Modern Languages

All Majors & Minors

Spanish

Outcomes for Spanish Majors

A successful Spanish major will:

  1. Demonstrate advanced Spanish linguistic skills in speaking, writing, reading and listening:
  2. Demonstrate cultural competence:

    • Ability to communicate with a native speaker in a nuanced manner;
    • Ability to read and understand a text or cultural product within its Spanish-speaking cultural context
    • Ability to function in a Spanish-speaking culture and to appreciate its differences.

    • Demonstrate the ability to do close readings and critical interpretations of a variety of cultural products from Spanish America, Spain, and Latino US;
    • Demonstrate an awareness of social and historical contexts from the Spanish-speaking world;
    • Demonstrate basic knowledge of literary and cultural traditions from Spanish America, Spain, and Latino US;
    • Demonstrate the ability to make connections between the Hispanic world and its cultural products and other disciplines.
  3. Demonstrate critical thinking: 
  4. Demonstrate research competency:
    • Demonstrate ability to do independent research using sources produced in Spanish;
    • Produce a senior thesis that adheres to proper scholarly format, develops a clear thesis, properly uses secondary sources, and develops a convincing argument;
    • Present a coherent oral presentation of the research for the senior thesis in Spanish before a scholarly audience; 
    • Demonstrate knowledge of major concepts in literary and cultural studies
  • Requirements for Majors

    Spanish majors are required to take a minimum of 36 credit hours in Spanish at the 200, 300 and 400 levels. SPAN-251, 252, and at least one 400-level W course are required, as well as a study abroad experience as approved by the department. Spanish majors can fulfill the requirement for an oral presentation in the major and the capstone requirement by taking SPAN-401W, 402W, 403W or 492W.

    Secondary School Certification

    Students planning to obtain certification for secondary-school teaching in Spanish must take a minimum of 24 credit hours in Spanish at the 200, 300 and 400 levels. The following courses are required: SPAN-251, 252, 317, 328 and at least two 300- or 400-level courses. In addition to the course requirements, students are required to pass a qualifying examination before they will be admitted to candidacy for certification and a competency examination before being certified.

    These tests will examine students’ linguistic competence, orally and in writing, testing phonetics, conversation, grammar and composition. The exit exam will also check their knowledge of Spanish literature and culture, including the arts, history and geography. Students and their advisers should consult the Ursinus College Education Department. Language majors and students preparing for certification are required to supplement their work at Ursinus by spending a summer, a semester or an entire year in a foreign country with a program approved by the department. Exceptions to this policy may be made by petition to the department chair.

    Requirements for Minors

    A minor in Spanish consists of SPAN-251 or 252, and 16 additional credits of Spanish at the 200, 300 or 400 level.

Spanish Courses

  • SPAN-101. Elementary Spanish I

    Development of the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Designed for beginners or students with little or no recent study of the language. Four hours per week plus one hour of work with interactive technologies. Four semester hours. (L.)

    SPAN-102. Elementary Spanish II

    Continuation of SPAN-101. Four hours per week plus one hour of work with interactive technologies. Four semester hours. (L.)

    SPAN-103. High Beginner Spanish

    This course is intended for students who are experienced learners of Spanish but lack the foundational knowledge for the intermediate level. The course develops the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing by emphasizing linguistic and cultural accuracy. This course is normally followed by SPAN-111. Four hours per week plus one hour of work with interactive technologies. Four semester hours. (L.)

    SPAN-111. Intermediate Spanish I

    A review of the basic grammatical structures of Spanish, with emphasis on the use of tenses and the subjunctive mode, vocabulary development through readings and use of authentic materials, and cultural and elementary literary readings. Prerequisite: SPAN-102 or SPAN-103. Four hours per week plus one hour of work with interactive technologies. Four semester hours. (L.)

    SPAN-112. Intermediate Spanish II

    Although Intermediate Spanish II is a continuation of Intermediate Spanish I, students may be placed in this course if they can demonstrate a good command of the basic structures of the Spanish grammar. The main focus of this course will be in the strengthening of vocabulary and the written command of the language through the use of authentic materials, literary readings, and writing of short compositions. Prerequisite: SPAN-111 or equivalent. Four hours per week plus one hour of work with interactive technologies. Four semester hours. (L.).

    SPAN-201. Conversation and Composition 

    Intensive review of the grammar to perfect oral and written communication. Materials used will be predominantly literary (short plays and short stories), but also journalistic. Writing will be both formal and informal. Four hours per week plus one hour of conversation with the language assistant. Prerequisite: SPAN-112 or equivalent. Four semester hours. (H, L)

    SPAN-202. Topics in Hispanic Literature and Culture 

    Topics, to be determined by interests of students and faculty, might include the short story, Spanish and/or Latin American film, class, gender, race relations as reflected in literature and/or film, and others. Prerequisite: SPAN-201 or permission of the instructor. Four hours per week plus one hour of conversation with the language assistant. Four semester hours. (H, L.)*

    Note: Course may be taken for credit twice.

    SPAN-207. Spanish Civilization and Culture

    A chronological introduction to Spanish history, culture and civilization from its beginnings to the present time. Recommended for students planning to study in Spain. May be taken in place of SPAN-202. Prerequisite: SPAN-201 or permission of the instructor. Four hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, L)

    SPAN-251. Survey of Hispanic Cultures

    This course introduces students to the major historical events and cultural trends of the Hispanic world. Students will analyze a range of key cultural products—from chronicles to literary works, architecture and film—within their social and historical contexts. This course will prepare students with the historical and cultural knowledge necessary for the advanced study of Hispanic cultures. Prerequisite: SPAN-202 or equivalent. Three hours per weekFour semester hours. (H, L, G.)

    SPAN-252. Introduction to Hispanic Cultural Studies

    This course introduces students to the major theoretical concepts and analytical tools necessary for the study of Hispanic cultural productions. Students will analyze Hispanic cultural products from a range of key analytical categories (e.g. race, nation, mass culture) and examine some major developments in the Hispanic world (e.g. migration, globalization, neoliberalism). This course will prepare students with the theoretical and analytical tools necessary for the advanced study of Hispanic cultures. Prerequisite: SPAN-202 or equivalent. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, L, G.)

    Note: 300- and 400-level courses are offered in rotation.

    SPAN-308. Culture and Medicine

    This course is designed for students interested in medicine or allied health fields. Students will use Spanish by engaging in specialized vocabulary and a variety of cultural and technical texts. The content of the course will emphasize traditional medical and non-traditional healing practices. Prerequisite: SPAN-201 or the equivalent. Three hours per week. Four semester hours.

    SPAN-317. The Hispanic World

    The development of the Hispanic Culture as a conjunction of Eastern and Western experiences and its subsequent expansion and transformation in the Americas. The creation of the American republics, the political and socio-economic crisis of the 20th century and the challenges of the future. Prerequisite: Two of the following: SPAN-201, 202, 251, 252 or permission of the instructor. Four hours per week. Four semester hours. (SS, G.)

    SPAN-328. Advanced Spanish Grammar

    In-depth study of the main grammatical aspects of the Spanish language with an emphasis on the verb system and syntax. Prerequisite: SPAN-201 or equivalent. Four hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, L)

    SPAN-335. Independent Study in Spanish

    Individual study of topics in Spanish or Latin American literature or culture. Prerequisites: two 200-level courses and permission of the instructor. Two to four semester hours. (I, if 4 credits.)

    SPAN-340. Topics in Hispanic Studies

    The course explores topics in linguistics, literary, and cultural studies in the Hispanic world. Recent topics have included “Love, Sex and Marriage in Nineteenth-century Spanish Literature” and “Performance and Literature.” Prerequisite: SPAN-251 or 252, or permission of the instructor. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, L)

    SPAN-350. English-Spanish Translation

    Practical introduction to translation from Spanish to English of literary, medical, cultural and consumer-oriented texts. It will have an individual final project consisting of the translation of a complete text —such as a research article, a short story, a video clip, etc.—of interest for the student. Prerequisites: SPAN-328, or permission of the instructor. Three hours per week. Four semester hours.

    SPAN-352. Contemporary Hispanic Novel

    Close readings of texts from a variety of perspectives (including gender, race, class), representing major trends in contemporary fiction (Spain and Latin America). Prerequisite: SPAN-251, 252, or permission of the instructor. Four hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, L)

    SPAN-381. Internship

    An off-campus academic work/experience under the supervision of an internship adviser and an on-site supervisor. Contact the chair of the department for further details. Open to juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 120 hours of work. Graded S/U. Prerequisites: three courses in Spanish and approval of a faculty internship adviser. Three semester hours. (I.)

    SPAN-382. Internship

    An off-campus academic work/experience under the supervision of an internship adviser and an on-site supervisor. Contact the chair of the department for further details. Open to juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 160 hours of work. Graded S/U. Prerequisites: three courses in Spanish and approval of a faculty internship adviser. Four semester hours. (I.)

    SPAN-401W. Golden Age Literature

    The picaresque and the Comedia of the 16th and 17th centuries. This course satisfies the College requirement of a capstone experience. Prerequisite: SPAN-251, 252, or permission of the instructor. Four semester hours. (H, L.)

    SPAN-402W. Cervantes

    Studies in the structure, sources and the impact of Cervantive prose, with emphasis on the Quijote. This course satisfies the College requirement of a capstone experience. Prerequisites: SPAN-251, 252 or permission of the instructor. MCS-102 is highly recommended. Four hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, L)

    SPAN-440W. Senior Seminar in Hispanic Studies

    This course satisfies the College requirement for a capstone experience. It will explore topics in linguistic, literary, and cultural studies in the Hispanic world. Prerequisites: SPAN-251, 252 and senior status or permission of the instructor. MCS-102 is highly recommended. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (H, L)

    SPAN-491. Research/Independent Work

    This course is open to candidates for departmental honors and to other students with the permission of the department chair. This course does not satisfy the College requirement of a capstone experience. Four semester hours. (I.)

    SPAN-492W. Research/Independent Work

    A continuation of SPAN-491. This is a writing-intensive course and at least one formal oral presentation is required. This course satisfies the College requirement of a capstone experience. Prerequisites: SPAN-491 and permission of the department chair. MCS-102 is highly recommended. Four semester hours. (I.)