Frequently Asked Questions

 

Frequently asked questions pertinent to current students

  1. How do I declare a major or minor in a world language?
  2. How can I make sure my paperwork gets through?
  3. Can I take a world language class even though I am not majoring or minoring in a language?
  4. How do I add/change my world language major/minor?
  5. Where can I find the schedule for classes offered this semester?
  6. How do I speak with an advisor?
  7. Where can I find my professor’s office hours?
  8. When and how am I getting my scholarship award money?
  9. How many units and classes are required for a language minor? Do I still have to take the same number of classes even though I got some classes waived?
  10. Is there any tutoring available for the foreign languages?
  11. Are there any World Language clubs and Honor Societies?
  12. If you are a language major, are you required to study abroad?
 

Frequently asked questions pertinent to prospective students

  1. What languages are taught at SJSU?
  2. I am thinking of getting a Master’s in French or Spanish. Where can I get more information about these languages?
  3. Where can I get more information on a language?
  4. I have questions regarding the teaching credential, where do I start?
  5. What is a placement test and how can I take it?
  6. What is a proficiency test and how can I take it?
 

If you have any other questions, please email world-languages@sjsu.edu. 


 

Frequently asked questions pertinent to current students

 

1. How do I declare a major or minor in a world language?

The first step in declaring a major or minor in a world language is to speak with a language advisor who can be found here. An advisor will give you the necessary paperwork and a roadmap of required classes.

 

2. How can I make sure my paperwork gets through?

To make sure that your forms are received and successfully processed and filed, take your forms to the appropriate office to get the required signatures.
 The first signature/approval you need to get is from your major/minor advisor. (If you are declaring a major in Spanish, visit one of our Spanish advisors). Next, bring the declaration form and the required documentation (transcripts, major forms, …) to get approval from the Department Chair at Clark Hall 421. After your paperwork is processed by the Department of World Languages and Literatures, take it to the College of Humanities and the Arts (located in Washington Square Hall Room 120).

 

3. Can I take a world language class even though I am not majoring or minoring in a language?

Yes, you can take any foreign language class you like, provided you have the necessary skill level. If in doubt, you can consult an advisor and take a placement test. Students are able to waive the unit cap under certain circumstances. Please contact the advisor for more information on this.

 

4. How do I add / change my world language major / minor?

a. For students with fewer than 90 units

1. Obtain an Addition/Change of Major or Minor Form (with fewer than 90 units) either by clicking here or at Clark Hall 421.

2. Fill up the form, talk to your assigned advisor, and get the advisor's approval.

3. Bring the form and a copy of unofficial transcript to Clark Hall 421 to be processed and filed.

4. You will receive an email/phone call notifying the document(s) is ready to be picked up approximately within two weeks.

5. Bring the form to the Humanities and Arts Student Success Center at Clark Hall 244 to have the Director sign.

6. Send the signed form to the Academic Advising and Retention Services (AARS) in the Student Services Center.

7. The AARS will then either approve or reject the proposal.

b. For students with 90 units or more

1. Obtain an Addition/Change of Major or Minor Form (with 90 units or more) either by clicking here or at Clark Hall 421.

2. Fill up the form, talk to your assigned advisor, and get the advisor's approval.

3. Bring the following documents to Clark Hall 421:

- Addition/Change of Major or Minor Form signed by advisor

- Current Major/Minor Form

- Requested Major/Minor Form

- Personal Statement (state your reasons of adding/changing the major/minor)

- Unofficial Transcript

4. You will receive an email/phone call when the form has been signed by the Department Chair and it is ready to be picked up.

5. Bring the form to the Humanities and Arts Student Success Center at Clark Hall 244 to have the Director sign.

6. Send the signed form to the Academic Advising and Retention Services (AARS) in the Student Services Center.

7. The AARS will then either approve or reject the proposal.

 

5. Where can I find the schedule for classes offered this semester?

The schedule of classes can be found here.

 

6. How do I speak with an advisor?

A list of advisors can be found here or in our department office at Clark Hall 421. You can either drop into their office hours or email them to set up an appointment to meet.

 

7. Where can I find my professor’s office hours?

A list of faculty office hours can be found here or in our department office at Clark Hall 421.
Office hours can also be found on the class syllabus, canvas and faculty pages.

 

8. When and how am I getting my scholarship award money?

Scholarships recipients info are sent to the Financial Aid office. They will apply it to any outstanding university debts you have and they will reimburse or give you back whatever is left. If you haven’t received your scholarship award, check with the Financial Aid office.

 

9. How many units and classes are required for a language minor? Do I still have to take the same number of classes even though I got some classes waived?

You can find general information for the program you are interested on our website under the "Programs" tab. Specific questions about your situation are best answered by the appropriate major or minor advisor. You can find advisors for every program here.

 

10. Is there any tutoring available for the foreign languages?

Yes, there are currently tutoring sessions available through Peer Connections for SPAN 1A and SPAN 1B. If you have any questions regarding tutoring, please contact http://peerconnections.sjsu.edu/tutoring/.

 

11. Are there any World Language clubs and Honor Societies?

 

12. If you are a language major, are you required to study abroad?

No, but we encourage you to do so -- study abroad is a rewarding experience that will improve your language skills immensely and give you new insights into the world around you.

 


 

Frequently asked questions pertinent to prospective students

 

1. What languages are taught at SJSU?

SJSU currently offers classes in the following languages:

  • Assyrian
  • Chinese
  • French
  • German
  • Hebrew
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Portuguese
  • Spanish
  • Vietnamese

Students can currently earn:

  • BA degrees in Chinese, French, Japanese, and Spanish
  • Minor degrees in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Latin American Studies, Portuguese, and Spanish
  • Minors for international business

 

2. I am thinking of getting a Master’s in French or Spanish. Where can I get more information about these languages?

For more information about the MA programs, please contact their respective advisors. The French MA Program is not currently accepting applicants:

 

3. Where can I get more information on a language?

The best source for more information regarding any of our language programs is the coordinator or advisor of that language, listed below:

Assyrian - Prof. Wilfred Bet-Alkhas wilfred.bet-alkhas@sjsu.edu CL 410H

Chinese - Dr. Chunhui Peng chunhui.peng@sjsu.edu CL 418M

Foreign Language Education - Prof. Helen Smith helen.smith@sjsu.edu CL 408K

French - Dr. Jean-Luc Desalvo jean-luc.desalvo@sjsu.edu CL 435

German - Dr. Romey Sabalius romey.sabalius@sjsu.edu CL 433

Hebrew - Dr. Rina Katzen world-languages@sjsu.edu (408) 924-3685 CL 420H

Italian - Dr. Michele Santamaria michele.santamaria@sjsu.edu CL 427

Japanese - Dr. Yasue Yanai yasue.yanai@sjsu.edu CL 410L

Portuguese - Dr. Duarte Pinheiro duarte.pinheiro@sjsu.edu CL 412J

Spanish (Undergraduate) - Dr. Cheyla Samuelson cheyla.samuelson@sjsu.edu CL 410D

Spanish (Graduate) - Dr. Damian Bacich damian.bacich@sjsu.edu CL 421D

 

4. I have questions regarding the teaching credential, where do I start?

The coordinator and advisor for the single subject credential in a world language is Prof. Helen Smith. She can be reached via email at helen.smith@sjsu.edu or in her office at CL 408K, (408) 924-4618.

 

5. What is a placement test and how can I take it?

A placement test can be taken in Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Spanish, and Vietnamese. These tests are used to assist advisors in determining what level course students should enroll in at their ability level. The placement tests are computer based and can be taken during regular business hours Monday through Thursday at 9:00AM - 2:00PM in the Carmen Sigler Media Center at CL 208. To contact the Carmen Sigler Media Center please call 408-924-4696 or email world-languages@sjsu.edu.

 

6. What is a proficiency test and how can I take it?

Language advisors use proficiency tests to determine if a student is competent enough in a language to satisfy a language requirement. The proficiency exam is more thorough than the placement test and may include written or oral components. Proficiency tests can be scheduled by appointment with a language advisor.

Assyrian - Prof. Wilfred Bet-Alkhas wilfred.bet-alkhas@sjsu.edu CL 410H

Chinese - Dr. Chunhui Peng chunhui.peng@sjsu.edu CL 418M

Foreign Language Education - Prof. Helen Smith helen.smith@sjsu.edu CL 408K

French - Dr. Jean-Luc Desalvo jean-luc.desalvo@sjsu.edu CL 435

German - Dr. Romey Sabalius romey.sabalius@sjsu.edu CL 433

Hebrew - Dr. Rina Katzen world-languages@sjsu.edu (408) 924-3685 CL 420H

Italian - Dr. Michele Santamaria michele.santamaria@sjsu.edu CL 427

Japanese - Dr. Yasue Yanai yasue.yanai@sjsu.edu CL 410L

Portuguese - Dr. Duarte Pinheiro duarte.pinheiro@sjsu.edu CL 412J

Spanish (Undergraduate) - Dr. Cheyla Samuelson cheyla.samuelson@sjsu.edu CL 410D

Spanish (Graduate) - Dr. Damian Bacich damian.bacich@sjsu.edu CL 421D

 

If you have any other questions, please email world-languages@sjsu.edu.