The Importance of Learning Foreign Languages

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Language is a key part of any family, community, culture and the human race. Without language the world today would be much different. From cavemen, to the Egyptian use of hieroglyphics, to Old English, to more than 6,500 languages spoken around the world today, the advances that humans have made in language is remarkable and inspiring. The ability to speak, read, write and understand more than one language is also remarkable and expands the liberties in life, especially for young people. High school students should be required to take at least two years of a foreign language class in order to graduate, as many recent studies support the benefits of doing so. Students who have learned a foreign language in high school have proven to have a higher success rate in college, enhanced career opportunities and increased cultural awareness. The goal of most high school students is to eventually go on to a college or university. Research shows that taking foreign language classes in high school improves the likelihood of being accepted to, succeeding in and graduating from college. If not required by the college or university, seeing foreign language courses on potential students’ transcripts is appealing to the schools. Many post-secondary schools, including the most prestigious ones such as Princeton and Stanford, often require incoming students to have taken foreign language classes in high school before being admitted (Damschen). After being admitted, bilingual students seem to be more successful in college than monolingual students. According to a study done in 2001, college students who had taken at least three years of a foreign language in high school showed to earn higher grades in college and were less likely to drop out (Horn ... ... middle of paper ... ...ting. Including this in all high school graduation requirements would ensure that United States high school students are more likely to succeed in college, the working field and in the culturally diverse society we live in today. Works Cited Damschen, Kalli. “Many benefits come with learning a foreign language.” Standard- Examiner. N.p. 9 February 2012. Web. 19 November 2013. Horn, L. & Kojaku, L. K. “High school academic curriculum and the persistence path through college.” NEA Research. U.S. Department of Education. 2001. Web. 19 November 2013 Ryan, Camille. “Language Use in the United States.” N.p. August 2013. Web. 19 November 2013. “The Benefits and Opportunities that come from learning another language.” ITS. Education Asia. N.d. Web. 19 November 2013. “The Benefits of Second Language Study.” NEA Research. N.p. December 2007. Web. 19 November 2013.
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