UMKC Catalog


Bachelor of Arts: French, German, Spanish - The Department of Foreign Languages and Literat...

The Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures offers a program of study leading to the bachelor of arts in French, German or Spanish.

Undergraduate Advisers:

French: Lindsy Myers 
(816) 235-2826,
German: K. Scott Baker
(816) 235-2823,
Larson Powell
(816) 235-1316,
Spanish: Alberto Villamandos 
(816) 235-2324,

General Information

Initial Advising and Placement

A language placement exam is strongly recommended for all students with previous foreign language experience in French, German or Spanish. The placement exam or the recommendation of a foreign language adviser will best determine a student's level, contributing to his or her success. Contact the department office for more information. Placement test website:

Consultation with an adviser is recommended for students who intend to major or minor in foreign languages.

Transfer Credit

Transfer students normally may expect to continue their foreign language study at the next comparable level. On consultation with their advisers or the course instructors, and after taking the placement exam, students may be advised to do either remedial or more advanced coursework. No more than nine hours of transfer credit for 200- to 400-level courses are normally allowed toward degree requirements.

Credit for study at a foreign institution will be granted, provided the courses proposed for study abroad have been approved in advance by a departmental adviser and endorsed by the chair of the department. When advance endorsement for credit is not obtained from the department, the credit is subject to approval by the department chair.

In cases where students have been engaged in an extended period (e.g., a year) of formal study at an approved academic institution abroad, transfer credit of more than nine hours may be granted, if approved by the chair of the department.

Credit by Examination

Beginning-level courses (110, 120) are not applicable toward requirements for the major. College credit for them may be earned by examination.

CLEP credit is available for the first 10 hours of French, German or Spanish (110 and 120). Contact Testing Services to arrange for the exam. A passing score is necessary to receive credit. (No more than 30 of a student's total hours may be earned by examination, and students with senior standing cannot earn credit via CLEP.)

Departmental testing or "Credit by Examination," is also available for 211-level credit. Students should first speak to the appropriate section coordinator for 2nd-year courses. The form is available online at A minimum grade of C is necessary to receive credit.

Degree Requirements

Students may choose to major in French, German or Spanish or to pursue a double major by satisfying requirements in each of two languages and literatures, or in a language plus another discipline.

The department recommends study of a second foreign language and relevant work in other disciplines such as English, history, art history, etc.

In consultation with the adviser, a course of study will be devised listing required courses, credits received and courses that still need to be taken to satisfy requirements for the degree. It will be signed by the student and the adviser. Majors must consult with their departmental advisers before registration.  They also must seek their adviser's consent whenever a change in the agreed course of study is necessary.
The following departmental requirements must be met:

  1. Students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours beyond 110 and 120 in the same language and literature. Normally, at least 18 of the 30 hours required for the major must be taken in this department. For more details concerning 300- and 400-level course requirements for degrees in French, German and Spanish, see #4-8 below.
  2. Special arrangements for study-abroad credit can be made with the chair on a case-by-case basis.
  3. A 2.0 grade-point average in the major is required for graduation.
  4. Composition and conversation courses through at least 415 are required and 425 is highly recommended. Prospective teachers in Spanish must take SPANISH 425.
  5. Native speakers majoring in their own languages will complete a minimum of 21 credit hours in courses numbered 300 and above, but normally not including 315 or 325. A native speaker is defined as a person who speaks the target language fluently and who has completed formal schooling through the secondary school level, or equivalent, in the target language.
  6. French majors must complete a total of 15 credit hours of 300- and 400-level literature and civilization courses. Of these, nine credit hours must be at the 400 level and must include the Senior Seminar (Capstone) course, FRENCH 499.
  7. German majors must complete at least 15 hours of 300- and 400-level literature and culture courses, including the Senior Seminar (Capstone) course, GERMAN 499.
  8. Spanish majors must complete at least 15 hours of literature and civilization courses, of which at least six hours must be at the 400 level and must include the Senior Seminar (Capstone) course, SPANISH 499.
  9. FRENCH 435 and GERMAN 304 and GERMAN 340 do not count toward a major.
  10. Certain cluster courses may be counted toward the language major, to be determined through consultation with the course instructor and the foreign language chair.