Important Notice:

  • Modern Language placement testing and the Language Background Questionnaire are online.
  • Mandatory Language Background Questionnaire must be completed by all students taking their FIRST language course at Carleton.
  • Having trouble with technology in your language classes?  Click here to check out videos on some of the more common questions.

We are also offering conversation practice in a limited number of languages. Click the link below to join and if you have a language you would like to share, please email

Conversation Practice

Learn a language

At the School of Linguistics and Language Studies we offer courses in the following modern languages:

Most of our language courses are offered at all levels, from Beginner to Advanced.  For those students who require an accelerated start to their language training for professional or academic purposes, SLaLS offers some languages as intensive courses with extra class time per week and a double credit value.

Also, whenever possible we offer one or more of the languages from the languages less commonly taught (LANG) area.  In the past, we have offered indigenous languages such as Cree, Inuktitut, and Algonquin (previously listed under ALSS).


  • All students who are taking a language course for the first time at Carleton must complete a mandatory Language Background Questionnaire.
  • Students taking their first language course at Carleton who are attempting to register in an UPPER level course must receive a Placement test result PRIOR to registration.
  • Students are NOT permitted to:
    • Audit language courses;
    • Repeat a language course in which they receive a grade of C or higher;
    • Register in a course level below their placement test result.
  • Language courses have mandatory attendance. Lack of attendance can result in deregistration. 
    • Students registered in 1010/1110 level courses (and those who registered in an upper level course, after receiving a placement test result):
      • Must attend and participate in the class in order to be observed by their instructor;
      • Those who have NOT attended by the 3rd class of the term, will be required to withdraw from the course. 
      • Students who don’t have their proficiency level confirmed (did not complete the required Language Background Questionnaire/Placement Test) will result in withdrawal from the course.

Minor Programs

The School offers minors in American Sign Language, German, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Korean, Russian, and Spanish are available and open to all undergraduate degree students.  Please note: students interested in being admitted to the Italian minor must meet with the School Director and receive written permission.

Heritage Language Courses

“Heritage Language” classes are intended for students who grew up with exposure to a particular “foreign” language, but who did not study it in a formal setting or at an academic level.  These courses are not offered every semester.  Contact the School for more information.

Other Languages at Carleton

French courses are taught by the Department of French.

Greek, Latin, Sanskrit, and Hebrew are offered through the College of Humanities.