Please update your web browser or disable Compatibility View.

Hispanic Studies

Department Chair: José Antonio Fábres

Faculty: Eleonora Bertranou, Patricia Bolaños, Bruce Campbell, Shirley Cardozo, Nelsy Solano-Echávez, Angela Erickson-Grussing, José Antonio Fábres, Elizabeth Guzman, Roy Ketchum, Marina Martín, Christina Mougoyanni Hennessy, Elena Sánchez Mora, Corey Shouse Tourino, Vilma Walter, Gladys White

Did you know that Spanish accounts for over 54% all foreign language studies nation-wide? When we learn a new language, we learn to see differently - we acquire a new perspective from which to view both ourselves and the world. In the literature of another language we encounter a culture revealed, extended and tested by its most critical and inventive thinkers, who use the language to explore their society's limitations and possibilities. Because the study of language liberates us from bondage to a single cultural perspective and allows us to converse with members of another culture, it has from the times of the ancient Romans been considered central to a liberal education.

Students of modern languages seek to understand an intricate contemporary culture and explore the literature and traditions that give it life. The major in Spanish, accordingly, consists of a balanced program of literature, culture, and linguistics, and should ideally include one or two semesters of foreign study. Study abroad programs in the Spanish-speaking world are becoming the favorite destinations among college students. 

A Spanish major is often interdisciplinary in nature and prepares students for a wide variety of careers, both in the United States and around the world. Some students pursue careers in teaching or go on to graduate school in their field, others enter those professions in which applicants with a broad liberal background are sought. Beyond that, the linguistic competence associated with such a major is increasingly of interest to employers in a growing number of business, service, and government fields. As a result, students often choose to combine a Spanish major with an additional major.

The Hispanic Studies department also provides the core curriculum requirement in language proficiency for all CSB/SJU students. In order to fulfill this goal, all students should:

  1. Know the basic grammatical structures of the Spanish language.
  2. Achieve balanced development of speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills.
  3. Understand the relationship between language and culture.
  4. Acquire an inclusive perspective on the Spanish-speaking culture(s), one which ranges from artistic accomplishments to details of everyday life.

Demonstrate awareness of the intellectual discussion provided by the learning of a foreign language above and beyond the language's practical usefulness.


The Department of Hispanic Studies conducts regular assessment of student learning in linguistic skills as well as in the literary and cultural components of the major. Methods of assessment include: language placement test for incoming students, regular review of skills in speaking, listening, reading, writing and cultural understanding according to proficiency guidelines, a senior project written in the target language and presented in a public forum.

Requirements for all Majors and Minors:

212 is a prerequisite for 300-level courses; it also fulfills a core humanities requirement (HML literature).
Students planning to major or minor in a language are strongly encouraged to take advantage of the colleges' study abroad options.

In order to ensure a well-balanced program, no student may apply more than 10 credits toward a major or minor in any one semester, whether on campus or abroad. Exceptions will be granted only in unusual circumstances and must be arranged in advance.

Up to 4 credits in a supporting field Spanish at a foreign institution may, with the approval of the chair, be counted toward a major or minor in Spanish language.

Courses in literature in translation may not be counted toward a major or minor.

All majors must present a senior project in a public forum. In consultation with a faculty advisor students choose a project appropriate to their previous course of study and/or their individual goals (399 listing).