DePaul University College of LAS > Academics > Islamic World Studies > Student Resources > Advising > Modern Language Requirement

Modern Language Requirement

Is there a Modern Language Requirement?

Yes, there is a Modern Language Requirement (MLR) for all students in the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. The modern language requirement may be met in any of the following eight ways: 

  • completing the last course in the fourth-year high school sequence of a non-English language; 
  • completing the last course in the first-year college sequence of a non-English language; 
  • completing a college course beyond the first-year level in a non-English language; 
  • achieving a satisfactory score on any of the Modern Language placement examinations administered at DePaul University; 
  • achieving a satisfactory rating in a language proficiency examination accepted by DePaul University; 
  • scoring a 3 or higher on the Advanced Placement (AP) test of a non-English language; 
  • scoring 5 or higher on the Language B assessment from a Standard or Higher Level International Baccalaureate (IB) program in a non-English language; or 
  • achieving a satisfactory score on the CLEP evaluation in a non-English language. 

Note: American Sign Language (ASL) does qualify as a modern language.

Note: Please see the Department of Modern Languages' Guide to Placement Tests.

Note: Transfer students will need to provide official high school transcripts in order to use high school coursework to meet the non-English language requirement. For students who applied to DePaul as high school students, the university already has a copy of the high school transcript.

Does the IWS major's Arabic Language Requirement satisfy the Modern Language Requirement?

Yes,​ completing the Arabic Language Requirement for your IWS major, consisting of the Basic Arabic sequence, will also satisfy the Modern Language Requirement.

What is the “Modern Language option (MLO)”?

Students who have met the Modern Language Requirement and also successfully completed two to three courses (depending on the level) of a foreign language beyond what they used to satisfy the MLR are eligible for the Modern Language Option, which grants a waiver of two courses from the standard Liberal Studies curriculum. These reductions are generally from the learning domains, and the decision as to which courses are waived from Liberal Studies is made by the student in consultation with the student's advisor and the LAS college office. Normally, students use the MLO to reduce their requirements by one course in each of two of the three following combinations of learning domains: 

  • Philosophical Inquiry or Religious Dimensions; 
  • Understanding the Past or Self, Society, and the Modern World; or 
  • Arts and Literature or Scientific Inquiry (cannot substitute for the lab science requirement). 

Note: All students must take a laboratory course in the "Scientific Inquiry" domain, and all students must take at least one course in each learning domain. So, for example, a student who is using the LSP 121 waiver to substitute for one of the two "Philosophical Inquiry" domain courses cannot also use an MLO waiver to substitute for the other required course in that domain.

I took a foreign language in high school but didn’t take the foreign language placement test when I first came to DePaul because I didn’t plan to continue in college; I have changed my mind and now want to take a language at DePaul. How do I know which class I should take?

If you don't see an available "button" in Campus Connection giving you access to the language placement exams, contact DePaul Central. Students who have taken a foreign language in high school may take a Modern Language Placement Test at any time to determine the appropriate level class at DePaul. If the language is not one for which DePaul has an online exam, please see the Modern Language Department for information about alternative forms of assessment.​

I speak another language at home; do I still have to fulfill the language requirement?

Even if you are comfortable speaking in a foreign language, you still need to have your language skills assessed by taking a Modern Language Placement Test. If the language that you know is not one of those for which an online test is available, see the Modern Languages Department for information about alternative forms of assessment.​
​​