Sharpen your foreign language skills


University College at Fairfield University in partnership with the Rassias Foundation at Dartmouth College, offers their popular Weekend Immersion Programs (WIPs) featuring Arabic, French, Italian and Spanish Friday, April 4 through Sunday, April 6.

Advanced beginners and intermediate level speakers in any of the four languages offered are encouraged to face the challenge of increasing one's comfort level and take a leap to the next level of proficiency. The programs are designed for people with limited time who are looking to reinforce and improve languages skills.

The WIPs use the Rassias Method® for language teaching and the Dartmouth Intensive Language Model (DILM), which were adapted to the needs of Fairfield University in 1998 by Joel Goldfield, Ph.D., associate professor of modern languages and literatures at Fairfield. Conceived by Professor John Rassias, the Rassias Method® is a way to develop proficiency in another language through the use of physical demonstrations and frequent guided speaking.

Linnell Smith of The Baltimore Sun captured the essence of Rassias' approach to language in his analysis, "To Rassias, language is ritual celebration, a momentous, living theatre. He knows that emotion and rhythm and movement make people remember things."

Dr. Goldfield who is also director of The Culpeper Language Resource Center at the university described the optimum learning atmosphere surrounding the intensive weekend programs by saying, "There's a spirit of dedication and good humor. All the participants arrive highly motivated to learn the language and as a result, in just three days students will learn more and noticeably improve their ability to speak the language."

Typically, the WIPs begin with an orientation lunch at noon on Friday and continue with classes through the afternoon into the early evening; the next are two full days with a graduation in the late afternoon on Sunday.

Tuition is $500, which includes a $100 non-refundable registration fee due at the time of registration. Lunches with staff are mandatory and included in the cost of the program. Breakfast, dinner and transportation to and from Fairfield are not included. Deadline for registration is Friday, March 28. A phone interview is required.

Prospective participants interested in WIPs in Brazilian, Portuguese, Chinese, German, Japanese, and Russian should inquire with University College. Future WIPs are planned for Oct. 2008 and April 2009.

For further information, please contact Jane Aquino of University College at (203) 254-4307 or visit www.fairfield.edu/wips.

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Media Contact: Joan Grant, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2950, jgrant@fairfield.edu

Posted on March 24, 2008

Vol. 40, No. 215