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Spanish Major & Minor

Advisement appointments for majors & minors in French, Italian & Spanish:

Address 910 Clemens Hall, North Campus
Phone

Language program advisement (SPA 101 – SPA 152)

(716) 645-2191

Dr. Barbara Avila-Shah (bia@buffalo.edu)

Majors and minors advisement (SPA 200 level and up)

Director of Undergraduate Studies (SPA 200 level and up)

Chair

 

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Dr. Maureen Jameson
jameson@buffalo.edu

Dr. Elizabeth Scarlett scarlett@buffalo.edu

Apply for the Major or Minor

Content

Why study Spanish?
Major and minor
Residency requirement
Prerequisites, application, and acceptance
Completing required credits

Why study Spanish?

Students enrolled in the undergraduate program in Spanish learn about language, literature, and culture of Spanish-speaking world regions like Argentina, Chile, Cuba, Mexico, Spain, and the United States. The program develops students’ research and analytical skills, enhances their capacity for aesthetic appreciation, strengthens their powers of observation and self-expression, and prepares them for cross-cultural, global interaction.

Major and minor

The Spanish undergraduate program course offerings cover a wide range of disciplines and historical periods as they provide linguistic proficiency and cultural fluency. Students gain breadth and depth of knowledge in Spanish and Latin American Studies as they earn credits necessary for fulfilling a major, a joint major, or a minor.

The major (B.A.) – 39 credits (including double and triple majors; for double degrees, see below):

  • Nine credits of lower (200) level coursework: any three courses taken prior to upper-level courses, SPA 210 strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5
  • 30 credits of upper (300/400) level coursework: any 10 courses; breadth in language, literature, time periods, and world regions strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5 (2.0 if declared before 8/31/15)

The joint major (B.A.) – 30 credits (with a major in another B.A. program; not for double degrees):

  • Nine credits of lower (200) level coursework: any three taken prior to upper-level courses, SPA 210 strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5
  • 21 credits of upper (300/400) level coursework: any seven courses; breadth in language, literature, time periods, and world regions strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5 (2.0 if declared before 8/31/15)

The minor – 18 credits:

  • Six credits of lower (200) level coursework: any two courses taken prior to upper-level courses, SPA 210 strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5
  • 12 credits of upper (300/400) level coursework: any four courses; breadth in language, literature, time periods, and world regions strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5 (2.0 if declared before 8/31/15)

For double degrees (the major and, e.g., a B.S.), see the Undergraduate Catalog for additional credit requirements.

Students should make an appointment with an RLL faculty advisor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies about questions on any aspect of the Spanish undergraduate program referenced in this document or elsewhere.

Residency requirement

The department requires completion of at least 50% of credits necessary for a major, a joint major, or a minor through RLL Spanish coursework on a local UB campus. The remaining 50% may be fulfilled through other Spanish courses at UB as well as or in combination with study abroad coursework, transfer courses, placement exams, or other pre-approved credit-earning opportunities (see below); RLL faculty advisement is recommended.

Prerequisites, application, and acceptance

Acceptance into the major, joint major, or minor requires satisfactory completion of prerequisites – through SPA 152 or equivalent work, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5. It also requires a minimum overall GPA of 2.0. If prerequisites are not fulfilled through departmental coursework or if UB credit has not been articulated for qualified non-UB prerequisite work, an RLL faculty advisor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies can advise and, when necessary, determine satisfaction as well as coursework levels suited to students’ linguistic abilities.

Students who are heritage or first speakers of Spanish must meet with an RLL faculty advisor before enrolling in any Spanish courses to determine an appropriate level of study.

The following is a guide for completing prerequisites in the department as well as how previous instruction may help fulfill them; RLL faculty advisors or the Director of Undergraduate Studies can assist with questions:

 

No prior instruction

in Spanish

Average preparation

(~ two years)

Fairly strong preparation (~ four years) Very strong preparation

(~ six or more years)

SPA 101 (5 credits) SPA 104 (5 credits) SPA 151 (3 credits) No courses required
SPA 102 (5 credits) SPA 151 (3 credits) SPA 152 (3 credits)
SPA 151 (3 credits) SPA 152 (3 credits)
SPA 152 (3 credits)

Once prerequisites are complete, acceptance into the major, joint major, or minor also requires applying to the program. Application is also possible during the semester of the last prerequisite, in which case the department office will hold all paperwork until final grades are posted for the semester. Applying requires submitting a brief application along with a current Academic Advisement Report (AAR) from HUB (under Advisement, My Advisement). The application can be found on and submitted via the department’s website. Hard copies are also available through the department office where the completed application and AAR can be turned in between 8.30am and 5pm EST.

Completing required credits

One way to fulfill required credits for the major, joint major, or minor is through coursework in the department, as explained above. Course levels should be completed in sequence: foundational 200-level courses must be successfully completed before advanced courses at the 300 and 400 levels, unless an RLL faculty advisor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies advises otherwise. It is also possible to take one lower 300-level course at the same time as the last 200-level course. Occasionally and by prior written permission from the Director of Undergraduate Studies, students may obtain exceptions such as substitution of advanced courses for foundational courses, or credit for an internship or a course taken in another department toward one elective advanced course.

Additional ways to satisfy required credits include:study abroad (RLL faculty advisement on program and course selection is strongly encouraged two semesters prior to intended participation); AP or similar credit;

transfer coursework, as approved after review by an RLL faculty advisor and the Director of Undergraduate Studies; – other opportunities such as internships, guided creative or research activity, or independent study, all of which require approval by the Director of Undergraduate Studies (forms in the department office). For study abroad, transfer courses, and AP or similar credit, the department’s residency rule (see above) always applies.

UB and other SUNY study abroad program information is available through the Office of Study Abroad. The Department has operated its own Summer Study Abroad Program in Salamanca, Spain, in tandem with Buffalo State College, for over thirty years. Study abroad scholarships are available from the Office of Study Abroad, the College of Arts and Sciences (RLL minors: cas.buffalo.edu/students/current-undergraduate/), and RLL (RLL majors; application open October and March).