Spanish and Latin American Studies

With official status in 20 countries, Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the world with approximately 400 million native speakers. It is the major language in Latin America, alongside Portuguese, and is also an increasingly important language in the USA.

Buildings in Barcelona

At Sheffield we don't just think about modern languages as a way of speaking and writing. To us, they're a way of broadening our understanding of the world. If you study Spanish you'll be engaging with a global community of around 400 million, the majority located in Latin America. Our degrees involve not only the study of Spanish language but they also offer you a deep insight into the cultures of Spain and the cultures of the various countries of Latin America. Study with us and become a citizen of the world.

More about Spanish at Sheffield

Undergraduate degree combinations

BA Modern Languages & Cultures

On the BA Modern Languages & Cultures you can study:

  • Spain & Latin America: language & culture 
  • Spain & Latin America: language & culture with one other language & culture
  • Spain & Latin America: language & culture with two other languages & cultures

Choose from:

Dual Honours (with a non-language subject)

As a Dual Honours degree

  • Spain & Latin America: language & culture with a non-language subject
  • Spain and Latin America: language & culture, a second language & culture, and a non-language subject

Combine your study of Spanish language & culture with one of the following:

  • Archaeology
  • Business Management
  • Economics
  • English
  • History
  • Linguistics
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Politics

Dual honours degrees

Free Credits

If you have some experience of modern language learning, you can take Spanish and Latin American Studies modules either as part of your degree (unrestricted modules) or alongside your degree (not-for-credit modules).

Fast facts

Award: Bachelor of Arts

Duration: 4 years

Entry: ABB at A Level. We also accept a wide range of other qualifications. See individual degree programmes for more detailed information.

Modules

Post A-level

You can take Spanish in a variety of subject combinations and you can choose from a wide range of optional modules.

At the centre of all programmes are your language modules. These form the bedrock of your education in Spanish.

Post A-level students normally take three hours of language teaching per week. In addition, students will study a core module which combines the study of the culture and literature of Spain and Latin America, and can choose to take an optional module that looks at the social and political history of Iberia and Latin America. We also offer digital learning opportunities and the Hispanic Society hosts a lively social and extra-curricular programme with other students and Spanish speakers.

After the first year, alongside your compulsory language programme you choose from a wide range of culture, history, linguistics, politics or literature courses. There is also the opportunity to pick up a new language, be it Catalan of Portuguese, within the Iberian world, or beyond. Our staff have expertise in many areas which is reflected in our teaching.

Beginners' Spanish

If you are new to Spanish, you will follow an intense programme of language teaching. This will rapidly and intensively develop your Spanish. In addition, you will study a core module which combines the study of the culture and literature of Spain and Latin America, and can choose to take an optional module that looks at the social and political history of Iberia and Latin America.

In your second year, you will have three hours a week of language teaching and can choose from a wide range of culture, history, linguistics, politics or literature courses. Our staff have expertise in many areas which is reflected in our teaching.

After the Year Abroad, you are able to integrate fully with your fellow students on the post-A level strand.

Year 1

You will study 40 credits in language and culture at either beginner or post A level.

Beginner's Spanish

Title Credits Core/Optional
Spanish Language Beginners 20 Core

Understanding Spanish and Latin American Culture

This course examines the literature and film of modern Spain and modern Spanish-speaking Latin America. In each semester, three cultural products from one of these two areas are studied: poetry, film and narrative fiction. We will build up a picture of the cultural history of Spain and Latin America, as well as looking at key themes to emerge from their literary and filmic outputs. By focussing on three different genres in each semester, you will be able to explore different types of cultural product and to build up analytical skills gradually by moving from shorter or visual pieces to a larger body of writing. The knowledge and skills acquired here will underpin the optional modules at level 2 and beyond.

20 Core (if you are studying one or two languages and cultures)
Optional (if you are studying three languages and cultures)

Social and Political History of Iberia and Latin America

This module examines the historical trajectory of Spain and Portugal, their emergence as states in the Iberian Peninsula, their imperial expansion overseas into Africa, Latin America and beyond, the eventual independence of the colonies and their development and consolidation into the various modern-day states we know today. The module will explore the social, political, linguistic and cultural characteristics of these states and its peoples and highlight the importance of understanding their complex history in the formation of their identities, their languages and their cultural and political values.

20 Optional

Post A-Level Spanish

Title Credits Core/Optional
Spanish Language Post A-Level 20 Core

Understanding Spanish and Latin American Culture

This course examines the literature and film of modern Spain and modern Spanish-speaking Latin America. In each semester, three cultural products from one of these two areas are studied: poetry, film and narrative fiction. We will build up a picture of the cultural history of Spain and Latin America, as well as looking at key themes to emerge from their literary and filmic outputs. By focussing on three different genres in each semester, you will be able to explore different types of cultural product and to build up analytical skills gradually by moving from shorter or visual pieces to a larger body of writing. The knowledge and skills acquired here will underpin the optional modules at level 2 and beyond.

20 Core (if you are studying one or two languages and cultures)
Optional (if you are studying three languages and cultures)

Social and Political History of Iberia and Latin America

This module examines the historical trajectory of Spain and Portugal, their emergence as states in the Iberian Peninsula, their imperial expansion overseas into Africa, Latin America and beyond, the eventual independence of the colonies and their development and consolidation into the various modern-day states we know today. The module will explore the social, political, linguistic and cultural characteristics of these states and its peoples and highlight the importance of understanding their complex history in the formation of their identities, their languages and their cultural and political values.

20 Optional

There is also the opportunity to pick up a new language, Catalan or Portuguese, within the Iberian world. You can even choose to start Catalan or Portuguese from scratch in the Second year, as one of your optional modules.

You may also choose from a range of modules from across the School of Languages and Cultures.

Year 2

Spanish Language Intermediate (following beginner's Spanish route)

Title Credits Core/Optional
Spanish Language Intermediate 20 Core

Spanish Language Higher Intermediate (following post A level Spanish route)

Title Credits Core/Optional
Spanish Language Higher Intermediate 20 Core

Depending on your degree programme and language combination you will take a minimum of 20 and a maximum of 100 credits from the following:

Title Credits Core/Optional
Tradition, Transition and Modernity 20 Optional
Promised Lands 20 Optional
Dictatorship, Revolution and Resistance 20 Optional
Hispanic Film 20 Optional
Hispanic Fiction 20 Optional
Nation and Identities in Hispanic World 20 Optional
The Spanish Language: Structure and Use 20 Optional

And choose from year 2 School-wide modules.

Year abroad

There are three Year Abroad options:

University Study

You can study in Alicante, Barcelona, Cadiz, Granada, La Havana (Cuba), Las Palmas (of Gran Canaria), Palma de Mallorca, Málaga, Oviedo, Vitoria, Salamanca, Santiago de Compostela, Seville, Valencia, Zacatecas (Mexico) and Zaragoza.

You are also more than welcome to arrange to study at another university. Students have recently been to - among others - São Paulo, Havana and Buenos Aires.

Teaching Placement

You can apply to work as an English assistant in a number of schools across Spain. If you want to go further afield, you have the option of going to Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay or Venezuela.

Please note that the academic year begins at varying times across Latin America, so if you are due to work there your placement may begin in July or August. The application process for posts in Latin America also includes an interview in London.

Work Placement

We have formal links with a number of schools in Alicante. Other voluntary and work placements are supported and encouraged by the University but these must be arranged by students. We do, however, put you in contact with students who have taken up work placements the previous year. You have the freedom to go almost anywhere in the Spanish-speaking world.

Examples of recent placements include: internships at a corporate services firm in Panama, a marketing and events company in the Canary Islands, and volunteering at the world's only sloth sanctuary in Costa Rica.

Year 4

Spanish Language Advanced (All students)

Title Credits Core/Optional
Spanish Language Advanced 20 Core

Depending on your degree programme and language combination you will take a minimum of 20 and a maximum of 100 credits from:

Title Credits Core/Optional
Barcelona: Culture of the City 20 Optional

Civilisation and Barbarism

Students will examine a range of Latin American works from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, which deal with the notion of Civilisation and Barbarism. This concept, which developed out of nineteenth-century Argentine nation-building, has relevance beyond its initial geographical and temporal context. In Semester 1 students will read key nineteenth-century Argentine texts written in opposition to the regime of Juan Manuel de Rosas and which formed the basis of Argentina’s ‘official’ history into the twentieth century. Through close reading and analysis of these literary works, students will explore how literature can shape historical discourses. Students will also explore how these discourses are contested and will consider their relevance to contemporary Argentine politics. In Semester 2 the focus will shift to the theme of civilisation and barbarism in other Latin American contexts.

20 Optional

Political Culture in the Hispanic World

This module considers the ways in which politics and culture have converged in various Hispanic contexts, with a focus on Latin America, and studies the means by which these two areas have impacted on each other at key moments in the development of different nations. This module explores these issues through an analysis of cultural policies in the nations covered and the detailed study of a range of cultural products, including literature, cinema, music, art and sport.

20 Optional
Questioning Spain 20 Optional
Spanish Colonialism in North Africa and its Legacy 20 Optional
The History of the Spanish Language 20 Optional
Popular Music in the Hispanic World 20 Optional
The Idea of the Modern in Latin American Fiction 20

Optional

You can also choose to do a dissertation on a Spanish or Latin American topic, or the Learning and Teaching Foreign Languages module. For more information please see our School-wide modules.

* The content of our courses is reviewed annually to make sure it's up-to-date and relevant. Individual modules are occasionally updated or withdrawn. This is in response to discoveries through our world-leading research; funding changes; professional accreditation requirements; student or employer feedback; outcomes of reviews; and variations in staff or student numbers. In the event of any change we'll consult and inform students in good time and take reasonable steps to minimise disruption.

Study with us

We have a wide range of courses in the School of Languages and Cultures, combining multiple languages at BA and MA level. 

Undergraduate courses

Postgraduate degrees