The programs in French and Italian are multifaceted, with an array of courses in language, culture, film, literature, and professional communication. Students may begin the study of French or Italian in college or continue it at any level for which they are prepared. For French, a placement test is highly recommended. Questions about placement should be addressed to an academic advisor or the SOAR (Student Orientation, Advising, and Registration) foreign language consultant.

Graduate Programs

Students interested in graduate programs in French and Italian should inquire at the graduate coordinator's office (608 Van Hise, 262-6971) or via the department website

Affiliated Graduate Programs. For information about the PFMP (Professional French Master's Program), see the PFMP website or call 262-6971. For information about the Ph.D. in Second Language Acquisition (SLA), see the Language Institute website.

Study Abroad

For information about study abroad programs, see International Academic Programs and programs in the student's school or college.


Professors Bousquet, Debaisieux, Goodkin, Langer, Miernowski, Tochon, Vatan, Vila

Associate Professors Armstrong, Dima, El Nossery, Willis Allen

Assistant Professors Gipson

Faculty Associates Deitz

Senior Lecturer Miernowska


Professors Buccini, Livorni, Rumble

Associate Professors Menechella, Phillips-Court, Todorovic

French House

La Maison Française, a francophone (French-speaking) residence hall and cultural center, is managed by the Department of French and Italian. Residence is open to UW–Madison students with the equivalent of a fourth-semester level of French. At least two native French graduate students reside in the house, aiding in conversation and facilitating the use of French. Most residents are Americans: prospective teachers of French, French majors, and students in other disciplines who want to speak French on a daily basis. Applications should be made well in advance. More information is available at

The French House is open for lunch, Monday–Friday, for all UW–Madison students. Students wishing to receive a credit for FRENCH 301 or FRENCH 302 must attend four times per week on average. 

The French House is open to the public for Wednesday dinner and Friday lunch during the academic year.

Piazza Italia

The department sponsors Piazza Italia, the Italian floor in the Lakeshore residence halls. An Italian graduate student serves as the resident house fellow, facilitating conversation in Italian and assisting a faculty member in a special 1-credit course on Italian culture. Students studying Italian will find a collegial atmosphere at Piazza Italia, which features special Italian-oriented programming including films, lectures, games, current events material, and regular meals "all'italiana" with guests from the Italian program. Piazza Italia is part of the International Learning Community (ILC), which is dedicated to enriching cross-cultural understanding through a variety of social and educational programs.

Clubs and Other Activities


French conversation groups and The French Ambassadors, a student organization, give students the opportunity to converse in French and participate in cultural events. Undergraduates are also welcome at scholarly talks and department events on an array of subjects (see department website and the French House website for event details).


Caffè Culturale, an Italian conversation group, gives students the opportunity to converse in Italian, while the Italian Club allows students to participate in cultural events on campus and in the community. Cineteca Italiana organizes weekly screenings of Italian films. Undergraduates are also welcome at scholarly talks and department events on an array of subjects (see department website for event details).