Graduate Certificate in Latin American Studies

The Graduate Certificate in Latin American Studies enriches the disciplinary and professional training of students with a focused multidisciplinary curriculum of courses. The certificate is available to graduate students in all participating schools and departments who fulfill the following requirements within an existing degree program. CAS/GRS departments likely to participate include Romance Studies, Sociology, History, Anthropology, Archaeology, History of Art & Architecture, Earth & Environment, International Relations, Music, Philosophy, and Political Science. Other schools for which the certificate would also be appropriate include the College of Communication, Questrom School of Business, College of Fine Arts, School of Law, Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine, School of Public Health, School of Theology, and Wheelock College of Education & Human Development.

Learning Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate intermediate-level proficiency in reading, writing, speaking, and oral comprehension of Spanish and/or Portuguese.
  • Students will demonstrate advanced knowledge of Latin America in at least two of six major disciplines (history, literature, politics, economics, culture, and social involvements) within an inter-American and global perspective.

Requirements of the Graduate Certificate Program

  • Students must successfully complete at least 16 credits of coursework (four standard courses) in courses primarily focused on Latin America, with a minimum grade of B in each course.
  • Concentration requirement: At least three of the four courses must focus on a subregional or substantive area (e.g., Brazil, Mexico, comparative government, cultural/archeological preservation, Latin American literature and the arts; Latin American film).
  • Courses must be chosen from at least two departments or schools.
  • No more than 4 credits can be in directed study or research, except with written permission of the director of the Latin American Studies Program (LASP).
  • Students must complete a piece of significant research such as an MA, MFA thesis, or doctoral dissertation, or two substantial research papers in graduate-level seminars and give a final talk to the LASP core faculty.
  • Students must demonstrate a high level of competence in either Spanish or Portuguese, including the capability to read, write, and speak the language with sufficient proficiency to understand and be understood. Competence in the foreign language of the student’s choosing is determined by examination by BU language instructors. Students must pass this examination in order to complete the degree.
  • For students concentrating in subregions or topics where other languages are spoken (French, Haitian Creole, Maya, Náhuatl, etc), the Graduate Certificate in Latin American Studies will arrange an assessment of reading proficiency based on a dictionary-aided, timed translation of a professionally relevant scholarly (or equivalent) document.
  • Students must receive approval of completion from the LASP director and the student’s departmental academic advisor. Students are expected to consult with the LASP director at the beginning of their studies in order to ensure that their planned courses will fulfill the goals of the certificate program.