Off-Campus Studies can help Spanish students…

  • Improve Spanish language skills
  • Gain awareness of the major discipline from a different scholarly tradition
  • Develop global perspectives
  • Gain research skills from field studies or work with primary sources
  • Expand cross-cultural communication and problem-solving skills
  • Prepare for an increasingly diverse and international workplace
  • Develop confidence in personal and academic skills

How does a semester or year of OCS help students in Spanish prepare for graduate school or various career opportunities? 

  • Most students experience significant linguistic development through off-campus studies in the Spanish-speaking world even if the student studies abroad for just one semester.
  • Broad exposure to Spanish and Latin American cultures, specialized course work, and internship opportunities for career development
  • Linguistic, literary and cultural immersion

As a general rule of thumb, the Spanish Department recommends the following for students who wish to study off campus.

  • First and second-year students who intend to study abroad in the Spanish-speaking world should keep in mind that most programs taught in Spanish require students to have completed a minimum of second-year Spanish (SPAN 205 & 206) or the equivalent prior to enrollment.  However, we strongly recommend that students planning on studying in Spanish complete at least one semester of third-year Spanish prior to studying abroad.  The more Spanish courses a student has prior to departure the better.
  • Students with little or no background in Spanish prior to entering Whitman should take SPAN 108 Introductory Spanish spring semester their first year. Students who have a previous background in the language must take the Spanish placement test prior to registering for classes and should then enroll in a Spanish course at the appropriate level.
  • A full year of off-campus study will yield the greatest linguistic benefit.  In many cases, students are able to obtain 11 credits in Spanish language and literature in just one semester.
  • Students may study abroad in either the fall or spring semester or for the academic year.
  • Note to Heritage speakers of Spanish and students with a strong background in Spanish: Program admission applications will require at least one graded Spanish course on your Whitman transcript at the time of application.

Which requirements can Spanish majors fulfill while off campus?

  • 400-level equivalent major credit in Spanish and/or Latin American literature, film, theatre
  • Elective major credit from courses in Spanish language and literature
  • General Studies distribution credit
  • General degree credit

Major Credit Limitations

  • The maximum number of credits that can be applied to the Spanish major from off campus studies (including AP credit, IB credit and credits from other U.S. institutions) is 11 credits with the approval of your major adviser. All transfer credits in Spanish must be equivalent to 300 or 400-level courses.
  • Business courses typically cannot be transferred to Whitman because they are vocational in nature and not considered liberal arts.

Minor Credit Limitations

  • A minimum of three-fifths of the specific course and credit requirements for the minor must be completed in the on-campus program of the college.

What are the types of OCS programs recommended by the Spanish department?

  • Direct enrollment in a foreign university with local students

Which Partner Programs are recommended by the Spanish department?

Spanish majors should enroll in study abroad Partner Programs that offer courses that can be applied to the major, which are typically available on the following programs.

  • IFSA-Butler: Argentine Universities Program (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
  • IFSA-Butler: Mendoza Universities Program (Mendoza, Argentina)
  • IFSA-Butler: Chilean Universities Program (Valparaiso, Chile)
  • IFSA-Butler: Merida Universidad Autonoma de Yucatan (Merida, Mexico)
  • Middlebury Spain (Cordoba, Getafe and Madrid)
  • CIEE: Alicante Liberal Arts (Spain)
  • IES: Granada - Study in Granada (Intermediate & Advanced) (Spain)

Students interested in Off-Campus Studies should attend an OCS First Step meeting in the fall of their second year, discuss their interests with their major adviser, and schedule an appointment with an OCS adviser.