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Dartmouth College
Office of the Registrar
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Hanover, NH 03755-3541


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Fax: (603) 646-2247
Email: registrar@Dartmouth.EDU
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Language Requirement - effective for the class of 2026 and beyond

The Arts & Science faculty have approved an expanded language requirement, effective for the class of 2026 and beyond. Students in the class of 2025 and earlier continue to follow the current requirement, as outlined in the ORC/Catalog.

Beginning with the entering class of 2026 and beyond, all students must satisfy the Language Requirement with coursework taken at Dartmouth, as follows: 

  1. Students who did not demonstrate competency at matriculation in a language other than English must complete language courses up to and including a 3-level course (e.g. FREN 3). This may be completed on a Language Study Abroad (LSA) program.

  2. Students who demonstrated competency (defined as the equivalent of completing a 3-level course) at matriculation in a language taught at Dartmouth must either complete a more advanced course in their language of competency (e.g. GERM 10, HEBR 21), or they must complete coursework in a different language through the 2-level (e.g. ITAL 1 and ITAL 2, or an intensive beginning course such as ITAL 11). This may be completed on an LSA program. 

  3. Students who demonstrated competency (defined as the equivalent of completing a 3-level course) at matriculation in a language not taught at Dartmouth must either complete coursework in a different language through the 2-level (e.g. ITAL 1 and ITAL 2, or an intensive beginning course such as ITAL 11. This may be completed on an LSA program.); or they must take an Language Requirement for Proficient Speakers (LRP) course, i.e. a course that builds metalinguistic or cross-linguistic awareness in students with appropriate language experience.  

  4. Students who demonstrated full proficiency as a native or near-native speaker at matriculation in a language taught at Dartmouth (e.g. a bilingual English-Russian student whose high school education was conducted in Russian) have the same options as group 3.  

  5. Students with a documented disability may seek a waiver of the language requirement from the Language Waiver Committee. Students granted a waiver are required to complete the course assigned by the committee.

See a summary of new requirements chart.

Language Requirement for Proficient Speakers (LRP) courses 

These are courses that build metalinguistic awareness and/or cross-linguistic awareness in at least one of the following areas: (a) the widely different structural features through which meaning is conveyed, (b) the irreducible differences between languages, and/or (c) the ways that linguistic diversity adds depth, insight, and value to the human experience.

A course that analyzes the structure of a single language at a deep level, thinking in a theoretical way about how the structures of that language manage to convey meaning, would seem to qualify. Courses that do not look as deeply at the structural features of any one language, but that do look at difficulties and opportunities arising from differences between multiple languages, would also seem to qualify. Courses that study cultural difference but do not engage specifically with linguistic difference and/or diversity would presumably not qualify.

Departments/programs may request the LRP designation through the DCARS system. Courses are reviewed by the Committee on Instruction (COI) for qualification as a LRP course. As with other general education requirements, “Students must follow the decision that has been made by the COI; there is no appeal of this decision, nor may students petition (then or later) to have a course count for them in a category other than the one selected by the department or program and approved by the COI. In cases where the category of a course has been changed, the category in effect for the term in which the course was taken will be used.”

Last Updated: 4/7/22