With its tremendous diversity of academic offerings in language, the College offers a unique opportunity for students to learn about many of the world's cultures. Students are especially encouraged to go beyond the Foreign Language Requirement and seek out ways to make further language study a part of their personalized curriculum. Language and Literature departments, the Language Certificate, the Penn Language Center, Penn Abroad programs, languages less commonly taken, and a host of cultural organizations at Penn provide a wide variety of avenues for students who want to take their language skills as far as they can go.
Since 1989, Penn Language Center (PLC) strengthens Penn’s language education and consistently supports the development of language professionals. In particular, PLC focuses on current trends in online instruction and teaching from within the National Standards.
The center remains committed to its structural flexibility enabling its staff to respond quickly to changing demands for language instruction in a variety of languages that are not offered within the typical programs of established departments.
PLC encourages dynamic and diversified language education with an emphasis on multilingual and transcultural competence that in turn imbue both the curriculum and the research effort of the academic community.
Penn English Language Programs offers instruction in English as a second or international language and exposure to the cultures of the United States for adults whose purpose is to learn English for a variety of social, professional, academic, or personal reasons. ELP also offers testing, consulting services, and cross-cultural training. Penn students can engage with ELP's international student body through language and cultural exchange in the ELP Conversation Partners Program.