Values Statement

Languages and Literatures Department

The faculty of the Department of Languages and Literatures at UNC Asheville provides pedagogically current and sound instruction in the language, literature and cultures of French-, German-, Spanish, Portuguese and Cherokee - speaking lands, engages in a wide variety of on and off campus services, and dedicates itself to ongoing growth in our disciplines.  Due to the interconnected nature of language and culture, many endeavors of our faculty link the areas of teaching, research, and service.  The Department values a broad range of activities that support our teaching, research, and service missions, and the guidelines presented in this statement are examples of ways in which our goals might be achieved and evaluated.

TEACHING

The Department of Languages and Literatures, in line with the University of North Carolina at Asheville, emphasizes exemplary and engaged teaching. We expect the teaching of any foreign language in the department to be based on sound and current foreign language methodology, delivered in a student-centered, enthusiastic, and target language environment. To achieve these goals, the Department supports and encourages: cross-disciplinary connections through participation in ILS, Humanities, and LSIC courses, knowledge of culture and literature, student-centered communicative language instruction, integrating language and culture based on the National Standards for Foreign Language Learning, providing opportunities for student-led teaching and collaborative student work, encouraging thoughtful reflections about the students’ native culture and language, fostering critical thinking and cultural reassessments, working with students in independent study and undergraduate research, facilitating student experience abroad, and service-learning.

SCHOLARSHIP AND CREATIVE ACTIVITIES

The scholarship that the faculty of the Department of Languages and Literatures are involved in ensures their active engagement in the profession and their field of expertise.  In many cases it informs, enriches, and supports their teaching. Not all scholarship results in publication but is of value when it supports the teaching and in many cases the service the faculty offers to the university, the community, and professional organizations. The Department of Languages and Literatures values, in addition to the traditional publication of books and articles, the development of pedagogical materials (authored and co-authored), i.e. materials that support student learning, whether it be instructional materials or community research, research of materials for new classes, conference presentations, panel organization at conferences, translations, service learning, commitment to the community through artistic, scholastic or other creative endeavors.

SERVICE

The Department of Languages and Literatures values service of many different kinds. Often the services offered by our faculty are closely connected to our areas of expertise and interest. The service informs in return our teaching and research. The faculty of the Department extend their service to the Department, to the University, to the academy at large, and in many cases to the public. We also encourage faculty to find opportunities to take on leadership roles within and outside the department.  In the area of service we value any contribution that enhances the students’ learning experience, such as language tables, clubs, and study abroad. In serving the university we value engagement in activities that enhance the relationship between the Department and the institution, such as committee work. The Department also encourages engagement in the larger community by offering service-learning opportunities that involve students and community partners, presentations and commitment to the community through artistic, scholastic or other creative endeavors, translation and interpreting, consulting, membership and leadership in our professional organization, serving on advisory or executive boards.

All of the above mentioned activities in the area of teaching, scholarship, and service are meant to be examples of what the Department values. All activities that support the mission of the Department are considered as valuable and relevant.