Alternative Language Study Option (ALSO)

Program Description

In the 2014-2015 academic year, the Alternative Language Study Option (ALSO) will offer students the opportunity to study Arabic, Korean, or Italian outside of the traditional language curriculum currently offered at St. Olaf.

The program is administered through Interdisciplinary and General Studies and supervised by the World Languages Center/ALSO program director. The WLC is the main hub for the ALSO program. It offers the necessary space, technology, and instructional materials for language study to be pursued. Any courses taken under the ALSO option cannot be used to fulfill the FOL (foreign language requirement) at St. Olaf; rather, they are intended to serve as an additional option for language study.

Language sessions take place 2-3 times per week (see schedules below). In each language session, students will work with a native-speaker learning facilitator. This facilitator will simplify the learning process of speaking, reading, writing, and general language content, including grammar.

Outside of these class sessions, students will work on homework assignments to continue learning content that will be practiced in class. Students are required to attend weekly tutorial sessions with a native speaker and one language table session per month.

Throughout the semester, students will complete an oral and written midterm and final exam developed by an outside examiner. Grades will be determined through evaluation of student work by the outside examiner and program director. Periodic meetings with the ALSO program director are recommended, to discuss students’ progress in the course.

Information sessions for Fall 2015

Students interested in this program should attend one of the information sessions before applying. Information sessions will be held on Tuesday, April 7th at 11:30-12:00 PM & 3:30 – 4:30 PM in the World Languages Center. Interested students who are not able to attend these sessions should contact the ALSO director at with any questions or concerns.

Language Session Schedules

Fall 2015
Arabic 100 Beginning 1 MWF 12:55-1:50 PM
(TOH 153 / WLC)
Arabic 101 Beginning 2 MWF 2:00-2:55 PM
(TOH 153 / WLC)
Arabic 200 Intermediate 1 MWF 8:00-8:55 AM
(TOH 153 / WLC)
Korean 102 T 9:35-11:00 AM, Th 9:30-10:50 AM
(TOH 153 / WLC)
Italian 104A Beginning 1 MWF 10:45-11:40 AM
(TOH 153 / WLC)
Italian 104B Beginning 1 MWF 11:50-12:45 PM
(TOH 153 / WLC)


Eligibility for participation in the ALSO program is determined by previous language performance. Interested students must have:

  • Successful completion of the college’s FOL (foreign language requirement)
  • 2.75 minimum GPA
  • Two faculty references, one of which must be a former language professor
  • Demonstrated evidence of serious motivation and the ability to work independently

Application Process

Applications for studying Arabic, Korean or Italian during the Fall semester 2015 can be submitted Tuesday April 22st electronically using the forms below:

Arabic ALSO Application

Italian ALSO Application

Korean ALSO Application

The application process for the Fall semester 2015 will begin on April 8th. Please contact the ALSO director at regarding any further information or additional questions.

Contact Information

If you have any questions about the program and/or the application process, please contact any of the following people:

Dana Gross
Associate Dean for Interdisciplinary
and General Studies
RNS 132
Renata Debska-McWilliams
WLC/ALSO Director
Faculty of Records
TOH 151
Ibtesam Al Atiyat
Professor of Sociology and Anthropology
ALSO Arabic Consultant
(On sabbatical 2015-16)
Holland Hall 401C
Amine Bekhechi
Professor of French
ALSO Arabic Consultant
TOH 327
Jamie Schillinger
Professor of Religion and
Director of Middle Eastern Studies
ALSO Arabic Consultant
Old Main 320D
Karil Kucera
Department Chair of Asian Studies and Professor of Art History
ALSO Korean Consultant
TOH 351
Ariel Strichartz
Professor of Spanish
ALSO Consultant
TOH 325
Sylvia Carullo
Professor of Spanish
ALSO / Italian Consultant
TOH 344