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The Five C's of Foreign Language Education


1. Communication - Communicate in Languages Other Than English

Standard 1.1: Students engage in conversation, provide and obtain information, express feelings and emotions, and exchange opinions.
Standard 1.2: Students understand and interpret written and spoken languages on a variety of topics.
Standard 1.3: Students present information, concepts, and ideas to an audience of listeners or readers on a variety of topics.

2. Cultures - Gain Knowledge and Understanding of Other Cultures

Standard 2.1: Students demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the perspectives and practices of the culture studied.
Standard 2.2: Students demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between the perspectives and products of the culture studied.

3. Connections - Connect With Other Disciplines and Acquire Information

Standard 3.1: Students reinforce and further their knowledge of other disciplines through the foreign language.
Standard 3.2: Students acquire information and recognize the distinctive viewpoints that are only available through the foreign language and its cultures.

4. Comparisons - Develop Insight Into the Nature of Language and Culture

Standard 4.1: Students demonstrate understanding of the nature of language though comparisons of the language studied and their own.
Standard 4.2: Students demonstrate understanding of the concept of culture through comparisons of the cultures studied and their own.

5. Communities - Participate in Multilingual Communities at Home and Around the World

Standard 5.1: Students use the language both within and beyond the school setting.
Standard 5.2: Students show evidence of becoming life-long learners by using the language for personal enjoyment and enrichment.


Excerpted from: Standards for Foreign Language Education: Preparing for the 21st Century. ACFTL, 1999.

The Executive Summary and a hard copy of the standards are available from the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL).


Updated 4/5/2006