How far will you take your degree?

Graduates of the BA Program in Second Language Studies go on to success in a number of professional and academic arenas. Some go overseas to teach a second language (with English being the most common, but other second languages, as well), some do further study to earn state teaching certification, and others go into careers that involve different aspects of second language studies or further professional development.

Teaching and working abroad

Teaching English (or another second language) overseas is a common path for many students who complete a BA in SLS. In addition, teaching abroad can often lead to other opportunities, such as program administration, materials development, or opportunities to lead international exchange programs.

Other language-related work

Some graduates are interested in areas such as translation or interpretation, working in immigrant services programs, or joining NGOs such as the Peace Corps.

Consulting or supplementary work

Other graduates might find that other part-time consulting opportunities may arise, in areas such as test interviewers, materials development, language software development, or facilitating cross-cultural communication or mediation.

Other types of consulting or careers

  • Curriculum design
  • Language testing and assessment
  • Literacy programs
  • Language policy
  • Program administration

Note that for higher professional positions in many of the above areas, a graduate degree might be preferable (or in some cases, one of the minimum requirements).

Graduate study

Almost every semester, some students who graduate with a BA in SLS decide to go on to graduate study, in SLS, Applied Linguistics, TESOL, or another related field.  Others choose to gain some professional experience first; after a few years they may return to school for a graduate degree.  Students who earn their BA in SLS are typically quite competitive with top graduate programs such as UH-Manoa’s own internationally renowned Master’s and PhD in SLS (for more information about either of these graduate programs, visit the Department of Second Language Studies website).