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International Studies and Languages Division

Modern Languages: Hispanic Studies

A major in Hispanic Studies equips students with the skills and knowledge to comprehend, speak, read and write competently in real-life situations in the language. Both oral and written communication are stressed in the Program. A successful Hispanic Studies major will be able to discuss the literature, culture, history and geography of Spain and Spanish America at a sophisticated level. Additionally, Hispanic Studies majors engage in the analysis of phonetic aspects of the language. The completion of the major is contingent upon an intensive experience in a Spanish-speaking country. The ultimate goal of the Hispanic Studies Program is to foster awareness not just of another language and its culture, but also of the value of human diversity and each student's capacity to serve in light of this awareness.

Freshman-Year Program

The Hispanic Studies major should enroll in the regular freshman program outlined in the Seaver College catalog and should begin the study of Spanish. The course level is determined by a placement examination.

Advanced Placement Credit

Students who receive a grade of "3" on the AP exam will receive four units of credit and satisfy SPAN 152. Those who receive a score of "4" will receive four units of credit and satisfy SPAN 251, thus satisfying the general education requirement for foreign language. Students with a grade of "5" will receive four units of credit and satisfy SPAN 252. Additional placement credit will be determined by departmental examination, including an oral interview. The prerequisite for all 300-level Spanish courses is SPAN 252.

Program Requirements

The Hispanic Studies major is required to take eight upper-division courses (thirty-two units), four of which must be taken in residence on the Malibu campus. The Hispanic Studies major is also required to complete the Summer Language Program in Madrid or Buenos Aires, or 2 semesters in: a) a year-round Pepperdine Spanish abroad program, or b) a pre-approved experience in a Spanish-speaking culture. For more information about the Madrid or Buenos Aires programs, please visit the International Programs Web site.

Although the information below is excerpted from the Seaver catalog, this is not an official binding document. To view the actual catalog visit Seaver Academic Catalog

The Hispanic Studies major consists of the following:

CourseIDCourse DescriptionUnits
SPAN 300 Introduction to Hispanic Studies 4
SPAN 341 Advanced Spanish Grammar, Composition, and Creative Writing (RM, WI) 4
SPAN 345 Spanish Phonetics and Conversation (PS) 4
SPAN 347 or A Survey of Spanish Culture and Civilization 4
SPAN 348 A Survey of Spanish American Culture and Civilization (390 & 380 may also serve as substitutions under certain circumstances) 4
Choose four upper-division courses (16 units)
In consultation with an advisor, choose four upper-division Hispanic Studies classes, of which two must be Hispanic literature courses.

The prerequisite for SPAN 300, SPAN 341 and SPAN 345 is SPAN 252. Two courses from the SPAN 300, SPAN 341 and SPAN 345 sequence are prerequisites to all other upper-division courses, except SPAN 350, SPAN 380, and SPAN 390 (for which the prerequisite is SPAN 252 or equivalent competency). A Hispanic Studies major is also required to participate in the Summer Language Program in Madrid or Buenos Aires, or have an equivalent intensive experience in a Spanish-speaking culture.

Student Learning Outcomes

A student who completes the Hispanic Studies major should be able to:

  • Read, comprehend and evaluate content with a difficulty level from simple conversational text to technical, theoretical and literary passages.
  • Compose written documents that express, explain and analyze culture and literature.
  • Understand aurally and respond orally to basic conversation, as well as more complex, scholarly discussion situations in a variety of regional and social dialects.
  • Describe and critique in written and verbal form cultural manifestations and social institutions of the Hispanic World, as well as current issues related to belief systems, politics and social justice issues.  

Secondary Teaching Credential

In addition to the requirements for the major as listed above, students who plan to qualify for a California Teaching Credential in Spanish must complete course work required by the State Department of Education. A credential candidate may not take a directed study as part of the Spanish course work.

A student can graduate with a bachelor's degree in Spanish and a California Teaching Credential in Spanish by taking the required thirty units in education as part of the student's undergraduate elective courses and passing the California Single Subject Assessment Test in Spanish. More information about the credential courses can be found in the Teacher Education section of the Seaver College catalog or the Humanities/Teacher Education Web site.

Hispanic Studies Minor

Students majoring in other areas but interested in Spanish may receive a minor in Hispanic Studies by taking twenty units in the language. The minor consists of the following:

CourseIDCourse DescriptionUnits
SPAN 252 Second Year Spanish II 4
Choose four upper-division courses (16 units)
In consultation with an Hispanic Studies advisor, choose four upper-division Hispanic Studies classes.