Department of Spanish and Portuguese

College of Letters & Science
HomeUndergraduateSpanish | UndergraduateMajor in Spanish

Major in Spanish

Declare the Spanish major online!


Prerequisites (These courses do not count toward the 27-credit minimum for the major):

Concurrent enrollment is permitted. All three prerequisites must be completed before studying more advanced levels of literature or civilization and culture; however, the Spanish major can be declared at any time.

  • Spanish 226: Intermediate Language Practice with Emphasis on Writing and Grammar (or higher language placement as determined by Placement exam)
  • Spanish 223: Introduction to Hispanic Cultures
  • Spanish 224: Introduction to Hispanic Literatures

Language Practice (3 Credits)

  • Spanish 311: Introduction to Advanced Language Practice

Introductory Linguistics (3 Credits)

  • One 3-credit course to be chosen from the following (Spanish 320, 321, or 331)

Culture/Civilization (3 Credits)

  • One 3-credit course at or above the 300-level (361, 363, 468, 469, 476)

 Literature (3 Credits)

  • One 300-level survey of literature (322*, 324, 326)
    *322 is recommended for those interested in historical linguistics
    PLEASE NOTE: Versions of Spanish 322, 324, and 326 are offered through UW Independent Learning. Independent Learning is a separate institution from UW-Madison and these courses neither equate to our survey of literature courses nor count toward our Spanish major!

Additional Culture/Civilization, Literature, and/or Linguistics (9 credits)

  • Additional coursework in culture/civilization (361, 363, 468, 469, 476), literature (322, 324, 326, any 400-level literature), linguistics (320, 321, 327, 331, 429, 446, 474), Directed Study (699), Honors or Senior Thesis (681, 682, 691, 692) and/or Undergraduate Seminar 470

Required Elective Credits (6 Credits)

  • Six additional credits in courses at or above the 300-level to be selected from language practice, linguistics, culture/civilization, and/or literature courses in Spanish. Students may also choose to take up to four credits in another Romance language by taking Latin 103 or intensive courses such as French 201, Italian 201, Portuguese 301, and/or more advanced offerings.

Advanced Coursework

  • A minimum of three 400-level credits in any of the above areas must be taken 

Study Abroad Stipulation and Faculty Engagement

  • At least fifteen credits of Spanish at any level (though at least six credits must be at the major level) must be taken while physically present on the UW-Madison campus

Total Credits: 27

The following Spanish courses are classified as:

Language Practice: 101, 102, 203, 204, 226, 311, 319, 323, 325, 329, 359, 473
Linguistics: 320, 321, 327, 331, 429, 446, 474
Culture / Civilization: 223, 361, 363, 468, 469, 476
Literature: 224, 322, 324, 326, 414, 417, 435, 453, 460, 461, 462, 463, 464, 465, 466, 467, 471, 475

Spanish Major Requirement Checklist (PDF)

Major Blocks:

A reminder that a major block is placed on Spanish 325 and 468 for registering purposes in the fall and spring. If you plan to major in Spanish and want to take either of these classes in the fall or spring, you must declare your major at least one week prior to your assigned class registration time. No exceptions are made to this rule. If you do not declare your Spanish major at least one week prior to your registration time, you will likely need to wait until a later semester to take either of these classes.

Oral Proficiency Testing:

In accordance with the College of Letters and Science regulations concerning program assessment, the Spanish program periodically carries out an evaluation of the language proficiency of Spanish majors. This could affect you in the following way:
Before you graduate, you may be required to take an oral proficiency test in Spanish. The Department will contact you if and when you are required to take this test. The results of this test will be treated anonymously and will in no way affect your academic record or progress.