West European Certificate


Academic Requirements

There are three Certificate requirements

  1. Language Courses
  2. Area Studies Courses
  3. Study Abroad

Language Courses

Students must complete three years of study (two courses beyond the fourth semester level) in French, German, Spanish, or Portuguese. Students may also choose to complete two years of one language (by completing the fourth semester) plus one year of a second language, as long as one or both are "less commonly taught" languages offered through the LCTL Center under the designation "Linguistics."  Currently Irish Gaelic, Swedish, and Modern Greek are available.

Western European Studies (Area Studies) Courses

A minimum of five West European Studies Courses is required. (see approved courses list)

  • One in the student's major department (if available) and no more than one course in the student's secondary major or minor
  • The remaining courses in at least two departments outside the student's major
  • One of the five courses must be on 20th Century Western Europe
  • Two of the courses must be at the 1000 level
  • Students must earn a C or better in classes counting toward the Certificate
  • Students must choose courses according to a theme to insure intellectual cohesion

Two new themes in German Studies and Modern European Humanities are available. Students may also develop their own themes in consultaion with the Assistant Director.

Study Abroad

Study abroad in Western Europe is required. Study, research, or a service learning program of any length is acceptable, as long as credit is awarded. Exceptions will be made for students who can demonstrate economic hardship; for these students substitute coursework or activities will be required.

The University of Pittsburgh has an established list of pre-approved study abroad programs and providers that students must choose from if they want their study abroad credits to count towards their degree (and our certificate requirements). This list has a very large selection of both Pitt and non-Pitt run programs, and can be searched here. The search engine will allow you to explore options by city, country, major, etc.

Certificate Advising

In order to obtain maximum benefit from the program, students should meet regularly with the Assistant Director, Stephen Lund.  Mr. Lund advises on the completion of requirements, the choice of a theme, and opportunities that complement classroom learning such as internships and research opportunities.

West European Certificate APPLICATION

Student Guide