The Latin American Studies program is a highly flexible plan; students must plan a cohesive program to focus their interests. They should take special pains to design programs of study that will incorporate basic theory and methodology courses relevant to the discipline. The student's program must be arranged in consultation with the graduate adviser.
LLILAS offers two MA degree plans: Plan A, thesis option, 30 or 33 semester hours of credit; Plan B, two reports in lieu of thesis option, each of 33 semester hours of credit leading to the master's degree. Under ALL of the MA degree plans, students must meet the language requirement.
Plan A: Thesis Option (30-33 hours total, including optional elective)
- 15 semester hours of Latin American coursework in the major discipline
- 9 semester hours in the minor discipline
- 6 hours thesis (LAS 698A and 698B) written in the major discipline
- 3 hour elective (optional)
Plan B: Two Reports in Lieu of Thesis (33 hours total)
- 18 hours: a 6-hour minimum of Latin American content coursework in each of three disciplines, 12-hour maximum in each discipline
- 9 hours distributed among the three disciplines
- 6 hour report courses (LAS 397R and LAS 398R) to be written in two of the three disciplines
It is not necessary to choose Plan A or B immediately. However, a choice should be made as soon as possible to avoid taking courses that will not count toward the degree. Courses in methodology may be included with the approval of the LLILAS graduate adviser. Students must meet the departmental prerequisites for all coursework. All courses to be counted toward the degree must have Latin American content. This requirement may be met by courses with actual Latin American content or by more general courses that permit the student to do coursework on Latin American topics.
It is possible to take two (6 hours total) upper-division undergraduate courses and count them toward the degree.
Language Proficiency Requirements
All students are required to take an Oral Language Proficiency Examination in Spanish or Portuguese the first semester enrolled. Students who enter with a knowledge of Spanish are strongly encouraged to study Portuguese - usually in a special section, "Accelerated Portuguese for Spanish Speakers." If students do not satisfy the proficiency requirement through this test, they must be registered for either Spanish or Portuguese language instruction until they pass the test. Students who are residents or citizens of Latin American countries are exempted from this examination.
It is possible to transfer in 6 hours from another program, but they must:
- have Latin American content,
- be graduate level,
- not have counted toward another degree, and
- be approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies.
Note: It is the responsibility of the student to be sure that courses taken will count toward the degree.