BA Modern Languages and Literatures

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Program Learning Objectives

The Modern Languages and Literatures program provides students opportunities to:

  1. Learn to communicate effectively through speaking, listening, reading, and writing in authentic target-language situations.
  2. Develop communicative and intercultural competency so that they can work productively both as individuals and in collaboration with others.
  3. Gain perspective on cultural and historical achievements in the target-language cultures as well as on relevant issues of diversity.
  4. Cultivate awareness of ethical and professional perspectives that reflect linguistic and cultural heritage.
  5. Think critically and creatively using the target languages and negotiate meaning between the target languages and English.
  6. Develop the life-long ability to evaluate ways in which language and culture provide perspective on the larger world of the arts, sciences, and technology.

Degree Requirements and Curriculum

In addition to the program requirements listed on this page, students must also satisfy requirements outlined in more detail in the Minimum Requirements for Graduation section of this catalog, including:

  • 60 units of upper division courses
  • Graduation Writing Requirement (GWR)
  • 2.0 GPA
  • U.S. Cultural Pluralism (USCP)

Note: No major or support courses may be selected as credit/no credit.

Primary Language
SPAN 201Intermediate Spanish I4
SPAN 202Intermediate Spanish II4
SPAN 203Intermediate Spanish III4
or SPAN 206 Spanish for Heritage Speakers
SPAN 207Introduction to Spanish Linguistics4
SPAN 233Introduction to Hispanic Readings (C1) 14
SPAN 301Advanced Composition in Spanish4
SPAN 302Advanced Conversation and Composition in Spanish4
SPAN 300-level courses
Select from the following:8
(see catalog description for credit limits on variable topic courses)
Introduction to English-Spanish Translation
Significant Works in Spanish
Spanish and Latin American Film
Chicano/a Authors
SPAN 400-level courses
Select from the following:8
Advanced Topics in Spanish Linguistics
Advanced Literature in Spanish
Don Quixote
Selected Advanced Topics
WLC 360Research Methods in World Languages and Cultures4
WLC 460Senior Project4
Approved language/culture electives (300-400 level) 5
(See Approved Language/Culture Elective list below)12
Secondary Language Concentration or Minor
Select one of the following:32
A. Secondary language concentration (32 units) 2
Elementary courses: 101, 102, 103 (12 units)
Intermediate courses: 201, 202, 203 (12 units)
Critical Reading course: 233 (4 units) 3
Advanced language course: 300-400 level (4 units) 4
B.Minor and Upper-Division SPAN Courses (32 units)
SPAN 300-400 level courses (2-8 units)
With signature of advisor, any course used in a declared academic minor not used to meet MLL major requirements (24-30 units) 5,8
(See GE program requirements below.)68
Free Electives 516
Total units180

  Approved Language/Culture Electives (300-400 level)

Select from the following:12
The Global Environment
Global Agricultural Marketing and Trade
Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica
Indigenous South Americans
Human Cultural Adaptations
Culture and Health
Native American Cultures
Art History - Nineteenth Century Art
Design History
Art History - Art Since 1945
Women as Subject and Object in Art History
Asian Art Topics: National, Religious, and Intellectual Movements
International Business Management
Advanced Seminar in International Management
The Legal Environment of International Business
Developmental Issues in Education
Group Performance of Literature
Communication Theory
Intergroup Communication
Intercultural Communication
Gender and Communication
Cultural Influence on Dance in America
Economics of Poverty, Discrimination and Immigration
International Trade Theory
Bilingual Literacy
Foundations of Bilingual Education
Writing: Advanced Composition
Ethnic American Literature
Literary Themes
The Linguistic Structure of Modern English
Topics in Applied Linguistics
Significant World Writers
Topics in Applied Language Study
Theories of Language Learning and Teaching
Approaches to Teaching English as a Second Language/Dialect
Practicum in Teaching English as a Second Language/Dialect
Graduate Introduction to Linguistics
Chicano/a Non-Fiction Literature
Native American Cultural Images
Asian American Cultural Images
Mexican American Cultural Images
Native American Architecture and Place
The Chinese American Experience
Cultural Production and Ethnicity
Ethnicity and the Land
Critical Race Theory
Advanced French Composition and Grammar 6
Advanced French Conversation and Grammar 6
Significant Works in French 7
French Literature in English Translation 7
Selected Advanced Topics 7
Global Geography
Geography of Latin America
Advanced German Composition and Grammar 6
Advanced German Conversation and Grammar 6
Significant Works in German 7
German Literature in English Translation 7
Selected Advanced Topics 7
The Witch-Hunts in Europe, 1400-1800
East Asian Culture and Civilization
Middle East
Modern East Asia
Modern South and Southeast Asia
Modern Central America
Colonial Latin America
Modern Latin America
Modern Japan
20th Century China
Chinese Film and History
Nazi Germany
Renaissance and Reformation Europe
Critical Issues in Latin American Studies
Storytelling: Modern Applications of Traditional Narrative
Medieval Philosophy
Early Modern Rationalism
Kant and 19th Century European Philosophy
Asian Philosophy
Feminist Ethics, Gender, Sexuality and Society
Philosophy of Language
The Politics of Race, Class, Gender and Sexuality
International Relations Theory
Global Political Issues
Authoritarian and Democratic Rule
Issues and Topics in International Relations
Religion, Gender, and Society
Sustainable Travel and Tourism Planning
The World System and Its Problems
Sociology of Gender
Urban Sociology
Global Race and Ethnic Relations
American Ethnic Minorities
Social Organization of Modern Japan
Introduction to English-Spanish Translation
Significant Works in Spanish 7
Spanish and Latin American Film 7
Chicano/a Authors (USCP)
Hispanic Literature in English Translation 7
Chicano/Latino Writers in the United States
Advanced Literature in Spanish 7
Selected Advanced Topics 7
Seminar in Playwriting
Global Theatre and Performance
Women, Gender and Sexuality in Global Perspective
Gender, Race, Culture, Science and Technology
Feminist Theory
Humanities in World Cultures 6,7
Humanities in Chicano/a Culture
Culture of Spain: Activities
Language, Technology and Society
Methods in Teaching Languages Other Than English
Selected Advanced Topics 7

Required in Major; also satisfies GE


Secondary language: French, German, Mandarin Chinese, or other language approved by Department Chair. Required coursework for approved secondary language that is not available through Cal Poly must be fulfilled through approved transfer credit.


If Mandarin Chinese is selected as the student's secondary language concentration, a department-approved upper-division course with significant Chinese culture and critical thinking components will be substituted for this course.


FR, GER (300-400 level), WLC 310 “Culture of France” or “Culture of Germany”, or upper-division work in other language approved by Department Chair.


If upper-division GE courses are used to satisfy Major or Support requirements, additional upper-division coursework may be required to satisfy the University's 60-units upper-division requirement.


May be used as an elective, if not being used as part of required courses. May not be counted twice.


May be counted multiple times if taken with different subtitles.


Exceptions: French Minor, German Minor, Spanish Minor, Italian Studies Minor. Academic policy states that a major and a minor cannot be taken in the same degree program.

General Education (GE) Requirements

  • 72 units required, 4 of which are specified in Major and/or Support.
  • See the complete GE course listing.
  • Minimum of 12 units required at the 300 level.
Area ACommunication
A1Expository Writing4
A2Oral Communication4
A3Reasoning, Argumentation and Writing4
Area BScience and Mathematics
B2Life Science4
B3Physical Science4
B4One lab taken with either a B2 or B3 course
B5Area B elective (select one course from B1-B5)4
Area CArts and Humanities
C1Literature (4 units in Major) 10
C3Fine/Performing Arts4
C4Upper-division elective (no SPAN, FR, GER courses)4
Area D/E Society and the Individual
D1The American Experience (Title 5, Section 40404 requirement)4
D2Political Economy4
D3Comparative Social Institutions4
D4Self Development (CSU Area E)4
D5Upper-division elective4
Area FTechnology
FUpper-division elective4
Total units68

Required in Major; also satisfies GE