The faculty of Modern Languages is one of the largest in the country, with over 100 academic staff and a thriving teaching and research community. It offers a wide range of languages which can be studied on their own, in combination with another language, or jointly with another subject such as English, Classics, History, Linguistics and Philosophy. In the Times Higher Education subject rankings 2016-2017 Oxford is ranked first in Arts and Humanities, and in the QS World University Rankings the university is ranked first in Modern Languages. The Taylor Institution is the University’s Centre for the study of modern European languages and literatures. Its research library, one of the three central libraries of the University, contains the largest specialist collection in this field in Britain with a book stock of around 500,000 volumes.
Modern Languages at LMH
LMH has a large and vibrant cohort of Modern Languages undergraduates and graduates. We offer a wide range of the modern languages degree courses at Oxford. The College has a fine library collection and a record of success both in Modern Languages and in Joint Schools. We have a close association with the Maison Française, the French Cultural Institute at Oxford.
Admissions requirements and course information
AAA. We welcome applicants for French, German, Russian and Spanish by themselves, in combinations with each other, in conjunction with other modern languages especially Italian, and Linguistics, and with Classics, English, Philosophy, and History. More information on other requirements, how to apply and a typical week can be found here and here. Visit the website of the Faculty of Medieval and Modern Languages.
National data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency indicate that Modern Languages graduates have one of the highest rates of employment across all subject areas, exceeded only by medical disciplines and law.
Some of our recent graduates have followed successful careers in teaching, publishing, civil and diplomatic service.
What our students say
I love the opportunity the LMH course gives me to combine both subjects, in my case by studying Spanish or South American history, whilst also studying each subject in its own right. There is real depth and variety in the papers you can study and my tutorials at LMH have always been eye-opening. The year abroad is an amazing opportunity to travel, explore your interests and practice your language skills.
- Flora Scorer
The great thing about studying languages at university is that you have the opportunity to start a new language, which is partly why I chose to study Beginner’s Portuguese, along with Spanish. The course has been fantastic so far, as it’s equally weighted so the same amount of time is dedicated to each language, meaning by the end of your degree you will reach near-native fluency in both. One advantage of the Portuguese department is that it’s very small, so it’s a fantastic opportunity to get to know all the tutors well and be able to discuss their specialties with them. The Spanish course has a wide range of texts which form the perfect building blocks, as they cover all aspects of Spanish literature through the ages. All first years study the same course for both languages, so it is an ideal introduction to the range of literature through the ages; this is a really good way to study work from different genres in detail, before being able to choose areas to focus on next year. LMH is a particularly friendly, open and supportive college which makes living and studying here really enjoyable.
- Ailsa Cookson
Modern Languages courses at Oxford are known for being particularly focused on literature, which is why they’re so great! First year gives you an extremely wide and varied taster of different periods and genres so you can choose what you’d like to explore in more depth in second and fourth year. Most of the lecturers are really engaging and interesting and there are often too many lectures that look interesting to choose from. Tutorials are the most invaluable though, as you get to talk about your own ideas with your tutor helping you to go even further in your understanding. Whilst some of the books can look daunting at first, your reading skills improve so quickly and the sense of achievement you feel on finishing a 500 page novel in a foreign language is amazing. The language teaching itself is really thorough and translation classes in particular are really interesting in terms of thinking about both the foreign language and English. The main highlight of any languages course is naturally the year abroad, where you can escape the essays and try out your speaking skills on real life native speakers; most people come back saying it was the best experience of their lives. And don’t forget, doing languages also means watching a film is a legitimate way of studying!
- Hannah Jackson