Spanish

Major Description

Spanish seeks to provide students with linguistic, communication, cultural and critical thinking skills in Spanish so they can pursue graduate school or careers which require them to apply these cross cultural competencies in an increasingly globalized world. Students take a sequence of basic core courses in language skills and content areas like linguistics, and literature and culture of the Spanish speaking world. Three features that define the program are the study of the language through content and in the context of other languages, community-based language learning, and the use of technology in the classroom.

Spanish is presented in contact with other languages and cultures: courses in Catalan, Basque and Quechua are offered; literatures and cultures are approached from a trans-Atlantic perspective; Portuguese, Italian and Spanish are linked when viewing cultural phenomena in Southern Europe or in Latin America; Latina/Latino Studies are discussed.

Concentrations:

Students may choose from one of two concentrations.

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Focuses on preparing students with professional goals of teaching Spanish. Visit https://flte.illinois.edu/ to learn more about teaching of Spanish.

Courses That Introduce the Major:
  • Spanish basic language sequence through SPAN 141 or 142 for completion of non-primary language requirements. These courses do not count towards the major.
  • SPAN 204 - Advanced Spanish Grammar in Context
  • SPAN 228 - Spanish Composition
  • other 200-level Spanish courses

Students should consult with an academic advisor regarding course selection prior to the advanced registration period.

Possible Career Opportunities:

Spanish can be a springboard to professional and personal success.

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  • Acknowledging value systems
  • Adapting to other cultures
  • Assessing needs
  • Clarifying ideas
  • Collaborating as part of a team
  • Communicating between cultures
  • Comparing translations
  • Compiling/recording data
  • Determining the needs of others
  • Evaluating results
  • Explaining complex concepts
  • Gathering and Evaluating information
  • Interviewing non-judgmentally
  • Listening carefully
  • Organizing materials/information
  • Reading for content and structure
  • Reading/writing another language
  • Speaking to groups
  • Understanding cultural diversity
  • Understanding historical language change
  • Weighing values
  • Account Supervisor
  • Advocate
  • Consumer Affairs Representative
  • Counselor
  • Culture Teacher
  • Foreign Service Officer
  • Human Resources
  • Insurance Agent
  • International Law
  • Interpreter
  • Journalist
  • Linguist
  • Peace Corps
  • Relocation Manager
  • Spanish Studies Instructor
  • Teacher
  • Tour Guide
  • Travel Agent
  • Volunteer Coordinator
  • Writer

Some careers may require education beyond an undergraduate degree.

Enhancing Your Academic Experience:
  • Participating in undergraduate research
  • Applying for a study abroad experience
  • Utilizing resources of The Career Center
  • Joining a Registered Student Organization (RSO) related to this major, such as:
    • Mi Pueblo Spanish Conversation Groups:  provides informal opportunities to practice conversational Spanish on campus.  By utilizing online resources, student facilitators arrange and maintain weekly 1-hour meetings with other students to talk about various topics in Spanish.  Through cultural events and volunteer activities, our goal is to improve participants’ speaking abilities as well as foster genuine social bonds between members of conversation groups and the Hispanic community.
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Further Information:

There are several professional organizations dedicated to Spanish.  Their websites might be able to provide a glimpse in the world of Spanish.  These organizations include American Council on the Teaching of Foreign LanguagesAmerican Translators Association, and Modern Language Association. In addition, be sure to visit the Spanish Undergraduate website to learn more about this major!