The Major

Sixty-six credits in Spanish including the following: no more than eighteen credits in the sequence 204-219; and no more than eighteen credits from courses numbered 220-299. A limit of three 200-level literature courses (may include one in translation) within the range of 220-299 guarantees that our students will proceed in a timely fashion to the upper division seminars and yet allows both flexibility and transition. All our courses demand that students learn and apply critical skills for literary and cultural analysis. However, it is at the 300-level that our majors complete a paper that can often form the basis for the senior comprehensive project, the capstone experience in our major.

At least three courses in Latin American literature, film and/or culture and three courses in Peninsular literature, literature, film and/or culture must be completed before winter term of the senior year.

In addition to these sixty-six credits, six credits in literature or film other than in Spanish are required.

The spring of our majors’ junior year, students consult with faculty and begin the process of their “comps” or “senior comprehensive exercise”.” The “comps” is completed spring term, senior year. Six credits for work in the “comprehensive exercise” are also included in the required 66 credits.


"I switched my major to Spanish after a few weeks of a class about Don Quijote with Professor Humberto Huergo, after realizing how much I personally gained from the Spanish classes I'd taken throughout my first two years. Aside from the usefulness of knowing another language, the subjectivity of literature itself is what drew me to change my major. Having the freedom to question, to interpret, and to be wrong is something I don't think I would have found in a different major." (Pallav Kumar '18) 

"I chose to major in Spanish because of the incredible department; my Spanish classes have consistently been my favorites at Carleton and I doubt this will change as I finish my degree. From being able to learn from insightful professors who genuinely care about my development as a Spanish speaker, to working as a TA starting sophomore year, I've been afforded so many opportunities to learn and grow." (Abby Sharer '18)

"I chose to major in Spanish because of the diverse courses and friendly professors. I have learned so much already about the history and literature of Spanish-speaking countries, and gained a sincere appreciation for the language and culture. I love speaking in Spanish and working with all of the professors to improve my competency in the language. I look forward to all the possibilities that the Spanish major brings." (Christina Tarazi '18)

"In the Carleton Spanish Department, I feel that I have the full support of my professors and fellow majors to pursue topics that interest me and push my own understanding of new subjects. Professors demand a great deal from us and help us succeed in both our personal and academic goals. It’s almost like a little family!" (Carlos Delgado '17)

"One of my favorite courses that I’ve taken in the Spanish major was called “Murder as Art: Latin American Detective Stories” my freshman winter. We spent the term exploring how many Latin American writers have transformed the detective genre into a potent form of social criticism by reflecting the hidden corruption that is hidden in their societies. The crime is just one part of a larger web of complicity, and our professor brought in several seniors who were compsing on detective stories to discuss the genre with us. It was a really wonderful, imaginative class, and I laugh in retrospect because I’ve come full circle. Now, as a senior myself, I’m going to be doing my comps on the detective genre, as well!" (Jesse Rothbard '17)

"What made me decide to become a Spanish major was the realization that all of my favorite classes were Spanish classes because they combined so many disciplines at once. Spanish classes allowed me to analyze literature, talk about politics and social movements, cover history and philosophy, all while simultaneously learning another language. I chose Spanish because it was like taking five classes in one." (Isabelle Ibibo '16)

***Some quotes have been shortened or edited for clarity.