Placement Questions

Contact the appropriate head of the RS language program in question:

Creole: Jacques Pierre,

French: Clare Tufts, 

Italian: Luciana Fellin,

Portuguese: Magda Silva,

Spanish: Liliana Paredes,

Transfer Credit Evaluation

Please note that FL credits for the Duke Language Requirement are only accepted from international immersion language learning environments; they are not accepted from US colleges and universities.

For the processing of Global Education FL credit forms, contact the head of the RS language program in question.

Creole: Jacques Pierre,

French: Clare Tufts, 

Italian: Luciana Fellin,

Portuguese: Magda Silva, 

Spanish: Liliana Paredes,

Global Education Credit Evaluation


Introduction to the Romance Studies Language Programs

Duke University is committed to providing students with an education that prepares them to become active participants in an increasingly diverse and interdependent world. It is imperative that all students acquire the ability to understand both global and local events from multiple perspectives. Development of linguistic abilities is integral to expanding students' worldview since it permits contact with French-, Italian-, Portuguese-, and Spanish-speaking countries and peoples through real texts, video, and audio sources. Active participation in the language classroom provides students the opportunity to discuss and reflect on cultural information. This linguistic ability and cultural knowledge will benefit students both in everyday interactions with their communities and in their chosen careers.

Creole/Kreyol Language Courses

Now being offered in Romance Studies at the Elementary and Intermediate Level.  These courses will carry Foreign Language credit for students wishing to satisfy the requirement with Creole. 



Our goal throughout our courses at the elementary, intermediate, and advanced levels is to help you achieve a level of language proficiency and cultural awareness that will allow you to communicate effectively with diverse peoples in the francophone world.

The courses in the FLP emphasize a full range of modalities, including listening comprehension, oral and written expression, reading, and grammar.  Instruction is in French from the beginning level.



We applaud your decision to study Italian at Duke. Italian is the language of many of history's most illustrious poets, artists, and musicians. Italy has given the world unsurpassed works of art, architecture, urban planning and industrial design, as well as influential film, fashion and gastronomy. Italy has a population of nearly 60 million and is among the seven nations with the highest gross national product. There are more World Heritage Monuments in Italy than in any other country and it is the top tourist destination in the world. 19 Italians have been awarded Nobel prizes in literature and science. 15 million Americans trace their heritage to Italy and millions of Italians are descendents of immigrants who returned home after years in America. By studying Italian you will gain passage into this world of beauty, culture and history.


Interested in Comparative Latin American Studies? Comparative African Studies? Merco-Sul? The Euro dollar and Portugal? Jazz - Samba? Brazilian and World Music? Machado de Assis and French Realism? What does Black and White and In-between mean in Brazil and the Caribbean? Brazilian and/or other Lusophone Literatures? Eco Tourism? The Amazon Basin? The coexistence of beautiful beaches and poverty? What happened/is happening in Portuguese speaking Asia? (and many other possibilities......)

Duke Portuguese offerings approach Portuguese studies from a multi-disciplinary perspective that welcomes comparativist work both in the Lusophone field (Brazil, Portugal, Lusophone Africa and Asia) as well as within/among other languages and cultures: i.e.: Latin American-Brazilian on many levels; French-Brazilian (perhaps the nineteenth-century novel and positivism; Chateaubriand and the exotic-erotic; Sartre and 20th century Brazilian cultural theory, etc.); possibilities of comparative Iberian studies with Portugal as well as with other European cultures (i.e: Gil Vicente and theatre; Renaissance literature and culture; Petrarch: Camões and narratives of discovery); Lusophone Africa and Afroamerican literature.


The Spanish Language Program (SLP) at Duke University has designed courses to develop all four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. The SLP includes Elementary Spanish 101 and 102, Intermediate Spanish (SP203) and Advanced Intermediate Spanish (SP204). The 300-level courses specialize in writing, grammar, and speaking skills in the following courses: Advanced Spanish Writing (SP301), Advanced Spanish Grammar (SP302), and Introduction to Cultural Studies (SP303). Spanish courses 306-308 carry a special emphasis on cultural and social issues. Our elementary and intermediate courses are taught following a task-based second language teaching approach. The ultimate goal is to have students be able to communicate in Spanish depending on the context and specific situations they encounter in authentic or real life situations. Our advanced courses (300-level) focus both on the development of specific language skills as well as on the reflection of different thematic content.

Romance Studies Language Program in the News:

Please read Assistant Director of the French Language Program Deborah Reisinger's blog post on "Using the iPad to edit and annotate documents" for the Center for Instructional Technology.

Foreign Language Requirement (FL)

The foreign language requirement may be met in different ways, depending upon the level at which students begin the study of the language in question, but every graduate of Trinity College is expected to attain proficiency at least equivalent to that of the first intermediate course in that language.

If you begin your language study at Duke at the intermediate level or above, you can fulfill the language requirement by completing a 100-level course coded FL.

  • if you place into the first semester of the intermediate level, you will take three courses in the same language;
  • if you place into the second semester of the intermediate level, you will take two courses in the same language;
  • if you place into the 100-level, you will take one course.
  • If you begin your language study at Duke at the elementary level, you can fulfill the foreign language requirement in that language by completing three (3) courses coded FL.

Note: Courses completed in order to fulfill the foreign language requirement must all be taken in the same language.

For more information: Academic Requirements and Languages at Duke.

Why study a foreign language?

Some people wonder why they should learn a foreign language, especially if they plan never to live or work outside the United States. Isn't the whole world learning English? In many fields and in many international arenas, English seems to be the main language of communication. So why should you learn a foreign language? Consider these reasons:

For more information, please see Languages at Duke.

Language Program Events

For more information on Language Program events, including ongoing events with the language tables, please see the French, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish webpages.

    • La Table Francaise Banner
    • Photo Credit: Germain Choffart
    • Tavola Italiana
    • Photo Credit: Matteo Gilebbi
    • Portuguese Language Table
    • Photo Credit: Magda Silva
    • club pura vida_spring 2011
    • Photo Credit: Bethzaida Fernandez
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