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SDSU offers accelerated foreign language courses for credit

by Jamie Kay Wilde

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This summer, students have the opportunity to enroll in accelerated foreign language courses that will encompass course work for one academic year in a single session. The courses, available in Arabic, Persian or Russian, will meet between five to six hours a day, Monday through Friday for approximately two and a half weeks. The courses are not limited to San Diego State students; anyone 16 and older who demonstrates college readiness can enroll. Students can earn three to 10 units of foreign language credit.

However, there are mixed feelings among students about whether these classes offer the most effective style.

Finance sophomore Otto Lange said six months of language immersion is necessary for fluency, and three weeks is not long enough to absorb the material.

“If you are self-motivated and diligent in your study habits, the three-week language class could be an effective way of completing two college semesters of a language,” Lange said. “However, I think it would be unreasonable to expect fluency at the end of the class, and if you bomb the class, it could significantly impact your GPA.”

Gerontology senior Victoria Owens wants to become fluent in another language and said the intensive course would help her reach that goal.

“The only way you can learn it is by being immersed in it and forced to talk,” Owens said. “You don’t get that by meeting twice a week for four hours with kids who don’t really care if they learn it or not. So in an intensive course, you know the people there want to learn.”

Spanish and Portuguese graduate teaching assistant Anaid Stere-Lugo has seen students excel as well as struggle in intensive classes. He said having the courses in the summer allows students to focus on all aspects of the language, including listening, writing, reading and speaking.

“Offering advanced second language courses during an intensive summer session allows students to have more time to focus on the language class than in a semester class, where the students take four or more classes,” Stere-Lugo said.

Tuition starts at $219 per unit and classes begin May 29. For more information on class schedules, visit the Language Acquisition Resource Center website at

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