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Latin American Studies: Graduate Programs


The goal of the Master of Arts program in Latin American Studies is designed to train students for careers in government, education, non-profits, and business where a knowledge of Latin America is valuable, as well as providing the first two years of graduate training for students who continue for doctoral or professional degrees. Interdisciplinary in nature, the program combines two fields of study, Spanish and Portuguese language skills, an introductory theory and methods seminar for Latin American Studies, a research seminar and thesis work or optional electives. The Center for Latin American Studies (CLAS) also offers dual degree programs with the College of Law and the School of Public Administration and Policy (MPA). CLAS is on the approved list of graduate programs for the training of U.S. military Foreign Area Officers interested in Latin America. For complete program information see

Expected Learning Outcomes: 

Learning Outcomes

  • Understanding of the cultural, historical and sociopolitical realities of Latin America with more specialized knowledge of ongoing themes in the field (development, political change, historical continuities, border studies, forms of social inequality or environmental issues) according to the individual student’s interests and goals
  • A basic understanding of the theoretical underpinnings of the social sciences and how scholars in different disciplines approach the region
  • Proficiency in reading, writing and speaking either Spanish or Portuguese and at least reading and basic writing competency in the second language
  • Proficiency in one of the social science or humanities disciplines offering an area focus on Latin America with competency in one other
  • Excellent writing, computer and research skills in order to produce a Master’s thesis and/or article-quality research papers Practical experience through an internship, study abroad, or field research
  • Appreciation of and even affinity for the cultural manifestations of the region, especially in terms of language, literature, music, dance, food and popular culture, including an attitude that might facilitate travel, volunteer work or business interactions with the region and/or Latino populations in the U.S.
  • Capacity to critically evaluate US foreign policy and press coverage of Latin America in ways that promote informed voting and/or advocacy


Updated date: Fri, 03/02/2012 - 10:21