Spanish and Portuguese

University of California, Berkeley

About the Program

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

The sequence of undergraduate programs of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese is designed to lead from the acquisition of competence in written and spoken Spanish or Portuguese, through an acquaintance with the structure and history of one or both of these languages and a critical understanding of the development and achievements of their literatures in the Old World and in the New, to training in advanced study and independent research. The department’s policy is to maintain a balanced strength between language and literature and between Peninsular and Latin American facets of a unified field.

Students in this major choose one of the following concentrations based on general area of interest:

Concentration A: The Languages, Literatures, and Cultures of the Spanish-Speaking World

This concentration is recommended for students interested in the languages, literature, and cultures of the Spanish-speaking World on both sides of the Atlantic.

Concentration B: The Languages, Literatures, and Cultures of the Portuguese-Speaking World

This concentration is recommended for students interested in the language, literature, and culture of the Portuguese-speaking world, and may include up to three upper division electives in Spanish.

Concentration C: Latin American Languages, Literatures, and Cultures

This concentration is recommended for students interested in the languages, literatures, and cultures of both Spanish-speaking and Portuguese-speaking Latin America. It requires coursework in both Spanish and Portuguese, which makes possible comparative approaches to the culture, literature, and history of the region.

Concentration D: Hispanic Languages, Linguistics, and Bilingualism

This concentration is recommended for students interested in the linguistic structure of Spanish and/or Portuguese, bilingualism in society, and/or career in K-12 foreign language teaching, as well as for future graduate students in (Hispanic) Linguistics.

Declaring the Major

Students can receive pre-major advising at any time, from the staff undergraduate adviser. Students can declare the major once they have completed SPANISH 25 for concentrations A, C, and D. For concentration B, students must complete  PORTUG 50 before declaring the major. These prerequisite courses must be taken for a letter grade.

Honors Program

Students are eligible to do honors work within the Department of Spanish and Portuguese if they have completed at least two semesters of work at Berkeley with an overall grade point average of 3.3 and a grade point average of at least 3.6 in those courses taken within the major. Students must complete two honors courses, SPANISH H195A (1.5 units) and SPANISH H195B (1.5 units), in two successive semesters, and will write a thesis under the supervision of an appropriate departmental faculty member over the course of two successive semesters. A letter grade, reflecting progress, will be given after the first semester. H195A/B will not count toward the required upper division work in the major. Before the semester in which students intend to begin the honors program, they should speak with the staff undergraduate adviser to verify eligibility for honors work and to discuss the process.

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Major Requirements

In addition to the University, campus, and college requirements, listed on the College Requirements tab, students must fulfill the below requirements specific to their major program.

General Guidelines

  1. All courses taken to fulfill the major requirements below must be taken for graded credit.

  2. No more than one upper division course may be used to simultaneously fulfill requirements for a student's major and minor programs, with the exception of minors offered outside of the College of Letters & Science.

  3. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 must be maintained in both upper and lower division courses used to fulfill the major requirements.

For information regarding residency requirements and unit requirements, please see the College Requirements tab.

Requirements by Concentration

Concentration A: The Languages, Literatures, and Cultures of the Spanish-Speaking World
Lower Division Prerequisites
SPANISH 1Elementary Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 2Elementary Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 3Intermediate Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 4Intermediate Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 25Reading and Analysis of Literary Texts3
Upper Division Requirements 1
SPANISH 104ASurvey of Spanish American Literature4
or SPANISH 107A Survey of Spanish Literature
SPANISH 104BSurvey of Spanish American Literature4
or SPANISH 107B Survey of Spanish Literature
SPANISH 135WStudies in Hispanic Literature - Writing Intensive4
Three elective courses in Spanish or Latin-American Literature/Culture12
Two elective courses in any upper division Spanish, Portuguese, or Catalan topic8
1

 Three total courses must focus on Latin-America and three must focus on Spain.

Concentration B: The Languages, Literatures, and Cultures of the Portuguese-Speaking World 
Lower Division Prerequisites
PORTUG 50Intensive Portuguese for Spanish Speakers4
SPANISH 25Reading and Analysis of Literary Texts 13
Upper Division Requirements
PORTUG 102Readings in Portuguese4
PORTUG 103Advanced Grammar and Composition4
PORTUG 104Introduction to Brazilian Literature4
PORTUG 107ACourse Not Available
or PORTUG 107B Course Not Available
Four upper division electives - a minimum of two courses on Portuguese/Brazilian topics, a maximum of two courses on Spanish or Spanish-American Literature/Culture, a maximum of one course on a related topic such as Hispanic Linguistics or Advanced Composition16
1

 Only if student is taking upper division Spanish courses

Concentration C: Latin American Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
Lower Division Prerequisites
SPANISH 1Elementary Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 2Elementary Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 3Intermediate Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 4Intermediate Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 25Reading and Analysis of Literary Texts3
PORTUG 50Intensive Portuguese for Spanish Speakers4
Upper Division Requirements
PORTUG 103Advanced Grammar and Composition4
PORTUG 104Introduction to Brazilian Literature4
or PORTUG 128 Twentieth-Century Brazilian Literature
SPANISH 104ASurvey of Spanish American Literature4
or SPANISH 104B Survey of Spanish American Literature
SPANISH 135WStudies in Hispanic Literature - Writing Intensive4
Two electives in Spanish, Spanish-American, Brazilian or Portuguese Literature/Culture8
Two electives in any upper division Spanish or Portuguese topic8
Concentration D: Hispanic Languages, Linguistics, and Bilingualism
Lower Division Prerequisites
SPANISH 1Elementary Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 2Elementary Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 3Intermediate Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 4Intermediate Spanish (or equivalent)5
SPANISH 25Reading and Analysis of Literary Texts3
Upper Division Requirements
SPANISH 100Introduction to Hispanic Linguistics4
SPANISH 161Spanish Phonetics and Phonology4
SPANISH 162Spanish Morphology and Syntax4
SPANISH 163Sociolinguistic and Psycholinguistic Approaches to Spanish Bilingualism4
SPANISH 164Spanish Dialectology and Sociolinguistic Variation4
One elective in Hispanic Linguistics4
One elective in Linguistics4
One elective in any upper division Spanish, Portuguese, or Catalan topic4

College Requirements

Undergraduate students must fulfill the following requirements in addition to those required by their major program.

For detailed lists of courses that fulfill college requirements, please review the College of Letters & Sciences page in this Guide. For College advising appointments, please visit the L&S Advising Pages. 

University of California Requirements

Entry Level Writing

All students who will enter the University of California as freshmen must demonstrate their command of the English language by fulfilling the Entry Level Writing requirement. Fulfillment of this requirement is also a prerequisite to enrollment in all reading and composition courses at UC Berkeley. 

American History and American Institutions

The American History and Institutions requirements are based on the principle that a US resident graduated from an American university, should have an understanding of the history and governmental institutions of the United States.

Berkeley Campus Requirement

American Cultures

All undergraduate students at Cal need to take and pass this course in order to graduate. The requirement offers an exciting intellectual environment centered on the study of race, ethnicity and culture of the United States. AC courses offer students opportunities to be part of research-led, highly accomplished teaching environments, grappling with the complexity of American Culture.

College of Letters & Science Essential Skills Requirements

Quantitative Reasoning

The Quantitative Reasoning requirement is designed to ensure that students graduate with basic understanding and competency in math, statistics, or computer science. The requirement may be satisfied by exam or by taking an approved course.

Foreign Language

The Foreign Language requirement may be satisfied by demonstrating proficiency in reading comprehension, writing, and conversation in a foreign language equivalent to the second semester college level, either by passing an exam or by completing approved course work.

Reading and Composition

In order to provide a solid foundation in reading, writing, and critical thinking the College requires two semesters of lower division work in composition in sequence. Students must complete parts A & B reading and composition courses by the end of their second semester and a second-level course by the end of their fourth semester.

College of Letters & Science 7 Course Breadth Requirements

Breadth Requirements

The undergraduate breadth requirements provide Berkeley students with a rich and varied educational experience outside of their major program. As the foundation of a liberal arts education, breadth courses give students a view into the intellectual life of the University while introducing them to a multitude of perspectives and approaches to research and scholarship. Engaging students in new disciplines and with peers from other majors, the breadth experience strengthens interdisciplinary connections and context that prepares Berkeley graduates to understand and solve the complex issues of their day.

Unit Requirements

  • 120 total units

  • Of the 120 units, 36 must be upper division units

  • Of the 36 upper division units, 6 must be taken in courses offered outside your major department
Residence Requirements

For units to be considered in "residence," you must be registered in courses on the Berkeley campus as a student in the College of Letters & Science. Most students automatically fulfill the residence requirement by attending classes here for four years. In general, there is no need to be concerned about this requirement, unless you go abroad for a semester or year or want to take courses at another institution or through UC Extension during your senior year. In these cases, you should make an appointment to meet an adviser to determine how you can meet the Senior Residence Requirement.

Note: Courses taken through UC Extension do not count toward residence.

Senior Residence Requirement

After you become a senior (with 90 semester units earned toward your BA degree), you must complete at least 24 of the remaining 30 units in residence in at least two semesters. To count as residence, a semester must consist of at least 6 passed units. Intercampus Visitor, EAP, and UC Berkeley-Washington Program (UCDC) units are excluded.

You may use a Berkeley Summer Session to satisfy one semester of the Senior Residence requirement, provided that you successfully complete 6 units of course work in the Summer Session and that you have been enrolled previously in the college.

Modified Senior Residence Requirement

Participants in the UC Education Abroad Program (EAP), Berkeley Summer Abroad, or the UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC) may meet a Modified Senior Residence requirement by completing 24 (excluding EAP) of their final 60 semester units in residence. At least 12 of these 24 units must be completed after you have completed 90 units.

Upper Division Residence Requirement

You must complete in residence a minimum of 18 units of upper division courses (excluding UCEAP units), 12 of which must satisfy the requirements for your major.

Student Learning Goals

Learning Goals for the Major

  1. Attain solid (though not necessarily flawless) proficiency in reading, writing, understanding, and speaking Spanish and/or Portuguese.

  2. Recognize a variety of genres and modes of writing (fiction, poetry, theater, and essay).

  3. Become conversant in the vocabulary associated with literary analysis in Spanish and/or Portuguese.

  4. Be able to articulate specific connections between literary texts and the historical and cultural contexts in which they were produced.

  5. Gain a critical awareness of distinctions and continuities among the literatures of the Iberian peninsula and Latin America across national and regional boundaries and historical periods.

  6. Acquire the analytical resources of diverse literary approaches and theories.

Skills

  1. Demonstrate the ability to interpret and analyze texts written in Spanish and/or Portuguese, depending upon the major option.

  2. Develop critical approaches for the analysis of texts from a range of historical periods and regions of Latin America and the Iberian peninsula.

  3. Distinguish among dialects and usages typical of diverse regions, social contexts, and historical periods in Spain and/or Portugal, and the Americas, including usages of heritage speakers (Option D).

  4. Formulate well-organized, well-supported arguments both orally and in written stylistically effective Spanish and/or Portuguese.

  5. Write essays in standard academic Spanish and/or Portuguese, using appropriate vocabulary to discuss examples from specific texts.

  6. Be able to distinguish among the available print and online sources and choose those that are most reliable as support for arguments in class discussion and essays.

  7. Practice responsible citation of sources in essays.

Advising

Advising Staff and Advising Hours

Jenny Cole
spanua@berkeley.edu
5317 Dwinelle Hall (Floor E)
Fall and spring semesters: Monday through Friday, 9 to noon and 1 to 4 p.m.; or by appointment.
Summer: Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 3 p.m.; or by appointment.

Mailing Address

Department of Spanish and Portuguese
5317 Dwinelle Hall #2590
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720-2590

Academic Opportunities

Study Abroad

There are several options for studying abroad in a Spanish speaking country, with program options that are suitable for students who have no Spanish language background, as well as opportunities for those who are fully fluent. The UC Education Abroad Program (UCEAP) offers summer, semester and classic full academic year immersion programs. Students with existing language ability may pursue their major studies at some of the most prestigious institutions in Spain and Latin America.

Spanish majors must complete 20 units of upper-division coursework within the department here at Berkeley and can transfer in the remaining approved courses from abroad.

The UCEAP office on campus is in 160 Stephens Hall. More information can be found on the UCEAP website.

Prizes and Awards

The John K. Walsh Undergraduate $500.00 Scholarship is awarded to Spanish and Portuguese majors to recognize academic achievement and alleviate the financial burden of education for outstanding undergraduate majors.

Cervantes Prize: This prize is for excellence in undergraduate literary studies in Spanish.

Related Courses

Faculty and Instructors

+ Indicates this faculty member is the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award.

Faculty

Emilie L. Bergmann, Professor. Early modern Spain, colonial Spanish America, Spanish literature, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, visual studies, gender and sexuality studies.
Research Profile

Natalia Brizuela, Associate Professor. Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Anthony J. Cascardi, Professor. English, comparative literature, literature, Spanish, Portuguese, philosophy, aesthetics, early modern literature, French, Spanish Baroque.
Research Profile

Justin Davidson, Assistant Professor. Spanish linguistics, romance linguistics, contact linguistics, bilingualism, Catalan, sociophonetics, language variation and change, quantitative methods.
Research Profile

Ivonne Del Valle, Associate Professor. Colonial period in Mexico, internal colonialism in Mexico, Jesuits (Loyola, Acosta, Baegert), Baroque and Enlightenment from a colonial perspective, technology and environment, drainage of Mexico City lakes, Christianity and Pre-Hispanic religions.
Research Profile

Daylet Dominguez, Assistant Professor. Modern and Contemporary Latin American and Caribbean Literatures and Cultures.
Research Profile

Michael Iarocci, Professor. Spanish, literature.
Research Profile

Tom McEnaney, Assistant Professor.

Ignacio Navarrete, Professor. Spanish literature: poetry, poetic theory, narrative and culture, history of the book, Cervantes, Don Quixote, Medieval and Early Modern Spanish literature. Modern Spain.
Research Profile

Alexandra Saum Pascual, Assistant Professor. Spain, electronic literature, contemporary literature, digital humanities, new media.
Research Profile

Candace Slater, Professor. Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Estelle Tarica, Associate Professor. Latin America, Mexico, race, nationalism, Spanish, mestizo, Indians, Andes, Bolivia, Peru, Holocaust, Quechua.
Research Profile

Nathaniel Wolfson, Assistant Professor.

Lecturers

Amelia R. Barili, Lecturer.

Jhonni Carr, Lecturer.

Agnes Dimitriou, Lecturer.

Clelia Francesca Donovan, Lecturer.

Miriam Hernandez-Rodriguez, Lecturer.

Elena B. Olsen, Lecturer.

Duarte Carvalho Pinheiro, Lecturer.

Ana Belen Redondo Campillos, Lecturer.

Victoria Martinez Robertson, Lecturer.

Donna A. Southard, Lecturer.

Tanya Varela, Lecturer.

Emeritus Faculty

Arthur L. Askins, Professor Emeritus. Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Milton M. Azevedo, Professor Emeritus. Linguistics, Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Jerry R. Craddock, Professor Emeritus. Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Dru Dougherty, Professor Emeritus. Poetry, stage history, Valle-Inclan, Spanish poetics, war and literature.
Research Profile

Charles Faulhaber, Professor Emeritus. Medieval Spanish literature; medieval rhetoric; codicology, paleography; computerization of scholarly methodology.
Research Profile

+ Francine R. Masiello, Professor Emeritus. Gender theory, culture, globalization, comparative literature, Spanish, Latin American literature of the 19th and 20th centuries, comparative North and South literatures.
Research Profile

John H. R. Polt, Professor Emeritus. Spanish literature, 18th century, 19th century.
Research Profile

Jose Rabasa, Professor Emeritus. Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Julio Ramos, Professor Emeritus. Spanish, Portuguese.
Research Profile

Contact Information

Department of Spanish and Portuguese

5319 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-0471

Fax: 510-642-6957

gspa@berkeley.edu

Visit Department Website

Department Chair

Michael Iarocci, PhD

5210 Dwinelle

miarocci@berkeley.edu

Faculty Adviser

Ignacio Navarrete, PhD

5221 Dwinelle Hall

ignacio@berkeley.edu

Undergraduate Adviser

Jenny Cole

5317 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-4084

spanua@berkeley.edu

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