The origins of the Department of Philology of the University of Silesia date to 1973, when the Institute of Polish Philology and the Institute of Foreign Language Philology were founded. Since that time many changes have taken place in the organization of the department. At present the department numbers 10 institutes and four chairs: the Ireneusz Opacki Institute of the Study of Polish Literature, the Irena Bajerowa Institute of the Polish Language, the Institute for Cultural Research and Interdisciplinary Studies, the Institute of Library Science and Information Studies, the Institute of the English Language, the Institute of English Language Cultures and Literatures, the Institute of Romanic Languages and Translation Studies, the Institute of German Philology, the Institute of Eastern Slavic Philology, the Institute of Slavic Philology, the Chair of Linguistic Didactics and Polish Literature, the Chair of Comparative Literature, the Chair of Classical Philology, and the Chair of International Polish Studies.
Until 1991 the Departmentof Philology was located in Sosnowiec, but since that year some sections have been moved to Katowice. At present those institutes that are devoted to foreign language philology research and study continue to be based in Sosnowiec, while in Katowice are located the institutes of Polish and Classical Philology, Cultural Research, and Library Science and Information Studies. The Department of Philology is accredited to award the degrees of Doctor of Philosophy and Doctor with Habilitation in the Liberal Arts in four disciplines: linguistics, literature, cultural studies, and library science and information studies.
Currently the Department of Philology can boast the following:
- rated Category A in the parametric evaluation of institutions of higher education,
- 15 courses of study,
- 76 majors,
- a unique range of programmes offered, among which are the following foreign languages: Chinese, Arabic, Japanese, Hindi, Swedish, Czech, Croatian and Slovenian,
- the language of professional specializations: legal, economic, diplomatic,
- design of interactive entertainment and localization of games and software (SPRINT-WRITE),
- 43 academic clubs,
- innovative didactic facilities: language labs, distance learning, e-learning (the moodle platform which aids in pedagogics), interactive information-boards
- an active programme of mobility for students and doctoral candidates (MOST),
- the possibility for studies abroad during the course of the degree, and the fulfillment of internships in, for example, museums, cultural centres, NGOs and private firms (European programme ERASMUS)
- active cooperation with foreign research institutions and the international community of scholars,
- excellent employment prospects for graduates: in cultural institutions, the publishing industry, the print and online mass media and the interactive media industry, the tourism and hospitality sector, PR agencies, private firms and corporations that require high-level foreign language skills, the administrative structures of local, regional and national government, and the organs of the European Union,
- a physical plant which is fully accessible and convenient for the use of handicapped persons.The foreign language philology section of the Department of Philology is located in a modern building in Sosnowiec, which is equipped with a range of facilities that permit classes to be taught that require various technical aids. There are, for example, translation booths and also modern laboratories equipped for the design of interactive computer games. The section of the Department that is located in Katowice is in the very centre of the city, in the immediate vicinity of several cultural institutions and of the city’s student club life.