Programme And Module Handbook
 
Programme Specification


Date Specification Approved 17/07/2019
College College Arts and Law
School Lan, Cult, Art Hist & Music
Department Modern Languages
Partner College and School
Collaborative Organisation and Form of Collaboration
Qualification and Programme Title B.A. Modern Languages Full-time
Programme Code 5099
Delivery Location Campus
Language of Study English
Length of Programme 4 Year(s)
Accreditations This programme has no outside accreditations
Aims of the Programme Programme aims for students who commenced their studies before 2017/18:
To provide students with language and language-related transferable skills useful in a range of contexts, both educational and professional; and to respond to national and international needs for advanced strategic competence in a variety of world languages.

To enable students to acquire knowledge and understanding of features of the culture, history and society of their chosen language communities.

Programme aims marked with an * apply to new year 1 students entering in 2017/18 onwards

*To enable students to achieve the appropriate level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (specified by language under Learning Outcomes) through the systematic integration of language and content teaching.

*To enable students to explain and assess critically the multi-disciplinary features and significance of the culture, history and society of their chosen language communities.

*To enable students to be digitally literate. Students will be able to use appropriate, up-to-date technology in the effective learning of languages and to understand works of culture (understood in the broadest sense, to include history, society, politics, and other material covered in modules aligned with the Birmingham Languages Graduate).

*To enable students to handle and analyse material relating to research projects based in the Department of Modern Languages.

*To enable students to engage with appropriately adapted questions derived from research projects based in the Department of Modern Languages.

*To enable students to become effective independent learners, with regular opportunities to develop skills in research, academic writing, and reflective learning.

*To enable students to be competitively employable through the acquisition of direct and transferable skills as well as through: 1) appropriate integration of Modern Languages careers topics within core modules; 2) optional placement opportunities relating to Modern Languages (credit-bearing and non-credit-bearing); 3) non-credit bearing Modern Languages careers events.

*To enable students to give a persuasive account of their degree and of why they have assembled their degree in a particular way.

*To provide students with language and language-related transferable skills useful in a range of contexts, both educational and professional; and to respond to national and international needs for advanced strategic competence in a variety of world languages.

Programme aims for all students:
To enable students to acquire first-hand experience of living and studying and/ or working abroad.

To enable students to develop a wide range of transferable skills, including the assimilation, analysis, organisation and synthesis of information and its effective communication in speech and writing, through the study of complex material, which can be applied in a variety of educational and professional contexts, thereby meeting a national and international need for competence in modern foreign languages.

Students can study: three languages equally weighted (40/40/40); two languages equally weighted (60/60); two languages with one weighted more heavily than the other (80/40); or a single language to 120 credits where available (Advanced French, Advanced German, Advanced or Beginners Italian, Advanced Spanish), to include a 20 credit Widening Horizons Module in Year 1.

A compulsory period of residence abroad.

With effect from the 16/17 cohort, the weighting of the year abroad will be 6.25%, with the corollary that year 2 will weigh 18.75%. For any student who started prior to 16/17, the year abroad will be weighted at 12.5%.
Programme Outcomes
Students are expected to have Knowledge and Understanding of: Which will be gained through the following Teaching and Learning methods: and assessed using the following methods:
The advanced strategic usage of one, two or three modern languages, including the linguistic structures of the language(s). By final year students of Catalan, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, and Russian should have achieved at least C1 level and normally C2 level within the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. By final year students of Chinese and Japanese should have achieved at least B1 and normally B2.

*Students should be able to select and use appropriate, up-to-date technology in the effective learning of languages.
The features and significance of the culture, history and society of their chosen language communities. Students should be able to use appropriate, up-to-date technology in such understanding.

Dependent on the range of optional modules offered, specialised further topics within Modern Languages such as translation, interpreting, politics, linguistics, cinema, history, society or culture.
Key methods and concepts used in the analysis of a range of fields relating to language and culture.
Advanced knowledge of the society and culture of the countries where the language is spoken.

*The significance of language and languages to our connections to other peoples and places around the globe, and in our own lives. This understanding will (a) span multiple disciplines and (b) extend across times, places, and identities, including with regards to:
  •  The historical and contemporary significance of different languages and cultures
  •  Cultural responses to the urgent human problems of history and the contemporary period, and to the human condition more widely

Material is developed and delivered by a combination of native and non-native teaching staff, and involving a wide range of registers, contexts and modes (e.g. journalistic, literary, colloquial, translation, correspondence, administration) as well as unassessed assignments. Beginners follow an expanded, intensive course of language study. Extensive supporting material is available through Canvas and self-access facilities on the main campus. The Year Abroad provides students with the opportunity for a period of immersion in the language(s) studied (1)

*Specialised core modules in all years, taught through the integration of language and content teaching involving plenaries and target language seminars and classes. The use of language learning technology is built in to all new core modules offered in Modern Languages (1)

Plenaries, seminars, tutorials, project supervision, guided and independent reading (2)

*All core modules in Modern Languages. This learning outcome is a key criterion through which optional modules can also align with the BLG curriculum. Teaching and learning methods include particularly plenaries, seminars, tutorials, project supervision, guided and independent reading (2)

Plenaries, seminars, tutorials, project supervision, guided and independent reading (3)

*All core modules in Modern Languages. This learning outcome is a key criterion through which optional modules can also align with the BLG curriculum. Teaching and learning methods particularly include plenaries (3)

Plenaries, seminars, tutorials, project supervision, language classes, guided and independent reading. Also through residence abroad (4)

*All core modules in Modern Languages. This learning outcome is a key criterion through which optional modules can also align with the BLG curriculum. Teaching and learning methods include particularly plenaries, seminars, tutorials, project supervision, guided and independent reading (4)
Unseen written examinations, assessed coursework, essays, oral and aural examinations, tasks undertaken under timed conditions, assessments completed during the Year Abroad, and dissertation work including 20 credits of Independent Study (1)

*Target language projects and e-assessment portfolios. Formative e- assessments and student-led research (1)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (2)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations (3)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (4)
Students are expected to have attained the following Skills and other Attributes: Which will be gained through the following Teaching and Learning methods: and assessed using the following methods:
Comprehension, analysis, evaluation, distillation and contextualisation of information across a range of subject areas and the application of both generic and subject specific skills.
Skills of oral and written presentation both in English and in the target language(s), and the ability to explain, discuss and debate in smaller and larger groups
Independent study skills (self-organisation, time management, research skills, planning, drafting and editing) and the ability to produce an extended piece of academic writing on the basis of them
Transferable skills relevant to employment, including problem-solving, self-reliance, initiative, adaptability, flexibility, and competences such as note-taking, the ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines, and to use electronic resources and ICT effectively.
The ability to use language in professional contexts.
The ability to apply generic, practical and interpersonal skills to living, studying and/or working abroad, in a non-English-speaking country.
Intercultural awareness, understanding and competence, especially the ability to function in another culture, and to engage critically with their own and other cultures
Generic, transferable language-learning skills and the ability to use language reference materials such as grammars, standard and specialised dictionaries, and in some cases corpora to refine knowledge and understanding of register, nuances of meaning and language use.
Attendance at plenaries, reading and contribution to seminars and tutorials, regular written exercises. Use of the University Library, IT and other information sources (1)

Target language seminars combined with extensive reading and other forms of exposure to and practice in the target language(s) (2)

Attendance at plenaries, reading and contribution to seminars and tutorials, regular written exercises. Use of the University Library, IT and other information sources (3)

By definition, language work and content modules involve new, ‘difficult’ material that requires the independent application and ownership of techniques taught in classes and lectures if it is to be understood fully and mastered. An emphasis on close analysis is intended to broaden the range and sophistication of students’ interpretations of material, and to allow students to produce not so much expositions as substantiated arguments and positions. Problem Based Learning (PBL) exercises, presentations, group project work and other forms of independent learning are germane to all parts of the programme. The Year Abroad offers a particular opportunity for the development of independent capability, personally as well as linguistically and intellectually. A range of formative assessment modes are used throughout the degree.

*Coverage of Modern Languages professions is built into all core language modules. Opportunities for work experience may be acquired through non-credit bearing summer placements (Year 2) and/ or placements followed during the Year Abroad (4)

Target language seminars combined with extensive reading and other forms of exposure to and practice in the target language(s).

*Coverage of Modern Languages professions is built into all core language modules. Opportunities for work experience may be acquired through non-credit bearing summer placements (Year 2) and/ or placements followed during the Year Abroad (5)

Residence abroad (6)

Target language seminars combined with extensive reading and other forms of exposure to and practice in the target language(s) (7)

Target language seminars combined with extensive reading and other forms of exposure to and practice in the target language(s) (8)
Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (1)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (2)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (3)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (4)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (5)

Year Abroad coursework (6)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (7)

Coursework (essays, dissertation, project work, oral presentations, target language projects, e-assessment portfolios), unseen written examinations, oral/aural examinations. Formative e-assessments and student-led research (8)