Language is about more than speaking and teaching. It's about communicating across cultures in a Christ-like manner.
The Department of World Languages and Cultures prepares graduates to use their language skills to understand, interact with, and serve with people from other cultures. You'll become a globally aware graduate prepared to culturally engage with communities from a thoughtful, Christian perspective.
Majors, Minors, and Programs
|Spanish Education K-12||Major|
|Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)||Major|
|Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) K-12||Major|
|Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Minor||Minor|
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Language and Linguistic Programs Focused on Compassionate Communication
The world languages and cultures program at Bethel gives students the global perspective they need to communicate with Christ-like compassion and be learners and explorers of God’s diverse world. By stepping out of your comfort zone through service learning projects, classroom interactions, and study abroad programs, you’ll be prepared to take your place in the global community of the 21st century. It’s about taking our faith in Christ and integrating it into everything we learn, into everything we do, and to everywhere we go, so that we can accomplish incredible things—in our careers, in our communities, and in our world.
0 undergraduate students
0th Minneapolis' ranking for new college grads- Livability.com
Live with a host family, serve, and take classes in Guatemala, Spain, or elsewhere; teach English in South Korea or Ecuador; or learn about Bible translation and community development with linguists from across the globe. Internships are built into our study abroad and other off-campus programs so you can gain real-world experience in your future professional field.
Focus on justice and reconciliation
Deepen your faith as you wrestle with topics pertaining to intercultural understanding, justice from a Christian perspective, and current issues in the U.S. and abroad. Gain a broad knowledge of the languages you’re learning so that you’re prepared to impact the communities you’ll serve after graduation.
Prepare for the global marketplace
Students who speak multiple languages and have extended immersion experiences are desired in any field, and many of our language education students find jobs in their field upon or before graduation.
You’ll learn from professors who bring real experience to the classroom and are experts in their field. They are highly competent linguists and culturally competent instructors who integrate Christian principles and cultural experiences into their courses. Classes are typically small, allowing for individual attention and mentorship.
Strong Christian commitment
Through each class, semester abroad, or service opportunity, you’ll learn what it means to understand others’ perspectives in order to communicate with people from other cultures in a Christ-like manner.
Bethel partners with the Summer Institute of Linguistics at the University of North Dakota (UND) to offer a complete linguistics degree during three academic years on the Bethel campus and two summer sessions at UND. We also partner with Students International and the Centro Lingüístico Maya in Antigua, Guatemala, as well as with the Centro de Estudios Hispánicos in Segovia, Spain to offer semester-length programs abroad.
Internships and service learning
Get involved in local multicultural communities and interact with native and heritage speakers of the languages you’re studying. You'll have transformative experiences that feed your love for people from other cultures and help you understand both the challenges faced by language learners and the strength of their communities.
The rich and diverse educational scene in the Twin Cities offers students valuable practicum and student teaching opportunities in bilingual and immersion schools and in community programs with immigrants. You can also get paid to serve as a teaching/research assistant and a language tutor at Bethel.
Obtaining my Master of Arts in Gerontology at Bethel significantly improved work opportunities for me within the health care system. Many more doors opened and I am currently working at a job that I love.Elise Lucey '11
Current job: Manager of Patient Relations at Metro Hospital
Bethel University and the instructors in the graduate school program are very supportive and give real world examples. I have been able to change my career and transition into a new industry because of the Masters in Teaching program.Lawton Burgstahler '15
Current job: Buffalo Lake Hector Stewart High School Business Teacher
I'm continually grateful for the education I received from the Athletic Training Program! I feel completely prepared for my job and know that I will always have close friends and mentors among the professors!Megan Roschen '13
Grad school: Mayo School of Health Sciences Doctorate of Physical Therapy Program
The philosophy department at Bethel exposed me not only to challenging intellectual ideas, but also to new ways of thinking and learning. The experience helped to prepare me for the rigorous academic requirements of both law school and legal practice.Eva Rodelius '10
Current job: Associate Attorney at Carson, Clelland & Schreder
I have loved having a faith-based program. From the prayer before each test to the sincere caring attitudes of the faculty - it has been a great educational experience!Laura Bade '15
My Bethel master's degree has prepared me to be the best nursing leader I can be. The research projects taught me how to tackle issues on my unit with an evidence-based approach. I loved the cohort aspect of the program.Jill Branovsky '12
Current job: HealthEast Woodwinds Maternity Care
The Physician Assistant program at Bethel University has allowed me to grow as a student, future provider, and Christian. I appreciate the Christian perspective our professors use to show that all patients are of equal worth and dignity.Courtney Perpich '15
Art professors go above and beyond for students open to challenge as they pursue their art careers. Many Bethel alums are still active in the art world and have successful careers. We've developed a growing, active national alumni network.Allison Peller '08
Current job: Curator, First Things Gallery, New York City
The Communication department does an excellent job providing the tools needed to find a job. I was prepared and confident entering the marketplace, and was able to use the knowledge from my communication coursework to find a good job quickly.Tyler Jass '11
Current job: Student Visitor Program Coordinator and Admissions Counselor at The Evergreen State College, Olympia, WA
Bethel's M.A. in Teaching program prepared me for teaching in today's challenging and ever-changing educational landscape. The instructors were caring and encouraging and the courses were very hands-on and engaging. I LOVE my job as a teacher. Thank you, Bethel!Theresa Anderson '13
Current job: Teacher
With an incredibly helpful and supportive faculty, and a great cohort of classmates, there is no other place I'd rather be preparing for a career as a Physician Assistant.Amanda Walters '16
Grad School: Bethel University
I was constantly performing through departmental events such as: weekly "Music Hour Recitals," orchestra and band concerts, solo and chamber recitals, semi-annual solo competitions, and yearly ensemble tours. I fell in love with the intensity of practicing and performing.Lindsay Flowers '07
Oboe/English Horn in the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and Evansville Philharmonic; Citizen Musician Fellow under the mentorship of Yo-Yo Ma; Doctoral Candidate in Oboe Performance at Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University.
Aside from giving me an extraordinary background in the Bible, Christian history, and theology, the BTS major allowed me to develop skills in close reading, research, and writing that continue to serve me well after graduation.Sara Misgen '13
Grad school: Yale Divinity School (Accelerated Masters Program)
Spain Term changed my life. God showed me a beautiful culture and people in need of Him. After graduation, I returned to complete a masters in Spanish and literature, and then taught at a private school in Madrid.Lauren Borst '09
Current job: Spanish Teacher at The Altamont School, Birmingham, Alabama
History majors are perhaps more prevalent in the corporate world than you think. The habits of research, writing and critical thinking built from a history degree are vital in any field. The ability to critically evaluate sources is particularly valuable.Tim Goddard '04
Current job: Vice President of Marketing, Corum Group Ltd
What can I do with a degree in world languages and cultures?
World languages and cultures students prepare for professional careers in a variety of industries and graduate programs in fields ranging from teaching to missions.
World languages and cultures graduates are:
- Business people
- College professors
- Educational leaders at the local and state level
- Healthcare workers (doctors, nurses, therapists, physician assistants)
- Legal assistants
- Nonprofit employees
- Social workers
- Spanish teachers
- Teachers of English to speakers of other languages in the U.S. and abroad
- Speech therapists
- Speech writers
Our alumni study:
Our alumni attend:
- Bethel University Graduate School or Seminary
- Hamline University
- Middlebury College (Vermont and Madrid, Spain)
- Mitchell School of Law
- New York University (New York and Madrid, Spain)
- University of Minnesota (Duluth and Twin Cities)
- University of Wisconsin-Madison
- University of California-San Diego
- University of Texas-Austin