Published annually, the Course Catalog sets out the requirements of the academic programs--the majors, minors, and concentrations. Each Bryn Mawr student must declare her major before the end of her sophomore year. Students may also declare a minor or a concentration, but neither is required for the A.B. degree. Students must comply with the requirements published in the Course Catalog at the time when they declare the major, minor and/or concentration.

The Course Catalog also sets out the College requirements. Students must comply with the College requirements published at the time they enter Bryn Mawr College.

2017-18 Catalog
2016-17 Catalog
2015-16 Catalog
2014-15 Catalog

Students may complete a major or minor in Spanish.  Majors may pursue state certification to teach at the secondary level. 

The major in Spanish offers a program of study in the language, literature, and culture of Spain, Latin America, and U.S. Latino communities. The program is designed to develop linguistic competence and critical skills, as well as a profound appreciation of the culture and civilization of the Hispanic world.

Our graduates have gone on to pursue successful careers in law, business, medicine, and translation, among others. This major program prepares students appropriately for graduate study in Spanish.

The language courses provide solid preparation and practice in spoken and written Spanish, including a thorough review of grammar and vocabulary contextualized by cultural readings and activities. SPAN 110 and SPAN 120 prepare students for advanced work in literature and cultural studies while improving competence in the language. The introductory literature courses treat a selection of the outstanding works of Spanish and Spanish-American, and U.S. Latino literature in various periods and genres. Three hundred-level courses deal intensively with individual authors, topics, or periods of special significance.

Students in all courses are encouraged to supplement their coursework with study in Spain or Spanish America either in the summer or during their junior year. All students who have taken Spanish at other institutions and plan to enroll in Spanish courses at Bryn Mawr must take a placement examination. The exam is offered online by the department and is available on our website here.

The Department of Spanish works in cooperation with the Departments of French and Italian in the Romance Languages major. It also collaborates with the Latin American, Iberian, and Latina/o Studies (LAILS).

College Foreign Language Requirement

Before the start of the senior year, each student must complete, with a grade of 2.0 or higher, two units of foreign language. Students may fulfill the requirement by completing two sequential semester-long courses in one language, beginning at the level determined by their language placement. A student who is prepared for advanced work may complete the requirement instead with two advanced free-standing semester-long courses in the foreign language(s) in which she is proficient. 

Major Requirements

Requirements for the Spanish major are:

  • SPAN 110  (formerly 200, Introducción al análisis cultural),
  • SPAN 120 (formerly 202, Introducción al análisis literario),
  • four  200-level courses,
  • three 300-level courses,
  • and SPAN 398 (Senior Seminar).

The prerequisite for 200-level Spanish courses is the completion of SPAN 110 and/or SPAN 120. The prerequisite for 300-level courses is the completion of a 200-level course in Spanish. At least two courses for the major must be in Peninsular literature (Spain) and at least two in Latin American literature; one of the major courses should focus on pre-1700 literature. Two courses must be writing intensive (WI). Students can satisfy the writing requirement by taking SPAN 120, SPAN 243, and other 200-level courses designated as WI in any given semester. Students whose training includes advanced work may, with the permission of the department, be exempted from taking SPAN 110 and/or SPAN 120. SPAN 399 (Senior Essay) is optional for majors with a grade point average of 3.7 who seek to graduate with honors. It may not be counted as one of the 300-level requirements.

Please note: the department offers some courses taught in English. In order to receive major and minor credit, students must do substantial reading and written work in Spanish. No more than two courses taught in English may be applied toward a major, and only one toward a minor.

Independent research (SPAN 403) is offered to students  recommended by the department. The work consists of independent reading,  conferences, and a long paper.


Departmental honors are awarded on the basis of a minimum grade point average of 3.7 in the major, the senior essay (SPAN 399), and the recommendation of the department.

Minor Requirements

Requirements for a minor in Spanish are six courses in  Spanish beyond Intermediate Spanish, at least one of which must be at the 300  level. At least one course should be in Peninsular literature (Spain).

Minor in Latin American, Iberian, and Latina/o Studies (LAILS)

The Department of Spanish participates with other departments in offering a minor in Latin American, Iberian, and Latina/o Studies (LAILS).

Teacher Certification

The department also participates in a teacher-certification  program. For more information see the description of the Education Program.

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