Honors College | Session 2

Title

The Decline of Foreign Language Education in America and the Implications for the Future

Presenter Information

Gabrielle TinebraFollow

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

German and Japanese

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Dr. Roxane Riegler; Dr. Jeff Osborne

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

Since the 1990s, America has witnessed the decline of programs in the Humanities while STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) programs flourish. Encompassed in the Humanities are the foreign languages, a discipline suffering a devastating deterioration of programs in both secondary and higher education. While language programs are defunded, the need for international cooperation is ever increasing, putting the American job seekers at a distinct disadvantage when placed in contrast to youth from around the world. While students in many European countries are required to study two foreign languages in addition to their native language, American students typically learn only English, with only 7 percent of college students enrolled in a language course. This makes their résumés less competitive when presented alongside multilingual candidates. This paper aims to discuss the decline of language education as attributed to sociocultural shifts, politics, and the effects of the economy, while also exploring the implications this has on American success in both the national and international job market.

Spring Scholars Week 2018 Event

Honors College Senior Thesis Presentation

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The Decline of Foreign Language Education in America and the Implications for the Future

Since the 1990s, America has witnessed the decline of programs in the Humanities while STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) programs flourish. Encompassed in the Humanities are the foreign languages, a discipline suffering a devastating deterioration of programs in both secondary and higher education. While language programs are defunded, the need for international cooperation is ever increasing, putting the American job seekers at a distinct disadvantage when placed in contrast to youth from around the world. While students in many European countries are required to study two foreign languages in addition to their native language, American students typically learn only English, with only 7 percent of college students enrolled in a language course. This makes their résumés less competitive when presented alongside multilingual candidates. This paper aims to discuss the decline of language education as attributed to sociocultural shifts, politics, and the effects of the economy, while also exploring the implications this has on American success in both the national and international job market.