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Spanish and Latin American Studies

BA (Hons)

Key Information

Course Overview

Our BA Spanish and Latin American Studies offers you the opportunity to focus on Spanish and Latin American studies, including Brazilian studies, and learn Spanish to an advanced level.

Spain and Latin America offer exciting possibilities for the study of literature, culture, history and society. Our interdisciplinary modules cover cultural aspects of modern Spanish and Latin American film, literature, visual culture, linguistics, history and history of art. Included in these is, for example, the study of world cities such as Barcelona and Rio de Janeiro.

Leaders in their fields, our language experts, lecturers and researchers provide a unique environment for you to learn and share your experience.

Discover the career opportunities available by taking Spanish and Latin American Studies (BA (Hons)).

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Highlights

  • You will be taught by specialists from our Department of Languages, Cultures and Applied Linguistics, a centre of teaching and research excellence.
  • Ours is a community of scholars with shared interests in interdisciplinary topics and cross-cultural research. Our affiliated research centres, the Centre for French, Francophone and Comparative Studies (CFFCS) and the Centre for Iberian and Latin American Visual Studies (CILAVS), provide an important platform for this exchange. CILAVS offers a range of events such as film screenings, workshops, and talks by guest speakers from the department and other institutions.
  • This degree course enables you to acquire a critical appreciation of the literature, art, cinema and cultural histories and geographies of Spain and Latin America, including Brazil, in modules taught by internationally renowned specialists. The course will also enable non-native speakers to become proficient users of Spanish.
  • If you opt for the Foundation Year routes, these will fully prepare you for undergraduate study. They are ideal if you are returning to study after a gap, if you have not previously studied the relevant subjects, or if you did not achieve the grades you needed for a place on your chosen undergraduate degree.
  • If you choose the International Experience route, you will have the opportunity to spend a year at a partner institution in a Spanish-speaking country.
  • This course gives you the chance to supplement your academic learning with crucial industry experience through our industry placement option module. If you decide to choose this module, you will be able to apply, expand and refine the skills you have learned during your studies and gain valuable skills for employment.

Course Structure

Birkbeck makes all reasonable efforts to deliver educational services, modules and programmes of study as described on our website. In the event that there are material changes to our offering (for example, due to matters beyond our control), we will update applicant and student facing information as quickly as possible and offer alternatives to applicants, offer-holders and current students.

  • Entry Requirements Entry Requirements

    Entry Requirements

    We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential.

    For part-time courses, standard requirements are a minimum of two A-Levels or equivalent.

    4-year, part-timeThis course is suitable for applicants with Spanish at GCSE/A2 (CEFR), proficiency or native speaker level.

    4-year, full-time, with Foundation YearMinimum GCSE (A2 CEFR) in Spanish.

    6-year, part-time, with Foundation YearThis course is suitable for applicants at all language entry levels, from beginner to proficiency, including native speaker level. Acceptance may be subject to an admissions test and/or interview.

    UCAS tariff points

    • 3-year, full-time and 4-year, full-time with International Experience: 96-128 points, A-levels: CCC-ABB, including A-level/B2 (CEFR) in Spanish, but a high AS/B1 (CEFR) level qualification may also be accepted.
    • 4-year, full-time, with Foundation Year: 48 points

    The UCAS tariff score is applicable to you if you have recently studied a qualification that has a UCAS tariff equivalence. UCAS provides a tariff calculator for you to work out what your qualification is worth within the UCAS tariff.

    Year abroad

    4-year, full-time, with International Experience: Please note you must make satisfactory progress during Years 1 and 2 of your degree to be eligible for a year abroad. Additionally, the non-UK partner institution may set its own entrance criteria, including, but not limited to, academic criteria, language requirements and visa requirements. In instances where a student does not meet the eligibility criteria for an approved year abroad or if it is not completed for another reason, their registration may be transferred to the corresponding BA degree pathway without the ‘with International Experience’ designation. Please be aware that you will initially be provided with a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) to study for the first two years of your course while at Birkbeck. During your third year of study at a European institution, you will be required to obtain a visa for that specific country. When you return to the UK to complete your fourth year, Birkbeck will issue you with a second CAS so that you can apply for another Student visa for your final year. You will therefore need to make a total of three visa applications: two for Birkbeck and one for the European institution.

    Foundation year degrees

    Our 'with Foundation Year' route is designed to give you extra support as it provides you with an additional year (full-time) or two years (part-time) of supported study. This is an ideal route if you are returning to study after a gap, or if you have not previously studied this subject, or if you did not achieve the grades you need for a place on this degree.

    Once you successfully complete your Foundation Year studies, you will automatically advance onto the main degree.

    Alternative entry routes

    We welcome applications from students on Access to Higher Education Diplomas. Credits gained on the Certificate of Higher Education in Culture and Language (French, German, Italian, Japanese, Spanish) can be counted towards the degree.

    English Language Requirements

    If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests. We also accept other English language tests.

    If you don’t meet the minimum English language requirements,  or see our international study skills page for more details of how we can help.

    Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

    Visa requirements

    If you are not from the UK and you do not already have residency here, you may need to apply for a visa.

    The visa you apply for varies according to the length of your course:

    • Courses of more than six months' duration: Student visa
    • Courses of less than six months' duration: Standard Visitor visa

    International students who require a Student visa should apply for our full-time courses as these qualify for Student visa sponsorship. If you are living in the UK on a Student visa, you will not be eligible to enrol as a student on Birkbeck's part-time courses (with the exception of some modules).

    For full information, read our visa information for international students page.

    Please also visit the international section of our website to find out more about relevant requirements by country.

    Credits and accredited prior learning (APL)

    If you have studied at university (or have an HND or Foundation Degree), you may have accumulated credits through the modules you studied. It may be possible to transfer these credits from your previous study to Birkbeck or another institution.

  • Fees Fees

    Fees

    Spanish and Latin American Studies with International Experience BA (Hons): 4 years full-time, on campus, starting October 2022

    Starting October 2022

    Full-time home students, 3 years of study: £9250 pa
    Full-time international students, 3 years of study: £14560 pa
    Full-time home students, international year: £1385 pa
    Full-time international students, international year: £2180 pa

    Spanish and Latin American Studies BA (Hons): 4 years part-time, on campus, starting October 2022

    Starting October 2022

    Part-time home students: £ 6935 pa
    Part-time international students: £10920 pa

    Spanish and Latin American Studies BA (Hons): 3 years full-time, on campus, starting October 2022

    Starting October 2022

    Full-time home students: £ 9250 pa
    Full-time international students: £ 14560 pa

    Spanish and Latin American Studies with Foundation Year BA (Hons): 4 years full-time, on campus, starting October 2022

    Starting October 2022

    Full-time home students: £ 9250 pa
    Full-time international students: £ 14560 pa

    Spanish and Latin American Studies with Foundation Year BA (Hons): 6 years part-time, on campus, starting October 2022

    Starting October 2022

    To be confirmed

    Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases. For more information, please see the College Fees Policy.

    Additional costs

    4 years, full-time, with International Experience

    As well as fees, you should expect to pay other study-related expenses, for travel to and from College, books, stationery, etc. Birkbeck provides advice and financial support for students who experience hardship in meeting the travel costs of essential fieldwork or study visits.

    Students who spend an academic year studying abroad for at least 24 weeks will only be liable for 15% of their Birkbeck tuition fee for the year abroad. However, those who study for one term abroad will be charged the full course fee.

    Tuition fee and maintenance loans

    Eligible full-time and part-time students from the UK don’t have to pay any tuition fees upfront, as government loans are available to cover them.

    Maintenance loans are also available for eligible full-time and part-time UK students, to assist with covering living costs, such as accommodation, food, travel, books and study materials. The amount you receive is means-tested and depends on where you live and study and your household income.

    Funding for EU students is changing from August 2021: find out about details of these changes.

    Find out more about tuition fee and maintenance loans for full-time and part-time students at Birkbeck.

    Discover the financial support available to you to help with your studies at Birkbeck.

    International Scholarships

    We provide a range of scholarships for eligible international students, including our Global Future Scholarship. Discover if you are eligible for a scholarship.

  • Teaching and Assessment Teaching and Assessment

    Teaching

    At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government's system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.

    Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading. Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.

    Our distance-learning and blended-learning courses and modules are self-directed and we will provide you with interactive learning opportunities and encourage you to collaborate and engage via various learning technologies. These courses involve limited or no face-to-face contact between students and module tutors.

    In addition, you will have access to pastoral support via a named Personal Tutor.

    Methods of teaching on this course

    Lectures, seminars and workshops.

    The Foundation Year is composed mainly of interactive lectures for large groups and tutorial-style classes that support the development of knowledge, skills, confidence and self-awareness.

    Teaching hours

    Our evening hours are normally between 6pm and 9pm (6-7.30pm and 7.30-9pm). Some programmes also offer teaching during the day and this will be clearly signposted to you where it is available.

    On our taught courses, you will have scheduled teaching and study sessions each year. Scheduled teaching sessions may include lectures, seminars, workshops or laboratory work. Depending on the modules you take, you may also have additional scheduled academic activities, such as tutorials, dissertation supervision, practical classes, visits and field trips. On our taught courses, the actual amount of time you spend in the classroom and in contact with your lecturers will depend on your course, the option modules you select and when you undertake your final-year project (if applicable).

    Alongside your contact hours, you will also undertake assessment activities and independent learning outside of class. The amount of time you need to allocate to study both for taught sessions (this might include online sessions and/or in-person sessions) and personal study will depend on how much you are studying during the year and whether you are studying full time or part time.

    Birkbeck’s courses are made up of modules and allocated ‘credit’. One credit is equivalent to ten hours of learning time. Modules are usually in 15, 30 or 60 credit units. A 15-credit module will mean around 150 hours of learning, including taught sessions and independent study or group work. This is spread out over the whole period of that module and includes the time you spend on any assessments, including in examinations, preparing and writing assessments or engaged in practical work as well as any study support sessions to help you in your learning.

    On our distance-learning and blended-learning courses, discussion, collaboration and interaction with your lecturers and fellow students is encouraged and enabled through various learning technologies.

    Timetables

    Timetables are usually available from September onwards and you can access your personalised timetable via your My Birkbeck Profile online (if you have been invited to enrol).

    Indicative class size

    Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to larger groups, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups led by a tutor.

    Independent learning

    On our taught courses, much of your time outside of class will be spent on self-directed, independent learning, including preparing for classes and following up afterwards. This will usually include, but is not limited to, reading books and journal articles, undertaking research, working on coursework and assignments, and preparing for presentations and assessments.

    Independent learning is absolutely vital to your success as a student. Everyone is different, and the study time required varies topic by topic, but, as a guide, expect to schedule up to five hours of self-study for each hour of teaching.

    On our distance-learning and blended-learning courses, the emphasis is very much on independent, self-directed learning and you will be expected to manage your own learning, with the support of your module tutors and various learning technologies.

    Study skills and additional support

    Birkbeck offers study and learning support to undergraduate and postgraduate students to help them succeed. Our Learning Development Service can help you in the following areas:

    • academic skills (including planning your workload, research, writing, exam preparation and writing a dissertation)
    • written English (including structure, punctuation and grammar)
    • numerical skills (basic mathematics and statistics).

    Our Disability and Dyslexia Service can support you if you have additional learning needs resulting from a disability or from dyslexia.

    Our Counselling Service can support you if you are struggling with emotional or psychological difficulties during your studies.

    Our Mental Health Advisory Service can support you if you are experiencing short- or long-term mental health difficulties during your studies.

    Assessment

    Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations, although this will vary from course to course - on some of our courses, assessment is entirely by coursework. The methods of assessment on this course are specified below under 'Methods of assessment on this course'. You will need to allow time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.

    Where a course has unseen written examinations, these may be held termly, but, on the majority of our courses, exams are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June. Exams may be held at other times of the year as well. In most cases, exams are held during the day on a weekday - if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance - but some exams are held in the evening. Exam timetables are published online.

    Find out more about assessment at Birkbeck, including guidance on assessment, feedback and our assessment offences policy.

    Methods of assessment on this course

    For language modules, work done during the year, including in-class assessments, counts in different proportions in different modules.

    Literature and culture modules are assessed by a combination of different types of coursework, depending on the level of the module. For example, for most 30-credit Level 6 modules you must complete two essays a year. There are no written examinations.

  • Careers and employability Careers and employability

    Careers and employability

    Graduates can pursue career paths in international organisations or businesses, media and cultural industries, education or research. Possible professions include:

    • translator
    • journalist
    • diplomatic services operational officer.

    We offer a comprehensive Careers Service - Birkbeck Futures - your career partner during your time at Birkbeck and beyond. At every stage of your career journey, we empower you to take ownership of your future, helping you to make the connection between your experience, education and future ambitions.

  • How to apply How to apply

    How to apply

    You apply via UCAS for our full-time undergraduate courses or directly to Birkbeck for our part-time undergraduate courses.

    Full-time (UCAS entry)

    If you are applying for a full-time undergraduate course at Birkbeck, you have to apply through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). To apply, go to the UCAS website and click on ‘Sign in’. You will have to register, giving UCAS a few personal details, including your name, address and date of birth, and then you can start working on your application.

    As part of the admission process you may be asked to complete a written test, or a language entry test (except for complete beginners), and you may be invited to attend an interview.

    15 January is the first UCAS deadline and the majority of university applications through UCAS are made by then. We welcome applications outside of the UCAS deadlines, so you can still apply through UCAS after 15 January, depending on the availability of places. We also take late applications via the UCAS Clearing system in August.

    Read more about key dates for UCAS applicants.

    Part-time

    If you are applying for a part-time undergraduate course (4 or 6 year), you apply directly to Birkbeck by using the Apply now button. You will need to prove your identity when you apply - read more about suitable forms of identification.

    You are strongly advised to apply now, to ensure that there are still places on your chosen course and to give you enough time to complete the admissions process, to arrange funding and to enrol. You don't need to complete your current programme of study before you apply.

    You will also receive information about subject-specific induction sessions over the summer.

    You apply directly to Birkbeck for this course, using the online application link. Please note that online application will open in September.

    When to apply

    You are strongly advised to apply now, to ensure there are still places on your chosen course and to give you enough time to complete the admissions process, to arrange funding and to enrol.

    You don't need to complete your current programme of study before you apply - Birkbeck can offer you a place that is conditional on your results.

    You will also receive information about subject-specific induction sessions over the summer.

    Help and advice with your application

    Get all the information you need about the application, admission and enrolment process at Birkbeck.

    Our online personal statement tool will guide you through every step of writing the personal statement part of your application.

    Apply for your course

    Apply for your course using the apply now button in the key information section at the top of this page.