New Report Documents Trends in Language Study

The MLA has just released its full report on language course enrollments in colleges and universities in the United States. Based on a comprehensive census of 2,547 institutions, Enrollments in Languages Other Than English in United States Institutions of Higher Education, Summer 2016 and Fall 2016: Final Report documents changes in enrollments in the fifteen most-studied languages as well as trends for less commonly studied languages. The report finds that while enrollments in languages other than English declined by 9.2% between fall 2013 and fall 2016, enrollments increased or remained stable in 45.5% of language programs. To understand how some programs remain strong despite local and national challenges, the report highlights programs that have maintained robust enrollments by implementing innovative curricula. As the report’s executive summary concludes, “[c]learly, investments are needed in language education, and this report includes case studies of successful programs on which change can be modeled.”