Major and Minor Options

Spanish Major

A major in Spanish provides students with the analytical skills necessary to undertake linguistic, cultural and literary investigation. Students perfect their language skills so that they are able to communicate their views effectively in written and spoken Spanish and Portuguese. All students majoring in Spanish are required to choose an emphasis in one of the following areas:

Hispanic Linguistics

An emphasis in Linguistics provides students with a scientific study of the Spanish language. 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.

Hispanic Literature

An emphasis in Hispanic literature is a comprehensive and innovative program in the writings and cultures of the Hispanic world.

Spanish Generalist

The Spanish General Emphasis offers students innovative courses in Spanish that help them improve their skills in intercultural communication. Our professors are well-known scholars who specialize in a variety of fields, such as: visual art, music, cinema, culture, literature, urban spaces, borders/migration, translation, interpretation, and linguistics.  

Spanish & Portuguese

Students in the Spanish & Portuguese emphasis complete coursework in language, literature, linguistics, and culture in both languages. Students begin at whatever level is deemed appropriate based on a placement exam.

Translation & Interpretation

An emphasis in Translation & Interpretation provides students the academic resources and practical skills necessary for professional development as an interpreter and translator, focusing on healthcare and legal fields.

Additionally, a mimimum of two semesters of Portuguese (PORT 305a and 325a) are required for all Spanish majors. Students who want to become middle or high school Spanish teachers must complete 24 units of upper division coursework in Spanish and be admitted into the College of Education. For specific requirements, please see the Degree Requirements page.

Many Spanish majors have double majors or dual degrees and benefit from generous double-dipping policies. To learn more about these policies, please schedule an appointment with the Undergraduate Advisor for Spanish & Portuguese.

Spanish or Portuguese Minor

We offer two minors: a minor in Spanish and a minor in Portuguese.

The Spanish Minor requires 18-20 units of coursework - minimum of 6 courses. Depending on proficiency, additional SPAN 300 and 400 electives may be needed to meet this total.

Here is the roadmap of undergraduate requirements for a Portuguese minor:

The first step is to take Portuguese 101 and 102 for a total of 8 units. If you test into Portuguese 305A or above level classes, proceed to the next level.

The Portuguese Minor
requires a minimum of 18-20 units of coursework - minimum of 9 units of upper division courses and requiring PORT 350 as a core course. Please note that Portuguese 305A and 325 are part of the minor.

The 9 units can be chosen from the following list:

Language classes:
PORT 305A – First Semester of Portuguese for Spanish Speakers
PORT 325A – Second Semester of Portuguese: Intermediate Grammar and Conversation
PORT 425 – Third Semester of Portuguese: Advanced Grammar, Composition, and Writing Skills


Literature classes:
PORT 350 – Introduction to Genres and Literary Analysis
PORT 401 – Luso-Brazilian Literature - 1900
PORT 463 – Topics in Luso-Brazilian Literature


Linguistics classes:
PORT 440 – Portuguese Phonetics and Phonology
PORT 452-  Introduction to Portuguese Linguistics


PORT 498 – Senior Capstone
Portuguese minor completed!

Muito bem parabéns!

Minors are chosen in consultation with the Director of Undergraduate Studies in Spanish. The Department strongly encourages majors to pursue a minor in Portuguese. Majors in Spanish are encouraged to take courses in areas related to their area of study such as Latin American Studies or Mexican and Mexican American Studies. For specific requirements, please see the Degree Requirements page.

Questions? Contact the Undergraduate Advisor for Spanish and Portuguese.

Ready to Declare?

Thank you for your interest, there are many benefits of majoring in Spanish & Portuguese! Declare a major or minor in one of the following ways:

In Person

To declare a major, please schedule an appointment using the button below.

Online form

Complete the online Major/Minor declaration form (NetID required). An academic advisor will follow up with more information as soon as possible. Please note that there may be slight delays during registration and other periods during the semester. If you have any questions, please contact