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Czech Literature and Language

Studying Czech literature and language involves not just learning a new language, but also understanding the history of Eastern Europe. Read about undergraduate and graduate degree programs in this subject. Review some careers you could pursue with an education in Czech literature and language.

Is Czech Literature and Language for Me?

Career Overview

Czech literature and language degrees are offered at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. This degree is often offered as a major or minor within a school's Slavic languages or Eurasian studies departments. A master's degree is the most common choice for advanced education in this subject.

You can pursue a career in the nonprofit sector, businesses, government or journalism. Another option is to become a translator or interpreter. Most translators and interpreters work on a freelance basis in various industries, such as judiciary, medical and literary fields. You'll need to be fluent in at least two languages, and work experience in this field is valuable, because these professionals currently lack the ability to demonstrate proficiency through a universal certification.

As a journalist or reporter, you would be responsible for interviewing people, analyzing information and writing compelling stories based on individual research. You can expect a hectic work environment involving great amounts of pressure, stress and limited amounts of time to deliver valuable content through a varied work schedule. You may also be required to travel.

Employment

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that from 2012-2022, there will be an employment increase of 46% for interpreters and translators (www.bls.gov). In 2012, interpreters and translators earned a median annual wage of $45,430. The BLS estimates that employment of reporters, news analysts and correspondents as a group will decrease by 13% from 2012-2022, so competition for jobs will be intense. In 2012, the median annual wage for a reporter and correspondent was $35,870.

How Can I Work in Czech Literature and Language?

Undergraduate Education

Basic coursework involves learning Czech and studying the history of both the country and region. As is the case with most language programs, you can expect to study comparative literature, linguistics and society while mapping out the roots of the language. In addition, you may be able to study abroad in the Czech Republic. This is a recommended experience that will immerse you in the Czech culture, allowing you to experience the history and practice your language skills. By the end of a bachelor's degree program, you should have a reading knowledge of Czech and, depending on the program, other languages, such as French or German. Furthermore, an undergraduate degree in Czech literature and language will prepare you for a more advanced degree in this field, and introduce you to possible concentrations for continued research and study.

Advanced Degree Options

Typically, you'd earn a Master of Arts (M.A.), Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.) or Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) by studying Czech literature through directed research in multiple languages. You should not only be fluent in Czech, but also able to demonstrate proficiency in another Slavic language, such as Russian. These programs tend to be interdisciplinary, involving multiple departments, such as political science, anthropology, history and comparative literature, to deliver an all-encompassing curriculum for Czech studies. Some programs may allow you to focus on either linguistics or literature, while others may immerse you in both simultaneously. In addition, a master's and doctoral degree program would require you to complete a master's thesis or doctoral dissertation.