School of Languages, Cultures, and Race

WSU Vancouver students

The School of Languages, Cultures, and Race at WSU Vancouver cultivates deeper understandings of linguistics, cultural, national, social and racial perspectives both within the United States and in a global context. It encourages you to make a difference by committing to these themes in our changing world through your education, scholarship, activism and outreach. The school seeks to advance social justice and the transformation of societies, including the effects of culture, popular culture and media on race and ethnic relations as well as advance understandings about the social production and influence of languages and cultural practices in the U.S. and around the globe.

The comparative ethnic studies minor offers a unique opportunity to study the social, economic and political forces that have shaped the historic experience of diverse ethnic communities in the U.S. over the past 500 years that continue to determine our present circumstances and our future.

CES embraces interdisciplinary, comparative and transnational approaches to studying race relations and how race, gender, class, sexuality, nation and globalization come together. The coursework fosters an in-depth understanding of race and culture and prepares you to work and function in the multiracial and multicultural world in which we live.

By taking CES courses, you will learn how to:

  • Understand how the social constructions of race impact the social fabric of our historical and contemporary world.
  • Appreciate differences and actively and critically engage in civic responsibilities, especially with respect to identifying inequities and seeking social justice.
  • Navigate an increasingly interconnected world and apply your education in any number of occupations.

Foreign Languages and Cultures is the study of languages other than English and the cultures where these languages are spoken. Studying a foreign language allows for direct access to people and cultures other than one’s own and furthers the development of global understanding and sensitivity. Proficiency in a foreign language is an important tool in a broad variety of professions.

Today, many leaders in business, politics and education realize that one of the many advantages of speaking a foreign language is to better understand your own. Study after study proves the importance of foreign languages, not just for professional reasons, but for lifelong brain health.

Skills you can market with a minor in Spanish:

  • Language competency grounded in cultural understanding
  • Understanding linguistic and cultural differences
  • Ability to anticipate difficulties in social/marketing interactions and events

The film studies minor introduces you to the critical study of cinema. It explores how cinema both reflects and influences the facts, ideas and activities of any given society and how film allows us to travel to most places in the world and become familiar with diverse cultures, traditions and ways of thinking. The minor also teaches how to discern the cinematic and narrative features that are used in cinematography and how culture can influence them. The study of film encourages critical thinking, respect for cultural diversity and detailed knowledge of film as a text of facts and ideas.

By taking film studies courses you will:

  • Gain an understanding of the basic conceptual vocabulary used in the study of film—i.e., the ability to define and use terms appropriate to cinematic genres and techniques, critical and theoretical approaches to film.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the history of national or international film and/or some of the major filmmakers and works.
  • Analyze film in an interdisciplinary manner.
  • Appreciate film as a medium for intercultural understanding.
  • Recognize cinematographic features that enhance film viewing and demonstrate the ability to analyze a film in terms of its formal dimensions.

Global studies examines economic, political, social and cultural practices from a transnational and cross-cultural perspective. The global studies minor is designed to provide you with an integrated exposure to globally related scholarship across the disciplines, and encourages you, no matter your major discipline, to think in terms of the globalization that marks the contemporary world. The program of study is designed to provide an exciting interdisciplinary global perspective on the arts, humanities, social sciences and sciences. The minor is flexible and complements majors from across the university, affording you the opportunity to reach beyond your major or to take courses related to majors outside of the context of the United States.

Skills you can market with a global studies minor:

  • Proficiency (low-intermediate) in a language other than English
  • Cross-cultural communication
  • Awareness of cultural differences and sensitivity to cultural issues
  • Global experience
  • Ability to adjust to new environments
  • Ability to interact effectively with people of different backgrounds
  • Enhanced speaking and writing abilities
  • Enhanced reading and listening comprehension skills
  • Independent, critical and creative thinking with increased analytical and problem-solving skills

The School of Languages, Cultures, and Race also offers a certificate for business students named race and ethnicity in the corporate world and classes in Chinese and foreign languages and cultures.