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Home / Academics / Careers / Foreign Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary Career

Foreign Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary Career

Career Description

Teach languages and literature courses in languages other than English. Includes teachers of American Sign Language (ASL). Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

What Job Titles Foreign Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary Might Have

  • French Professor
  • Professor
  • Spanish Instructor
  • Spanish Professor

What Foreign Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary Do

  • Prepare course materials, such as syllabi, homework assignments, and handouts.
  • Evaluate and grade students' class work, assignments, and papers.
  • Initiate, facilitate, and moderate classroom discussions.
  • Maintain student attendance records, grades, and other required records.
  • Plan, evaluate, and revise curricula, course content, course materials, and methods of instruction.
  • Prepare and deliver lectures to undergraduate or graduate students on topics such as how to speak and write a foreign language and the cultural aspects of areas where a particular language is used.
  • Maintain regularly scheduled office hours to advise and assist students.
  • Compile, administer, and grade examinations, or assign this work to others.
  • Select and obtain materials and supplies, such as textbooks.
  • Keep abreast of developments in their field by reading current literature, talking with colleagues, and participating in professional organizations and activities.
  • Advise students on academic and vocational curricula and on career issues.
  • Collaborate with colleagues to address teaching and research issues.
  • Participate in student recruitment, registration, and placement activities.
  • Develop and maintain Web pages for teaching-related purposes.
  • Conduct research in a particular field of knowledge and publish findings in scholarly journals, books, or electronic media.
  • Serve on academic or administrative committees that deal with institutional policies, departmental matters, and academic issues.
  • Act as advisers to student organizations.
  • Participate in campus and community events.
  • Compile bibliographies of specialized materials for outside reading assignments.
  • Perform administrative duties, such as serving as department head.
  • Organize and direct study abroad programs.
  • Supervise undergraduate or graduate teaching, internship, and research work.

What Foreign Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary Should Be Good At

  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

What Foreign Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary Should Be Interested In

  • Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Artistic - Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

What Foreign Language and Literature Teachers, Postsecondary Need to Learn

  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Foreign Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of a foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Sociology and Anthropology - Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
  • History and Archeology - Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
  • Philosophy and Theology - Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.
Diploma iconThis career requires a graduate degree.
Median Salary: $63,500

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.