Mission Statement

language definitionThe mission of the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures is intertwined with the mission of Northern Michigan University, particularly with regard to challenging “students. . . to think independently and critically, develop lifelong learning habits, acquire career skills, embrace diversity and become citizens and leaders in the regional and global community.”  The following constitute major emphases of the Department mission:

1.  Provide quality undergraduate courses and programs.

  • The Department provides courses which meet the Liberal Studies Program requirements in Humanities (world literature and culture studies), Formal Communication (language studies), and World Cultures.

  • Given the vast international experience and expertise as well as the extensive advanced training in world literature which its faculty members possess, the Department is uniquely qualified to teach world literature and culture classes.  Thus, it provides courses in these areas in both English translation and in the original language of the texts studies.

  • The Department provides majors, minors, and certification programs in a number of languages and literatures for students seeking baccalaureate degrees.  These programs include professional training of language education and liberal arts students, as well as linguistic and cultural training to enhance the professional training of students in any discipline.

  • The Department provides courses for and advises students in a variety of interdisciplinary programs, including International Studies and Latin American Studies.

  • Additionally, the Department provides courses which apply to graduate-level programs in Education and Liberal Studies.

2.  Serve the campus community and beyond with regard to matters related to culture, language, pedagogy and international studies.

  • Provide linguistic and cultural assistance when needed across campus and in surrounding communities.

  • In collaboration with the Office of International Programs, serve as facilitator in helping students to study abroad.

  • Provide leadership and expertise to area schools and teachers with regard to language and world studies.

3.  Enrich the campus community and beyond.

  • Contribute to NMU governance.

  • Participate in and contribute to scholarly and creative exchange through publications and presentations in a variety of media and locales both on and off campus.

  • Champion the cause of diversity by encouraging students and community members to learn about, have contact with, and understand people of varying cultural, ethnic, and racial backgrounds.

The Department is committed to academic excellence through regular assessment and improvement of its academic programs, the use of current teaching and learning technologies, and the maintenance of pedagogically sound class sizes.