Undergraduate prospectus

  • Start date: September 2016

Spanish and Latin American Studies BA

This four-year programme combines the study of Spanish language and its varieties with courses in the film, languages, literature, history and cultures of Spain and Latin America, from the early modern period to the present day. Year three is spent abroad in a Spanish-speaking country.

Key Information

Degree Programme
Spanish and Latin American Studies BA
UCAS code
4 years
Application deadline
15 January 2016
Subject area
European Languages, Culture and Society
Total intake (by subject area)
194 (2016 entry)
Applications per place (by subject area)
5 (2014 entry)
Research Excellence Framework
74% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Entry requirements

A Levels

Spanish grade A required.
AS Levels
For UK-based students a pass in a further subject at AS level or equivalent is required.
English Language at grade B, plus Mathematics at grade C. For UK-based students, a grade C or equivalent in a foreign language (other than Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew or Latin) is required. UCL provides opportunities to meet the foreign language requirement following enrolment, further details at: www.ucl.ac.uk/ug-reqs

IB Diploma

A score of 17 points in three higher level subjects including Spanish at grade 6, with no score lower than 5.

UK applicants qualifications

For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:

Equivalent qualification

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme

Pass in Access to HE Diploma, with a minimum of 18 credits awarded with Distinction in the Level 3 units, the remainder of the Level 3 units awarded with Merit.

D3,D3,M1 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects, including Spanish at D3

A,A,B at Advanced Highers (or A,A at Advanced Higher and B,B,B at Higher), including Spanish at grade A

Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Diploma Core with grade B, plus 2 GCE A-levels at grades AA. Spanish is required.

International applications

In addition to A level and International Baccalaureate, UCL considers a wide range of international qualifications for entry to its undergraduate degree programmes.

Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates

UCL offers intensive one-year foundation courses to prepare international students for a variety of degree programmes at UCL.

The Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.

For more information see our website: UCL Undergraduate Preparatory Certificate.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency. Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.

The English language level for this programme is: Advanced

A variety of English language programmes are offered at the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education.

Degree benefits

  • UCL is an important centre for Hispanic and Latin American Studies, with a wealth of expertise in areas from Cervantes to Borges.
  • You will receive high-quality language instruction combined with innovative, research-led teaching of a wide range of Spanish and Latin American literature, culture and film topics.
  • Your third year will be spent in a Spanish-speaking country - an experience which contributes vastly to your linguistic competence and cultural understanding. The department currently has links with universities in Argentina, Chile, Mexico and Spain.
  • You will benefit from the resources of the UCL Library, Senate House Library of the University of London, the Instituto Cervantes, Canning House and the Institute for the Study of the Americas.

Degree structure

In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual courses, normally valued at 0.5 or 1.0 credits, adding up to a total of 4.0 credits for the year. Courses are assessed in the academic year in which they are taken. The balance of compulsory and optional courses varies from programme to programme and year to year. A 1.0 credit is considered equivalent to 15 credits in the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).

The integrated study of literature and history is the hallmark of this degree and includes compulsory courses in Latin American history, taught by specialists from UCL's Department of History. You are required to take courses to the value of 16 credits (240 ECTS) comprising a core course, Spanish and Portuguese language courses, Spanish and Latin American literature courses, and Latin American History courses. A wide range of options is available in all years.

During your third year you will undertake a course of study at a University in a Spanish-speaking country - we currently have links with universities in Spain, Mexico, Chile and Argentina.

You may also take School of European Languages, Culture & Society (ELCS) courses, which allow students to study literature, film, art and culture from outside their subject area(s), focusing on broad cultural movements, issues and approaches from an interdisciplinary perspective and drawing on the full range of specialisms within the school.

Year One

Compulsory courses

Spanish Language I
A choice of first-year Spanish and Latin American courses (including literature, film and beginner's Portuguese)
Introduction to Portuguese Literature

Optional courses

You may choose two courses from a wide range offered by the School of European Languages, Culture and Society, which may include:

Crime Fiction: From the Picaresque to the Detective Novel
European Art Cinema
How To Make an 8-minute Documentary
Jungle Fevers: Transatlantic Imaginations of Wild Landscapes
Poetry and Revolt

Year Two

Compulsory courses

Spanish Language II

Optional courses

You will select a total of 3.0 credits from a wide range of optional courses. Options may include:

Developments in Spanish Film
History and Politics of Latin America, c. 1930 to the Present
Portuguese Literature
The Essay in Spanish America
The Short Story in Spanish America
The Theatre in Spain's Golden Age
ELCS Intermediate-level courses

Year Three

Year abroad in a Spanish-speaking country

Students currently complete a 4,000-word Year Abroad Project in the target language, and:
Any assessment required by a host university (if participating in a university exchange); or:
A British Council Assistantship or work placement abroad.

Final Year

Compulsory course

Spanish Language III

Optional courses

You will select a total of 3.0 credits from a wide range of optional courses. Options may include:

Latin American Journeys
Latin American Vanguard Movements
Spanish and Latin American Cultural Dilemmas
Spanish Film from the 1990s
The Battle for Memory in the Contemporary Spanish
The Work of Jorge Luis Borges
The Works of Cervantes
ELCS Advanced-level courses

Your learning

Language teaching takes place in small classes, with an emphasis on interaction between teacher and student which enables us to ensure that the scope and pace of learning meets your needs. You will also attend lectures and seminars in which the literary, historical and cultural elements of your studies will be discussed.


You will be assessed by a combination of written and oral examinations, essays, language work, projects and work undertaken throughout your degree, with more weight being given to studies in the later years of your programme.

Further Information

Detailed course descriptions are available on the department website: Spanish and Latin American Studies BA.


In addition to your language competence your studies will develop skills in close and critical reading, the analysis and communication of complex material, and the ability to organise your own time - all of value in your future employment.

Fluency in the Spanish language opens up exciting career paths around the world as politics and commerce become increasingly global.

Career alternatives include areas such as finance, journalism, law, education, commerce, arts administration, the civil service, the media, or translation and interpreting. Of course, the pursuit of further study is also an option open to you.


First career destinations of recent graduates (2010-2013) of Spanish and Latin American Studies programmes at UCL include:

  • Assistant TV Producer, Disney World Company (2013)
  • Technology Consultant, Asenqen (2013)
  • Press Officer, Maido (2012)
  • Teaching Assistant, Chelsea Academy (2011)
  • Live Subtitler, Independent Media Support (2010)

*Data taken from the 'Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education' survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2010-2013 graduating cohorts six months after graduation and, where necessary, department records.

UCL is commited to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers, UCL Advances and other entrepreneur societies here: Careers and skills.

Fees and funding


UK & EU fee
£9,000 (2016/17)
Overseas fee
£16,130 (2016/17)


Details about financial support are available at: www.ucl.ac.uk/study/ug-finance

We offer the A A Parker and Alcana Galiano prizes annually to the most outstanding undergraduates studying Spanish and Latin American Studies.


Scholarships listed below are relevant to the department. Please read the details carefully to check they are relevant to the degree and your own circumstances.

Modern European Languages Scholarship

Based on academic merit

Virtus UG Bursary - NOW CLOSED FOR 2015/16 ENTRY


The Scholarships and Funding website has a comprehensive list of scholarships and funding schemes available for UCL students. These can be available for specific nationalities, regions, departments or open to all students.

Application and next steps

Your application

We will be looking for a demonstrable interest in literary, historical and cultural studies, and will be curious to learn about your motivation for applying for this programme. Evidence of extracurricular interest in the culture of Spanish-speaking countries, such as reading books, newspapers and magazines, watching films, or travel to one of these countries, will be looked on favourably.

How to apply

Application for admission should be made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Applicants currently at school or college will be provided with advice on the process; however, applicants who have left school or who are based outside the United Kingdom may obtain information directly from UCAS.

Application deadline: 15 January 2016


If your application demonstrates that your academic ability and motivation makes you well-suited to our degree and you receive an offer, then we shall invite you to a post-offer Open Day, where you can experience the sort of teaching which we offer and life in SELCS.

Our admissions process aims to assess your linguistic abilities and attainment as well as cultural awareness, motivation for study and intellectual potential.We may interview candidates by telephone in order to establish a level of language ability.

Applicants must have A level or equivalent knowledge of Spanish.

For further information on UCL's selection process see: Selection of students