Provost approves changes to language requirement

Languages 2

Herald Staff

In an email to faculty and staff, provost and vice president of Academic Affairs David Lee said he approved a resolution that would allow students to count two years of foreign language study in high school as their modern language requirement.

As previously reported, the University Senate approved the resolution last week. 

The resolution changes the requirement that students obtain their world-language credit by passing at least the 102-equivalent of a language course or passing a proficiency test, usually the STAMP Test. The change affects students enrolled through June 2018, and will clear the backlog of 7,000 students still waiting to fulfill their language requirement. 

WKU published a website to address any questions about the changes. We broke down some of the questions and answers from the website to address lingering questions students may likely have regarding the new policy. 

  • Did you take one year of French and one year of Spanish in high school? Does that satisfy the requirement?
    • No, you need two years of a single world language.
  • Did you take German 102 last fall at WKU and get a “D”? Do you meet the requirement?
    • No, WKU policy says a “C” or above is required. This resolution only applies to high school coursework. 
  • Do you have one world language credit from high school? Does that mean you only need to complete one language course at WKU?
    • According to the website, it depends. “If you test into the 102-level at WKU and successfully complete the course with a “C” or above, then only one course is required.”
  • Did you enroll in a language course next semester? Does the university automatically drop you?
    • No, you are still responsible for withdrawing yourself if you choose to do so. 
    • “You may wish to encourage students to consider the benefits of exposure to a world language prior to making their decision,” Lee said in the email announcing the change. 
  • How can you know if your high school transcript documents two credits of a world language? 
    • Log onto TopNet, click the Student Services tab at the top, click registration and then click “View Student Information.” The Language Proficiency and High School Foreign Language fields will be on the right. The proficiency field will either be marked with Y (yes) or N (no), and the high school language field should indicate what information WKU has on file from your high school transcripts. 
    • In the email, Lee said if a student indicates they have two credits, or the equivalent, of a single world language in high school but TopNet does not reflect this information, the student should contact their high school or electronically order an updated transcript to be sent to the admissions office. 

Lee said the Colonnade General Education Committee will revisit the World Language Proficiency requirement for students admitted for catalog years 2018-19 and after.