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Frequently Asked Questions

Submitted by darmstro on Fri, 11/18/2016 - 1:44pm

Courses and Registration

Submitted by darmstro on Fri, 11/18/2016 - 1:36pm

When is a placement test recommended/required?

We recommend a placement test (a written test whose purpose is to assess your language knowledge) when you are not sure as to what course you should register in, or when you believe that you have sufficient command of the language to skip prerequisite courses. In some areas of learning, such as Chinese, a placement test is required prior to registration in any of the language courses. Following are examples of typical circumstances in which a placement test is advised :

  1. you are a native speaker, or possess near-to-native fluency, but have no formal qualifications;
  2. you wish to enrol in a course for which you lack the prerequisites;
  3. you have learnt a language without formal tuition whilst living and/or working in francophone Canada or abroad;
  4. you obtained formal qualification several years ago and have used the language infrequently or not at all;
  5. you feel that the course you have started taking is too easy or too difficult. In this case the placement test should be completed straight away, well before the deadline for registrations.

Assessment of the test may take up to five working days. If you have not heard back within five working days, please e-mail to inquire about your results. The test is free of charge if taken within the deadlines.

In order to complete a placement test for Arabic or Chinese, please first complete the on-line Placement Application.

I am a native speaker of Arabic, can I still register in beginner’s Arabic courses?

No, native speakers are not eligible to take language courses, but are eligible to take Muslim literature and culture courses (ALMC 317, 319, 353, 357 and 359), at any time without the submission of a placement application or departmental assessment.

I would like to register in CHIN 205, but the system will not let me

Prior to registration in any of the Chinese language courses, you must first complete the on-line application form. After you complete and submit the form, you will receive an e-mail notifying you of whether or not you will be required to complete a placement test.

Can I register in CHIN 317 without completing a placement test?

Yes, you can enroll in any of the Chinese literature and culture courses (CHIN 317, 353, 355, 357, 431 and 461) without assessment.

I took FREN 30 a long time ago and now my French is quite rusty. What course should I register in?

We advise that you take a placement test. One of our advisors will examine it and give you approval for the course/s corresponding to your level of competence.

I have SPAN 30 but the system won't let me register for SPAN 203. What can I do to get in SPAN 203?

You should provide an official document showing that you have SPAN 30. We will then give you on-line approval to register in SPAN 203.

How are students with High School French placed?

As a general rule, students with High School French are placed as follows:
FREN 10: FREN 209
FREN 10N, FREN 20: FREN 211
FLA 10: FREN 211 or, if a placement test is passed, FREN 213
FREN 20N,20S, 30, N30: FREN 213
FREN 30N, 30S, 31, 31A, 31B, 31C: FREN 225 or FREN 291
FLA 30: FREN 225 or FREN 291
IB students, min. grade of 5: FREN A1: FREN 315; FREN A2: FREN 227: FREN B: FREN 213

How do I go about taking a Minor/Major? Where do I declare it?

Information about our Majors and Minors can be viewed on the program page for that area. We also suggest that you speak with one of our undergraduate advisors.

Once you have decided that you wish to pursue a Major or a Minor, you need to declare it either at the  Arts Students’ Centre office on the main floor of the Social Sciences building or through PeopleSoft for Students.

How do I go on a course waiting list?

Students may sign up for wait lists in PeopleSoft.

Where do I find course information sheets?

Course information sheets are found on our Courses page [include new link] Some instructors also post them in Desire 2 Learn (D2L).

I am an exchange student. How do I register for your courses?

Exchange students may register for courses through PeopleSoft.

What is the difference between withdrawing from, and dropping, a course?

You may change your registration by dropping courses without penalty any time before the deadline for registrations in a given session. After this time, you may withdraw from courses but a 'W' will show on your transcript and no refund will be given for the course. Please also refer to the information on withdrawals contained in the University Calendar.

How many courses am I allowed to take per semester?

You may take a maximum of six half courses per session. Should you wish to take a seventh course, you will need special permission. Students in the Faculties of Arts or Science who have completed a full course load (5 full courses) with a GPA of 3.20 or higher in the previous Fall/Winter session may add a 6th course with the approval of a program advisor at the Arts Students’ Centre (SS 102).

What minimum grade do I need as a prerequisite for another course?

In the Faculty of Arts all prerequisites must be met with a minimum grade of C-.

Can I take a course again to upgrade my mark?

You may repeat a course previously failed or one in which a higher grade is sought although you will normally be permitted to repeat a particular course only once. Taking or repeating a course that is a prerequisite for a higher level course after having completed the higher level course with a grade of C- or better will only be allowed with the permission of both the faculty in which you are registered and the department offering the course.  Please see also the University Calendar,

Where can I get course information / course outlines?

I want to register in a course, but it's full. Does the School allow overloads?

All School of Languages, Linguistics, Literatures and Cultures courses have enrollment limits – so typically overloads will not be approved. However, our records indicate a number of changes in course registration within the drop/add period. Students wishing to register in courses that are full should attend the classes and check daily the status of course registration. You can also try e-mailing as you may be permitted to overload in certain instances.

I got a grade of D in one of my courses. Will I be able to use it as a prerequisite?

A grade of D is termed a "minimal pass". It is not a failing grade, but is generally considered insufficient preparation for subsequent courses in the same subject.

How many withdrawals am I allowed to take?

The maximum number of courses a student is allowed to withdraw from is 10 (10 half-course equivalents, or 5 full-course equivalents). For more information, consult the Arts Students' Centre in SS 102.

How do I get consent to repeat a course for the third time?

A student may repeat a course previously attempted (including withdrawals) only once. Permission to enroll in a course for the 3rd time is granted only under exceptional circumstances and the student must see an advisor in the Arts Students' Centre (SS 102).

I want to appeal a grade. What do I do?

Course work:
Students seeking reappraisal of a piece of graded term work should discuss their work with the Instructor within two weeks of either being notified of the grade, or of the work being returned to the class. If not satisfied, the student shall immediately take the matter to the Director of the school offering the course who will arrange for a reassessment of the work within the next fifteen days.
Final grade:
A student wishing a reappraisal of an individual final grade should first attempt to examine the final examination at the School office. Then the student shall obtain a Reappraisal of Final Grade form from Enrolment Services. On that form the student is required to indicate exactly what error was made in marking the examination and/or in computing the final grade. The form will not be processed and the reappraisal will not take place unless the student provides a detailed rationale that outlines where and for what reason an error is suspected.

Students wishing a reappraisal of a final grade (excluding Law courses) must submit their request by the following dates:

Fall Term: March 1
Winter Term: June 30
Spring Intersession: August 15
Summer Term: October 15

The reappraisal form shall be submitted to Enrolment Services who shall forward it to the school director or dean of the faculty offering the course. Reappraisals of final grades are dealt with by the head of the academic unit in consultation with members of staff. Normally, the academic unit will respond to a Request for Reappraisal of Final Grade within thirty days of its initiation. After the reappraisal is completed, the academic unit will return the form to the Registrar who shall inform the student in writing of the result of any request for reappraisal.

Students should be aware that the grade being reappraised may be raised, lowered or remain the same. A student may request a reappraisal of final grade only twice in one academic year (Sept. 1 – Aug. 31).

Where can I go to get my old assignments and exams?

Previous assignments and mid-term exams are kept for one full year and can be obtained in the School of Languages, Linguistics, Literatures and Cultures main offices, located in CHC 205 and CHD 310. Please bring a piece of ID with you.

Studying abroad

Submitted by darmstro on Fri, 11/18/2016 - 1:48pm

How do I transfer credits for courses taken at another university?

Visit the Office of the Registrar’s Transfer Students page

If the University of Calgary has an agreement with an institution overseas, does it mean that the courses a student takes in a foreign country are transferred automatically?
No. It is the student's responsibility to consult with the appropriate University of Calgary advisor concerning the acceptability of transfers, and to provide the documentation necessary for comparison. Courses transferred for credit may not duplicate courses previously taken.

If the University of Calgary has an agreement with an institution overseas, does it mean that the courses a student takes in a foreign country are transferred automatically?

No. It is the student's responsibility to consult with the appropriate University of Calgary advisor concerning the acceptability of transfers, and to provide the documentation necessary for comparison. Courses transferred for credit may not duplicate courses previously taken.

What exchanges do you offer?

The School offers academic exchanges with two French institutions, Université de Bourgogne in Dijon and Université François Rabelais in Tours, and with the University of Bologna in Italy.  Every two years the School offers the Catherine E. Barclay Scholarship.

View the Study Abroad programs which may be available to you.

What scholarships do you offer?

Visit the University of Calgary's Awards, Scholarships and Bursaries page

Where could I ask for funding to go abroad?

View funding information from University of Calgary International

Every two years the School offers the Catherine E. Barclay Scholarship.

What courses should I take if I go on a study abroad program?

We suggest that that you check our undergraduate program requirements and that you read the information on Transfer of Credit. You may also wish to consult an undergraduate advisor for further guidance.

A number of courses at other universities are offered through Credit Travel Study, among them the Field School in Mexico.


Submitted by darmstro on Mon, 11/21/2016 - 3:15pm

What careers can I pursue with languages and linguistics?

Where can I find past exams?

Some past exams can be found through the SU Online Exam Bank.

I need to get in touch with an advisor. Whom should I contact?

Division of Chinese Studies and Japanese Studies
Undergraduate Advisor (Chinese): Dr. Shu-ning Sciban
Undergraduate Advisor (Japanese): Akiko Sharp

Division of French and Francophone Studies
Division Chair and Undergraduate Advisor: Dr. Anthony Wall

Division of German Studies, Russian Studies, Arabic Language and Muslim Cultures
Undergraduate Advisor (Arabic Language and Muslim Cultures): Dr. Asmaa Shehata
Undergraduate Advisor (German): Dr. Cornelia Burian
Undergraduate Advisor (Russian): Dr. Olga Mladenova

Division of Linguistics
Undergraduate Advisor: Dr. Dennis Storoshenko

Division of Spanish Studies and Italian Studies
Undergraduate Advisor for Italian: Emilia Spoldi

Where can I practice my language/s and ask questions?

At Le centre français (CHC 301; tel: 220-7226), Il Circolino (CHC 318; tel: 220-7289) and El Centro de Tertulia (CHD 303; tel: 220-6677) you can practise your French, Italian and Spanish respectively.

You can drop in at Le centre français for a coffee and a chat, to read, to do homework, to listen to music in French, and to attend their numerous activities.

Il Circolino provides a meeting place for students who wish to speak Italian with a monitor, ask questions, read the centre's books or find out about study and travel in Italy.

El Centro de Tertulia offers conversation practice in Spanish. It also collects, organizes and distributes information about study and travel in Spanish-speaking countries, local cultural activities in the Spanish community, as well as those planned by the Centre

Where can I find information about Faculty and School requirements?

The requirements of the Faculty of Arts are listed at on the current UCalgary Calendar.

Requirements of the School of Languages, Linguistics, Literatures and Cultures are found by selecting the individual programs at

When do I need permission from the Faculty? And from the School?

You will need permission from your Faculty, for instance, to study away from the University of Calgary and to withdraw from a course.

You will need permission from the School to take courses for which you lack the prerequisites.