Majors, Programs, and Departments

Department of Spanish, Latin American and Caribbean Literatures and Cultures

Spanish is spoken in Spain, Latin America, Equatorial Guinea, Western Sahara, and parts of the United States, the Caribbean, Northern Morocco and the Philippines. Being proficient in Spanish and studying the Spanish-speaking cultures help students to better understand the historical legacies and cultural contexts that make up today’s world. Moreover, beginning or continuing your study of Spanish at Scripps will allow you to establish links with Spanish-speaking people in your community and abroad.

The department is committed to two main educational goals: 1) provide a contextualized knowledge of the multiple cultural and linguistic exchanges that permeate the Spanish-speaking cultures; 2) prepare students for advanced work in literature and cultural studies and/or in a range of professional fields, while improving their competence in the language.

The Major in Spanish, Latin American and Caribbean Literatures and Cultures offers students the possibility of a concentration in two different tracks: Latin American, Caribbean or Peninsular (Spain) literature, or Latin American, Caribbean or Peninsular culture (literature, politics. economics, art, history, etc.) Related majors of interest to students of Spanish are Latin American Studies and Chicano Studies.

Lower Division Curriculum

The Department offers a placement test in order to determine the student’s level. Students who have never studied Spanish must enroll in Spanish 1.

Spanish 1, 22, and 33 teach students the fundamentals of the Spanish language through the development of reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills. One more course leads to the mastering of the language: Spanish 44, Advanced Spanish, Readings in Literature and Civilization.

Spanish for Bilinguals

Those students who can understand and speak Spanish because they belong to a Spanish-speaking family, or because they have been exposed to a situation where they acquired a practical use of Spanish, but who lack formal instruction in the language, are encouraged to take Spanish for Bilinguals (Spanish 65). This course offers students an intensive overview of grammar. Students will learn effective written and oral expression, and will read and discuss selected texts dealing with Latin American and Chicano/a topics and problems.

Studying Abroad

Study abroad is required to complete the major. Students may choose programs in Spain (Madrid, Seville, Granada) and Latin America (in countries such as Ecuador, Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico.) On campus students have the opportunity to live in the Spanish Corridor, which is directed by the Spanish Language Resident.

After four semesters of college Spanish, Scripps students may choose to study in a Spanish-speaking country for either a semester or a year. Most students study in Spain, Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Bolivia, Cuba. You can discuss study abroad options with any professor in the department or with Neva Barker, the Director of Off-Campus Study.

Sigma Delta Pi

Sigma Delta Pi is the National Spanish Honor Society that recognizes excellence in the study of Spanish. You do not need to be a Spanish major. The requirements for admission to Epsilon Zeta, the Claremont Chapter of Sigma Delta Pi are:

  • Nomination by a faculty member
  • Completion of 3 semesters of college work with a GPA of 10.0 or above
  • Completion of at least 2 upper division Spanish courses
  • A grade point average of 10.0 in all Spanish courses

A ceremony of initiation of new members is held each semester. Please contact the chapter advisor, , Professors Carmen Sanjuán and Rita Alcalá for more information.

Scripps Faculty

Marina Pérez de Mendiola
Richard Armour Chair in Modern Languages
Professor of Hispanic Studies
Chair, Department of Spanish, Latin American and Caribbean Literatures and Cultures

Send an email »

Carmen Sanjuan-Pastor
Associate Professor of Hispanic Studies

Send an email »

Claudia Arteaga
Assistant Professor

Send an email »

Gabriela Bacsan
Assistant Professor of Spanish, Latin American, and Caribbean Literatures and Cultures

Send an email »

Martha Barcenas-Mooradian
Visiting Assistant Professor in Spanish, Latin American, and Caribbean Literatures and Cultures

Send an email »

Martin Vega Olmedo
Assistant Professor

Send an email »