrate proficiency in a language by passing a proficiency exam given on certain dates in the summer (2014:  July 10, August 21).  The French proficiency exam will only be given on August 21.  If interested in this option, please register online to sign up for a proficiency exam (sign-up deadline:  noon the day before the exam date).

Note: Students must achieve a grade of C or better in the proficiency examination, in order to satisfy the requirement. 

Language Programs:


  • Language courses vary from three to six credits; regardless of the number of credits, an individual language course counts as one course.
  • Placement tests are used to place students only; they are not to be confused with a proficiency Intermediate test.

Language learning disability

Some students have a learning disability that interferes with their ability to learn a language. They must have documented evidence by a professional to support their claim. If this occurs, students will be referred to Nancy Mott at Learning Support Services.Those who have such disabilities will satisfy the language requirement by taking 2 upper level culture or literature courses offered in English at the department.