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Multilingual Correspondence Clerk - Vocational Training in Heidelberg

Multilingual Correspondence Clerk (m/f) full-time training programme – an attractive alternative to university

  • 2019 programme start: 09.09.2019
  • 2020 programme start: 07.09.2020

Job profile: Multilingual Correspondence Clerk

Multilingual Correspondence Clerks work primarily for internationally orientated companies in various business sectors, such as manufacturing, commerce or services. They are also employed by international companies and authorities with overseas contacts. Multilingual Correspondence Clerks work independently on specialist, foreign-language business correspondence and produce translations that are both linguistically accurate and professionally appropriate. They write business letters from dictation or from key terms in accordance with the formal standards of the country in which the respective language is spoken. With a sure instinct for interaction with other cultures, they also communicate by telephone in the respective foreign language and interpret during business negotiations and meetings.

Detailed information on this programme can be found in our Foreign Language Professions brochure, available for download here.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What are the admission criteria for the Multilingual Trade Correspondence Clerk training programme?

You need enthusiasm for learning foreign languages and an interest in business topics. In addition, you should take an interest in other cultures and enjoy contact with people in an international setting. You also need motivation and a capacity for self-organisation.
Admission to the Multilingual Correspondence Clerk programme requires demonstration of good English skills (minimum B1 level). In general, the Abitur and Mittlere Reife are accepted without the need for additional language certificates. Furthermore, all internationally recognised language certificates (TOEFL®, TOEIC®, TELC) are accepted. These examinations can be taken at the school. Please note that we only accept certificates that are less than two years old. This also applies to school certificates. Previous knowledge of French and Spanish is desirable, although not essential.

  • Summer semester (March): Programme start for learners without previous knowledge. Language combinations: English, French and Spanish with Japanese, Russian or Chinese.
  • Winter semester (September): Programme start for English, French and Spanish plus the selected fourth language. Start for beginners with and without previous knowledge. The course is divided into two learning groups.
What will I learn on the Multilingual Trade Correspondence Clerk programme?

You receive intensive training in international commercial correspondence, in spoken communication and in translation skills. You will be taught by experienced and enthusiastic native speakers. Regional Studies is also a key subject, as only with comprehensive knowledge of culture, politics, geography and the mentality of the respective country is it possible to produce meaningful translations. The IT module teaches current application software such as MS Office and the production of business correspondence. In Office Organisation, teachers prepare students for the broad variety of tasks in the office. Grounding in principles of Business Administration, International Trade and Marketing rounds off the European Secretary training programme.

Which languages are offered on the four-language programme?

For your fourth language you can choose from the following languages: Japanese*, Chinese* Russian*, Arabic, Italian, Polish, Portuguese or Turkish.
*Japanese, Chinese and Russian are state recognised.

How long is the Multilingual Correspondence Clerk programme?

The programme lasts four semesters (two years) and comprises four languages: English*, French* and Spanish* plus a fourth language. The fourth language is chosen from the following: Japanese*, Chinese*, Russian*, Arabic, Italian, Polish, Portuguese and Turkish. Modules in Business Administration, IT, Commercial Correspondence, Writing Skills, Office Organisation and Social and Regional Studies complete the World Trade Correspondence Clerk programme.
*English, French, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese and Russian are state recognised.

What qualification will I receive on completion of the Multilingual Correspondence Clerk programme?

Option 1: State recognised World Trade Correspondence Clerk: The examination is taken at the school before a board of state examiners. The state examination is offered in the following languages: English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Russian and Japanese.
Option 2: IHK certified World Trade Correspondence Clerk: The examination is taken at the Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK). The IHK examination is offered in the following languages: English, Spanish, French, Italian and Polish. Further language examinations are available from the respective IHK on request. F+U certification is available for Italian, Arabic, Polish and Turkish.

Can I use an education voucher for the Multilingual Correspondence Clerk training programme?

Yes and no! The Multilingual Correspondence Clerk programme is not certified for the four-language combination. An education voucher can be used for English, French and Spanish, so you only need to pay for the fourth language. The programme is eligible for funding through Employment Agency education vouchers. There is no regional restriction on the validity of the voucher. You can apply for an educational voucher anywhere in the country and start the programme at our school. The voucher is only valid for three months from the date of issue.

What are the differences between the Foreign Language Correspondence Clerk, European Secretary and Multilingual Correspondence Clerk training programmes?

These training programmes are broadly similar. The curriculum is based on a combination of language instruction with Regional Studies, Translation, Commercial Correspondence and business-orientated subjects such as Business Administration, Writing Skills, Office Organisation and IT. The single – but significant – difference concerns the number and combination of foreign languages and the examination subjects.

Trainee Foreign Language Correspondents are able to take one, two or three languages. English is mandatory for all programmes; otherwise, students can choose from any of the foreign languages offered by F+U. By contrast, the professional title ‘European Secretary’ can only be used in connection with the combination of English, Spanish and French. Furthermore, the Writing Skills examination requires a specified rate of keystrokes. The Multilingual Correspondence Clerk training programme is an extension of the European Secretary programme: in addition to the three mandatory languages a fourth language is selected from the range offered by F+U.

Both the number of learning hours per week and the overall duration of the programme naturally depend on the number of foreign languages: Single language Foreign Language Correspondence Clerks train for 1 year; for two languages, provided the combination is formed from English with either Spanish or French, the programme is completed in 1.5 years. All other combinations, as well as the European Secretary and Multilingual Correspondence Clerk programmes last 2 years.

The examination subjects also differ. Foreign Language Correspondence Clerks are examined in their respective foreign languages plus Office Organisation. European Secretaries and therefore also Multilingual Correspondence Clerks are additionally examined in Business and Writing Skills.
A further difference concerns the range of difference qualifications and examinations for the various languages. Currently, state recognition exists for English, Spanish, French, Japanese, Chinese and Russian. In addition, English, Spanish, French, Italian, Polish and Portuguese can be examined by the IHK. It is also possible to gain F+U certification for all available languages. As an international test centre, F+U also offers several other language examinations. For example, the TRKI is recommended for Russian, the HSK for Chinese and the JLPT for Japanese.
The programme starting dates for the various languages also differ. For English, Spanish, French, Japanese, Chinese and Russian we offer admission in March in addition to the standard September starting date. Furthermore, only these state recognised languages are eligible for BAföG.

See also:



Taster day at F+U Heidelberg – Multilingual Correspondence Clerk

You are welcome to experience for yourself a typical day’s learning by coming along to an open day! Lessons begin at 8 am and, depending on the language combination, end by 6 pm at the latest. Just send an email indicating your preferred language combination to languages@fuu.de and arrange an appointment.

See also: Foreign Language Correspondence Clerk - European Secretary - Multilingual Correspondence Clerk - Translator / Interpreter










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