Feb 26, 2024  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Modern Languages and Linguistics Department

Angela Helmer, Chairperson, Modern Languages and Linguistics
306 Slagle Hall
(605) 677- 5357




Laura Vidler, Ph.D. (Spanish), Performance Studies, Golden Age Theater, Spanish Literature, Spanish Civilization

Associate Professors:

Angela Helmer, Ph.D. (Spanish & Linguistics), Historical Linguistics, Sociolinguistics, Phonetics, Colonial Perú
Armik Mirzayan, Ph.D. (Lakota & Linguistics), Phonetics and Phonology, Lakota, Quechua, American Indian Languages, Language Structures
Robert Turner III, Ph.D. (Spanish), Spanish Literature and Culture, Science Fiction, Golden Age Theater


Marius Conceatu, Ph.D. (French and Francophone Studies Coordinator)
Nathan Bates, Ph.D. (German Coordinator)


Dayana Soto y Caballero de Galicia (Spanish), Spanish Language, Literature, and Culture
Armando Galicia-Silva (Spanish), Spanish Language, Literature, and Culture

Adjunct Instructor:

Ilmira Dulyanova (Russian Language) Literature, and Culture


Nelson Arana (Spanish Language) Literature, and Culture
István Gombocz, Ph.D. (German), German Language, Literature and Culture (Emeritus Professor)


French and Francophone Studies, B.A.
German, B.A.
Spanish, B.A.


French Studies
Latin American Studies
Russian Studies

The Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics develops graduates with language proficiency, cultural competence, and the analytical and communicative skills to succeed in any field. We enable our students to lead effectively in a wide variety of cultural and professional situations. 

The study of modern languages, linguistics, and cultures not only improves your ability to communicate with others, but also broadens your world-view. Speakers of more than one language are creative and analytical problem-solvers, work well in teams, and are able to see multiple perspectives of an issue. This ability to analyze, communicate, and navigate other cultures makes language majors especially highly regarded in business, education, medicine, law, government, law enforcement, tourism, and the arts.

The Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics offers programs in French and Francophone Studies, German, and Spanish. Students wishing to satisfy the language requirement for the Bachelor of Arts degree may do so in any of the aforementioned languages, or in Lakota, Russian, Latin (offered through the History Department’s program in Classics), or languages such as Arabic when available. Students may elect to minor in French, German, Latin American Studies, or Spanish. Teaching majors and teaching minors are offered in French, German, Lakota (minor only), Modern Foreign Languages (K-12) Teaching (French and German, minor only), and Spanish. Students who wish to expand their knowledge of the world by living in a foreign culture may take advantage of exchange opportunities in many countries; more information is available from the Center for Academic and Global Engagement . Student exchange programs currently exist with the Carl von Ossietzky Universität, Oldenburg, Germany; the Friedrich Schiller Universität, Jena, Germany; the University of Pau, France; the Pázmány Péter Catholic University of Hungary; and the University of Vigo, Spain. 


Please contact the department for additional information about available scholarships and awards. Also see College of Arts & Sciences  for college level scholarships.

  • Alexander P. Hartman
  • Constance Hampl Scholarship
  • Edward & Helen Greene Modern Language Travel
  • Erwin R. Behrendt Scholarship
  • Languages & Linguistics Department Scholarship Fund
  • Lillian M. Hollingsworth Memorial Scholarship
  • Phyllis McQuillen Modern Languages Scholarship
  • Spanish Major Scholarship