Hispanic Linguistics

The Department of Spanish and Portuguese offers BA,  MA, and PhD programs  in Hispanic Linguistics, which are dedicated to the scientific study of the Spanish language.

The undergraduate program provides training in Spanish Phonetics and Phonology, Morphosyntax, Sociolinguistics, Applied Linguistics, and Bilingualism. In these classes, students explore how language is formulated and organized in our brains, what Spanish structures are possible and why, and how sounds are organized, produced and perceived. Some of our classes also explore language production as social behavior, taking into account speakers’ intentions, the role of the interlocutor, Spanish variation and change over time, and the impact of language ideologies and attitudes on our societies.

Finally, these approaches are applied to our understanding about how Spanish is acquired and taught in our classes that focus on pedagogical issues that arise in the field of teaching of Spanish as a second language and as a heritage language.

A B.A. in Hispanic Linguistics prepares you for language teaching, health care professions, translation and interpretation, speech and hearing sciences, international relations, and graduate studies in several areas, including computer sciences, bilingual education, and several subfields in linguistics. 

 

Why Study Hispanic Linguistics?

  1. To learn how Spanish works: its structure and sounds
  2. To develop analytical skills and apply them to real world issues
  3. To explore different dialects and understand how they change over time
  4. To learn about the role of Spanish in the US society
  5. To investigate issues of Spanish-English bilingualism in the Tucson community

Hispanic Linguistics Courses

SPAN 340 - Spanish Phonetics

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Fall,Spring
In-depth study of articulatory phonetics with emphasis on both theory and practical applications for non-native speakers of Spanish. (Taught in Spanish).

SPAN 343 - Spanish Phonetics for the Heritage Speaker

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer 1 and 2
Introduces learners to Spanish phonology and phonetics. Students learn about the differences between spoken and written language as the basis to advance their Spanish proficiency. It also focuses on exposing students to the different varieties of the Spanish-speaking world.

SPAN 452 - Introduction to Hispanic Linguistics

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Fall,Spring
General survey of the core fields in linguistics: phonology, phonetics, morphology, syntax, historical linguistics and dialectology. Provides basis for further study in the field.

SPAN 453 - Theory of Spanish Morphosyntax

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Fall,Spring
An introduction to the current theories of syntax and morphology to describe specific aspects of the structure of Spanish. Central notions of generative grammar.

SPAN 455A - History of the Spanish Language

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Fall
Study of the history of the Spanish language from its origins to the present, with particular emphasis on two transition periods: from Late Latin to Old Spanish, and from Medieval to Modern Spanish. Analysis and discussion of early and medieval texts that exhibit relevant phonological, morphological, syntactic and semantic changes; discussion the nature of linguistic change and its place in grammar.

SPAN 457 - Applied Linguistics

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Fall
This course provides an introduction to applied linguistics and its methods of inquiry. Students are introduced to the major fields of applied linguistics but the course focuses on those related to Spanish language instruction. Some of the subfields are second language acquisition theories, language teaching methodologies, heritage language instruction, pedagogical grammar, and computer-assisted language instruction.

SPAN 458 - Hispanic Sociolinguistics

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Spring
This course introduces students to theoretical models and research findings in the field of sociolinguistics. It is intended to expand students’ awareness of social aspects of language and their implications for linguistic analysis. It also provides students with the necessary tools to develop their own research among the Spanish-speaking community in Tucson on topics related to Spanish sociolinguistics.

SPAN 459 - Hispanic Linguistics

Units: 3
Usually Offered: Fall,Spring
Various topics. Topics include linguistic perspectives on Mexican-American Spanish and bilingualism, phonology, semantics, translation, and origins of language.