Department of Spanish and Portuguese

College of Letters & Science

Graduate Admissions

  • Applicants with a B.A. in Portuguese or Spanish must have an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, and a GPA in Portuguese or Spanish courses of at least 3.25. Exceptions to these requirements may be made by the Admissions Committee.

  • During the registration period, the student will be asked to supply supplementary information regarding courses taken previously, experience abroad, scope of readings in Portuguese and Brazilian literatures, and preparation in linguistics.

  • All candidates will take an examination for written proficiency. An unsatisfactory performance in the written examination will require the student to take Portuguese 311 (Fourth-Year Composition and Conversation). Any student who receives a grade of less than A in Portuguese 311 will be required to take Portuguese 312. Candidates who are not native speakers of Portuguese will take an examination for oral proficiency. Any student achieving a grade-point average of less than 3.0 in the first semester in residence will be placed on probation. If after the second semester of studies the cumulative grade-point average is not 3.0, the student is not eligible to continue in the program.

  • Each candidate will confer with the general adviser. The student and the adviser will plan a program that takes into account the candidate's interests, strengths and deficiencies. If, for example, the student has a strong undergraduate background in a particular period of literature, the adviser will not recommend further exposure to the same field. Likewise, a student with extensive experience abroad and/or undergraduate preparation in composition or conversation may not need further study in these areas.

  • Candidates who expect to go on to the Doctorate are urged to acquire the basic reading knowledge of a second foreign language before taking the M.A. examination. It should be another Romance Language, Latin, or German. Other languages may be considered, with the approval of the department.

Required Documentation for MA and PhD Applications

  • Three (3) letters of recommendation are required for all graduate student applicants, using the Graduate School's online form.
  • Send one (1) official copy of ALL university transcripts to the Department of Spanish & Portuguese. Notarized English translations should accompany ALL non-English transcripts.
  • TOEFL test is required for ALL applicants whose native language is NOT English, or whose undergraduate instruction was NOT in English.
  • Reason for Graduate Study/Statement of Purpose: What are your Reasons for Graduate Study? Please describe your current degree goals and your reasons for selecting your program(s). Your statement can be either in English or the program’s language. It should not exceed three (3) single-spaced pages, or the equivalent when double-spaced.
  • Ph.D. Degree: A writing sample in either Spanish or Portuguese (e.g., a term paper length) is required for all Ph.D. applicants. It should be eight to ten (8-10) pages. The topic should be as close as possible to the field you wish to specialize in for the Ph.D. thesis.

Application Deadlines

  1. Fall term - January 5 of same Fall term (i.e. January 5, 2015 for Fall 2015)
  2. Spring term - October 15 in year prior to Spring term (i.e. October 15, 2014 for Spring 2015)
  3. All materials must be received either electronically or by postal mail to the Department of Spanish and Portuguese by these dates
Click here for more information regarding Graduate School requirements

Spanish

Admission to Candidacy

  • M.A. students in Spanish at the University of Wisconsin-Madison are admitted to doctoral studies in this Department on the recommendation of the M.A. examining committee.
  • A graduate student with the M.A. from another institution is admitted to the doctoral program by virtue of his/her acceptance in the Department. A minimum graduate GPA of 3.4 is required.

Portuguese

Admission to Candidacy

  • M.A. students in Portuguese at the University of Wisconsin-Madison are admitted to doctoral studies in this Department upon successful completion of the Ph.D. Qualifying Examination (see Guidelines for the M.A. in Portuguese).
  • A graduate student with the M.A. from another institution is admitted to the doctoral program by virtue of his/her acceptance by the Department. A minimum graduate GPA of 3.4 is required.