Language Reading Knowledge Exams

The Department of Modern Languages administers graduate reading exams in French, German and Spanish. To assist the graduate student who is preparing for such an examination, the following may provide assistance and reassurance:

  • Every effort is made to find a passage in the foreign language which simulates a realistic research endeavor according to the student's area of interest or specialization ( e.g. discipline, literary genre or literary period);
  • The student is expected to translate roughly 500 words, has one hour to work and may use a dictionary;
  • Students are strongly encouraged to take an intermediate level course in the target language while preparing for the exam. As well, they are advised either to review notes and books previously used for foreign language study or to obtain a textbook for reading knowledge such as French for the Humanities, edited by Colette Brichant, French for Reading, Sandberg and Tatham, German for Reading Knowledge, or French for Reading Knowledge, Palmeri and Milligan or their equivalents in Spanish. Also, intermediate-level readers, newspaper or magazine articles in the target language provide good practice in preparation.

To make arrangement for the examination, students should contact the following exam administrators:

  • French: Mrs. Margaret McDiarmid, Schott 108, 745-3406
  • German: Dr. Irene Compton, Schott 109, 745-3549
  • Spanish: Dr. Diane Ceo-DiFrancesco, Schott 111, 745-3423