World Languages

The world languages program at Seattle Central provides the opportunity for students intending to transfer to a four–year college or university as well as community members to begin study of languages and cultures. World language courses address speaking, listening comprehension, reading, and writing.

Earn a college transfer degree that includes World Languages classes. Planning to Major in World Languages? Download this handy guide (pdf).

Cultural study emphasizes the naturally global and multicultural perspectives inherent in the study of world languages. Students who continue their language studies are well-prepared when they transfer to destination institutions. Many students also decide to volunteer, travel or work in countries where the language is spoken and find that they are able to communicate successfully.

World Languages Courses Offered

  • American Sign Language I–VI
  • Arabic I–III
  • Chinese I–III
  • French I–IV
  • Japanese I–IV
  • Spanish I–IV

World Languages Links

Relevant Links


Tsai–En Cheng (Chinese)
Seattle University, M.A.

Reham Elkhayat (Arabic)
Bellevue University, M.A.

Yuko Hanamure–Stalter (Japanese)
University of Hawaii at Manoa, M.A.

Laurie Kempen (French)
Stanford University, M.A. 
University of Washington, Ph.D.
Laurie Kempen's faculty website

Hiroshi Miyamoto (Japanese)
Central Connecticut State University, M.S.

Violeta Quintana (Spanish)
The University of Iowa, M.A., Ph.D.

David Quintero (Spanish)
University of Washington, M.A., Ph.D.

Katie Roberts (ASL)
Teachers' College, Columbia University, M.A.

Rebecca Robertson (Spanish)
University of Washington, M.A.

World Languages – Careers

Training in a World Language can lead to a career in:

  • Education
  • Interpreting
  • Translating
  • International Business
  • Non–profit and NGO
  • The Peace Corps
  • Information Technology
  • International Studies
  • International Development
  • Area Studies

World Languages – Learning Outcomes

By the end of the first year of study, world language students will understand the basic structure of the target language and be able to communicate in everyday life situations.

By the end of the second year of study, world language students will be able to communicate with increased fluency in the target language in more increasingly specialized situations.

Students who take courses in World Languages earn credit in the Visual, Linguistic, Performing Arts (VLPA) area of knowledge for the AA degree by

  • understanding language and languages as universal human phenomena and as tools of communication, persuasion, and self–expression

Depending on the course taken, World Language courses meet communication, global learning, and/or intercultural knowledge outcomes for the AA degree, as students

  • explain meaning of written work, presentations, arts, and media in different contexts
  • present oral, signed, written, or other forms of expression to increase knowledge, foster understanding, or promote change in an audience
  • analyze complex, interdependent national and global systems, and their legacies and implications, in reference to the distribution of global power
  • reflect on how one's position in systems of power affects both local and global communities
  • apply a set of cognitive, affective, and behavioral skills that support effective and appropriate interaction in a variety of cultural contexts