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Spanish Classes in NYC with Degree Program Overviews

Feb 20, 2019

New York City has around 42 colleges that offer Spanish programs, including three within 15 miles of the city's downtown. Learn about the degree programs, admission info and program requirements for three of these schools to make an informed education decision.

New York City Schools with Spanish Classes

There are a number of schools in New York City that offer Spanish classes and programs, including a large private university and two that are affiliated with the City University of New York (CUNY). Undergraduate programs can lead to a Bachelor of Arts (BA); graduate programs culminate in a Master of Arts (MA) or Master of Fine Arts (MFA). Continue reading to learn more about the program options at each of the three schools, and find a comparison table with their institutional profiles. A highlight of other school options can be found in the paragraph at the end of the article.

  • CUNY Brooklyn College is located less than seven miles from New York City's downtown. The college offers an undergraduate major and a minor in Spanish, as well as bachelor's and master's degrees in Spanish education.
  • CUNY Lehman College offers an undergraduate and a graduate program for students who want to learn about Spanish culture and communication. The school is located about 13 miles from downtown New York City.
  • New York University, located less than two miles from downtown, offers an undergraduate major and a minor in Spanish and a unique master's degree in creative writing in Spanish. It is the only one of the three featured schools with a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) program in a relevant field of study.

Comparison of Schools

The following table includes information about undergraduate tuition, financial aid and acceptance rates. You can also use it to find out which of the three featured colleges has the highest graduation rate and how many students return to their school of choice after the first year.

CUNY Brooklyn College CUNY Lehman College New York University
School Type* 4-year; public 4-year; public 4-year; private not-for-profit
Total Enrollment (2017)* 17,803 14,130 51,123
Campus Setting* Large city Large city Large city
Tuition & Fees (2017-2018)* $7,040 in-state;
$14,430 out-of-state
$7,010 in-state;
$14,400 out-of-state
$50,464
% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2016-2017)* 83% 88% 54%
Acceptance Rate (2017)* 40% 35% 28%
Retention Rate (2016-2017)* 82% for full-time students;
90% for part-time students
83% for full-time students;
61% for part-time students
93% for full-time students;
71% for part-time students
Graduation Rate (2011 start date)* 58%,
21% transfer-out rate
46%,
21% transfer-out rate
84%,
10% transfer-out rate

Source: *NCES College Navigator

CUNY Brooklyn College

Students at this college can choose programs in modern Spanish language and literature or Spanish education. The teaching programs can also prepare students for New York teacher certification in education.

Minor in Spanish

In order to complete this program, students must take at least 12 credits in advanced Spanish courses. Topics can include advanced language skills, Latin American cultures, contemporary Spain and more.

BA in Spanish

Students interested in this program can concentrate in general Spanish or business language Spanish. Courses in culture, literature and advanced communication are required for both programs. General Spanish students may take classes in integrated language skills and Spanish texts. Spanish language and business students take courses in marketing management and international business, in addition to Spanish classes.

BA in Adolescence Education: Spanish Teacher

This program helps students perfect their Spanish speaking and writing skills while learning how to teach Spanish to adolescents in grades 7-12. Students who want to receive their initial New York certification for teaching must also take courses in mathematics, science or social science. Major coursework includes topics in adolescent education and development, advanced language skills, Spanish literature, Latin American cultures and multidisciplinary teaching; additionally, students complete an advanced teaching seminar.

MA in Education: Spanish Teacher (7-12)

Students who want a graduate education in Spanish pedagogy, literature, language and culture may be interested in this program. The program consists of 30-46 credits, and students need to pass a written/oral exam and complete a thesis project. Some examples of coursework include grammatical and syntactical analysis, peninsular Hispanic culture and integrating technology in education. Graduates may be eligible for teacher certification, which can lead to instructional positions in middle schools and high schools.

CUNY Lehman College

Students at this college can pursue a bachelor's or master's degree in Spanish. Once enrolled, students develop Spanish reading comprehension and speaking skills.

BA in Spanish

Students in this program take courses in Spanish literary studies, advanced Spanish composition and advanced Spanish grammar. Students also complete two courses in Latin American and Spanish literature. Upper-level courses include translation, advanced conversation and Spanish phonetics. This program requires 36 credits of major coursework.

MA in Spanish

Students have to complete 30 credits in this graduate program. Courses in Spanish grammar, peninsular literature and Spanish American literature are required. All students have to complete a comprehensive exam.

New York University

This university has several undergraduate and graduate programs focusing on Spanish language, literature and writing. Students can also participate in student exchange programs in Latin America and enjoy language and culture immersion experiences. Admission requirements include GRE scores and fluency in Spanish.

Minor in Spanish

Students in this program can choose tracks in Latin American or Iberian studies, Spanish or creative writing. Course topics include studies in advanced grammar and composition and Latin America cultural history. Advanced writing workshops in poetry, fiction and creative writing are also offered.

BA in Spanish

Undergraduates in the Bachelor of Arts program can major in Spanish, Spanish and linguistics, Romance languages, Iberian studies and Latin American studies. Coursework may include advanced grammar and composition, critical approaches and grammatical analysis; students also learn about language and sound, the cultural history of Spain and the Iberian Atlantic.

MFA in Creative Writing in Spanish

This program is taught entirely in Spanish. Students must take courses in general writing, participate in writing workshops and choose electives. They can also attend workshops devoted to a variety of genres, like fiction and poetry or study translation of creative writing.

PhD in Spanish and Portuguese Language and Literature

Doctoral students enrolled in this graduate program focus on academic research and literature. Scholarly courses include topics in medieval Iberia, colonial Latin America, visual studies of culture and contemporary literature. Additional coursework focuses on the psychoanalysis of Spanish-speaking and Portuguese-speaking cultures. The program requires 72 credits to complete and includes a theoretical seminar, comprehensive exam and dissertation.

Other School Options

Spanish programs are also available at Pace University in New York City, located 0.9 miles away from downtown, and St. Francis College, located 2.3 miles away from New York City's downtown.

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