Hispanic Studies (Spanish)
The Hispanic Studies minor at Graceland is more than just learning Spanish – it is a program that encourages students to explore the history and culture of the Spanish- speaking world through oral, written and visual expressions. We believe that language acquisition is a gateway to embracing the diversity of the world we live in. The Hispanic Studies minor fosters cultural understanding and global citizenship among its students, resulting in a transformative experience that will teach them to think critically and better understand themselves and others.
The Hispanic Studies minor offers students the opportunity to learn or polish their oral, written and reading skills in Spanish.
The minor will encourage the analysis of artistic expressions from urban art to photography to film. We aim to discover the multiple meanings hidden in visual cultural representations.
Students will be exposed to both canonical and contemporary literature from the Spanish-speaking world. Courses will help the student uncover the historical, political and cultural contexts in the works of both renowned and new authors.
Learning Spanish language and culture can complement career opportunities in a wide range of fields, including nursing, business, teaching, history and political science, among others. It also provides you with the opportunity to be globally connected with international organizations in the Spanish-speaking world. Furthermore, some students go on to complete their master’s and PhD degrees in Hispanic Studies.
When you complete the minor in Hispanic Studies, you will:
- Learn about the linguistic diversity of the Spanish language
- Have a better understanding of the cultures in the Spanish-speaking world.
- Develop important skills such as critical thinking, which most employers actively seek today.
A Hispanic Studies minor requires 18 or more semester hours in Spanish including the following:
*SPAN1410 First-Year Spanish I
*SPAN1420 First-Year Spanish II
**SPAN2100 Second-Year Spanish
SPAN2310 Spanish Contact Hours
SPAN2440 Cultural Conversations: Oral and Written Expressions
SPAN3110 Hispanic Cinema or
SPAN3120 Hispanic Literatures
*Placement Examination is available for those students with some background in Spanish.
**Students with previous background in Spanish or heritage/native speakers who place out of SPAN2100 will be required to complete an additional nine (9) semester hours of upper-level Spanish elective courses (listed below) to complete the minor.
Upper Division Spanish Elective Courses:
SPAN3110 Hispanic Cinema
SPAN3120 Hispanic Literatures
SPAN3220 Unheard Voices
SPAN3240 Literature, Visual Culture, and Digital Media in the Hispanic Caribbean
SPAN3500 Experiential Learning SPAN3900 Topics in Spanish
A student must maintain a minimum of 2.0 GPA in Spanish courses.
SPAN1410 First-Year Spanish I 3 s.h.
An introduction to the practice of using and understanding Spanish to develop listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. Goal 4
SPAN1420 First-Year Spanish II 3 s.h.
Provides further practice in using and understanding Spanish to develop listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. Prerequisite: SPAN1410 or equivalent. Goal 4
SPAN2100 Second-Year Spanish 3 s.h.
Review and development of listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. Introduces students to cultural topics in the Spanish-speaking world. Prerequisite: SPAN1420 or Placement Examination. Goal 4
SPAN2310 Spanish Contact Hours 1-2 s.h.
Contact hours in Spanish conducted independently. Available only to students in the Hispanic Studies minor. Can be taken simultaneously with the Spanish 1410-2100 sequence or before enrolling in SPAN2440. A student cannot complete more than two Spanish Contact semester-hours at a time per semester. The Spanish faculty, in collaboration with the student, will design a plan to comply with the number of Spanish Contact Hours needed. Experiential Learning in Spanish (including a study away opportunity) may satisfy this requirement for Spanish minors. Goal 4
SPAN2440 Cultural Conversations: Oral and Written Expressions 3 s.h.
Designed to facilitate a discussion, in Spanish, about contemporary cultural topics that affect the Spanish-speaking world. Students will also engage and write about texts that discuss and/or embody Hispanic culture. Prerequisite: 3 s.h. of SPAN2100 and SPAN2310 or Placement Examination. Goal 4
SPAN3110 Hispanic Cinema 3 s.h.
Designed to enhance students' knowledge of Hispanic culture through selected Spanish-speaking films. Prerequisite: SPAN2440. Goal 4, ELO4 Global Learning - Equality
SPAN3120 Hispanic Literatures 3 s.h.
Designed to enhance students' knowledge of Hispanic culture through selected pieces of literature from different parts of the Spanish-speaking world. Prerequisite: SPAN2440. Goal 4, ELO4 Global Learning - Equality
SPAN3220 Unheard Voices 3 s.h.
Explores representations of vulnerability in Latin American cultural production, particularly short narrative and film. Discusses the diversity of vulnerable experiences among unheard sectors of Latin American societies with a focus on women, afrolatinos, and the LGBTQ+ community. Taught in Spanish. Instructor approval required. Goal 4, ELO4 Global Learning – Equality
Note: Since this course is taught in Spanish, an intermediate-high proficiency level in Spanish is recommended for non-minor students.
SPAN3240 Literature, Visual Culture, and Digital Media in the Hispanic Caribbean 3 s.h.
Explores contemporary literature, visual culture, and digital media in translation produced in the Hispanic Caribbean (Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic). Through the examination of literary, digital, and visual materials, including narrative prose, paintings, murals, films, and performances, students will be exposed to multiple interpretations (new and traditional) of concepts such as citizenship and gender, sexual, and racial identities in the Hispanic Caribbean and its diasporas, particularly in the United States. Taught in English. Goal 4, ELO4 Global Learning – Equality
SPAN3500 Experiential Learning in Spanish 3 s.h.
Experiential learning (e.g. service in a Spanish-speaking country, working with a Latino non-profit organization, etc.) in Spanish conducted independently. The Spanish faculty, in collaboration with the student, will set up an appropriate Experiential Learning opportunity.
SPAN3900 Topics in Spanish 3 s.h.
Study of selected topics of interest in the Spanish-speaking world, to be announced prior to the semester when the course is offered. May be repeated for credit as topics change. Goal 4
“I chose the Hispanic Studies minor because I believe that to truly understand a people, it takes more than just learning the language. The Hispanic Studies minor allows me to learn about the different cultures, values, ethnicities, and it also helps me evaluate my own culture through an outside perspective, while also expanding my methods of communication for professional and personal use.”
– Natalie Harper
“Taking Spanish classes at Graceland University has changed my point of view on issues that are relevant and impact the Latino community. It has also motivated me to pick up a Hispanic Studies minor.”
– Gerardo Salgado
“Being a part of the Hispanic Studies minor at Graceland University has opened my understanding to the rich language and culture. I feel more prepared to break down cultural barriers and mature in versatility."
– Tabitha Watson
¿Qué está pasando? What’s happening in the Hispanic Studies?
For more information, contact:
Dr. Jonathan Montalvo