Building the skills students need to engage with global communities both locally and internationally

Our high-impact undergraduate programs are designed to help students succeed and develop skills for post-graduate pursuits. Small class sizes enhance students’ sense of belonging, and we provide support for learning through the Spanish Speaking and Writing Center and tutoring programs in Portuguese. Extracurricular Spanish and Portuguese conversation groups enable UI undergraduates to improve their language skills and engage with local native speakers in safe, faculty-supervised settings. We support undergraduate research opportunities in our GE Core Spanish classes and linguistics labs and mentor students working in the Iowa Center for Research by Undergraduates (ICRU). We have strong commitments to community outreach and enable undergraduates to do service projects in translation, Spanish in the Community, and the Iowa Women’s Archives, and many of our graduates have received Fulbright awards to Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries.

Bachelor of Arts in Portuguese

The Bachelor of Arts in Portuguese develops enhanced linguistic proficiency and cultural awareness of the Portuguese-speaking world through a focus on the four skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing, and through a critical engagement with the histories, cultures, and arts of the Lusophone world.

Learning Outcomes

Students are expected to demonstrate: 

  • the ability to understand any spoken language and read all forms of the written language;
  • the ability to communicate effectively, in both oral and written discourse, considering varying registers and cultural contexts;
  • the ability to reflect with critical insight on a range of topics in Portuguese literature, history, and contemporary culture; and
  • critical understanding of cultural differences as well as shared values between Portuguese culture and their native cultures.

Want to get started?

Learn more about the program, including courses, curriculum, and requirements here.

Bachelor of Arts in Spanish

The Bachelor of Arts in Spanish is designed to develop language skills through the study of content areas related to the Spanish language, such as literature, culture and linguistics. A major in Spanish complements other majors or minors in the humanities or in the social sciences or may be combined with work in a certificate program such as the Latin American Studies Program or the International Business Certificate Program.

Learning Outcomes

Students are expected to demonstrate: 

  • the ability to understand any spoken language and read all forms of the written language;
  • the ability to communicate effectively, in both oral and written discourse, considering varying registers and cultural contexts;
  • the ability to reflect with critical insight on a range of topics in Spanish literature, history, and contemporary culture; and
  • critical understanding of cultural differences as well as shared values between Spanish culture and their native cultures.

Want to get started?

Learn more about the program, including courses, curriculum, and requirements here.

Minor in Portuguese

The undergraduate minor in Portuguese includes courses in language, literature and culture. Language courses focus on developing the four communicative skills –speaking, listening, reading, and writing, while upper-level courses expand upon these skills and help to foster critical analysis skills through the study of cultural products and phenomenon, including literary texts, and films.

Features of the Minor

  • With over 230 million speakers, Portuguese is important for business, diplomacy and development, and the arts.
  • Brazil is the 8th largest economy in the world. Learning Portuguese will give you marketable skills as well as access to rich cultural traditions, literature, and film.
  • The Portuguese minor offers several levels of courses in Portuguese language, including one for Spanish speakers, as well as courses in linguistics, culture, and literature.

Want to get started?

Learn more about the program, including courses, curriculum, and requirements here.

Minor in Spanish

The undergraduate minor in Spanish includes courses in language, literature, and culture. Language courses focus on developing the four communicative skills—speaking, listening, reading, and writing, while upper-level courses expand upon these skills and help to foster critical analysis skills through the study of cultural products, including literary texts, and films.

Features of the Minor

A Minor in Spanish:

  • strengthens basic linguistic proficiency in Spanish;
  • prepares students to work with Spanish-speaking communities in the US and around the world by adding cross-cultural skills to any major;
  • provides a foundation in the main cultural issues related to the Spanish-speaking world; and
  • includes an option to count study abroad toward the minor.

Want to get started?

Learn more about the program, including courses, curriculum, and requirements here.