Spanish

Admission Requirements

Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission. Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-300 Admissions Policies.

The minimum requirement for admission normally will be the equivalent of an undergraduate Spanish major.

Applicants must submit a statement of purpose and a single-authored sample of representative research. One of these must be in Spanish and one in English.

The language of instruction at Penn State is English. English proficiency test scores (TOEFL/IELTS) may be required for international applicants. See GCAC-305 Admission Requirements for International Students for more information.

Degree Requirements

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-600 Research Degree Policies.

A candidate for the M.A. degree must take a minimum of 30 credits at the 400, 500, or 800 level, with at least 18 credits in 500-level courses. Required courses for the M.A. degree are SPAN 502 (1 credit) and PORT 123 (2 credits). Students are required to take PORT 123 in order to achieve basic proficiency in Portuguese; however, as a 100-level undergraduate course, PORT 123 will not count towards the 30 minimum credits required for the degree and will not count in the cumulative GPA.

The culminating experience for the M.A. degree is a scholarly essay. A cumulative examination is also required, which serves as the doctoral qualifying examination for students continuing in the Ph.D. program. The M.A. degree (or equivalent) is normally a prerequisite for entrance to the Ph.D. program.

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-600 Research Degree Policies.

For the Ph.D. degree, a student must complete at least 51 credits (including M.A. credits) of course work at the 400, 500, 600, or 800-level. Other requirements include reading knowledge of a language other than English and Spanish and submission of an essay to a peer-reviewed journal. Doctoral students must pass a qualifying examination, a comprehensive written and oral examination, and a final oral examination (the dissertation defense). To earn the Ph.D. degree, doctoral students must also write a dissertation that is accepted by the Ph.D. committee, the head of the graduate program, and the Graduate School.

Dual-Titles  

Dual-Title Ph.D. in Spanish and Language Science

Requirements listed here are in addition to requirements listed in GCAC-208 Dual-Title Graduate Degree Programs.

Graduate students with research and educational interests in Spanish may apply to the Spanish and Language Science dual-title degree program. The goal of the dual-title in Spanish and Language Science is to enable graduate students from Spanish to acquire the knowledge and skills of their major area of specialization in Linguistics while at the same time gaining depth and methodological expertise in the areas associated with the language sciences.

Admission Requirements

Students must apply and be admitted to the graduate program in Spanish and The Graduate School before they can apply for admission to the dual-title degree program. After admission to their primary program, students must apply for admission to and meet the admissions requirements of the Language Science dual-title program. Refer to the Admission Requirements section of the Language Science Bulletin page. Doctoral students must be admitted into the dual-title degree program in Language Science prior to taking the qualifying examination in their primary graduate program.

Degree requirements

To qualify for the dual-title degree, students must satisfy the degree requirements for the Ph.D. in Spanish, listed on the Degree Requirements tab. In addition, students must complete the degree requirements for the dual-title in Language Science, listed on the Language Science Bulletin page.

Particular courses may satisfy both the Spanish requirements and those in the Language Science dual-title program. Final course selection is determined by the student after consultation in advance with their advisers. A student’s Ph.D. committee can require additional course work depending on the student’s background and research plans.

The qualifying examination committee for the dual-title Ph.D. degree will be composed of Graduate Faculty from Spanish and must include at least one Graduate Faculty member from the Language Science program. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs’ Graduate Faculty may serve in a combined role. There will be a single qualifying examination, containing elements of both Spanish and Language Science. Dual-title graduate degree students may require an additional semester to fulfill requirements for both areas of study and, therefore, the qualifying examination may be delayed one semester beyond the normal period allowable.

In addition to the general Graduate Council requirements for Ph.D. committees, the Ph.D. committee of a Spanish and Language Science dual-title Ph.D. student must include at least one member of the Language Science Graduate Faculty. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs’ Graduate Faculty may serve in a combined role. If the chair of the Ph.D. committee is not also a member of the Graduate Faculty in Language Science, the member of the committee representing Language Science must be appointed as co-chair. The Language Science representative on the student’s Ph.D. committee will develop questions for and participate in the evaluation of the comprehensive examination.

Students in the dual-title program are required to write and orally defend a dissertation on a topic that is approved in advance by their Ph.D. committee and reflects their original research and education in Spanish and Language Science. Upon completion of the doctoral dissertation, the candidate must pass a final oral examination (the dissertation defense) to earn the Ph.D. degree. The dissertation must be accepted by the Ph.D. committee, the head of the graduate program, and the Graduate School.

Dual-Title Ph.D. in Spanish and Visual Studies

Requirements listed here are in addition to requirements listed in GCAC-208 Dual-Title Graduate Degree Programs.

Graduate students with interests in Spanish and/or Latin American literature and visual media may apply to the dual-title Ph.D. in Spanish and Visual Studies. The goal of the dual-title Ph.D. in Spanish and Visual Studies is to enable graduate students from Spanish to acquire the knowledge and skills of their major area of specialization in Spanish and/or Latin American literature, while at the same time gaining the theories and methods of Visual Studies.

Admission Requirements

To pursue a dual-title degree under this program, the student must first apply to the Graduate School and be admitted through the Department of Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese (see the Admission Requirements tab). After admission to their primary program, students must apply for admission to and meet the admissions requirements of the Visual Studies dual-title program. Refer to the Admission Requirements section of the Visual Studies Bulletin page. Students must receive approval from the Director of Graduate Studies in Spanish, and must submit a recommendation from a member of the Spanish Graduate Faculty who is also a member of the Visual Studies Graduate Faculty. Doctoral students must be admitted into the dual-title degree program in Visual Studies prior to taking the qualifying examination in Spanish.

Degree Requirements

To qualify for the dual-title degree, students must satisfy all of the degree requirements listed on the Degree Requirements tab  for the Ph.D. degree in Spanish. In addition, students must complete the degree requirements for the dual-title in Visual Studies, listed on the Visual Studies Bulletin page. At least 9 of the 24 credits required for the Visual Studies dual-title must be from Spanish courses dealing with questions of visuality. These courses must be chosen in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies in Spanish.

The qualifying examination committee for the dual-title Ph.D. degree will be composed of Graduate Faculty from Spanish and must include at least one Graduate Faculty member from the Visual Studies program. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs’ Graduate Faculty may serve in a combined role. There will be a single qualifying examination, containing elements of both Spanish and Visual Studies. Dual-title graduate degree students may require an additional semester to fulfill requirements for both areas of study and, therefore, the qualifying examination may be delayed one semester beyond the normal period allowable.

In addition to the general Graduate Council requirements for Ph.D. committees, the Ph.D. committee of a Spanish and Visual Studies dual-title Ph.D. student must include at least one member of the Visual Studies Graduate Faculty. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs’ Graduate Faculty may serve in a combined role. If the chair of the Ph.D. committee is not also a member of the Graduate Faculty in Visual Studies, the member of the committee representing Visual Studies must be appointed as co-chair. The Visual Studies representative on the student’s Ph.D. committee will develop questions for and participate in the evaluation of the comprehensive examination.

Students in the dual-title program are required to write and orally defend a dissertation on a topic that is approved in advance by their Ph.D. committee and reflects their original research and education in Spanish and Visual Studies. Upon completion of the doctoral dissertation, the candidate must pass a final oral examination (the dissertation defense) to earn the Ph.D. degree. The dissertation must be accepted by the Ph.D. committee, the head of the graduate program, and the Graduate School.

Student Aid

Graduate assistantships available to students in this program and other forms of student aid are described in the Tuition & Funding section of The Graduate School’s website. Students on graduate assistantships must adhere to the course load limits set by The Graduate School.

The following awards typically have been available to graduate students in this program:

The department awards annually an Edwin Erle Sparks Fellowship in the Humanities. In the past several years, graduate students have received external NSF fellowships and awards such as Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement grants.

Courses

Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 699 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.

Spanish (SPAN) Course List

Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate competence in Spanish—and when appropriate Portuguese—for written and oral communication for academic research, presentations, and teaching.
  2. Develop in-depth scholarly knowledge of the literary, cultural, and intellectual Luso-Hispanic traditions.
  3. Articulate competence in a range of approaches to analyze, study, and write about texts and other cultural productions.
  4. Establish mastery of the conventions of writing and delivering a paper at a professional conference.
  5. Formulate and execute an independent research project that significantly furthers knowledge and theory in a specific field within Luso-Hispanic Studies.
  6. Demonstrate ability to uphold standards of academic, professional, and ethical integrity in research and teaching.
  7. Demonstrate ability to design course activities and assessments, and deliver instruction appropriate to undergraduate education.
 

Contact

Campus University Park
Graduate Program Head PAOLA EULALIA DUSSIAS
Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) or Professor-in-Charge (PIC) Rena Torres Cacoullos
Program Contact

Heather Rutten
442 Burrowes Building
University Park PA 16802
hxr87@psu.edu
(814) 863-0997

Program Website View