Careers and employability

A degree in Modern Languages and Cultures opens the door to an exceptionally broad range of careers.

What you'll take away from Manchester

Study Modern Languages with us and you'll graduate with not only advanced language skills, but also highly sought-after transferable skills including:

"Whilst at Manchester I volunteered working with young people in a mentoring scheme. Now I work with children of all ages up to 18. The skills I gained in this post really helped me to develop my counselling skills with young people and I use these almost daily."

Shona Becker / Speech and Language Therapist and BA French and Linguistics graduate
  • self-motivation;
  • leadership;
  • adaptability;
  • problem-solving;
  • critical thinking.

You will enhance your understanding and appreciation of diversity by learning about the attitudes and values of other cultures.

You'll also develop independence and self-confidence during your residence abroad.

Some of our courses also include vocational-facing optional course units, such as language for business and translation and interpreting.

What you could do after graduation

The University of Manchester is one of the most targeted universities in the UK for top graduate employers, according to High Fliers Research.

Employers actively recruit our graduates for their excellent language and communications skills and in-depth intercultural understanding.

According to the British Chamber of Commerce report for 2016, over 70% of UK businesses value foreign language skills.

This is a trend that is on the increase as ambitious firms break into new, fast-growing markets. Our graduates have gone on to work in areas as diverse as:

  • broadcasting;
  • business;
  • PR and marketing;
  • journalism;
  • publishing;
  • management consulting;
  • politics;
  • accounting and finance;
  • translation;
  • interpreting;
  • education.

What our graduates are doing now

You can read profiles of some of our previous students below to find out how their degree helped them into their current jobs.

Video profiles


    How we can help you into your perfect career

    You will have various opportunities to develop your skills as part of your course.

    Study abroad

    All of our Modern Language degrees offer the opportunity to study and/or work for up to a year in a country or countries relevant to your chosen language(s). We offer one of the most flexible residence abroad programmes of any university in the UK.

    If you choose to work abroad, we will help you to find the right placement for you, whether you want to become a Language Assistant with the British Council, gain experience at a fashion house in Paris, or work at a top Spanish football club.

    Find out more on the International opportunities page.

    Languages employability events

    You can meet Modern Languages and Cultures alumni at annual events organised by the Careers Service. You will be able to hear about our alumni's career journeys since graduation and speak to them individually to ask questions in an informal setting.

    We regularly invite teachers, translators and interpreters, as well as guests from the media, marketing, finance, business, travel and tourism, and public sectors, among others.

    "Languages provide a vast amount of transferable skills. I have learnt how to communicate in a different language, and in a different culture. I have acquired analytical and research-based skills that will be extremely useful in later life. I have already been able to secure a number of marketing work placements and internships following graduation."

    Honor de Winton / BA Italian Studies (Year 4 student)

    You will be able to attend these events from your first year at Manchester, and you will hear invaluable advice about the importance of gaining work experience and building your skills throughout your degree, as well as building a great network to support your future endeavours.

    Student societies

    There are more than 30 international and language-related student societies, offering cultural activities and experiences specific to your course. Some societies also coordinate trips abroad to language-specific destinations.

    Learn more on the student societies page.

    Go beyond your subject

    Many employers seek graduates who have skills in multiple fields of expertise to demonstrate their adaptability and resourcefulness.

    Our Flexible Honours option may allow you to study another subject within arts, languages and cultures as a minor in addition to your major within Modern Languages and Cultures.

    Alternatively, you could study selected course units from other courses around the University through the University College for Interdisciplinary Learning, as well as the Manchester Leadership Programme.

    University-wide careers and employability initiatives

    You will be able to access a rich variety of volunteering opportunities that help students build transferable skills and form part of the University's Stellify initiative.

    In addition, Manchester's Careers Service is a great starting point for discovering the wide range of opportunities and activities available across the University and beyond to help you develop your employability and transferable skills alongside your studies, including:

    • internships and other forms of work experience;
    • work experience bursaries;
    • part-time, casual and holiday work;
    • overseas opportunities, for example, our Global Graduates scheme;
    • networking events, talks and workshops;
    • mentoring.

    Students and new graduates have access to a full range of in-person and online help, including careers guidance and CV and applications support.