Department of Spanish and Portuguese
“El animal político moderno es primero un animal literario.”
Jacques Rancière, El desacuerdo
Explore Spanish at UMD
Undergraduate Degrees in Spanish
The Spanish major is flexible and designed to allow you to satisfy your intellectual curiosity. While all majors study Spanish language through the advanced levels, you will also have the opportunity to select from over 75 courses to accommodate your specific needs and interests.Explore our undergraduate Programs
Graduate Degrees in Spanish
Our M.A. and Ph.D. students are mentored by our faculty, engage in substantive research projects, and benefit from rigorous training in the teaching skills required by the profession. They graduate prepared to meet the demands of highly competitive academic positions in the United States and Latin America.Spanish Graduate Programs
Special Programs in Spanish
Explore our Study Abroad programs in Spain, Ecuador, Cuba, and Argentina, and discover the Language House Spanish Cluster, our living-learning program to experience daily language and cultural immersion.
Speaker Series and Special Lectures
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese is proud to organize and host several important lecture series open to the university and the general public. Renowned intellectuals and professors from Latin America, Spain, and the American Academy have mentored many generations of our students.
The Faculty of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese (SPAP) is committed to excellence in teaching and mentoring, along with the production of new knowledge that is the hallmark of a strong department.Spanish Program People
The signature of our department is its ability to put into play the singularity of literary and linguistic experiences in relation to politics and philosophy.
By rethinking conventional historical, cultural and language boundaries across disciplines, our undergraduate and graduate programs critically engage different archives across the Americas, the Latina/o/x United States, the Luso-Brazilian world, and Spain in its Iberian and Transatlantic contexts. Our intellectual agenda involves diverse forms of community, civic, and public engagement. With a hemispheric and international perspective, our program fosters both critical and creative work. Our graduates are prepared for diverse career tracks in education, business, government, law, medicine, the arts, and social work.
The Faculty of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese (SPAP) is committed to excellence in teaching and mentoring, along with the production of new knowledge that is the hallmark of a strong department. We are known for our Ph.D. and M.A. Programs in Latin American and Spanish Literature and Culture, as well as our M.A. Track in Hispanic Applied Linguistics. Renowned intellectuals and professors from Latin America, Spain, and the American Academy have mentored many generations of our students. Literary figures such as Juan Ramón Jiménez taught at UMD between 1943 and 195. After being nominated by the Department and Professor Graciela Palau de Nemes (1943-1998), he received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1956, the first Nobel Laureate to teach at the University of Maryland. His legacy, as well as that of cultural critic Ángel Rama (1982-1983), award-winning poet José Emilio Pacheco (1984-2006), and distinguished scholar-teacher Jorge Aguilar Mora (1981-2010), among others, continues to shape our thought, vision, and mission.
We invite you to discover information on undergraduate and graduate programs in the languages, literatures, and cultures of the Spanish and Portuguese speaking world, as well as opportunities for learning beyond the classroom.
About Our Programs
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese (SPAP) at the University of Maryland, College Park, offers students the unique opportunity to engage with the diverse, complex, and globalized literatures, cultures, and linguistics of the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking world from the political capital and uniquely diverse cultural center of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. Our goal is to foster learning, develop critical perspectives, and promote intellectual growth in our students. We teach across interdisciplinary fields such as literature, cinema and media, popular and visual culture, theater, history, philosophy, critical theory, gender and queer studies, philology, and linguistics in different cultural and geographic contexts. We strive for the creation and discussion of new forms of knowledge and the effective engagement of our students and faculty with the world, preparing students to become promising professionals in their chosen careers.
The UMD Spanish and Portuguese Department offers a B.A. with multiple tracks; Ph.D. and M.A. degrees in language, literature and culture of both Latin America and Spain as well as an M.A. track in Hispanic Applied Linguistics; undergraduate minors in both Spanish and Portuguese; and courses specially designed for Heritage speakers and specific purposes.
The Department is renowned for its transdisciplinary strengths in Latin American literatures and cultures as well as faculty research and teaching on intellectual history, literary politics, colonial and transatlantic discourses, Judeo-Latin American writing, Mexican literature, reinscriptions of the 19th century, Southern Cone studies, Central American transnational cultural studies, U.S. Latina/o/x studies, Caribbean studies, Archipelagic poetics, salsa and sabor, deconstructions of the Cuban Revolution, transnational perspectives on 1968, and creative writing.
In the area of Spanish literature and culture, faculty research and teaching is recognized for their work in Linguistics, the history of the Spanish language and Romance Philology from the Middle Ages to the present, Medieval and Neomedievalism Studies, Spain in the US, Golden Age poetics, the traditions of Cervantes and Quevedo, revisions of the Enlightenment, 18th and 19th century gender and queer studies, the philosophical traditions of romanticism and realism, modern and postmodern narrative and poetics, as well as transnational and transatlantic representations of the Spanish Civil War and narratives of exile, particularly in Latin America.
The Department is also at the forefront of Spanish Applied Linguistics, language teaching pedagogy, language teacher education, language use and identity, social and political issues in foreign language teaching and learning, instructional technology, language for specific purposes, cross-cultural communication, and heritage language learning.
Advising & Courses
The undergraduate advisors for Spanish and Portuguese are available to answer all questions related to the Spanish and Portuguese undergraduate programs. To ensure fulfillment of all of the departmental requirements for graduation, we recommend that students confer with the advisor every semester. Advisor office hours are posted in Jiménez 1104.
Advisor for B.A. and Spanish Program Undergraduate Students
Advisor: Dr. Chris Lewis
Advisor for Heritage Undergraduate Students
Advisor: Dr. Evelyn Canabal-Torres
Advisor for Portuguese Minor Undergraduate Students
Advisor: Dr. Thayse Lima
The College of Arts and Humanities (ARHU) Office of Student Affairs provides college advising for all ARHU undergraduates in 1120 Francis Scott Key Hall.
Degree Program Requirements
Please consult the program pages for requirements about each degree:
- Spanish Language, Literatures, and Culture Major
- Spanish Literature, Linguistics, and Culture Minor
- Spanish Language, Culture, and Professional Contexts Minor
- Spanish Heritage Language and Latina/o Culture Minor
- Portuguese Language, Literature and Culture Minor
- Teacher Certification
- Spanish Language and Literature Ph.D.
- Spanish Language and Literature M.A.
- Hispanic Applied Linguistics M.A.