Santa Clara University


Language Requirements

SCU requires all students, except Engineering students, to show proficiency in a second language. Santa Clara University offers courses in the following languages:

Department of Classics:

Greek, and Latin

Department  of Modern Languages & Literatures:
Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish

Department of Religious Studies:


  • When applying to SCU
  1. Score 4 or 5 on the Advanced Placement test (Contact: Drahmann Center)
  2. Receive a "C" or higher grade on the International A Level Exam (Contact: Drahmann Center)
  3. Receive a 6 or 7 on the International Baccalaureate (Contact: Drahmann Center)
  4. Submit TOEFL score to the Office of the Registrar, Walsh Administration [The minimum acceptable TOEFL score is 213 (computer based), 550 (paper based), 79-80 (internet)]
  • After admission to SCU
  1. Proficiency exam (Sign ups available beginning of each quarter—except summer; Contact Maria Bauluz, with questions). Information available on Modern Languages website, Proficiency Exam info
  2. Course work at SCU–the most common way to do it. (SCU courses offered in: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Latin, and Spanish)
  • Requirements by Degree:
  1. B.A and B.S (Social Sciences): Complete the 3rd course of any first year language, i.e. (FREN 3, CHIN 3, ARAB 3, SPAN 3, etc...)
  2. B.S (Natural Sciences and Math): Complete the 2nd course of any first year language, i.e. (FREN 2, CHIN 2, JAPN 2, etc...)
  3. Business: Complete the 2nd course of any first year language, i.e. Elementary Language 2 (FREN 2, CHIN 2, JAPN 2, etc...)
  4. Double major students are required to fulfill the language requirement for BOTH majors (i.e. a student earning a B.S. in Physics or Business, who has a double major in Philosophy) MUST complete the 3rd course of first year, i.e. (FREN 3, CHIN 3, ARAB 3, SPAN 3, etc...)
  5. Undeclared major: it is highly recommended to fulfill the most complete requirement (i.e. 3rd course of Elementary language) so that no matter what major you ultimately declare, you will have satisfied its Core language requirement.
NOTE: We encourage students to start at the level for which they are best prepared... the University language requirement is NOT about the number of courses, but the LEVEL of course completed. Please visit our website as read the Criteria for Self-Placement:

Placement Formula:

  1. Want to study a language you didn't study in high school: start at Elementary Language 1
  2. 2 years in high school language: begin in Elementary 2
  3. 3 years high school language: begin in Elementary 3 or Intermediate 1 depending on your preparation
  4. 4 or more years of high school language: see Dept. of Modern Languages for advising
  5. Native or Heritage Speaker: see Dept. of Modern Languages for advising


If you have any questions, please contact Kari Craighead at 408-554-4049 or email or drop by room Kenna 112C in the Department of Modern Languages


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500 El Camino Real Santa Clara, California 95053-0300| (408)-554-4049 | Fax: (408)-554-4887 |
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