The Spanish program at Shippensburg University offers a chance to learn how to interact with more sensitivity and insight in multicultural contexts throughout the Spanish-speaking world.
Spanish at Ship
The Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Spanish at Shippensburg University (42 credits) prepares students in interpersonal communication, interpretive listening, interpretive reading, oral and written presentations in Spanish. Students also study the culture and literature of Spanish-speaking countries including their products, practices and perspectives. Our world languages curriculum strengthens critical thinking skills and global and intercultural awareness. The BA in Spanish with Secondary Certification (45 credits) prepares graduates to teach Spanish in secondary schools.
A minor in Spanish (18 credits) helps students develop cross-cultural competency, along with an ability to communicate in Spanish to the proficiency level of Intermediate Mid (at a minimum), following the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. This is an important component of education for students who choose careers in such fields as services (health, international organizations, volunteering); industry (import/export, marketing and advertising, overseas investments); and government (foreign service, department of state, FBI, CIA, homeland security).
The Department of Modern Languages has a thirty-five-position computerized multimedia audio-video language-learning center for both classroom sessions and individual work. Some of the computers are equipped with Webcams and Skype to facilitate live interactions with native speakers. Practicing in a multimedia center accelerates students’ learning process and transforms the most tedious aspects of language learning into an enjoyable experience. Both the department and Ezra Lehman Library maintain an excellent collection of books, magazines, maps, and DVDs on the language, literature, and culture of foreign countries.
Any student may take foreign languages courses. Students majoring in International Management must take a series of intermediate or advanced courses in their chosen language. Language and foreign study enhance the ability to function effectively in other countries. Many students find that proficiency in a foreign language is very useful in today’s highly competitive job market.
Admission and Degree Requirements
High school study of the language is helpful in allowing the student to begin the major on a solid footing. Training in a second and even a third foreign language is helpful. Take every opportunity to practice speaking and writing Spanish. Take advantage of any language resources available: foreign language broadcasting, newspapers, music, and contact with exchange students and others who speak Spanish. One of the student learning outcomes that Shippensburg’s Spanish language program strives to achieve is oral proficiency. Therefore, the more at ease a student becomes with speaking the language, the better they will do in our courses.
Spanish majors and minors complete courses in conversation, writing, grammar, phonetics, culture, and literature. All courses are designed following the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) National Standards and they are conducted in Spanish.
All courses required of the Spanish major are taught in Spanish. Professional Educations courses offered by other departments are taught in English.
Students may also earn a Spanish Letter of Completion by completing four courses from the major or earn a Spanish Translation Specialization Letter of Completion by completing 12 credits in Spanish and 18 credits in a subject area of specialty.
Careers in Spanish
Learning the Spanish language helps students communicate more effectively, which provides many opportunities in a diverse job market. Ship graduates of the Spanish program have entered a variety of careers such as teaching, business, government, social service, public health, international relations, translation and interpretation for private and public entities, travel agencies, advertising, and others.
Shippensburg Spanish majors have had internships in social service agencies, museums, businesses, community organizations, and government.
Students who wish to study abroad will find that there are many opportunities available. Spanish majors are especially encouraged to study at least one semester in a Spanish-speaking country. Study abroad is highly encouraged but not required for the minor.
There are several organizations that directly involve modern languages majors, minors, and interested students. The Spanish Club invites all students to participate in a variety of activities, such as foreign language films and field trips. The Spanish Honorary Society recognizes and honors students who have attained outstanding academic achievement. The Modern Languages Department provides a multilingual web page that features student production.