Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies BA

Year of entry

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UCAS code
RR45
Start date
September 2024
Delivery type
On campus
Duration
4 years full time
Work placement
Optional
Study abroad
See below
Typical A-level offer
ABB (specific subject requirements)
Typical Access to Leeds offer
BBC at A Level including B in Spanish and pass Access to Leeds
Full entry requirements

Course overview

Spanish portuguese and latin american studies

On this course you will gain a detailed understanding of the cultures and histories of Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries in Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia. These include countries like Portugal, Spain, Mexico, Brazil and Mozambique. You’ll become highly competent in Spanish and Portuguese, and you can study the latter even if you’re an absolute beginner.

Core language modules will help you improve your spoken and written languages, while core research modules introduce you to study skills and major issues. Optional modules allow you to explore literature, cinema and history, as well as topics like race, ethnicity, translation and using Spanish for business.

Your third year will be spent in a Spanish- or Portuguese-speaking country (or one that has speakers of both languages). This will allow you to practise your language skills and get first-hand experience of local cultures.

Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies at Leeds is an exciting place for your undergraduate experience. Our friendly community of students and staff, student-led societies and outstanding pastoral support creates a friendly and dynamic atmosphere for all our students. This course will equip you with the knowledge, skills and intercultural awareness necessary to achieve your true potential and pursue a wide range of exciting global careers.

We strongly believe that the best way to build your vocabulary and hone your grammar is through the study of culture and history, and that language classes offer an excellent opportunity to acquire greater knowledge of the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking worlds. Our teaching across our modules therefore is a unique blend of language and content, and many of your modules will contain classes and/or assessment in Spanish or Portuguese.

Studying at Leeds means you will learn from world-leading experts in fields as diverse as Spanish popular music, translation, Brazilian cinema, gender in the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking worlds, electronic art and writing, Angolan dance, and nationalism and empire. Much of our teaching derives from our research activities and language scholarship in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies. Click on the links below to see more about the research centres which we lead and the organisations of which we form part:

Specialist facilities

The official cultural institutes of the governments of Spain and Portugal – Instituto Cervantes and the Camões Institute – have branches on campus, as does the cultural arm of the Catalan autonomous government, Institut Ramon Llull. The University of Leeds is the only institution in UK Higher Education to host all three. This means you can participate in many cultural events such as Leeds Flamenco Cultural Week, attend poetry readings and film screenings, and take part in competitions and events.

Our Language Zone gives you access to free learning resources, including space for personal study, language learning software, and video, audio, books and magazines. You'll also have access to our translation computer labs equipped with specialist software and our interpreter training booths.

With four libraries on campus, you’ll find space for study, group work and research. The world class Brotherton Library holds a wide variety of manuscript, archive and early printed material in its Special Collections – valuable assets for your independent research. You’ll have access to free classes and workshops so you can learn how to use them.

Course details

Our Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies course is rewarding and flexible, allowing you to focus on your language skills while choosing from a wide range of optional modules on your particular areas of interest. You will gain an international outlook and intercultural competence from your studies and the experience of living abroad which, alongside advanced language skills, will allow you to pursue career options in diverse and exciting fields when you graduate.

You will start your learning journey with post A-level knowledge of Spanish. For Portuguese there are two pathways within the Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies course: one for beginners, and one for intermediate/advanced (post-A-level or equivalent) learners.

Beginners in Portuguese have their own dedicated intensive language modules in Year 1 to make rapid progress in their learning. Learners who already have a prior knowledge of Portuguese have their own dedicated advanced language module in Year 1.

Year one

You’ll further develop your existing Spanish skills on our core Spanish language module. As for Portuguese, if you start as a beginner, much of the focus will be on building up your language skills through intensive language training. Alternatively, if you already possess knowledge of Portuguese, you’ll attend a tailor-made module to consolidate your language skills.

On your other core modules, you will be introduced to various issues central to the study of the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking worlds and to the skills and knowledge necessary for academic study. In optional modules, you will have the opportunity to develop your knowledge and understanding of Spanish and Latin American culture or history. Some of your teaching and/or assessment on these modules will be in Spanish or Portuguese.

Year two

In addition to your core Spanish and Portuguese language modules, you’ll build on the knowledge acquired in your first year through a wider range of optional modules to choose from, covering topics such as history, cinema, literature, art and popular music across Europe, Latin America and Africa (and even further afield in the case of Portuguese), and Spanish-English translation. Language elements of these optional modules range from lectures in Spanish to you producing podcasts and literature reviews in the target language.

Year three

You can choose to spend a year studying or working in a Spanish-speaking and/or Portuguese-speaking country, sharpening your language skills and absorbing the culture of your local communities.

Year four

You’ll return from your Residence Abroad with first-hand experience to shape your studies, as you take advanced language classes and select from more optional modules ranging from the use of Spanish in a business context to representations of the city in the Portuguese-speaking world. You'll also apply the critical skills you’ve developed to your Final Year Project on a topic related to Spanish or Portuguese (or combining both), which you will research independently and produce with the guidance of one of our expert academics.

At each stage of your studies, you’ll also be able to study other modules in the School of Languages, Cultures and Societies, such as Black Europe at Level 2 and Decolonial Approaches in your final year.

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our terms and conditions.

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies BA in the course catalogue

Year 1 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Practical Language Skills in Spanish 1 20
Introduction to Brazil, Portugal and Portuguese Speaking Africa 20
Portuguese Language for Beginners 1A 20
Portuguese Language for Beginners 1B 20
Researching Spanish and Latin American Studies 20

Year 2 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Practical Language Skills in Spanish 2 20
Practical Language Skills in Portuguese 2 20

Year 2 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)

Module Name Credits
Film and Literature in the Portuguese-speaking World 20
Issues in Hispanic Cinemas 20
Literature and the Arts in the Spanish-speaking World 20
Culture and Society in the Portuguese-Speaking World 20
Latin America since Independence (c1800 - c1930) 20
Translation Theory and Practice in a Spanish - English Context 20
Modern Spain (1868-1975) 20

Year 3 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Year Abroad 120

Year 4 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Practical Language Skills in Spanish 3 20
Advanced Portuguese Language 20
Final Year Project 40

Year 4 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)

Module Name Credits
Spanish in an Economic and Business Context 20
Spanish-English Translation 20
Urban Realities and Representations in the Portuguese Speaking World 20
Nationalism and Internationalism in the Spanish-Speaking World 20
Icons and Stars: Celebrity and Revolution in Spain and Latin America 20
Race and Representation in the Spanish-speaking world 20

Discovery modules

Throughout your degree you will benefit from a range of opportunities to expand your intellectual horizons outside or within your subject area.

Find out more about discovery modules on our Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

Independent learning is an important element of your studies, allowing you to think critically about the various topics you encounter and the materials used to study them. We offer plenty of support on everything from choosing your modules to making the most of our excellent library resources. You’ll have regular opportunities to provide feedback on teaching, course content and what is working well and what can be improved. We have excellent library resources that you can draw upon, and the University Library runs training programmes to help you use them effectively.

On this course you’ll be taught by our expert academics, from lecturers through to professors. You may also be taught by industry professionals with years of experience, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus.

Assessment

We use various types of assessment. Exams and essays are a significant part of this. You will also be assessed in other innovative ways across our modules, such as language portfolios, oral presentations, podcasts and video reviews. We offer support in these areas as well – for example, we run extra classes on skills such as making a podcast, public speaking, structuring essays and exam techniques that you’ll be able to attend throughout your time at Leeds.

Some of your assessment on non-language modules will also be in Spanish or Portuguese, as part of our drive to use the study of culture and history to enable you to build your vocabulary and hone your grammar.

Entry requirements

A-level: ABB including A in Spanish.

Other course specific tests:

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 qualification

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 the level 3 QCF BTEC at Subsidiary Diploma level and above in combination with other qualifications. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information.

Cambridge Pre-U

M1, M1, M2 including M1 Spanish.

International Baccalaureate

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

Irish Leaving Certificate (higher Level)

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

Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

BB in Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers OR B in Advanced Highers or AAABB in Highers OR AABBBB 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: 75% including 8.5 in Spanish.

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

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.

International

We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. Contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.

International Foundation Year

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.


Improve your English
If you're an international student and you don't meet the English language requirements for this programme, you may be able to study our undergraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

Fees

UK: £9,250 (per year)

International: £24,500 (per year)

Tuition fees for a study abroad or work placement year
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.

Some additional fees apply to this course:

  • Find out more about fees if you take a study abroad or work placement year.

  • Read more about paying fees and charges.

  • Course or programme of study costs.

  • Additional costs related to being a student at the University of Leeds.

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 on our living costs and budgeting page.

Scholarships and 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.

Applying

Apply to this course through UCAS. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

Read our guidance about applying.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK 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.

This course is taught by

School of Languages, Cultures and Societies

Contact us

School of Languages, Cultures and Societies Undergraduate Admissions

Email: artsadmissions@leeds.ac.uk
Telephone:

Career opportunities

A degree in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies gives you proficiency in two global languages that are spoken in many major economies across four continents. Through your training in analytical and communication skills and your expertise in two important world languages, you’ll be a clear communicator with strong presentation skills, as well as being a critical thinker who draws your own conclusions from the information available to you.

Your experience of living in a Spanish/Portuguese-speaking country will demonstrate that you are independent and adaptable, while you’ll have skills in teamwork, research and time management, which will allow you to fulfil your career ambitions.

What can I do with a SPLAS degree?

Graduates have gone into a wide range of careers across the globe. They include:

  • Diplomacy
  • Tourism
  • Business and finance
  • Marketing and retail
  • Education
  • Journalism
  • Government departments and the civil service
  • Law

Others have studied for a postgraduate qualification in translating or interpreting in one or both languages to pursue language-based careers or continued to study language or culture to Masters level, either for a PhD and career in academia or to further their knowledge.

What careers support will I have?

We are committed to helping you achieve your career ambitions. You’ll benefit from bespoke support and opportunities in the School and the University.

Our experts in the award-winning University Careers Centre will support you to make informed decisions about your career path, understand the opportunities available and the steps you need to take to pursue your choices. You’ll be encouraged to attend on-campus events including graduate recruitment fairs, employer networking and information sessions, and meetings with our alumni.

The Union provides career-related support through the part-time job hub, student societies and other activities throughout the year. Clubs and societies are a great way to get involved in lots of activities and explore your interests. They’re also a great way to develop your skills such as team working and leadership. For example, you could be a key player in an award-winning sports team, or become a committee member and chair society meetings, or you could even project manage a volunteering trip overseas. The Union is home to School Reps who are appointed by students to represent the views and be the voice of students in your School.

At Leeds, you can access support to help you start your own business. Whether you want to learn about enterprise or become an entrepreneur, we offer award-winning specialist support.

Careers support

The School of Languages, Cultures and Societies regularly hosts employability events where you can listen to Leeds alumni talking about their careers and ask them for advice.

As a student with us, you will be guided in your career choices and prepared for life after your degree in a variety of ways. Workshops and events are organised for you by the School throughout the year and focus on networking, understanding the value of your language skills, hearing from alumni about their career experiences and hosting graduate recruiters who want to hire you.

We’ll also keep you informed of work/voluntary placements for your time abroad and of any other part-time and volunteering opportunities that you can fit around your studies.

We are committed to helping you achieve your career ambitions. The School of Languages, Cultures and Societies careers and employability support includes promoting internships, providing opportunities to work for the School and employer-led workshops and events.

This high-level knowledge provides access to many careers, but you’ll also acquire a range of transferable skills that are highly desirable to employers. You’ll be a clear communicator with strong presentation skills, as well as being a critical thinker who draws your own conclusions from the information available to you. Your year abroad will demonstrate that you are independent and adaptable, while you’ll have skills in teamwork, research and time management.

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 about Careers support.

Study abroad and work placements

Residence abroad opportunities

You’ll spend your third year in a Spanish- or Portuguese-speaking country, or a combination of both, immersing yourself in local culture and cultivating your language skills.

You can choose to study, work as a British Council assistant or take a work placement year.

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

We have partnerships with a number of universities in Spain, Portugal and Latin America for you to spend your residence abroad year.

Read more about Spanish and Portuguese Residence Abroad

Read more about Portuguese Residence Abroad

Work placements

Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.

Find out more about work experience on the Careers website.

You’ll receive support and guidance from the School’s experienced Work Placement Officer, the Residence Abroad team and the University Careers Centre. You'll also network with returning fourth-year students to ask about opportunities, their experiences and general advice for finding the right placement.

Some of the companies where our students have completed work placements include:

  • The Anglo Mexican Foundation (Mexico)
  • FARMEC (Portugal)
  • Elite Formación Integral (Spain)
  • Newlink Consulting and Communications (Spain)
  • La Casita de Martín (Spain)
  • Optimissa Capital Market Consulting (Spain)