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Major: Spanish and Latin American Studies

Major Details

Spanish and Latin American Studies


Department of International Studies
Faculty of Arts

This major must be completed as part of an award. The general requirements for the award must be satisfied in order to graduate.

Requirements for the Major:

Completion of a minimum of 24 credit points including the following prescribed units:

Credit points

200 level

6cp from
SPN units at 200 level

300 level

Advanced Spanish I (3)
Advanced Spanish II (3)

300 or 400 level

6cp from
Spanish Research Option (3)
Place and Displacement (3)
Advanced Spanish Residential Short Unit (3)
Rebellion and Change (3)
Advanced Spanish III (3)
Advanced Spanish IV (3)

Any level

6cp from
SPN units


Units marked with a C are Capstone units.
Additional Information
Overview and Aims of the Program Students completing a major in Spanish and Latin American Studies develop proficiency in Spanish across a range of modes of communication. They gain an understanding of the society and culture of the countries where Spanish is spoken. Students learn about cultural differences, analyse the relationship between language and culture, and apply skills in cross-cultural communication. The Macquarie University Spanish and Latin American Studies major has a distinctive cross-cultural approach and includes opportunities for innovative modes of learning including online delivery, in-country studies and internships.
Graduate Capabilities

The Graduate Capabilities Framework articulates the fundamentals that underpin all of Macquarie’s academic programs. It expresses these as follows:

Cognitive capabilities
(K) discipline specific knowledge and skills
(T) critical, analytical and integrative thinking
(P) problem solving and research capability
(I) creative and innovative

Interpersonal or social capabilities
(C) effective communication
(E) engaged and ethical local and global citizens
(A) socially and environmentally active and responsible

Personal capabilities
(J) capable of professional and personal judgement and initiative
(L) commitment to continuous learning

Program Learning Outcomes By the end of this program it is anticipated you should be able to:

1. describe the role of culture in communication and demonstrate this knowledge in a variety of cross-cultural settings (K, T, C)
2. explore cultural difference/s and demonstrate respect for them (K, E, A, J)
3. define concepts of cross-cultural communication (K, C)
4. identify the role of the Spanish language in its cultural and socio-historical setting (K, T)
5. recognise structural properties of the Spanish language and aspects of its variation and change (K, C)
6. discuss past and present cultural productions of the Spanish-speaking regions and communities (K, P)

7. evaluate and analyse ideas and information in regional studies, intercultural communication, language studies/linguistics, globalization, identity, culture transition/transmission, or diaspora studies (K, T, E, A, L)
8. examine the role of the Spanish language in its cultural and societal setting, and evaluate this role in local and global situations (K, T, I, A)
9. communicate effectively in the Spanish language across a range of forms and in different contexts including local, international and cross-cultural contexts (K, T, P, C)
10. employ context-appropriate modes of communication including electronic, written, graphic, oral and aural forms (K, T, P, I, C, J)

11. examine a variety of Spanish texts, spoken and written, and interpret implicit meaning (K, T, P, J)
12. express ideas fluently and spontaneously in Spanish (K, I, C)
13. locate and critically examine a range of Spanish language resources for academic and professional purposes (K, P)
14. employ the Spanish language flexibly for social, academic and professional purposes (K, P, I, C, J)
15. compose clear, well-structured, detailed text in Spanish on complex subjects (K, I, C)
16. demonstrate independent management of language learning and practice skills in lifelong learning of languages and cross-cultural-communication (K, I, C, L).
Learning and Teaching Methods Learning and teaching in Spanish and Latin American Studies incorporates a range of methods to enable students to gradually develop the knowledge, skills and opportunities to apply knowledge and skills in the program outcomes. Language units take a communicative approach in the classroom environment with additional audio and written material and activities to be worked on at home. The emphasis inside and outside of the classroom is on meaningful interaction and tasks, and the creation of a low anxiety environment which fosters the development of a learning community in which students can practice Spanish language and discuss the Spanish-speaking world. This is supported by a range of comprehensible inputs targeted at the students’ developing language level, both from teaching staff and support materials (principally online), and constant opportunities for students to apply their developing knowledge to meaningful tasks. These include reading and listening to authentic cultural materials, in which students are guided to develop comprehension strategies that can be applied to any situation, and to acquire vocabulary in context. In support of the communicative goals, students also review key grammatical concepts to build their confidence and capacity to evaluate their own progress in the discipline. As students progress into 200 and 300 level units, they also engage in tasks and enrol in units with a stronger emphasis on cognitive and analytical skills in addition to language proficiency, including conducting research about the Spanish-speaking world and presenting it in a variety of formats such as oral presentations and written and spoken discussions, essays, debates, and audio-visual recordings. Teaching models include: practicals, seminars, lectures, tutorials, and supervised independent study. All units are also offered in External mode and have been designed to support online learning. Students of Spanish and Latin American Studies have opportunities to include in-country studies such as intensive residential units and semester exchange as well as PACE activities in their degree.
Assessment Assessment in Spanish and Latin American Studies units is based on a progressive continuous assessment model, which ensures compliance with Macquarie’s policy of early, low-risk assessment and feedback, a minimum of three assessment tasks and different types of task, with no task worth more than 60% of the unit total. The diversity of assessment tasks strives to create a balance for students with different learning styles and opportunities for students to develop their skills across the four language learning areas of listening, reading, writing and speaking. Students are given multiple opportunities in each unit throughout the Major to develop comprehension and communication strategies that will assist them in attaining the overall program learning outcomes. Depending on their language proficiency and the level of the unit, assessment tasks require students to engage with speech and writing in Spanish and express themselves appropriately according to the context and medium, while demonstrating their growing knowledge of the structural aspects of the language and the cultural contexts in which communication occurs in the Spanish-speaking world. The emphasis is on formative tasks with meaningful applications, such as spoken and written tasks relating to students’ lives, opinions and their engagement with the Spanish-speaking world, however some summative tasks such as grammar and vocabulary quizzes are incorporated, particularly at 100 and 200 levels, so that students can confirm minimum attainment of key structural aspects of the language. All student work is evaluated according to standards that are clearly articulated within the unit, and no norm-referencing is used. Spanish and Latin American Studies employs moderation procedures between multiple markers involved in a single unit and external moderation for units with a single marker, and incorporates some machine-marked activities.

Examples of assessment types include:
• quiz
• oral assignment – individual and group (e.g. advertisements, dialogues, monologues, interviews)
• written composition
• oral examination
• debate
• essay
• video/audio recording
• online discussion – written and spoken
• review
• editorial
• participation
• homework (e.g. grammar exercises, reading and listening comprehension)
• literature review
• presentation.
Recognition of Prior Learning

Macquarie University may recognise prior formal, informal and non-formal learning for the purpose of granting credit towards, or admission into, a program. The recognition of these forms of learning is enabled by the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Policy and its associated Procedures and Guidelines. For recognition of prior informal and non-formal learning, please refer to the relevant RPL Plan, which describes the evidential requirements and approval processes for recognising prior learning for entry or credit in this program.

For undergraduate RPL plans visit
For postgraduate RPL plans visit

Support for Learning

Macquarie University aspires to be an inclusive and supportive community of learners where all students are given the opportunity to meet their academic and personal goals. The University offers a comprehensive range of free and accessible student support services which include academic advice, counselling and psychological services, advocacy services and welfare advice, careers and employment, disability services and academic skills workshops amongst others. There is also a bulk billing medical service located on campus.

Further information can be found at

Campus Wellbeing contact details:
Phone: +61 2 9850 7497

Program Standards and Quality

The program is subject to an ongoing comprehensive process of quality review in accordance with a pre-determined schedule that complies with the Higher Education Standards Framework. The review is overseen by Macquarie University's peak academic governance body, the Academic Senate and takes into account feedback received from students, staff and external stakeholders.

Graduate Destinations and Employability A major in Spanish and Latin American Studies can be completed in the Bachelor of Arts giving students a proficiency in Spanish language and culture which they can apply to their professional endeavours in a range of fields or as preparation for professional or research degrees at the post-graduate level. The Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Latin American Studies can also be combined with degrees in Law, Education, Commerce, Business Administration, Science or Engineering, giving graduates in those areas distinctive additional communication skills and cultural knowledge to distinguish them from their peers. A major in Spanish and Latin American Studies can also be completed as part of specialised degrees such as the Bachelor of Global Business, which combines a focus on the relationship between language, history and culture with business skills and a work placement opportunity.

Career options for students majoring in Spanish and Latin American Studies:
• international business - private sector
• international public sector
• communications and media
• travel and tourism
• international law
• translation and interpreting
• education
• consulting.
Assessment Regulations

This program is subject to Macquarie University regulations, including but not limited to those specified in the Assessment Policy, Academic Honesty Policy, the Final Examination Policy and relevant University Rules. For all approved University policies, procedures, guidelines and schedules visit