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BA (Hons)

Spanish and Latin American Studies

Study abroad in each of these fascinating regions

RT47UCAS code 3yrsfull time 1yrabroad

Star Course Overview

Why take this course?


As the official language of Spain, Mexico and much of Central and South America, Spanish is one of the dominant global languages. You will study the culture of contemporary Spanish and Latin American societies alongside whilst honing your skills in one of the world’s most spoken languages.    The course will give you the opportunity to study and explore of wide range of subjects, from the legacies that Spanish expansion and settlement left in Central and South America, the enduring impact legacy of the Spanish civil war on Spanish society, representation of the Hispanic world in 20th century films, dictatorships and the fight for justice in Spain and Latin America. 

By gaining access to Spanish and Latin American cultures, and opting for units such as translation, interpreting, or ‘Spanish language for professional communication’  you will also become culturally aware and linguistically fluent in Spanish. 

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Develop high levels of fluency in Spanish, with language learning fully integrated into the course. You do not need prior knowledge of Spanish to follow this course; it is possible to follow our excellent beginners programme in your first years of study, and achieve the same level of fluency at graduation. You can also study a second language as an option.
  • Gain career enhancing skills alongside your academic study with skills training ‘built-in’ to courses, work placements and the possibility to learn another language. You can develop an in-depth knowledge of Spanish and Latin American history, society, politics, and culture.
  • Immerse yourself in the Spanish and Latin American way of life and develop your linguistic, cultural and professional skills by spending half your placement abroad in Spain and the other half in our partner institutions in Latin America.
  • Study with experienced lecturers employing innovative and exciting teaching techniques such as interactive lectures, simulations, scenario exercises, debate-discussions and the use of audio-visual sources. In particular, our state-of- the-art  ‘Conference Interpreting Suite’ allows  our students to  develop valuable first-hand experience in interpreting.

What opportunities might it lead to?

Language is used in a range of professional contexts including business, tourism, and finance – not just language teaching. Your transferable skills and area studies expertise can be used in many careers across the private, public and voluntary sectors. You may enhance your graduate employment opportunities, owing to strong partnerships with organisations across the globe. This course is great preparation for work at home or abroad and you will have a very wide range of career paths open to you. Our graduates  have found employment in such diverse careers as travel and tourism, working for international organisations, international research and consultancy, marketing, translation, interpreting, the media, NGOs, investment banking,  journalism or teaching foreign languages.

Magda Suchocka, BA (Hons) Spanish and Latin American Studies student 2013

I loved that some of the professors are native speakers - some are from Spain and some are from countries in Latin America and that kind of really helps with vocabulary.

Magda Suchocka, BA (Hons) Spanish and Latin American Studies student 2013

Want to start this course in 2017?

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Key Facts

UCAS Course Code:
3 years full time, 4 years full time with language year abroad
The UCAS tariff for 2017 entry has changed. See how this affects your tariff score A LEVELS
96-120 points from 3 A levels or equivalent. See full entry requirements

We accept UCAS points from other qualifications. See full details and English Language qualifications

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
2017/18 entry: full time: £9,250 p/a*

International students
2017/18 entry: full time: £12,600 p/a**

*Tuition fee may be subject to annual increase.
**Tuition fee is subject to annual increase.

View tuition fee terms and conditions
View additional course costs

+44 (0)23 9284 5566
School of Languages and Area Studies
Programme specification


Modern Languages and Area Studies

Find out what our students say about studying at Portsmouth, including:

  • Combining language learning with the study of culture and politics, promoting a deeper understanding of a country/countries of study
  • Fantastic opportunities for spending a year abroad
  • Interactive and practical nature of studying that will prepare you for a wide range of careers

Browse all courses in Modern Languages and Area Studies

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Light bulb Structure & Teaching

Year one

This year is your introduction to and the beginning of your in-depth study of the Spanish-speaking world. You will focus developing a sound understanding of political, social and economic developments in Spain.

Core units in this year include:

  • Spanish General Language Grade 1 and 2 OR Spanish General Language Grade 3 and Language Project
  • Introduction to Spanish Studies
  • Introduction to Latin American History
  • Studying at University
  • Developing Research Skills

Year two

Continue to study units in Spanish language with the choice to start a beginner’s course in a second language if you wish. Preparation for your year abroad and preliminary work on your dissertation is also incorporated into this year.

Core units in this year include:

  • Spanish General Language Grade 3 and 4 OR Spanish General Language Grade 4 and Language For Professional Communication 1
  • Golden Age Spain 1469-1700

Options to choose from in this year include:

  • Revolution, Repression and Resistance
  • Text and Translation
  • Pre-Columbian and Colonial Latin America
  • Democratisation in Latin America
  • Key Issues in Development
  • Managing Across Cultures

Final year*

Complete your dissertation in your final year and specialise in the topics that intrigue you the most.

Core units in this year include:

  • Spanish General Language Grade 6
  • Language for Professional Communication 2

Options to choose from in this year include:

  • Spanish Civil War and Franco Regime
  • City and Nation: The Latin American Urban Experience
  • Translation Theory and Practice
  • Political and Economic Development in C20 Spain
  • Transitional Justice and Human Rights In Latin America
  • Contemporary Issues and Controversies In Latin America
  • Interpreting

*On this programme you will spend your third year in a country where Spanish is spoken.

Teaching and Assessment

We provide a varied, creative and stimulating learning environment. Teaching is via lectures and seminars which are supported by the University’s interactive learning facilities. Classes may also take the form of hands-on skills development sessions where you learn how to access electronic resources in our MELISSI multimedia digital classrooms (they are much more than language laboratories!) or via small oral practice classes with Language Assistants.

How are you assessed?

Our assessment methods are varied, with relatively few formal examinations. Here’s how we assess your work:

  • written essays and reports
  • case studies
  • book reviews
  • group and individual projects
  • oral presentations

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Monitor Facilities & Features

Year Abroad

On this programme you will spend your third year in a country where your target languages are spoken. You may take advantage of our well-established links with universities in Spain and Latin America, should you wish to spend this period studying; alternatively, with University approval, you may be able to arrange a work placement abroad.

Learning Resources Centre

You will have access to our recently refurbished Learning Resource Centre, which provides access to texts, study rooms, software, computers and a wireless laptop area that can augment your learning outside the classroom, enhance your research and support your assignment work. 

Language Laboratories

We have four state-of-the-art Language Laboratories, where you can manipulate video, sound, text and Internet sources in a rich, multimedia language-learning environment. Our staff are at the forefront in exploiting the potential afforded by this technology to create their own packages of materials.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Budgeting for your studies

There are extra costs associated with studying, which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Recommended texts:
If you wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow from the University Library, the average price is £50-£60. You may be studying up to 6 units a year, each with a standard recommended text.

General costs:
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for costs of photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

Final year project:
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose to develop.

Other costs to consider

For placements abroad that are taken in countries outside the EU/EEA, you will be required to meet travel costs. These costs will be in the region of £1000.

You will also be required to meet any extra tuition costs for units of study taken outside of your agreed study abroad programme. These costs will be in the region of £200.

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Mortarboard Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

Where next?
Where next?

Like all modern language graduates you will be highly employable. You can expect to find work in areas as diverse as management, banking, marketing and sales, commerce, export, tourism and the media, among others.

Graduates from this course have been successful in finding work in the following areas:

  • working in insurance and finance
  • working with Journey Latin America
  • charity work for Save the Children
  • as language assistants or teachers, both home and abroad
  • working as a Stagiaire at the European Commission

Work experience

Employment boosting opportunites
Employment boosting opportunites

Would you like to live in Spain or a Spanish-speaking country for a year? Time spent abroad will enhance your intercultural awareness, which is a quality increasingly appreciated by employers in a globalised economy.

Work as a teaching assistant in a school in Spain, in cities such as Salamanca, Saragossa, Seville, Granada or Murcia, among others. Or broaden your horizons even further by combining a work and study placement in Mexico, Central America. Check out the video below to hear the thoughts of final year students on their time abroad.

This course also allows you to take the Learning From Experience (LiFE) option, which means you can earn credits towards your degree for work, volunteer and research placements that you’re involved in alongside your study.

Career planning

Career planning
Career planning
6.04 minutes

To make sure you take the right steps on your career path, we’re here to give you help, support and advice throughout your study. Even after you’ve graduated, we continue to give you support for up to five years.

Employers tell us that they want graduates to be able to demonstrate certain skills when they come out of university. Our courses take account of this. We make sure we prepare you for employment through work-related learning, projects, placements and working in simulated environments that are designed to prepare you for the working world.

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