The Academic Program

The Spanish division in the Department of Languages and Literatures of Europe and the Americas (LLEA) offers language instruction at the beginning and intermediate levels. Advanced courses in composition, conversation, film, literature, and linguistics are also offered. Courses in the literatures of Latin America, Spain and US Latino are offered regularly in the original language. Cultural studies courses designed to acquaint students from other fields with the traditions and cultures of Europe and the Americas are also available, both in English and in the target language, and advanced courses in specialized topics have been designed for students at the graduate level. Such courses include Hispanic cultural studies; U.S. Latino literature and culture; film; Spanish and Latin American civilization; literary theory; exile literature; and courses on specific authors and literary movements.


At the end of the program students will be able to:

  • SLO 1 Analyze, evaluate, critique, describe, and develop intercultural competence in the language and literatures of Spain and Latin America within their socio-historical context.
  • SLO 2 Conduct research, write research papers, and report orally in Spanish using appropriate professional registers on issues related to Hispanic culture, literature, and linguistics.
  • SLO 3 Develop cultural awareness, international engagement, language and cultural immersion, and respect for cultural differences and social justice related to Hispanic cultures.

Petition for Back Credits

         College of Languages, Linguistics and Literature Policy on Second Language Back Credit

All students (including native speakers of a language) with experience in another language other than English may earn “back credits.” These students may take any UHM course, appropriate to their level, in which there is significant use of that language. (Appropriate level determined by placement exam or adviser; significant use determined by the course content.) Upon completion of this course* with a letter grade of C (not C-) or better, may petition between 3-16 back credits. Please note that a “W” grade received for university language courses will make you ineligible for back credits when taking subsequent courses. For more information please visit UH Manoa General Education Policy on Second Language Back Credits (pdf).  *Only first instance of a course.  Back credits are not automatically awarded. You need to actively request a petition for back credits

Petition Form – form-fillable (complete online, print, and bring to Moore Hall 464 or email to llea464@hawaii.edu- write in the subject of your email: “Petition for back credits”)

FAQs about Spanish credits  Read the answers to the most common questions that students ask about Spanish credits.

Certificate in Spanish

Students must complete 5 courses at the 300-level or above (5 courses with a grade of C or better). A minimum GPA of 2.5 must be achieved.

  • SPAN 301 – Language & Writing I + 4 other courses at the 300 or 400 level to choose from reading, writing, conversation, film, phonetics, translation, interpretation, pragmatics, culture, literature, theater…

Upon completion you must file an application form (available in Moore 464)

Contact our Undergraduate Advisor Prof. Eric Thau (thau@)

BA in Spanish

33 credit hours at the 300 level or above, half of which must be taken at UHM

  • Four (4) required courses
    • SPAN 301 Language & Writing or 310 Spanish for Heritage Speakers
    • SPAN 303 Conversation I
    • One Literature course from:
      • SPAN 361 Spanish Literature I
      • SPAN 362 Spanish Literature II
      • SPAN 371 Spanish American Literature I
      • SPAN 372 Spanish American Literature I
    • One Cultural Studies course from:
      • SPAN 351 Spanish Cultural Perspectives
      • SPAN 352B Latin American Cultural Perspectives: Pre-Columbian and Colonial Periods
      • SPAN 352C Latin American Cultural Perspectives:Independence, Nationhood and Current Issues
  • Seven (7) elective courses to choose from all SPAN 300-400 level courses (At least two courses must be at the 400 level).
  • Minimum GPA of 2.5 for advanced (300- to 400-level) courses used to satisfy major requirements
  • Language skill courses (SPAN 301 or 310 to 304) are normally limited to nonnative speakers of Spanish. Native and near-native speakers should consult a department adviser to determine what courses they may take.
  • Recommended courses for prospective teachers: SPAN 330, 400, 403, 451, 452 & LLEA 455
  • Recommended courses for prospective graduate students: SPAN 400, 451, 452, and two 400-level literature courses. Approved study abroad of at least one semester in a Spanish-speaking country is recommended for all majors.
  • Courses need to have a grade of C or better to count towards the degree.

Certificate in Latin American & Iberian Studies (LAIS)

The Certificate in Latin American and Iberian Studies provides a systematic program of study in English for students interested in the arts, traditions, values, histories, religions, socioeconomic systems, and mythologies of Latin America and the Iberian Peninsula. It combines studies on literature, history, film and cultural studies for a richer and more comprehensive understanding of the peoples and heritage of Latin America and Iberia. Its interdisciplinary nature treats issues of colonization, imperialism, race, ethnicity, class, neoliberal practices, aesthetics, popular culture and globalization as they have been played out within the Ibero-Latin context.


  • sophomore standing or consent
  • 15 credit hours (all five courses must be taken with a letter grade, minimum GPA of 2.5 required) half of which must be taken at UHM
  • LAIS 360 (Alpha) Studies in Culture: (B) Latin America, or (C) Spain and Portugal (should be taken the first semester in the program; it may be taken concurrently with one of the electives)
  • at least one from LAIS 468/HIST 478, HIST 479, LAIS 360B, LAIS 362, LAIS 363, LAIS 366, LAIS 372
  • at least one from HIST 448, LAIS 360C, LAIS 361, LAIS 365, LAIS 380

Certificate in Spanish

Upon recommendation of the division chair of the Department of Languages and Literatures of Europe and the Americas, the University confers certification of Spanish.

Students must complete 15 Credit Hours at the 300-level or above (5 courses with a grade of C or better). A minimum GPA of 2.5 must be achieved. Upon completion you must file an application form (available in Moore 464)

See all our courses.

Application for a Language Certificate (print, complete and take to Moore Hall 464)

Division Advisor Phone No. Office E-mail Address
Spanish Dr. Eric Thau
(808) 956‑4440 Moore 430 thau@hawaii.edu

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