Department of Spanish and Portuguese
Department of Spanish and Portuguese

Information Session for Tracking Cultures Program to be Held

Fri, October 1, 2004

Each fall, the program faculty accepts ten to fifteen students who will enroll in four challenging seminars at UT during the spring semester. Students will travel to Spain over spring break and enroll in a summer course taught on site in Mexico and New Mexico. The capstone project of the program is a final report on a specific topic related to students' individual programs of studies. The program is a blend of study abroad and carefully coordinated academic course work in Austin. Faculty from several different departments at UT work closely together to plan the program's curriculum, identifying fundamental themes and goals for each course, coordinating examinations and writing assignments, and encouraging synthesis exercises that transcend traditional academic boundaries.

Courses offered in the program for the spring 2005 semester are as follows: GRG 320K: Land and Life in the American Southwest (Doolittle) HIS 375D: Islamic Spain and North Africa to 1492 (Spellberg) SPN 349: Culture and Literature in Medieval Spain (Sutherland-Meier) SPN 350: Tracking Cultures Seminar (Reed) Local faculty in each country enhance the students' exposure to each culture with a series of lectures and on-site discussions in the most important locations for the study of cultures in contact. After studying the wide array of academic subjects related to the program, students then focus more specifically on a topic of personal interest when they write their reports, due at the end of the first summer session. Past report topics have investigated the arrival of Islamic medical technology in the New World, comparative vernacular and monumental architecture in North Africa, Spain, and Mexico, contrastive studies of colonization and religious conversion, and a variety of other issues related to art, literature, music, history, geography, anthropology, religion, and politics.

Tracking Cultures, with its interdisciplinary focus rooted in Texan cultures, is a flagship interdisciplinary study abroad program at the University. Applications for the 2005 program are due October 18, 2004. There is a program fee of $2,500, which covers all six weeks of travel to Mexico, New Mexico, and Spain during the spring and summer. The University underwrites the remaining costs of the program. A limited number of need-based scholarships up to $1,000 will be available. Upper division standing and basic language proficiency in Arabic, French, or Spanish are required (the equivalent of four semesters of lower-division work). FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT ANY OF THE FOLLOWING FACULTY: Prof. Cory Reed, Program Director, BEN 4.140 (232-4512) Prof. William Doolittle, Dept. of Geography, GRG 306 (232-1581) Prof. Denise Spellberg, Dept. of History, GAR 20 (475-7202) Prof. Madeline Sutherland-Meier, Dept. of Spanish and Portuguese, BEN 4.134 (232-4513) Application materials are also available from Priscilla Ebert, in GEB 2.308, and from undergraduate advisors in the Departments of Anthropology, History, Spanish and Portuguese, and other Liberal Arts departments.

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    The University of Texas at Austin
    BEN 2.116
    150 W. 21st Street, Stop B3700
    Austin, TX 78712-1155
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