El Yunque, Puerto Rico


Program Overview

Spanish is the second language of the United States, one of the three most widely spoken languages in the world, and one of the five diplomatic languages of the United Nations. Students majoring or minoring in Spanish choose from a broad array of courses, including study of literature, linguistics, cultural topics, translation and interpretation, courses encompassing history, philosophy, and art that draw on the literary and artistic production of the 20 Spanish-speaking countries in Europe and Latin America. The Spanish major is an excellent preparation for careers in international relations, communications, government, law, diplomacy, medicine, business, the arts, academics, journalism, and education.

Minor in Spanish

The Minor in Spanish requires a minimum of 18 credits, distributed as follows:

  • SPAN 214/SPAN 301 (non-heritage speakers) or SPAN 227/SPAN 300 (heritage speakers) should those courses be warranted on the basis of the placement exam. Should a student place at a higher level, additional credits will be taken in SPAN 300 or higher.
  • 15 credits of courses numbered SPAN 300 or higher, with at least six of those credits in Spanish literature courses.

Major in Spanish

The Major in Spanish is a comprehensive degree that gives students a thorough preparation in language, literature, linguistics, and culture. The language courses help students develop their writing and speaking skills. The culture courses introduce students to the art, history, politics, music, and social trends of the major Spanish-speaking countries. In the literature courses students read major works by many different authors, improve their language and analytical skills, and scan a whole spectrum of cultural and social issues.

Admission Requirements

For the Minor in Spanish, completion of language level SPAN 213 or SPAN 226, or equivalent.

For the Major in Spanish, completion of language level SPAN 114 of SPAN 126, or equivalent.

Career Information

In all respects, a Spanish major enhances career prospects: bilinguals are smarter (NY Times, March 17, 2012); they have superior social skills (NY Times, March 11, 2016); bilingualism sparks creativity (Psychology Today, May 24, 2014). A second language offers an advantage in the business world (U.S. News & World Report, Jan. 29, 2014), and is a plus in graduate/medical/law school applications.

Today’s global society demands individuals who can transcend linguistic and cultural barriers. With a major in Spanish, a student can do just that.