A stock photo of Mayan masks from Chichen Itza, Mexico. A stock photo of Mayan masks from Chichen Itza, Mexico.

The Latin American Studies major is designed for students who desire a comprehensive understanding of Latin America and the Caribbean; its history, cultures, languages, economics, politics, and societies. A total of 36 credits (including 6 credits in foreign language) are required for completion of the major. Majors often combine their studies with concentrations in other departments or schools. LAS majors also learn outside of the classroom, through interaction with visiting experts, participation in symposium and conferences, and travel courses. Students are required to attain at least competency in two Latin American languages, and are advised (but not required) to spend at least one semester in Latin America.

Click here to view the program curriculum.

The Mission

The mission of the B.A. in Latin American Studies is to prepare students as they acquire knowledge of the history, literature, culture, politics, economics, and natural sciences of the regions of Latin America and the Caribbean. This knowledge acquisition should occur within an interdisciplinary framework that emphasizes the languages of the Hispanophone, Francophone, and Lusophone Americas, and which includes the transnational study of Latin American and Caribbean diasporic communities in the United States.

Learning Outcomes

  • Students should graduate from the program with a deep understanding of Latin America, the Caribbean, as well as of the individual countries within the region, as acquired through internships, travel and study abroad.
  • Students will demonstrate proficiency in Latin American regional learning, a critical analysis of and an engagement with complex, interdependent regional systems and legacies (such as natural, physical, social, cultural, economic, and political) and the lives and sustainable development of the region.
  • Students will demonstrate proficiency in inquiry and analysis. Inquiry is a systematic process of exploring issues/ objects/works through the collection and analysis of evidence that result in informed conclusions/ judgments. Analysis is the process of breaking complex topics or issues into parts to gain a better understanding of them.