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Modern languages and cultures

Secure your global future
When you study language or linguistics with us, you will gain qualities that set you apart – unique communication skills and deep cultural awareness.

Learning a language will alter the way you look at the world and make your life richer, and studies in linguistics will teach you about many aspects of human language, knowledge and behaviour. 

You will also gain skills valued by employers in every country and sector, including business services, government or the not-for-profit sector. 

Whether you are starting your undergraduate degree or looking to expand your professional career, we can help you discover the joys of learning a new language.

Why study modern languages and cultures with us?

  • We are ranked 1st in Australia and 26th in the world for modern languages.*
  • We offer a wide range of language studies covering Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the Americas.
  • As an undergraduate student you can choose from various language majors as well as more than 100 majors from the University’s shared pool, allowing you to gain expertise in a range of disciplines.
  • We offer a broad and diverse range of international exchange programs, enabling you to develop cultural insights into the country of the language you are studying.
  • You can balance your workload with our flexible study options, such as part-time study for eligible students.** 
  • Gain experience and skills in professional practice relating to the application of cross-cultural and linguistic knowledge and skills. 
  • Pursue research with an honours year, which will improve your understanding of research theory and methods while supporting your language learning and developing the critical skills to make you a well-rounded researcher. The honours experience will equip you with the necessary knowledge and skills to pursue postgraduate research and may involve a fieldwork component.
  • We offer a wide range of scholarships and prizes designed to recognise potential, assist those in need and reward high achievement.

*QS World University Rankings by Subject 2018 

**Please refer to individual course requirements and visa details (for international students) regarding eligibility for part-time study. 

Our study offering

Arabic is the fifth most widely spoken language in the world. It is one of the official languages of the United Nations and the religious language of 1.5 billion Muslims, as well as millions of Christians and Jewish people. Political and economic developments in the Arab world and parts of the Middle East have made understanding, speaking, reading and writing Arabic an increasingly valuable skill.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

In the Asian Century, the task of understanding this region is of vital importance. Asian Studies will help you develop a critical insight into the world of Asia by exploring the most important cultural, historical, social and political trends and issues in relation to China, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia and South Asia.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

Chinese Studies delivers a solid understanding of Chinese society and culture and the foundational language skills essential to function with confidence in the Chinese-speaking world. Studies in this area have exchange and summer study opportunities, including to Peking University.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

Europe comprises 10 percent of the world's population and is one of the world's largest economies. Multidisciplinary in outlook, we examine aspects of European life, including economics, politics and the social sciences.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

Experience the rich history and cultural diversity of the official language of 29 countries (la Francophonie), spoken by more than 300 million people worldwide. 

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  Research

Study both the German language and culture, including literature, film, history and society. Through exchange programs in Berlin, Vienna, Munich, Cologne, Freiburg and Constance, you will experience exciting opportunities to enhance your language proficiency and deepen your understanding of German culture.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

Hebrew (Modern) covers listening, speaking, reading, writing and cultural awareness. You will develop and expand your proficiency in these five language and cultural skills with the opportunity to complete some of your studies at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  Research

A complex and exciting country, Indonesia is very close to Australia yet also very different in many ways. Drawing on our extensive links in Indonesia and with the Indonesian community in Australia, you can experience a highly integrated and contemporary subject area covering history, politics, geography, anthropology, language and culture.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  Research

Select from a wide range of language and culture units from one of the largest Italian departments in Australia and undertake a semester with one of our Italian partner universities. Develop high levels of linguistic aptitude and deep understanding of Italian authors, thinkers and literary and intellectual movements from the Middle Ages to the present.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

One of the oldest subject areas of its kind in the English-speaking world, Japanese Studies offers consideration of a rich history and culture, as well as a rewarding language experience. Undertake an in-country exchange with our large network of partner universities in Japan and prepare for employment in education, government, media, international relations and the private sector.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

Korea is a dynamic nation at the epicentre of Northeast Asia. Korean Studies provides a broad foundation in Korean language as well as history, linguistics, culture and society and media and communication. Equip yourself with crucial language skills and an in-depth knowledge of this intriguing nation.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

Linguistics is the study of human language. It aims to find out what language is like and identify ways to use this knowledge in understanding communication, culture, social life, and the human mind. Each of the world’s 6000 languages is a rich and textured system. From the Amazon to Africa, Southeast Asia and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australia, learn how we use language for thinking, gathering information and structuring our societies.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Postgraduate

The Master of Crosscultural and Applied Linguistics deepens your knowledge of linguistics and cross-cultural communication and you will develop new skills as you put this knowledge into practice. Analyse the forms and functions of language, both spoken and written, and study how language connects with visual contexts – gesture, image, film and sound, and digital platforms. You will develop a critical awareness of the connections between language, culture and society.

Research

Our academics are involved in major research projects, tackling subjects as diverse as anthropological linguistics, field linguistics in Southeast Asia and the Pacific, language use in television series, news discourse, language and evaluation, genre relations, literacy, semantics, multimodality, classroom discourse, youth justice conferencing, and World Englishes. Research students will join a vibrant community of researchers.

Study one of the oldest languages and cultures in Australia’s largest department of Modern Greek and Byzantine Studies. Select from a range of language and culture units, undertake an intensive in-country experience and prepare for employment in education, translation and interpreting, media, government and the private sector.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  Research

Spanish is the official language of 21 countries and is spoken by more than 400 million people. Studying Spanish will equip you with a deep knowledge of the language and offer you the tools to examine and understand politics, society and culture in the Spanish-speaking world.

Undergraduate

*Available to all students studying the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Economics and Bachelor of Visual Arts, as well as all combined Bachelor of Advanced Studies degrees.  

Research

Where can studies in modern languages and cultures lead you?

Learning about another language and culture will open the doors to overseas jobs and the chance to travel. Our modern languages and cultures subjects will prepare you to work in a range of areas that use language skills, including as a translator or a teacher of languages in international organisations or for government and foreign languages-based media outlets. Studying linguistics can prepare you for a broad range of professions, including careers in computing and technology, clinical fields relating to speech and language, business and education. 

Headshot of Jaydn OBrien
Jayden O’Brien – Italian Studies and Neuroscience student
"From learning linguistics field methods to practising Italian speaking skills with native speakers and getting real-life experience in a working research laboratory, I have gained the skills and experience I believe will have a real impact on my future career.”
Download the undergraduate course guide (pdf, 4.8MB)

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