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College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Department of Languages & Literatures

Why Learn a Second Language

Languages & Literatures Department

Why Learn a Foreign Language?

In an increasingly smaller world, knowing a foreign language is a must!


Countless professions in the United States and around the world require daily interaction with people who speak many different languages. Learning a foreign language will open up new career fields and help you stand out in a competitive global economy.

Aside from multilingualism, employers look for traits like flexibility, versatility and sensitivity to other cultures—all things you develop when you learn another language.


Learning another language will introduce you to a new culture. Increased cultural awareness provides for enriched interpersonal exchanges and experiences.

  • You can build relationships with people all over the world.
  • Learn to respect and appreciate different ethnic and cultural values.
  • Enjoy foreign films, music and literature in their original languages.
  • Discover unique histories and traditions.

You might take a second look at your own culture, understanding it in a whole new way.


Traveling to a foreign country, for business or vacation, will be much easier if you can speak the language. Imagine the satisfaction of reading the newspaper or ordering lunch with the same ease as you would at home! Also, you may find that locals are more friendly and welcoming when you make an effort to speak their language, and are delighted when you show an understanding of their history and culture.


Learning a foreign language has proven benefits for your brain. Multilingualism improves memorization and multitasking abilities. It has also been shown to help prevent early-onset Alzheimer's disease and dementia.

Additionally, you may find that your vocabulary and grammar-usage of your native language will simultaneously improve.