New Jersey Department of Education

World Languages

As one of the most diverse states in the United States, New Jersey encompasses a multicultural, global citizenry. In all regions, there are people speaking and interacting with others in different languages; there are street signs in several languages and international enterprises conducting business in English and in a multitude of other languages. The New Jersey Department of Education, whose mission is to equip students with necessary knowledge, skills, and attitudes to participate successfully in the 21st century, embraces the state’s multiculturalism and diversity, including the acquisition of diverse languages and cultures.

2020 New Jersey Student Learning Standards for
World Languages

Intent and Spirit

The study of world languages benefits all students by fostering academic success, cognitive flexibility, increased access to information from other content areas, employment opportunities, and the ability to function more effectively with understanding and respect in all environments encountered in their lives. To meet the high school graduation requirement (N.J.A.C. 6A: 8:5.1), the New Jersey Student Learning Standards — World Languages (NJSLS-WL) promotes an acquisition process that is research-based, spiraling and recursive, and aligned to appropriate proficiency targets that are designed to ultimately enable learners to attain Novice High proficiency level or higher, which is a requirement for high school graduation. All students have regular, sequential instruction in one or more world languages beginning in kindergarten and continuing at least through the freshman year of high school. Further, N.J.A.C. 6A:8-5.1(b)4 directs districts to actively encourage all students who otherwise meet the current year requirement for high school graduation to continue their study of a second language through high school in order to reach higher proficiency levels. Opportunities to develop higher levels of proficiency should be based on personal and career interests.


World languages education provides learners with the essential language skills and cultural understandings in languages other than English necessary to live and work in a global, culturally diverse world.


An education in world languages fosters a population that: 

  • Cultivates communication and cultural understanding in more than one language with the levels of language proficiency that are required to function in a variety of occupations and careers in the contemporary workplace;
  • Exhibits attitudes, values, and skills that indicate a positive disposition and understanding of cultural differences and that enhances cross-cultural communication;
  • Participates in local and global communities with people who speak languages other than English to address social justice issues and other global problems; and
  • Values language learning for its long-term worth in advancing personal, work-related, and/or financial success in our increasingly interconnected world.

Contact Us

Lavinia Rogers

World Languages Coordinator

The resources provided on this webpage are for informational purposes only. All resources must meet the New Jersey Department of Education’s (NJDOE) accessibility guidelines. Currently, the NJDOE aims to conform to Level AA of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.1). However, the NJDOE does not guarantee that linked external sites conform to Level AA of the WCAG 2.1. Neither NJDOE nor its officers, employees or agents specifically endorse, recommend or favor these resources or the organizations that created them. Please note that the NJDOE has not reviewed or approved the materials related to the programs.

Page Last Updated: 01/12/2022

to top