Return to search results

Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies BA (Full time) 2018 start

  • Overview

    Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries are among the most diverse and dynamic in the world. This degree will allow you to combine Spanish with learning Portuguese, so you can explore the cultures of the Spanish-speaking and Lusophone world.

    You’ll develop your language skills through core modules, while being introduced to key areas of Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American culture and history.

    But you’ll also be able to choose from a wide range of optional modules exploring these vibrant regions, pick up practical skills such as translation or specialised language for business purposes. What’s more, you’ll build on this knowledge by spending time abroad in both a Spanish-speaking and a Lusophone country.

    Because our department is so big, we can offer flexible degrees with an array of topics to choose from. Whether it’s postcolonial writing, Latin American cinema, the African diaspora or the Spanish Civil War, you can find what you’re looking for at Leeds.

    Specialist facilities

    Leeds offers great facilities for SPLAS students. The most exciting resources we have are the cultural branches of the governments of Spain and Portugal – the Cervantes and Camões Institutes have branches on campus. So does the Ramon Llull Institute, the cultural arm of the Catalan regional government.

    The institutes seek to promote language teaching and greater understanding of Spanish-speaking, Lusophone and Catalan cultures around the world. They host a large number of cultural events and academic activities for our students, working closely with our degree programmes.

    Our fully-equipped Language Centre hosts digital language labs, audio/video practice booths and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). Interpreter Training Suites allow you to explore a career in interpreting, while our Electronic Resource Information Centre houses specialised computing facilities to support translation studies.

  • Course content

    You’ll consolidate your written and spoken Spanish in your first year as you begin to learn Portuguese, while you can choose optional modules introducing you to the culture and history of the Spanish-speaking world.

    From your second year, you’ll continue to develop both languages while selecting from a broader range of optional modules, on topics such as the literature and culture of the Portuguese-speaking world, Spanish regional identities and Latin American history since independence. But you’ll also begin your time overseas, usually spending a term in a Spanish-speaking country, before spending your whole third year in a Portuguese-speaking community to sharpen your skills and experience the culture first-hand.

    When you come back, you’ll continue to refine your language skills with advanced language modules, but you’ll also choose modules split across Spain, Spanish-America, Portugal and Brazil to pursue a broad base of interests. You'll even demonstrate the research and critical skills you have gained with an extended essay, or independently-researched dissertation.

    Course structure

    These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

    Year 1

    Compulsory modules

    • IT for LCS Students 5 credits
    • Practical Language Skills in Spanish 1 20 credits
    • Introduction to Brazil, Portugal and Portuguese Speaking Africa 20 credits
    • Essay Project in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies 20 credits
    • Portuguese Language for Beginners 1A 20 credits
    • Portuguese Language for Beginners 1B 20 credits

    Optional modules

    • The Historical Development of Spain and Hispanic America 20 credits
    • Introduction to the Cultural Production of Spain and Spanish-America 20 credits

    Year 2

    Compulsory modules

    • Practical Language Skills in Spanish 2 15 credits
    • Portuguese Language Skills 15 credits
    • Term Abroad 30 credits

    Optional modules

    • Linguists into Schools 15 credits
    • Issues in Hispanic and Lusophone Cinemas 15 credits
    • Culture and Society in the Portuguese-Speaking World 15 credits
    • Modern Spanish-American Literature 15 credits
    • Latin America since Independence (c1800 - c1930) 15 credits
    • The Spanish regional Melting Pot: the old same History? 15 credits

    Year 3

    Compulsory modules

    • Year Abroad 120 credits

    Year 4

    Compulsory modules

    • Practical Language Skills in Spanish 3 20 credits
    • Advanced Portuguese Language 20 credits
    • Final Year Project

    Optional modules

    • From Bolívar to Chávez: Revolutionary Icons in Contemporary Latin American Culture 20 credits
    • Things Can Only Get Better: The Role of the Arts and Cultural Institutions in Spain's Transition to Democracy (1962-1992) 20 credits
    • Spanish in an Economic and Business Context 20 credits
    • Crime and Punishment in Contemporary Latin American Culture 20 credits
    • New Media in Latin America 20 credits

    For more information on typical modules, read Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies BA in the course catalogue

    Broadening your academic horizons

    At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

    Learning and teaching

    A variety of teaching and learning styles are used so you can benefit from the knowledge and experience of our tutors. Lectures, seminars and tutorials are the most common, but workshops may occasionally be included.

    However, independent study is also an important element of your programme, since it allows you to develop your research skills and critical thinking. The University Library runs training programmes to help you make the most of our great library resources.


    We also use different methods of assessment – exams and essays are the most common, but some modules may also assess you on oral presentations or group work. We do offer plenty of support – for example, you’ll be able to attend extra classes on exam technique, public speaking, structuring essays and other issues throughout your time at Leeds.

  • Entry requirements, fees and applying

    Entry requirements

    A-level: ABB including A in Spanish.

    • Access to HE Diploma

      Pass diploma with 60 credits overall, including at least 45 credits at level 3, of which 30 credits must be at Distinction and 15 credits at Merit or higher. An interview and a piece of written work may also be required. This course has additional subject specific requirements. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

    • BTEC

      We will consider this qualification in combination with other qualifications. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

    • Cambridge Pre-U

      M1, M1, M1 including Spanish

    • International Baccalaureate

      34 points overall with 16 at Higher Level including 6 in Higher Level Spanish

    • Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

      H2, H2, H2, H3, H3, H3 including H2 in Spanish

    • Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

      BB in Advanced Highers including Spanish and AABBB in Highers, or B in Spanish in Advanced Highers and AAABB in Highers

    • Welsh Baccalaureate

      The Welsh Baccalaureate is not typically included in the academic conditions of an offer made to you for this course. If you choose to undertake the Welsh Baccalaureate we would strongly encourage you to draw upon these experiences within your personal statement, as your qualification will then be taken into account both when your application is initially considered by the selection panel and again when reviewed by the admissions tutor at the time your A-level results are passed to us.

    • Other Qualifications

      European Baccalaureate: 77% including 85% in Spanish.

    Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

    Where an applicant is taking the EPQ in a relevant subject this might be considered alongside other Level 3 qualifications and may attract an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. If you are taking A Levels, this would be ABC at A Level including A in Spanish and grade A in the EPQ.

    We welcome applications from mature students with Access qualifications, and from students with a wide range of qualifications.

    Alternative entry

    We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

    Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

    Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

    Typical Access to Leeds offer: BBC at A Level including B in Spanish and pass Access to Leeds.


    We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information, contact the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies admissions team.

    International Foundation Year Programme

    International students who do not meet the academic requirements for undergraduate study may be able to study the University of Leeds International Foundation Year. This gives you the opportunity to study on campus, be taught by University of Leeds academics and progress onto a wide range of Leeds undergraduate courses. Find out more about International Foundation Year programmes.

    English language requirements

    IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

    International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

    How to apply

    Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

    International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

    Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

    Admissions policy

    School of Languages, Cultures and Societies Undergraduate Admissions Policy


    UK/EU: See fees section below

    International: £17,500 (per year)

    For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

    The fee for undergraduate students starting in 2019 will be confirmed in September 2018.

    The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

    The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students in 2018-19 will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

    If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

    Read more about paying fees and charges.

    Additional cost information

    There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs

    Financial support

    If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

  • Career opportunities

    Especially with the rise of economies like Mexico and Brazil, Spanish and Portuguese are seen as important languages for business. But they’re also major world languages that are spoken across the globe, and the doors they can open for you are endless.

    However, you’ll also earn important transferable skills that are highly sought by employers. You’ll have developed research and critical skills, allowing you to find information from a range of sources and draw your own conclusions from what you find. Your advanced communication and presentation skills will enable you to explain and defend those views. You’ll also have experience of working in a team, and your time abroad will demonstrate you are independent and adaptable.

    Graduates have gone onto work in a range of sectors, both within and beyond the UK. They include education, IT, retail, marketing, administration, the civil service and tourism. Others pursue language-based careers in areas such as translation or interpreting, or further training in these fields.

    Careers support

    We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

    Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

    The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

  • Study abroad and work placements

    Residence abroad

    This degree is unusual in that you’ll actually spend two periods abroad. Normally, you’ll spend the last term of your second year in a Spanish-speaking country, leaving you a full year to spend in Portugal, Brazil or another Lusophone country, or vice versa.

    We have partnerships with a number of universities in Spain, Argentina, Mexico, Uruguay, Chile, Costa Rica, Portugal and Brazil where you could study. Alternatively, you can choose to gain valuable work experience and maybe earn a salary - you could undertake a work placement or even become a language assistant in a school under the British Council’s programme.

    Whatever you choose to do, you’ll gain a new insight into a Spanish or Portuguese-speaking society as well as valuable experience of adapting to another culture. For many of our students, it’s the real highlight of their course.

    Read more about Residence Abroad in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies

  • Related courses