Nahuatl is among the 68 living Indigenous languages officially recognized by the Mexican government and has the most speakers, approximately 1.4 million. Nahuatl is part of the Uto Azteca language family, one of the largest language families in the Americas spanning the Western United States and Mexico.
Common words used in everyday English such as chocolate, chili, tomato, avocado, and coyote all derive from Nahuatl. The courses are taught by native-language speakers from the Instituto de Docencia e Investigación Etnológica de Zacatecas (IDIEZ) in Mexico through a distance-learning format i.e. video conferencing.
IDIEZ instructors teach modern Nahuatl spoken in the Huascteca Veracruzana. Nahua culture, history and modern life are at the center of Nahuatl language instruction. Classes are offered at beginning, intermediate and advanced levels. Though knowledge of Spanish is not required, it is helpful as the native language instructors present grammatical explanations in Spanish.
All language classes are offered in a series beginning in the Fall semester (1010 and 2010) and concluding in the Spring semester (1020 and 2020), and will count towards the foreign language credits required to complete a Bachelor of Arts.