BuddingAchiever
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Yes, yes, yes I hear that there are so many different possibilities and pathways.... however do language graduates acquire the skills to be employed? If people realised that languages were so valuable.... then why aren't many people studying them at uni? Many of my friends say that although languages are highly desirable....they need another skill, therefore, combining languages with another subject i.e history, business, etc would make them more employable. On the other hand, these kind of cominbed degrees don't really appeal to me, so I was wondering whether language graduates are truly sucessful.... all university prospectuses would of course shed light for this matter..
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émiliemilia
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(Original post by BuddingAchiever)
Yes, yes, yes I hear that there are so many different possibilities and pathways.... however do language graduates acquire the skills to be employed? If people realised that languages were so valuable.... then why aren't many people studying them at uni? Many of my friends say that although languages are highly desirable....they need another skill, therefore, combining languages with another subject i.e history, business, etc would make them more employable. On the other hand, these kind of cominbed degrees don't really appeal to me, so I was wondering whether language graduates are truly sucessful.... all university prospectuses would of course shed light for this matter..
I've read in many places that employers actually look for language degrees as they are impressed with the communication skills and confidence gained from a year abroad


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llamaspoon
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Some businesses which deal with international clients prefer language graduates to business graduates. It's easier to teach a language grad business skills than it is to teach a business grad a whole new language(s).
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BuddingAchiever
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Well this is my decision sorted.....French/Spanish and Chinese here I come!!
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moutonfou
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This is something I'm very passionate about. Please research careers properly before choosing a language-only degree and don't let people who haven't yet graduated and faced the realities of the job market tell you that "employers value languages!"

Career paths in which a languages-only degree won't be a barrier are few, namely:

School teaching
EFL teaching
Translation
Working abroad
The big grad schemes which accept any degree

For everything else, the problem is that 'languages' isn't a job. An employer is usually not looking for "a French speaker" - they are looking for a French-speaking accountant, a French-speaking laywer, a French-speaking engineer, etc. Somebody with a languages-only degree leaves uni with a great skill, but no professional specialism in which to actually use it. The non-specialised foreign language jobs market in the UK is almost entirely call centre based. Please before dismissing this take a look at a popular careers site and just type in "French-speaking" and look at the jobs that come up. Once you take out teaching and translation, the majority of the jobs in the UK which specifically ask for a language are foreign language customer service/call centre jobs, particularly for travel companies.

It really comes down to what you want to do with your degree. If you are passionate about doing one of the careers in the top list and are confident you will never want to or need to fall back on the general graduate job market then do go ahead and do a language-only degree. For a language lover it is absolute heaven and I won't deny I enjoyed it. But nothing is ever certain - if I had my time again I would have just added that extra element of security to my degree by adding business, accounting, or something with professional relevance to my degree, and talked to those who had actually graduated and gone through the jobhunting process rather than listening blindly to uni promotional materials which assure you that employers love languages without mentioning which employers with what prospects.
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BuddingAchiever
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Yeah I was considering doing a GDL... But then again would I be naive into thinking that this would make me more employable unless I have work experience? And not necessarily experience in law firms but rather business orientated?


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TheBigJosh
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(Original post by BuddingAchiever)
Well this is my decision sorted.....French/Spanish and Chinese here I come!!
Should you need any advice on Chinese then I'm happy to help.
I'm a second year French and Chinese student in Beijing
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BuddingAchiever
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(Original post by TheBigJosh)
Should you need any advice on Chinese then I'm happy to help.
I'm a second year French and Chinese student in Beijing

What uni are you at?
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TheBigJosh
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(Original post by BuddingAchiever)
What uni are you at?
I'm at Leeds
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Катя
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(Original post by émiliemilia)
I've read in many places that employers actually look for language degrees as they are impressed with the communication skills and confidence gained from a year abroad


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But you can do a year abroad without doing a modern languages degree?
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émiliemilia
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(Original post by Катя)
But you can do a year abroad without doing a modern languages degree?
True but it doesn't hold the same clout as speaking another language abroad and doesn't have the same level of communication
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