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Modern Languages


Applicants can choose between Modern Languages and joint schools in: Modern Languages and Linguistics; English and Modern Languages; European and Middle Eastern Languages; History and Modern Languages; and Philosophy and Modern Languages.

Why study Modern Languages at St Hilda's?

As a Modern Linguist at St Hilda's, you'll have a rich intellectual life and benefit from excellent resources to support your studies, starting with your tutors. They will work intensively with you as you develop your language skills and embark on your career as a discerning critic of literature and culture. Your tutors will help you to identify and develop your personal interests and to find your individual critical voice as you grow in confidence in your chosen language(s). The Modern Linguists form a large group in St Hilda’s, and we have a strong tradition of supporting students from a diverse range of backgrounds and nationalities to realise their potential and achieve academic success and excellence. The College also gives several prizes in the subject, accompanied by small bursaries, to reward outstanding attainment and endeavour.

The College library is particularly well stocked for French and German, and our dedicated linguists’ travel grant fund helps to finance trips or courses abroad during University vacations. An annual ‘year abroad’ meeting provides a forum for fourth-years to share experiences and advice with second-years on different ways of shaping their year abroad activity. Our strong community of students across almost the full range of languages and joint schools available is a diverse and exciting group of which to be a part.

Over the past years, St Hilda’s linguists have been notably active in University and College student activism, as well as in student journalism, music, drama, and in the executive committees of the various student-run modern languages societies. The internationalism of the student body at St Hilda’s provides an excellent context for this discipline.

Subject tutors

At the core of Modern Languages at St Hilda's are French, German, and Linguistics; the College has Fellows in all subjects.

In addition, we have College lecturers in Italian and Spanish:

- Lachlan Hughes (Italian)
- Dr Roy Norton (Spanish)

In French, Dr O’Sullivan and Prof Swift, who specialise in the early modern and medieval periods, are supported in the modern period and for native-speaker oral classes by College Lecturers:

- Dr Stephen Goddard
- Dr Elsa Baroghel

In German, Dr Paul, who specialises in modern German literature, and Dr Hoge, whose specialist interests include the study of syntax and Yiddish, are supported by a College Lecturer, Dr Raisbeck, a specialist in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century German literature, and by a Lektor part-funded by the German government-sponsored German Academic Exchange Service:

- Dr Joanna Raisbeck

After St Hilda's

A Modern Languages degree opens up an especially broad variety of exciting career options; recent St Hilda’s graduates have embarked on careers ranging from communications, publishing, and teaching to law, diplomacy, international development, and the arts. Many students also choose to continue to postgraduate study in Modern Languages or other disciplines where their linguistic knowledge is an asset, from art history to international relations.