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Language Courses for Students, Staff and Members of the Public

Our philosophy is that anyone who wants to learn a language should be able to do so.

We offer language courses for Durham University students, staff and members of the public. Currently, courses in 18 different languages are available, ranging from beginners to higher advanced level. Our courses are flexible and are offered in a variety of formats and lengths, with start dates throughout the year.

  • Course Formats

    The Languages for all programmes comprise a series of non-credit-bearing language courses open to Durham University students and staff as well as members of the public.
    A smiling student walking along a busy street
  • Guide to Levels

    Guide to entry levels based on previous language learning and/or English educational qualifications, as well as, for European languages, the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).
    A bustling city road crossing

Course Formats

The Languages for all programmes comprise a series of non-credit-bearing language courses open to Durham University students and staff as well as members of the public.
A smiling student walking along a busy street

Guide to Levels

Guide to entry levels based on previous language learning and/or English educational qualifications, as well as, for European languages, the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).
A bustling city road crossing

June 2021 online course programme | Now open for registration

View course listings by language
Arabic Bengali Chinese Dutch French German
Greek Italian Japanese Korean Persian Polish
Portuguese Russian Spanish Swedish Turkish   

CFLS delivers the majority of its courses face-to-face in a classroom setting. However, due to the current social distancing measures, we will be delivering our June language programme online. Any course that starts online will be completed online.

Courses will be delivered on a teaching platform (Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, Zoom or Teams), providing a virtual classroom in which learners can interact via video with their teacher and fellow students. Classes will take place at a set time each week, as per the schedule shown for each course, replicating as far as possible the regular progression and curriculum.

If you are not familiar with online language courses, you may need to adjust to new ways of working and learning, with added emphasis on the need for self-study, already an essential part of learning a language meaningfully.

To take full benefit of the classes you will need a reliable internet connection, webcam & microphone, and an effective web browser.

Schedule of course programmes

Our main October programme currently offers courses in Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish. Courses in most of these languages are also offered in January and June.

Please see the table below for programme dates and registration information.

Programme Registration opens Course formats available Further information
June 2021 Now open Language Progression The June 2021 programme will be delivered online.
    Language Development  
October 2021 By early summer 2021 Language Accelerator  
    Language Progression  
    Language Development  
January 2022 TBC Language Progression  
    Language Development  

To be added to a contact list to receive a notification when courses open for registration, please email languages.forall@durham.ac.uk, stating which programme(s) you are interested in.

Course formats

Courses are available in four different formats, offering learners the opportunity to study at a pace to suit their language learning needs, as well as providing flexibility to work around other commitments.

Find out more about our Course formats.

Levels and prerequisites

There are no prerequisites for any of our courses, however, it is important to choose your level carefully.

View our Guide to levels.

Further information

View our Frequently asked questions or contact languages.forall@durham.ac.uk.