Requirements

Requirements for an undergraduate degree in Latin American Studies vary. Each semester the LAS program publishes a course booklet comprised of classes from across disciplinary boundaries with at least 40% LAS content for students to choose from.

The undergraduate program in Latin American Studies provides a solid foundation in language skills and area competence for careers in business, education, public service, or for further graduate/professional training. Students may choose to major or minor in LAS. 

We also encourage CNM transfer students to continue their studies in Latin American Studies. Students interested in any of these options should contact the LAS undergraduate adviser for more information.



Once students have completed either HIST 1170 (Survey of Early Latin America) or HIST 1180 (Survey of Modern Latin America) they can be formally admitted to the major.

The major requires at least 36 credit hours of LAS coursework as outlined below.

Major Required Courses

  • HIST 1170:  Survey of Early Latin America
  • HIST 1180:  Survey of Modern Latin America
  • LTAM 360:  Latin American Culture & Society

Language

We want students to develop adequate language skills not only to gain a deeper understanding of the cultural nuances of the region but also to learn how to be effective communicators.  LAS majors must complete 12 credit hours in Latin American languages, choosing to study two Latin American languages from one of the following options:

  • Spanish option with Portuguese support skills, requiring SPAN 301 & 302 and PORT 2110 or 2115 or 2120.
  • Portuguese option with Spanish support skills, requiring PORT 311 & 312 and SPAN 1110 & 1120.
  • Balanced Spanish and Portuguese option, requiring PORT 2115 and SPAN 2110 & 2120.
  • Spanish option with Indigenous language support skills, requiring SPAN 301 & 302 and LING *401 (Topics I) and LING *401 (Topics II).
  • Portuguese option with Indigenous language support skills, requiring PORT 311 & 312 and LING *401 (Topics I) and LING *401 (Topics II).

Area of Specialization

The LAS major focuses on interdisciplinary inquiry, allowing students to focus on one of the following areas of specialization as their “core” to focus 12 hours of their coursework.  Each semester, the course booklet outlines which courses fit within each area.

  • Arts, Literature, & Cultural Studies
  • Conflict, Peace, & Rights
  • Environmental governance and resilience
  • History & Society 
  • Indigeneity in the Americas
  • Markets & Development

Electives

Students complete an additional 3 credit hours of LAS-related elective courses. 

A Few Details

At least 18 credit hours of the major must be at the 300 level or above.

Finally, all students must submit to the LAS Advisor a paper written after the completion of 24 credit hours towards the major. The paper, written for a course completed for the major, should have at least 40% Latin American content, relate to the student's chosen core area of focus (either Humanities or Social Sciences), present an analytical argument based on data or texts, and be at least 5 pages in length. The paper is only graded by the instructor of the course, but the student’s work helps LAS gauge how well students are meeting our preferred learning outcomes.


The second major allows students to complement another major that may or may not have a strong Latin American focus.  The degree program requires at least 24 credit hours of LAS coursework as outlined below.

Second Major Required Courses

  • HIST 1170:  Survey of Early Latin America or HIST 1180: Survey of Modern Latin America
  • LTAM 360:  Latin American Culture & Society

Language

Choose from one of the two options to complete 6 credit hours.

  • Spanish focus: SPAN 301 & 302
  • Portuguese focus: PORT 311 & 312

Area of Specialization

The LAS second major focuses on interdisciplinary inquiry, allowing students to focus on one of the following areas of specialization as their “core” to focus 12 hours of their coursework.  Each semester, the course booklet outlines which courses fit within each area.

  • Arts, Literature, & Cultural Studies
  • Conflict, Peace, & Rights
  • Environmental Governance and Resilience
  • History & Society 
  • Indigeneity in the Americas
  • Markets & Development

A Few Details

At least 12 credit hours of the major must be at the 300 level or above.


For students who want to complement another major, the LAS minor can be a great fit. Like the major, it offers the opportunity to strengthen language skills and expand multicultural understandings. Students complete 18 credit hours as outlined below.

Minor Required Course

  • LTAM 360:  Latin American Culture & Society

Language

Choose from one of the two options to complete 6 credit hours.

  • Spanish focus: SPAN 301 & 302
  • Portuguese focus: PORT 311 & 312

Area of Specialization

The LAS minor focuses on interdisciplinary inquiry, allowing students to focus on one of the following areas of specialization as their “core” to focus 9 hours of their coursework.  Each semester, the course booklet outlines which courses fit within each area.

  • Arts, Literature, & Cultural Studies
  • Conflict, Peace, & Rights
  • Environmental governance and resilience
  • History & Society 
  • Indigeneity in the Americas
  • Markets & Development

LAS has partnered with CNM to facilitate the transfer of students to the UNM LAS major. With CNM’s recently launched Latin American Studies degree, students can earn a significant number of credit hours at CNM which will then transfer to UNM to count towards the major. For more information and course guidance, contact:

krista-savoca

Krista Savoca

Associate Director for Program Development

Latin American & Iberian Institute

   (505) 277-7044