In today’s world, whether at home or abroad, we inhabit communities where linguistic diversity keeps us on our toes, always wondering where an accent is from, or what is being said by speakers around us. Harvard is dedicated to being a pluriglossic environment for teaching and learning. We take great pride in the fact that we teach over eighty languages—more than any other university. Transcultural competence in today’s world demands linguistic and cultural proficiency beyond English, and we are committed to helping students acquire it.
Languages Offered in AY 17-18
African & African American Studies: Gikuyu, Swahili, Twi, Yoruba, African language tutorials (Afrikaans, Amharic, Bamanakan, Bemba, Cape Verdean Creole, Chichewa, Dinka, Fon, Haitian Creole, Hassaniyah, Hausa, Ibibio, Igbo, Jamaican Patois, Kikongo, Kinyarwanda, Krio, Lingala, Luganda, Malagasy, Oromo, Pulaar, Setswana, Shona, Somali, Sudanese Arabic, Tigrinya, Tshiluba, West African Pidgin, Wolof, Xhosa, Zulu)
Celtic Languages & Literatures: Modern Irish, Old Irish, Modern Welsh, Middle Welsh, Scottish Gaelic
The Classics: Latin, Ancient Greek, Modern Greek
East Asian Languages & Civilizations: Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Manchu, Mongolian, Uyghur, Vietnamese
English: Old English
Germanic Languages & Literatures: German, Swedish, Scandinavian language tutorials (Danish, Finnish, Norwegian)
Linguistics: American Sign Language (does not satisfy the College language requirement), Hittite, Indo-European, Old Church Slavonic
Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations: Akkadian, Arabic, Aramaic, Egyptian, Hebrew (Classical and Modern), Persian, Sumerian, Turkish, Yiddish
Romance Languages & Literatures: Catalan, French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish
Slavic Languages & Literatures: Czech, Polish, Russian, and Ukrainian language courses and Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian language tutorials
South Asian Studies: Hindi-Urdu, Nepali, Sanskrit, Tamil, Thai, Tibetan language courses and Bahasa Indonesia, Bengali, and Burmese language tutorials
Language Resource Center
Students can also take advantage of Harvard’s state-of-the-art Language Resource Center with a multitude of digital resources like smart classrooms, online language-learning and production software like Adobe’s Creative Cloud, non-English-language DVDs and videos, international HD TV, audio and video materials for coursework, and computers for multilingual web-browsing.
The LRC and its dedicated staff are located on the 4th floor of Lamont Library.
A Foreign Language Citation allows you to offer proof, upon graduation, of a high level of competency in a foreign language, an advantage when applying for graduate programs, grants, or employment.
Students can earn a Foreign Language Citation on their transcript by taking four courses (4 credits per course) in the same language beyond the first-year level, at least two of them at the third-year level or above. Students benefit from early planning, so reach out to language departments early to set your path. For further information about meeting the Citation requirements, consult the Harvard College Handbook for Students.