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General Information

Purpose and Expectations

The Department offers two unique Master of Arts programs:

Both degrees are offered in the fields of French, German and Spanish. The MAFLP degree affords students the opportunity to continue their foreign language study at the graduate level with the option of working toward teacher certification.

The purpose of both M.A degrees is to provide students with the opportunity for professional growth in the areas of language proficiency, literature, culture, and pedagogy. The MAFLP degree is designed to offer an interdisciplinary course for those who wish to pursue a specialty area in Foreign and Second Language Education. The degree’s flexible options make it suitable both for those new to the field and for practicing teachers and other professionals.

Students typically take four semesters to complete their degree, and over the course of their study they are expected to perfect their linguistic and cultural proficiency in the foreign language as well as their knowledge and understanding of its literature. Students are also expected to significantly expand their research and teaching abilities.

What Makes Us Unique

With Delaware’s MA in Foreign Language Pedagogy (one of the few in the US), students graduating with a BA in French, German, or Spanish who make the decision to teach in their senior year now have the possibility of continuing their foreign language study at the graduate level while at the same time working towards teacher certification.

There are even fewer graduate programs that provide students with the opportunity to continue the study of two languages at the graduate level. Delaware’s MA in Foreign Languages and Literatures Program offers students the possibility of single-language study or two-language study, either in a major-minor format or a double major. For talented polyglots proficient in two “favorite” languages, there’s no need to choose! At Delaware, you can deepen your understanding of two cultures, increase your fluency in two languages…and make yourself that much more flexible on the job market.

Recognizing that time spent abroad greatly enhances our students’ learning, we have established exchange programs in France and Spain for students who are not native speakers of the target language. These programs are competitive.

MA in Foreign Languages and Literatures

This flexible master’s program has three options: a single major (30 credits), a double major (42 credits) or a major/minor (36 credits). The program offers students an in-depth study of the target culture(s) and literature(s). Students who complete this program find that the additional exposure to the language and the literature prepares them for positions requiring target language fluency and general familiarity with the target culture such as teaching, international business, and government.
The program also prepares students for study at the Ph.D level in foreign literature or (especially in the case of those who elect the double major or major/minor option) in comparative literature.

  • Major Fields: French, German, and Spanish
  • Minor Fields: French, German, Spanish, Russian,
    Latin, and Italian Literatures, Women’s Studies,
    Applied Linguistics/Pedagogy, and related disciplines.

MA in Foreign Languages and Pedagogy

This master’s program has three options: a single major (30 credits), a double major (42 credits) and a major/minor (36 credits).
The MA in Foreign Languages and Pedagogy is a flexible degree that can provide students with all the courses required for teaching certification in French, German, or Spanish. Students may apply for a fifth semester of funding to cover student teaching. Students already certified can take as many as 15 credit hours in foreign language pedagogy courses or closely related fields. All students take at least half their courses in the foreign language and literature of their major field (French, German, or Spanish). This program also prepares students for study at the Ph.D level in the field of Applied Linguistics. Students seeking teacher certification must take 33 credits, not including the student teaching semester. All other students must take 30 credits.

The two master’s programs have virtually identical entrance requirements but different course distribution requirements, reading lists, and comprehensive examinations.

Study Abroad

The Department has exchange programs with the Universities of Caen (France) and Granada (Spain). Students who go to Caen remain for a full academic year. Students wishing to participate in the programs in Bayreuth and Granada generally stay for one semester only. As a rule, students teach English courses at the foreign site, either at the university or secondary school level. They may also take a limited number of courses towards completion of their M.A.degree. Participation in the exchange programs is competitive. Students should consult the faculty liaisons for the program in which they’re interested one year in advance of the intended stay abroad.

Explore Further

For further information about specific language requirements, course distribution, and comprehensive examinations, please refer to:

For further information about reading lists for the specialization of interest to you, please refer to:

How to Apply

Most of your questions about the application process are already answered on the UD Grad Office’s site (be sure to read the items on the sidebar menu, which address each aspect of the application). Please be sure to follow the instructions carefully: http://www.udel.edu/gradoffice/apply/

FAQs for Applicants

Do I need to take the GRE?

No, our department does not require the GRE.

Do I need to take the TOEFL?

All international applicants are required to take the TOEFL, and to make arrangements for ETS (the Educational Testing Service, which administers the test) to report their scores (by the Feb. 1 deadline, if the applicant is requesting a teaching assistantship or tuition scholarship). You will need to enter UD’s code, 5811, so that the scores will be added automatically to your application as soon as they are received. Do not enter a department code.

TOEFL exemptions apply to applicants who are not native speakers of English, but who belong to one of two groups: 1) those who have earned a university degree in a country where English is the official language, and 2) those who are permanent residents of the US. Both groups are still subject to the University’s English proficiency requirements for teaching assistants.

Are there alternatives to the TOEFL?

Yes. We also accept scores on the IELTS (minimum score of 6.5 overall with no individual sub-score below 6.0; scores are to be sent directly by IELTS International to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education, 234 Hullihen Hall, Newark, DE 19716) or the DELF/CEFR/Cambridge assessments (level C1 or higher).

Do I need to secure a certified English translation of my transcripts and/or diplomas?

If they are in Spanish, French, German, or Italian, no. Otherwise, yes.

In what language should my applicant essay and writing sample be written?

The writing sample should be in the target language, that is, the language in which you will be specializing. The application essay must be in English.

What sort of writing sample should I send?

We would like to see evidence of your analytical ability and your academic writing skills. Select an example of your very best writing, in the target language (i.e., if you are applying to the MA program in Spanish, submit an essay in Spanish). A paper for an academic course is ideal. The subject should be related to the area of study you expect to pursue at the MA level. The suggested length is five to ten pages. Please do not submit entire theses: select instead an excerpt and explain its context.

What information should I include in my applicant essay?

Your personal statement is a very important part of the application and is read with great care. It is highly recommended that you invest ample time in composing this statement and include enough detail to communicate your fit with our program (suggested length: 500 – 800 words). Your statement should address the following matters:

  1. It should describe why you have selected our program (MAFLL, MAFLP, or MACFLE) and how you intend to use the degree to fulfill your career goals or further educational aspirations.
  2. It should provide any other information about you (your experience, specific interests, talents or abilities, and/or your academic record) that you believe is important for the admission committee to know. If you are currently registered in a graduate program at this or another university, please explain why you wish to leave.
  3. If you are an MAFLP applicant intending to pursue the certification track, please mention this in your essay.

Can my letters of recommendation be written in a language other than English?

All letters of recommendation should be written in English. If this constitutes a problem for one of your recommenders, we can accept letters in Spanish, French, German or Italian if necessary.

Whom should I approach for letters of recommendation? Can letters be from current or past employers?

Your three letters of recommendation should preferably come from professors who know you well and who can comment on your academic performance in the target language and/or literature, as well as on your current target language proficiency (if you are a non-native speaker of that language). If you have been away from the academic world for some years, a letter from an employer may be substituted for one academic letter.

One of my professors has not yet submitted his/her letter of recommendation. Should I submit my application anyway?

Yes. But since we cannot make a final decision unless we have all three letters, do first gently remind that person that the letter has not yet been received. If s/he says that s/he is unable to submit the form at that point, find another recommender and add her/him BEFORE submitting your application.

I want to apply for a teaching assistantship (or tuition scholarship). What do I need to do?

Check the box on the application that says “I would like to be considered for financial aid.” There is no separate application for financial aid (including teaching assistantships) from the University.

I have been granted “full funding.” What exactly does that mean? Will there be any additional fees?

“Full funding” means that you will be paid a monthly stipend (paid twice a month, over nine months) plus a full tuition scholarship. There are still required fees for which you will be responsible: any visa-related fees, plus University-mandated mandatory health and activity fees (as of April 2015, these mandatory UD fees total approximately $400 per semester for domestic students and $500 per semester for international students). For updates, see the UD Financial Aid website: http://www.udel.edu/finaid/grad_rates.html. For a breakdown of mandatory fees, click the box on that page labeled “Related Fees.”
Continuation of your financial award is contingent upon your satisfactory progress in the program. A minimum average GPA of 3.0 is required.

When should I expect to hear whether I have been accepted?

If you have submitted all the required documents by the February 1 deadline for applicants requesting financial aid, you should expect to hear from us between March 1 and April 15. Decisions on late applications or on applications from those not seeking funding are issued on a rolling basis.


Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures · 30 E Main. St. · Newark, DE 19716 · USA

Phone: 302-831-2591      Fax: 302-831-6459      Email: dllc-academics@udel.edu