Hi there! I’m excited to share my journey with you and explore the exciting opportunities for language learning at York. Today, I’ll talk about my personal experience with learning Russian and shed light on why York is a great choice if you’re considering studying a new language alongside your degree during your time at uni.
At the start of my second year, I had loads of choices in what modules I was able to take. Among these options, the opportunity to undertake a language elective really stood out to me. I’d been interested in Russian for ages but never had the chance to fully explore it and had only learned the alphabet. Making Russian a part of my degree was not only a fun experience but also provided me with a solid foundation to further my learning in the future.
What Options Are There?
Choosing which language to study was not easy, given the range of options available. From Japanese to Classical Latin, and everything in between, there are a lot of languages to explore with courses that cater to learners of all levels, whether you’re just starting out or are looking to build upon existing knowledge (all the info about what courses are available can be found here).
If you’re not allowed to take an elective in the year you’re in, don’t worry! I wasn’t able to in my first year. York’s Languages for All program provides an alternative avenue to study languages, ensuring flexibility and accessibility for all students. With this option, you get the same course but not for degree credits and there will be a fee. However, this means you get to study a language and also pick more modules from your department if you don’t want to miss out on any of them.
Taking a language elective was a great opportunity, especially as I was the only person on my specific course. This meant I got over 30 hours of private language tuition free alongside credits towards my degree.
Immersion and Cultural Exchange
Studying Russian wasn’t just about grammar and vocabulary, it was also about understanding the culture of the Russian-speaking world. With a native Russian speaker as the instructor, we delved into cultural topics alongside language skills. From Russian customs and festivals to geography, each lesson offered a glimpse into Russian culture.
As I look ahead to the future, I’m excited about the doors that starting to learn Russian open for me. Whether it’s pursuing further studies, exploring career opportunities, or simply travelling with confidence, the skills and knowledge gained from my language elective have equipped me for success in a globalised world.
Language learning at York
To all prospective students considering studying a new language at York, I wholeheartedly encourage you to take the leap. Whether you’re interested in French literature, eager to explore Mandarin, or intrigued by the beauty of Arabic writing, York has language learning opportunities for everyone.