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Department of Languages and Cultures

The goal of the Languages and Cultures Department is to equip Polytechnicians with a solid international profile, enabling them to confront the challenges of the multicultural world in which they are to evolve. To work in France or abroad, international expertise and intercultural skills are essential for future graduates.


The Missions
The Languages and Cultures Department assumes three missions:

>Teaching foreign languages
The study of two languages is compulsory, with English being mandatory for all students. The Department also encourages the study of a third language and offers a large choice of eleven languages.
Languages taught include: Arabic, Chinese, English, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.
In addition, French as a Foreign Language (FLE) classes are provided for international students whose native language is not French.

>Preparation for international experience
At École Polytechnique, linguistic and cultural studies are an integral part of the curriculum. These classes are also intended to prepare students for internships or academic programs which they undertake abroad. In addition, students learn to anticipate the possibilities of working abroad in their future professional careers, thanks to their familiarization with other cultures.

>Acquisition of cultural skills
The acquisition of linguistic competencies by students is encouraged through the completion of various projects. This method enables students to create and innovate in the languages which they are learning, and thus to use them more easily. Writing articles in English, producing radio programs, and acting in plays and short films are all examples of this project-oriented teaching. These creations are brought to life through trips, conferences, and cultural events.
Furthermore, thematic courses such as Business English, Famous Spanish Painters, or Creative Writing for Detective Novels in German also allow students to develop their intercultural skills.