HS Foreign Language Requirement

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by Craig, May 8, 2011.

  1. Craig

    Craig Member

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    Does Latin meet the Naval Academy's foreign language requirement/recommendation for HS? My daughter is schedule to take Latin 3next year and plans to take AP Latin her SR year. She wants to study Russian in college (which is not offer in HS).
     
  2. rayquad

    rayquad Member

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    This is purely my personal opinion but here goes:
    I think that the Navy would certainly accept it as a foreign language, however they might look a little more favorably on something that is more widely used in the world and that would be helpful to a navy officer stationed in another part of the world
     
  3. Craig

    Craig Member

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    Thanks for the feedback. That's a similar response we heard recently and one that promted the question. She would love to take Russian, but not offered. Chinese, Arabic and all the other crucial languages not taught either at this time. French, Spanish and German are offered. She did take Spanish K-7 and HS Spanish I but was over it and wanted to try something new. French, what can I say other than "ne fonctionnent pas" pretty much covers it.
    We figured Latin is a basis for many languages it would be a good start in language. One positive is the discipline doing translations in class might serve well in an Intelligence roll one day.
     
  4. GoNavyMom

    GoNavyMom Member

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    Hi,

    My DD is currently a MID. She took four years of Latin in HS, including AP in her her senior year. Latin did count as a language on her USNA application.
     
  5. MomoftheMagik

    MomoftheMagik Member

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    Son is a Plebe. He also took four years of Latin. In his senior year, he took one semester of French, but that was just out of curiosity, and I'm not even sure that was noted because it was the spring semester. I know Air Force specifically requires a modern language, but USNA does not make that stipulation.
     
  6. Hurricane12

    Hurricane12 USNA 2012

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    I took Latin all through high school (up through both APs back when there was two Latin APs...) and didn't have any problems. I kind of doubt that they really care that much what language you took as long as you took one.
    HOWEVER, being able to validate a little bit of a modern language would have been kind of nice, especially if you plan on declaring Group III.
     
  7. usafahopeful1

    usafahopeful1 Prospective Cadet 2017

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    Latin should count on the application, and although it is not a modern language, all the romance languages stem off of it, and there is a ton of grammar, preparing her to then learn Russian (grammar) and Spanish and French are much easier after a language like Latin. Also, Latin should boost her SAT scores too.
     
  8. Whistle Pig

    Whistle Pig Banned

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    Not to beat a dead horse ... or language, but as has already been iterated, Latin is as good as Russian in terms of meeting the requirements. Now, Russian might get some bonus points on an app, but Latin'll get no points taken away. USNA does not differentiate among the languages; only if one is deficient ... or has some exceptional capacity, in which case any "bonus points" won't be devoted to course curriculum.
     
  9. falconfamily

    falconfamily Member

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    Latin will not hurt you on the application but it will affect your language choice

    This is precisely the situation with my DS who is a member of the 2015 class. He took Latin in high school, got decent grades and listed Latin as his language on his application to USAFA.

    The way it works at USAFA is that you get your choice of language by how well you do with the subject in high school and if you are taking a modern language where there are both spoken and written elements to the study. If you study a language like Latin (where it is mostly grammar, since few high schools teach it as a spoken language), then you are likely to be slotted to take one of the tier 1 romance languages such as French, Spanish, or Portuguese. I'm not saying that if you were a language stud and got straight A's and scored a 5 on the AP Latin exam that you might not get a tier 4 language like Arabic or Chinese. Just that you are much more likely to get a romance language since it projects well with Latin.

    As it is, life is tough enough academically at USAFA, languages are taught 5 days a week there. The expectations are high and the work load is extremely challenging. Unless you have a special facility for language, it is likely a subject that will challenge you the most. My son was assigned French as his language because of his Latin background. If he wants to pick up Mandarin, he can always do it later, perhaps by immersion at the DLI (Defense Language Institute).

    One last thing, USAFA does not use the DLAB to assign languages. It is based mostly on what you studied in high school, how well you did in those courses, and what you list as language preferences. So language assignments are not based upon any notion of aptitude. There is a language placement exam at the academy during BCT, but it is not really applicable to Latin.

    Good Luck!
     
  10. ski_addict29

    ski_addict29 Member

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    ok i hate to intrude on your post but i have also have a language question. so I have taken spanish for the past three years in h.s. and i will be taking spanish 4 my senior year. now we dont have an AP spanish but you can tell the teacher if you would like to take the AP test and he will work with you and give you extra work so you will pass. I have a heavy workload next year, but since I hope to continue spanish at the academy i am thinking about it. do you guys think it would be a good idea to do the AP track for it on the side? Thanks in advance for the advice.
     
  11. wilson73

    wilson73 Member

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    Ski,
    FWIW, my now-Youngster took Spanish IV during his junior year of high school, but chose not to take AP Spanish during his senior year. Like you, he had a very rigorous senior year schedule that included 6 AP courses, and he did not have room for Spanish. During the validation/placement testing over Plebe Summer, he was able to validate Spanish I and II at USNA. That was with a one-year gap in taking a foreign language, so it is possible. Good luck!
     
  12. ski_addict29

    ski_addict29 Member

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    ok thanks that definitely helps!
     
  13. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

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    If you put down any language on your USNA application you will get the opportunity to take a validation exam in that language. The more proficient you are when you report on I-Day, the better you'll do on that exam.

    One of my biggest regrets about my Naval Academy education is that I majored in Aerospace Engineering after having validated SIX semesters of Russian. If I had any sense at all, I should have majored in Soviet Studies (circa 1975).

    For summer training blocks, it is very common for midshipmen to be assigned to countries for the purpose of language immersion. There are great opportunities for anybody interested in acquiring proficiency in a foreign language. My guess is that this is an offshoot of the Naval Academy's obsession with "diversity".

    If you're not Hispanic by birth - the next best thing is to be able to speak their language. :smile:
     
  14. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    USNA doesn't have a "requirement" per se for a foreign language. They like to see such work at an advanced level but not having a language isn't a bar to admission. Latin would be acceptable.

    Studying a new language at USNA is somewhat involved. Easy if you are a Group III (humanities) major. If you're an Group I/II major, you can take a 3rd/4th year of language as your humanities electives. To start a new language as a Group I/II major, I think you'd need to have the open slots in your schedule (via validation) to take those courses. Even so, you'd need to start as a plebe (2d semester) or, at the latest, a youngster in order to get any real time in the language.
     
  15. IronEagle7

    IronEagle7 Member

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    Is there an opportunity to validate more than one language or do you only study one? I will be taking both German and Spanish IV this upcoming year.
     
  16. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    I believe you can attempt to validate as many as you know. However, as a practical matter, it would be extremely difficult to study more than one at USNA. You just don't have the openings in your schedule. Even if you validate a lot of stuff, you might well want to take something other than language, do graduate study, etc.

    And, even if you could do both languages, you'd probably have to wait until at least your 2/C year to start the second of them. By that time, I'd imagine you'd start to be a bit rusty on the one from which you'd been away.
     

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