The Department of Spanish and Portuguese offers undergraduates an opportunity to master the four fundamental linguistic skills—speaking, understanding, reading, and writing—in Spanish and Portuguese and to study the literary, cultural, and linguistic heritages of the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking peoples in the Iberian Peninsula and the Americas. The department offers the B.A. degree in Spanish and in Portuguese, and the MA/PhD and PhD in Hispanic languages and literatures in three different specializations: Spanish and Spanish-American literature, Luso-Brazilian literature and Iberian linguistics.
Students interested in a Spanish or Portuguese major or minor should meet with department advisors at the beginning of each quarter. Qualified staff in the Department office are available on a regular basis to advise on academic matters.
Qualified students majoring in Spanish or Portuguese may spend a semester or year at the university’s Education Abroad center at one of the following locations: Madrid, Barcelona, Córdoba, Granada, Mexico City, San José, Santiago (Chile) Rio de Janeiro, or Bahía.
Students who complete the major in Spanish or Portuguese may enter a variety of careers and graduate programs including education, public policy (government institutions, NGOs or NPOs), international trade and finance, interpreting and translation, travel, communications, publishing, public relations, and further graduate work in medical or law school. It is important to keep in mind that many of these professional careers require training beyond the undergraduate level, and students with such interests should discuss their plans with an advisor as early as possible.
Students with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish or Portuguese who are interested in pursuing a California Teaching Credential should contact the credential advisor in the Graduate School of Education as soon as possible. Successful completion of an advanced degree in Spanish is required for issuance of the Community College Instructor’s Credential. Students interested in the related professional preparation program should contact the credential advisor prior to the fall quarter of the year in which the advanced degree will be completed.
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese at UCSB is one of the first in the United States to include in its curriculum all five of the languages and literatures of the Iberian Peninsula (Spanish, Portuguese, Basque, Catalan, and Galician). The curriculum also covers the whole spectrum of Hispanic literary traditions, from the Middle Ages to U.S. Chicano and Latino literature.
Center for Portuguese Studies provides support for teaching and degree programs and promotes the study of the literatures, language, and cultures of the Portuguese-speaking world. Services and activities include awarding student scholarships and stipends; hosting colloquia; maintaining the center library; and sponsoring a publications series, as well as a scholarly journal, “Santa Barbara Portuguese Studies.” The Center is made possible by an endowment from the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation in Portugal.
Portuguese Lectureship. The Portuguese government, through the Instituto Camões, established the first Portuguese Lectureship in the United States at UCSB in 1973. It provides a visiting lecturer annually.
Basque Studies. The department has a Basque Studies program, supported by the establishment in 1993 of an endowed chair from the Autonomous Basque Government of Spain. The José Miguel de Barandiarán Chair of Basque Studies promotes the study of Basque language and culture and provides UCSB students with the opportunity to take 6 Basque-related courses thanks to an agreement with the Etxepare Institute. We offer three courses in language and three courses on the history, culture, literature and cinema of the Basque Country every year.
Tinta, Scholarly Journal. The graduate student publication gives students the opportunity to gain valuable experience by editing and publishing their own scholarly work.
Samuel A. Wofsy and Robert E. Wilson Awards. Each year the Department awards two Wofsy Fellowships to outstanding graduate students at the M.A. and Ph.D. levels. The Department also awards two Wilson Scholarships to outstanding undergraduate students.
Senior Honors Program in Spanish or Portuguese
Qualified seniors will be invited to participate in an honors program, designed to allow them to pursue independent research on a topic of particular interest to them. Requirements for admission to the program include 105 units of course credits, completion of a minimum of 30 upper-division units in the major, minimum overall grade-point average of 3.0, and a grade-point average of 3.5 or better in the major. Honors graduates will be identified each year at the head of the graduation list in Spanish or Portuguese and will be designated on university records and diplomas with the legend Distinction in the Major, as well as recognized at the annual Department awards ceremony.