Learn languages at Essex

Whether it's to take your first step towards an international career, to talk your way into an upgrade from the hostel dorm or even just because you love to chat, learning a language introduces you to new conversations and cultures.

At Essex we make language-learning easy so that you can:

  • expand your options for studying abroad
  • develop your confidence to travel and work in an international environment
  • increase your global cultural awareness
  • get a competitive edge when applying for jobs
  • join our global community of people from every corner of the planet

Study a language in four different ways

  • Choose a module

    Learn French, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese, Portuguese or Spanish by taking a language as an option worth 30 credits as part of your degree, for up to three years.

    You're taught for around 3 hours per week, with 3-5 hours of weekly self-study.

    To register for a place on a language module, enrol on MyEssex

    Headshot "I feel like studying a language with International Relations has widened my horizons, increased the opportunities available to me and also helped me communicate with more people around the world."
    Aji, BA International Relations
  • As your undergraduate degree

    Study one or more languages right up to Mastery level in our Department of Language and Linguistics.

    Headshot "Essex is a great place to be and I've fallen in love with the languages I study and the fact that I learn something new every single day.

    "It's definitely not enough in this day and age just to speak English! The possibilities are endless - being able to speak another language really makes me stand out from the crowd and gives me better options for my future."
    Tasha, BA French and Modern Languages
  • Languages for All

    Languages for All gives you the chance to learn a language alongside your degree at no additional cost, through two study options:

    • Language Express – learn Arabic, French, German, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Russian or Spanish in evening classes for beginners and post-beginners. You're taught for 2 hours per week, with 1-2 hours of weekly self-study.
    • Language Portfolio – learn French, German or Spanish in web-based classes from beginners to advanced level. You're taught for 2 hours per week, with 3-4 hours of weekly self-study.

    Options available at your campus:

    Headshot"Learning languages is a vital skill. It breaks down social and professional barriers. Learning French alongside my degree and other responsibilities has given me additional skills and confidence. It's also furthered my ambition. I want to continue learning French and learn another language."
    Jacob, LLB Law
  • Essex Modern Language Certificates

    Essex Modern Language Certificates allow everyone to learn French, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese, Portuguese or Spanish part-time, from beginner to mastery level on a fee-paying basis, or via Proficio.

    You're taught for around 3 hours per week, with 3-5 hours of weekly self-study.


Need more help deciding?

Have a look at our flowchart to find the best way for you to learn a language at Essex.

Improving your English

If you're a non-native English speaker, we provide support to help you improve your English.

UG Open Days

Book a place at our undergraduate Open Day. Our department and admissions staff can answer any questions you have, and you can speak to current students about life at Essex while taking a campus tour.

Life at Essex

three students talking

Why not find out what life at Essex is really like? See more of our campuses, facilities and accommodation and hear from our students and academics about what it's like to study with us.

Find a course

Find a course

Search our courses and find the right course for you. At Essex you can show your academic potential in a research-intensive environment, and develop the knowledge and skills required for a successful career.

Students' Union

Students' Union

Our Students' Union (SU) is one of the most active in the country. Our SU will be there to offer you support, plus the opportunity to join numerous clubs and societies and to enjoy lots of events and nights out.