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Dal Senate approves new minors

Dalhousie Senate approved four new minors for the 2015/16 school year. These include Esoteric and Occult Studies, Aboriginal Studies, Security Studies and French Literature and Culture.

A minor in French Linguistics and Translation has also been approved for the upcoming school year in a recent 2015 Senate meeting, according to the Chair of the French Department, Christopher Elson.

Ruben Zaiotti, director of the European Union Centre for Excellence, said he proposed the Security Studies minor because it’s a topic that will be beneficial to students in an array of departments — not just political science.

“Security, as a concept within itself, is very interdisciplinary,” Zaiotti said.

To fulfill the Security Studies minor, students can take classes within the political science, religious studies, contemporary studies, history and sociology and social anthropology departments. Biopolitics, The Cold War, and Spying on the World: the CIA in American History are amongst some of the courses one can take to receive this minor.

Elson said the two new French minors also offer students the ability to take an interdisciplinary approach to the language. Both the Linguistics and Translation minor and the Literature and Culture minor require first- and second- year French language classes, but expand on more specific areas of the language.

“We thought there would be room to attract people to this who might not feel like they want to do another couple of grammar classes,” Elson said.

The Department of French also teaches courses taught in English, but these do not count towards either of the new minors.

The French department offers courses in literature and culture from the medieval to contemporary periods, as well as semantics and sociolinguistics.

“Canada being a bilingual country, a lot of folks see an immediate usefulness, to have not only the ability, but the credential—the minor—that gives a certain heft to a secondary, or even a third, concentration in their degree,” Elson said.

Zaiotti also said that a minor can give students an additional edge entering the job market.

Sabina Wex
Sabina Wex
Sabina is the Gazette's Managing Editor. Email Sabina at managing@dalgazette.com.
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