Spanish, Bachelor of Arts College of Letters & Science

The Major Program

The Spanish major program assures proficiency in all four language skills-speaking, understanding, reading, and writing-and acquaints students with the intellectual and cultural contributions of the Spanish-speaking world through a study of its language, literature, and cultural productions.

The Program

The department's lower division program gives students a solid foundation in the Spanish language, either through the traditional elementary and intermediate language series or through an accelerated three-course sequence of Spanish for native speakers. At the upper division level, students receive a broad introduction to basic concepts and the practice of literary and cultural criticism and to the four areas of study represented in the department's curriculum: Spanish linguistics, Spanish literature and culture, Latin-American literature and culture, and Latina/o literatures and cultures in the United States. Students are encouraged to work closely with the department's academic advisors in designing a program of studies tailored to their individual needs and interests. Many students combine the Spanish major with another major in the humanities or social sciences.


Given the great flexibility in the Spanish major, it is important that students design their programs in close consultation with their major advisor. This is especially important for students who intend to use their major as preparation for graduate study, for those who are planning a teaching career, and for those who wish to take advantage of our Education Abroad Program options.

Major Advisors

213 Sproul Hall.

Career Alternatives

The program, alone or in combination with other major programs, may lead to advanced study of the language or literature and culture of Spain and Spanish America, and to careers not only in teaching, but also in other professions such as library science, law, medicine, and in government, social service, business, or international relations.

Honors Program

Candidates for high or highest honors in Spanish must write a senior thesis under the direction of a faculty member. For this purpose, honors candidates must enroll in at least 6 units of SPA 194H distributed over two quarters. Normally, a student will undertake the honors project during the first two quarters of the senior year; other arrangements must be authorized by the department chair. Only students who, at the end of their junior year (135 units), have attained a cumulative GPA of 3.500 in courses required for the major will be eligible for the honors program. The requirements for earning high and highest honors in Spanish are in addition to the regular requirements for the major in Spanish.

UC Education Abroad Program Options

The department encourages its majors to consider study in a Spanish-speaking country with our UC Education Abroad Program (UCEAP). It is now possible for our students to complete significant portions of the Spanish major in the UCEAP centers at both the lower (Preparatory Subject Matter) and upper division levels through newly introduced options. See the Global Learning Hub.

UC Davis Quarter Abroad

The Quarter Abroad Program offers programs in Mendoza, Argentina (fall quarter) and in Madrid, Spain (spring quarter). These programs aim at providing students with opportunities to increase their knowledge of the Spanish language and cultures by experiencing the life-learning challenges of living and studying abroad.

Students may earn 15-22 UC Davis units toward the Spanish major, minor, or foreign language requirement. Each program may offer an upper division course taught by the UC Davis Program Director focusing on history, culture and society.

For more information, see UC Davis Quarter Abroad.

Prerequisite Credit

Credit normally will not be given for a course if that course is the prerequisite of a course already successfully completed. Exceptions can be made by the Department Chairperson only.

Preparatory Subject Matter
SPA 001Elementary Spanish5
or SPA 001V Elementary Spanish
or SPA 001Y Elementary Spanish
or SPA 001S Elementary Spanish
Choose one:5
Elementary Spanish
Elementary Spanish
Elementary Spanish
Elementary Spanish
Choose one:5
Elementary Spanish
Elementary Spanish
Elementary Spanish
Elementary Spanish
Choose one:5
Intermediate Spanish
Intermediate Spanish
Intermediate Spanish I
Intermediate Spanish
Choose one:5
Intermediate Spanish
Intermediate Spanish
Intermediate Spanish II
Intermediate Spanish
Choose one:4
Spanish Composition I
Spanish Composition I
Choose one:4
Spanish Composition II
Spanish Composition II
All of the above, OR
SPA 031
SPA 032
SPA 033
Intermediate Spanish for Native Speakers I
and Intermediate Spanish for Native Speakers II
and Intermediate Spanish for Native Speakers III
Preparatory Subject Matter Subtotal0-33
Depth Subject Matter
Choose one in each of the following five areas:19-20
Group 1
Principles of Hispanic Literature & Criticism
Principles of Hispanic Literature & Criticism
Introduction to Spanish Culture
Introduction to Spanish Culture
Introduction to Latin American Culture
Introduction to Latin American Culture
Group 2
The Structure of Spanish: Sounds & Words
History of the Spanish Language
Applied Spanish Linguistics
Applied Spanish Linguistics
Group 3
Survey of Spanish Literature to 1700
Survey of Spanish Literature: 1700 to Present
Don Quijote I
Special Topics in Spanish Cultural & Literary Studies
Group 4
Survey of Latin American Literature to 1900
Survey of Latin American Literature 1900 to Present
Great Works of Latin American Literature/Culture
Special Topics in Latin American Literature & Culture
Special Topics in Latin American Literature & Culture
Group 5
Teaching Spanish as a Native Tongue in the U.S.: Praxis & Theory
Chicano Culture
Literature in Spanish Written in the United States
California & Latin America
Choose six electives in consultation with the student’s major advisor:22-24
Depth Subject Matter Subtotal41-44
Total Units41-77

A maximum of 6 units of SPA 199 may be counted toward the major. SPA 199 cannot be used to replace regular departmental courses.

Electives Outside the Spanish Department

Students may, with the approval of their advisor, choose up to two electives outside the Spanish department in such programs as:

African American & African Studies
AAS 107AAfrican Descent Communities & Culture in the Caribbean & Latin America4
AAS 180Race & Ethnicity in Latin America4
ANT 144Contemporary Societies & Cultures of Latin America4
Art History
AHI 151Arts of the Ancient New World4
Chicana/o Studies
CHI 154The Chicana/o Novel4
CHI 155Chicana/o Theater4
CHI 156Chicana/o Poetry4
CHI 160Mexican Film & Greater Mexican Identity4
CHI 170Contemporary Issues in Chicano Art4
CHI/ART 171Mexican & Chicano Mural Workshop4
Comparative Literature
COM 152Literature of the Americas4
COM 165Caribbean Literatures4
COM 165SCaribbean Literatures4
EDU 151History & Approaches to Multilingualism in K-12 Contexts3
EDU 152Academic Spanish for Bilingual Teachers3
HIS 159Women & Gender in Latin American History4
HIS 160Spain & America in the 16th Century 4
HIS 164History of Chile4
HIS 165Latin American Social Revolutions4
HIS 166AHistory of Mexico to 18484
HIS 166BHistory of Mexico since 18484
HIS 167Modern Latin American Cultural & Intellectual History4
HIS 168History of Inter-American Relations4
HIS 169AMexican-American History4
HIS 169BMexican-American History4
LIN 166The Spanish Language in the United States4
Native American Studies
NAS 120Ethnopolitics of South American Indians4
NAS 133AEthnohistory of Native Peoples of Mexico & Central America to 15004
NAS 133BEthnohistory of Native Peoples of Mexico & Central America 1500 to 20004
NAS 184Contemporary Indigenous Literature of Mexico4

Educational Objectives