We promote a comprehensive understanding of the core roles that language, culture, and society play in engaged citizenship and build exceptional communicative and cultural competence through courses and research led by faculty from diverse parts of the world.


Mercedes Juliá, PhD
Mercedes Juliá, PhD Professor and Interim Chair

Hello and welcome to the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, a vibrant community of professors and students dedicated to the study of French and Francophone Studies, Hispanic Studies and Italian Studies.

Please come in and find out about our course offerings in French and Francophone, Italian and Spanish Studies, as well as community internships, study abroad, language clubs, honor societies and the many exciting activities that the Department has to offer.

By enrolling in any of our unique programs, you are ready to begin a journey of self-discovery as well as an exploration of some fascinating cultures of the world. You will be glad you did.

A more peaceful and just world is possible when people understand the languages, cultures, and values of the world’s citizens. Our Department promotes Villanova’s commitment to the Augustinian values of diversity, holistic education, and the pursuit of justice.

In addition to gaining skills in critical and creative thinking, our students interact with a diverse set of individuals from other parts of the world, which fosters self-awareness and professionalism. By experiencing cultural practices that may differ from their own, they develop a more nuanced perspective of themselves and global issues. Students also discover the many opportunities that multilingualism and intercultural competence offer in today’s global economy. Students develop skills that are critical to success in most professional career paths, including medicine, business, education, law, technology, and the arts.

  • Career Readiness: Find rewarding employment and service opportunities that engage linguistic and cultural knowledge and enable graduates to address issues of injustice and inequality in society
  • Linguistic Competence: Clearly and concisely articulate, debate, and defend one’s viewpoints by developing an advanced level of proficiency in the second language. This will also permit students to learn first-hand about people from other cultures and backgrounds. 
  • Critical Thinking: Integrate knowledge from various disciplines to develop a comprehensive view of language, culture, and society—then express this interrelationship succinctly and effectively through the lenses of several approaches
  • Content Mastery: Develop breadth and depth of knowledge on multiple literary genres, historical trends, theoretical frameworks, and linguistic features of Romance languages
  • Cultural Fluency: Recognize and critically address issues of cultural diversity by reviewing key debates/movements and conducting community-centered research

Diversity is at the heart of our departmental community. It informs our teaching, research, and service. Our culturally diverse faculty advance a commitment to understanding differences throughout the Spanish-, Italian-, and French-speaking worlds.

We articulate the value of listening to a plurality of perspectives in both contemporary and historical contexts. Our classes acknowledge the range of disparities present around us, giving students the tools to address inequality. Our graduates carry this knowledge and these skills into the wider world, contributing to a better-connected, more tolerant and just society.

St. Augustine Center, 303
Villanova University
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, PA 19085