Languages, Literatures and Cultures

Languages, Literatures and Cultures

Master of Arts (MA)

Course-based program

Program overview

This program has three streams - applied linguistics, literature and/or film studies, and transcultural studies.  Students in each stream enjoy personal attention and interaction with professors with far-reaching subject-area expertise who embrace a range of theoretical approaches. The applied linguistics stream focuses on language acquisition, language learning and teaching, and sociolinguistics. Students may choose to undertake experimental studies in any of these areas.  The focal languages for applied linguistics are French, Chinese, German and Spanish. The stream in literature and film studies offers students an opportunity to delve into the study of literary and cinematic productions in French, German and Spanish.  Students will acquire theoretical and critical expertise in their chosen field of study. The stream in transcultural studies, the only one offered in Canada, examines the inner differentiation and complexity of cultures from the geographic areas where French, Arabic, Chinese, German, Italian, Japanese, Russian and Spanish are spoken. This program has an interdisciplinary emphasis, and students acquire a high degree of cultural literacy. All of these streams will provide students with a broad set of advanced research and communication skills, specialized knowledge, and enhanced language proficiency. 

Please note: this program is not intended for students interested in performing research primarily on texts written in English or on English as a Second Language. Applicants in these fields are encouraged to consider programs in Educational Research.

Completing this program

  • Core courses: Students will take a required course on Additional Language Pedagogy, and a research methods course on Applied Linguistics or Literary and Cultural Studies.
  • Capstone essay and exam: Students complete a written essay of approximately 20 pages to form the basis of the Capstone Examination.


  • French
  • Spanish

Please visit the Languages, Literatures and Cultures departmental webpage for more information on specializations.


Graduates will be prepared for a profession in the post-secondary sector, cultural organizations, education, finance, government services, immigration, public relations, publishing, translation and interpretation, tourism and travel, advertising, or communications and media.

A course-based master’s degree in languages, literature and culture is usually considered a final degree.

Classroom delivery

Time commitment

Three years full-time; four years maximum


No supervisor is required

Fees and funding

See the Graduate Calendar for information on fees and fee regulations, and for information on awards and financial assistance.

Virtual Tour

Explore the University of Calgary (UCalgary) from anywhere. Experience all that UCalgary has to offer for your graduate student journey without physically being on campus. Discover the buildings, student services and available programs all from your preferred device.

Admission requirements


A minimum of 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 point system, over the past two years of full-time study (a minimum of 10 full-course equivalents or 60 units) of the undergraduate degree.

Minimum education

A four year baccalaureate degree or equivalent from a recognized institution, with adequate academic background in one of the fields of modern languages, linguistics, literary, film or cultural studies or another closely related field.

Work samples

An academic writing sample 3-5 pages: a term paper, research paper or other writing, which the applicant considers representative of his or her best work.


A statement of intent: 250 ­word (minimum) statement of research interest including research topic and the reasons for wishing to pursue graduate work in this program.

Reference letters


Test scores



A sufficiently high level of oral and written competence in the target language (a recommended minimum of CEFR level B2, ACTFL Intermediate ­High, or equivalent.

English language proficiency (ELP)

An applicant whose primary language is not English may fulfill the English language proficiency requirement in one of the following ways:

*Please contact your program of interest if you have any questions about ELP requirements.


For admission on September 1

January 15 application deadline for applications and supporting materials

If you're not a Canadian or permanent resident, or if you have international credentials, make sure to learn about international requirements

Learn more about this program

Languages, Linguistics, Literatures and Cultures

Craigie Hall, Room C 310
2500 University Drive NW
Calgary, AB, T2N 1N4

Contact the Graduate Program Administrator

Visit the departmental website

Faculty of Arts

University of Calgary
2500 University Drive NW
Calgary, AB, T2N 1N4

Visit the Faculty of Arts website