Spanish: Major or Minor

Andalucia, Spain

Andalucia, Spain

Why Study Spanish?

Learn about the language, literature and culture of Spanish-speaking world regions: Spain, but also Argentina, Chile, Cuba, Mexico,  the United States and more. The undergraduate program will develop your research and analytical skills, enhance your capacity for aesthetic appreciation, strengthen your powers of observation and self-expression, and prepare you for cross-cultural, global interaction.

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Degree Requirements

The Spanish undergraduate tracks cover a wide range of disciplines and historical periods while providing linguistic proficiency and cultural fluency. Students gain breadth and depth of knowledge in Spanish and Latin American Studies as they earn credits necessary for fulfilling a major, a joint major or a minor.

Academic Advisement (SPA 200+)

BA in Spanish

36 credits (including double and triple majors; for double degree combinations, see below):

  • Six credits of lower (200) level coursework: any two courses taken prior to upper-level courses, SPA 210 strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5
  • 30 credits of upper (300/400) level coursework: any 10 courses; breadth in language, literature, time periods, and world regions strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5 (2.0 if declared before 8/31/15)

Joint Major

27 credits (with a major in another BA track in a separate department; not for double degrees):

  • Six credits of lower (200) level coursework: any two taken prior to upper-level courses, SPA 210 strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5
  • 21 credits of upper (300/400) level coursework: any seven courses; breadth in language, literature, time periods, and world regions strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5 (2.0 if declared before 8/31/15)

Minor in Spanish

18 credits

  • Six credits of lower (200) level coursework: any two courses taken prior to upper-level courses, SPA 210 strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5
  • 12 credits of upper (300/400) level coursework: any four courses; breadth in language, literature, time periods, and world regions strongly encouraged; letter grades required; minimum cumulative GPA 2.5 (2.0 if declared before 8/31/15)

Double Degree

A double degree combines a Spanish major with another degree format from a separate department. (E.g. BS, BFA) Please see the Undergraduate Catalog for additional credit requirements. 

Residency Requirement

The department requires that at least 50% of credits necessary for a major, joint major or minor degree in Spanish be completed on a local UB campus. The remaining 50% may be fulfilled through any combination of study abroad coursework, transfer courses, placement exams or other pre-approved credit-earning opportunities.

Prerequisites

Acceptance into the major, joint major, or minor degree in Spanish requires satisfactory completion of prerequisites through SPA 152 or equivalent work, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5. Acceptance also requires a minimum overall GPA of 2.0.

If prerequisites are not fulfilled through departmental coursework, or if UB credit has not been articulated for qualified non-UB prerequisite work, an RLL faculty advisor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies may advise and, when necessary, determine satisfaction as well as coursework levels suited to the students’ linguistic abilities.

Students who are heritage or first speakers of Spanish must meet with an RLL faculty advisor before enrolling in any Spanish courses to determine an appropriate level of study.

The following is a guide for completing prerequisites in the department, and how previous instruction may help fulfill them. RLL faculty advisors or the Director of Undergraduate Studies can assist with any questions.

No Prior Spanish Instruction Average Preparation
(~ 2 years)
Intermediate Preparation
(~ 4 years)
Advanced Preparation
(~ 6+ years)
SPA 101 (5 credits) SPA 104 (5 credits) SPA 151 (3 credits) No courses required
SPA 102 (5 credits) SPA 151 (3 credits) SPA 152 (3 credits)  
SPA 151 (3 credits) SPA 152 (3 credits)    
SPA 152 (3 credits)      

Completing Required Credits

There are several ways for students to fulfill required credits for the major, joint major or minor: 

Departmental Coursework (as detailed above)

  • Course levels should be completed in sequence: Foundational 200-level courses must be successfully completed before advanced courses at the 300- and 400-levels, (unless an RLL faculty advisor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies advises otherwise). It is also possible to take one lower 300-level course simultaneously with the last 200-level course.
  • Occasionally (and by prior written permission from the Director of Undergraduate Studies), students may obtain exceptions, such as substitution of advanced courses for foundational courses, or credit for an internship or a course taken in another department toward one elective advanced course.
Study Abroad

AP or Similar Credit

  • Advanced standing and university credit may be awarded to students who complete college-level work in high school. UB awards credit based on AP exam scores, IB exam scores for certificates and diplomas, GCE exam scores and CLEP exam scores. Visit University Admissions for more information.

Transfer Coursework

  • Some course articulations are available on the TAURUS website. Spanish faculty advisors will review syllabi upon request.

Other Opportunities

  • Including internships, guided creative or research activity, or independent study, all of which require approval by the Director of Undergraduate Studies. 

For all study abroad, transfer courses and/or AP or similar credit, the department’s residency requirement (see above) always applies.

How to Apply

Once prerequisites are complete, acceptance into the major, joint major or minor requires an application to the major or minor. Interested students must complete a brief application form and submit a current Academic Advisement Report (AAR), available through HUB

Please Note: Application is also possible during the semester of the last prerequisite, in which case the department office will hold all paperwork until final grades are posted for the semester.

For students who do not wish to submit an online application, paper copies are available from the department office. Completed paper applications and AARs may be submitted by mail or in person (between 8:30am and 5pm) to:

Department of Romance Languages and Literatures
910 Clemens Hall
University at Buffalo, North Campus
Buffalo, NY 14260

Contact Us

Language Advisement (SPA 101-SPA 152)
Barbara Avila-Shah

910 Clemens Hall

Phone: (716) 645-0867

bia@buffalo.edu

Language Coordinator, Adjunct Assistant Professor in Spanish
Department of Romance Languages and Literatures
College of Arts and Sciences

Scholarly Interests: Sociolinguistics in Caribbean Spanish; Second language acquisition and teaching; Spanish for heritage speakers; Linguistics; Sociolinguistics; Caribbean Spanish

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910 Clemens Hall

Phone: (716) 645-0867

bia@buffalo.edu

Language Advisement (SPA 200+)
Henry Berlin

911 Clemens Hall

Phone: (716) 645-2243

hsberlin@buffalo.edu

Assistant Professor
Department of Romance Languages and Literatures
College of Arts and Sciences

Scholarly Interests: History and theory of the emotions; Medieval rhetoric and poetics; Literature, philosophy and theology; Iberian Studies

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911 Clemens Hall

Phone: (716) 645-2243

hsberlin@buffalo.edu