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Courses Foreign language course

  1. Oct 20, 2008 #1
    Hello everyone, I am a mechanical engineering major and I have to decide which course in foreign language to take because is required at my school. I am between chinese and german, but I want to pick one that can help me in my future career.

    Any suggestions?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 20, 2008 #2
    You can't go wrong with learning mandarin, China is growing rapidly, and i imagine engineers will continue to be needed there at exponential rates. That would open your job possibilities quite i bit i imagine
  4. Oct 23, 2008 #3
    Before you jump into learning Mandarin, you have to recognise the amount of work it takes to become fluent in an asian language. For a native English speaker, it takes around 2400 hours of study to become fluent in an Asian language, compared to 800 hours with a European language.

    I studied Japanese for 3 years, and loved it. Am I fluent in it?...well, I did 6 months of French and I probably speak that better now.

    If you want to show cultural awareness, and are actually interested in it, by all means do Mandarin. But, if you want a foreign language to use as a business tool with any fluency, I'd choose German.
  5. Oct 23, 2008 #4
    Also realize that Mandarin will also have a completely different character set... one that is huge!

    My school excuses Engineering students from Foreign Language requirements, but we also need more than the 120 credits standard to graduate.
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