The multiple forms of linguistic expression, both oral and written, should be numbered among the defining characteristics of individuals, of societies and of humankind in general, and thus are an integral aspect of any humanistic pursuit and worthy of serious cultivation in a liberal arts setting. The study of language engages students in reflection on other cultures and widens their world perspective in ways other fields cannot. It helps them to analyze their own culture with the goal of being a better citizen both globally and locally. Language study is especially important in the context of professional and career pursuits in today’s multicultural society and global economy. Students are encouraged to combine study of languages with other majors and minors to acquire skills necessary for achievement of career goals.
The University sponsors a program in Spain or Latin America for students who are interested in an intensive language/culture program with Spanish-speaking people. See SPAN 331 - Study Culture Workshop in Spain or Latin America.
Non-majors who wish to travel or study abroad in the Spanish-speaking world are encouraged to speak with the Spanish faculty for exploration of options, and to consult with the International Studies and Programs office.
The Spanish program offers small classes, personalized instruction and a proficiency-based methodology that helps students truly communicate in the language. Faculty help students to design a major and study abroad program that correspond to their interests and that prepare them for further study and career success. Spanish major and minors have gone on to successful graduate study and to careers in teaching, social work and business.
Teaching candidates in Spanish have enjoyed a 100% success rate in meeting state standards, including the Praxis subject test and the Oral Proficiency standard set by the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages, www.actfl.org.
The student will:
- Exhibit level of proficiency at least equivalent to Intermediate-High on the ACTFL OPI and WPT scales of Spanish in listening comprehension, speaking, reading and writing
- Have a solid understanding of Spanish grammar and syntax, and will be able to model and explain linguistic structures (especially candidates for teacher certification)
- Employ both formal and informal discourse orally and in writing
- Have studied a large range of texts spanning centuries of language, and can understand the changing nature of language and appreciate the wide range of uses of language beyond communication of facts - to include or exclude groups or individuals, to entertain, to persuade, to move, to attract or repel, to show conformity or rebellion
- Attain a basic knowledge of Spanish and Spanish-American language, history, literature and culture
- Have lived and interacted in a Spanish-speaking country, and acquired a profound and first-hand understanding of that host culture, and should be able to compare and contrast that culture with her own. Prospective teachers will be able to share experiences and texts with their students in an authentic manner.
- Undertake research and find information in the target language through a number of sources (books and articles, databases, Internet, newspapers both in hard copy and online, etc.)
- Use research and critical thinking skills to present ideas and findings both orally and in writing in a thoughtful, well-organized and persuasive manner
Admission and continuation requirements
New and transfer students must consult with Spanish faculty for testing and placement. Students wishing to enroll at the 300 level or above for the first time must receive instructor’s permission.