Rivka

Rivka
Rivka Bidwell
Undergraduate Student
BA Modern Languages & Cultures
Rivka on studying German, Dutch and Luxembourgish
Rivka

Why did you choose Sheffield to study Languages?

I was initially interested in Sheffield University because I was impressed by the department and it's variety of modules and languages, as well as it's focus on cultural modules. The staff were very friendly, and the department seemed well organised and well established. I was further impressed by the Germanic Languages department at Sheffield because it offered the Dutch and Luxembourgish languages as options, which wasn't offered in many other (if any) places in the UK. I also wanted to do a degree that I would enjoy, and so Sheffield became my first choice.

What do you particularly enjoy about your degree programme?

My degree programme consists of German, Dutch and Luxembourgish language modules, as well as many cultural modules. My degree is structured in a way, that I have lots of freedom to choose my modules, based on what each language department offers each year. I particularly enjoy this freedom because I am therefore able to get what I want out of my degree, while also acquiring a large variety of skills through the broad scope of topics that this language department offers.

Are there any modules that you have particularly enjoyed during your degree so far, and why?

Luxembourgish: I am a second year student of Luxembourgish (the official language from Luxembourg), and I can honestly say that I am thoroughly enjoying this module. I continued it into my final year at university because it was something I knew I could enjoy, even at final year. I initially chose to do it as a second year module, because it was an interesting concept to me, that I could learn a third language, and especially one that isn't spoken very widely. It is a language that is indeed very important within Luxembourg, and is something which considers the learners of this language, pioneers. I enjoy learning about new cultures and languages, so this was the perfect choice. The module is very well organised, and we all get the best teaching and supervision needed. This module even organises a trip into Luxembourg, offering a thoroughly well-rounded experience of the language and culture that this module and country has to offer. I would definitely recommend this module to anybody.

Where did you go and what did you do during your year abroad?

I spent half of my time abroad in the Netherlands and the other half in Berlin. My aim was to improve my Dutch and German language skills, which is something that I think I achieved during this time. However, I didn't go to Luxembourg on my year abroad, as I didn't have the time to make it to three countries - but I would have if I could. Thankfully, going on the department trip to Luxembourg really help. This meant that my interest in the country, culture and language increased, and that I was able to put 'face to the name' by going to Luxembourg and seeing the sights.

How would you sum up your overall experience of studying at Sheffield?

Fantastic!

Would you recommend studying Languages at Sheffield?

I would definitely recommend studying languages at Sheffield. They offer the flexibility to do a large variety of languages, they offer the opportunities to go in depth into these languages and cultures. It is a department with a wide range of academic research topics, meaning that as students, we can make the most of what is available to us.

Do you have any advice for students thinking about studying Languages in Sheffield?

Study Luxembourgish! If you get the chance to widen your horizons and to get to know another language that could prove useful in your future, why not? I did, and I will never regret this decision.

Jessop West

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