About French, Hispanic and Italian Studies

The Department of French, Hispanic and Italian Studies at UBC is a vibrant centre for the study of Romance languages, literatures and cultures. Our faculty is composed of a group of specialists whose expertise ranges from second language acquisition and linguistics, to literary and cultural studies.

Our department offers an exploration of the languages, literatures and cultures from places that speak Latin-based languages – French, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese. We strive to connect language studies to literature and culture through a variety of interdisciplinary methods. We offer a variety of programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Our courses explore the abundant traditions of French, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese cultures, both in their countries of origin, and in the cultures of diaspora, including Quebec and a wide variety of geographic areas such as Latin America, as well as the Caribbean, African and Asian countries.

Our language course offerings are for students at many levels of language proficiency and understanding. Our main programs are designed to enhance active communication skills, solid grammatical training, and to develop an appreciation of many different cultures. We explore Romance languages and traditions from Latin and vernacular, to dialect and regional variations, to creole and hybrid idioms. Our language courses promote lively, inclusive environments in which to learn a new language or to improve your skills.

Our literature and culture course offerings take students on stimulating journeys of wonder and complexity. We teach literature and culture courses in French, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese, as well as in English. Our course topics range from the earliest European oral and literary traditions, to the earliest cultural exchanges with North Africa and Asia, to the history of navigation and global exploration, to the cultural explosion of the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, and Romanticism; to innovation in modernity and postmodernism, to post-colonial regions and relations, to globalization and current affairs.

Our diverse courses intersect with multiple areas of interest and study such as Cinema and Visual Studies, Linguistics, Theatre, Music, African, Asian, Caribbean, European, Latin American Studies, Indigenous Studies, Gender Studies, Social Sciences and Critical Theory.

Our department has one of the largest enrollment numbers at UBC, and we have systematically provided students with an exceptional education. Most of our course offerings fulfill the Faculty of Arts language and literature requirements, and our elective courses in English have successfully inspired many students to pursue the study of Romance languages, literatures, and cultures.

We offer our students outstanding preparation in critical thinking, analytical writing, and professionalism. Our department provides a superior education in the Humanities in preparation for a future in a globalized economy and diverse communities. Our graduates pursue a wide variety of careers in teaching, law, business, management, government, journalism, and the sciences, among many other fields.