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EIU Department of Foreign Languages

Why Choose Spanish?

Spanish is the native language of 406 million people worldwide: That’s 71 million more than native English speakers!*

The areas of human endeavor where Spanish is used are endless: Business, international trade, health care, education, publishing, the visual and performing arts, gastronomy, architecture, environmental science, tourism, sport, law enforcement, government agencies, international organizations ... Spanish is one of the six official languages of the United Nations.

The economic weight of the Spanish language in the United States and across the world is enormous. Invest in your future: choose Spanish! You will discover the rich cultural heritage of Spain and Latin America, and the beauty of their language.

*(Source: Ethnologue: Languages of the World, 17th ed., 2013. www.ethnologue.com)

Interested in Degree Programs?

Spanish Major
Spanish Minor
Teacher Licensure in Spanish

Teacher Licensure Minor, Spanish

 

Interested in Latin America?  

Combine your Major with an interdisciplinary  Latin American Studies Minor

 

Ten Reasons Our Programs are Great

  1. They feature a consistently small student-to-faculty ratio.
  2. They emphasize speaking proficiency.
  3. They grant credit for previous formal training in Spanish.
  4. They combine easily with interdisciplinary minors.
  5. They invite students to the Spanish Club and the national Hispanic Collegiate Honors Society (Sigma Delta Pi), two venues for meeting fellow Hispanophiles (lovers of the Spanish language and Hispanic culture).
  6. They encourage language immersion through flexible short-term study abroad programs led by Spanish faculty, and long-term programs with partner institutions in Spain and Latin America.
  7. They offer majors multiple significant scholarship opportunities which may also be applied to study abroad.
  8. They foster close academic mentoring by faculty to Honors students.
  9. They provide service learning opportunities for Teacher Licensure students to work in the after-school enrichment program of area elementary schools.
  10. They result in an impressive 100% job placement rate for our graduates in Teacher Licensure in Spanish.

Faculty


 

Spanish Student News...

Testimonial of Former Student Cameron Murray

Whenever I had studied Spanish in my undergrad years, I always found myself wondering, “How the heck am I going to use this Spanish without being a teacher?” Dr. Routt and other professors in the Foreign Language Department said that I will be able to incorporate the language anywhere that I go. I couldn’t help but think that was too vague of a response. I wanted to know what I would have been doing with my Spanish. But what I learned was a little different than I expected.

I currently work for State Farm Insurance as an Auto Claims Representative in the Total Loss department. My “zone” handles vehicles that are total losses in Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. When I applied for this job, the interview team saw my resume and that I noted that I studied Spanish and had it as a minor in college. They saw too on my resume that I studied abroad in Salamanca, Spain. The job posting didn’t say they were looking for Spanish speakers, nor did it say that they preferred them. To my delight, in my interview, they inquired about it, and said they drastically need Spanish speakers in the department. All I would have to do is pass an oral proficiency exam and I would be full time on the Spanish Claims Team for my department. How cool!

Since then, I have helped out with claims in my department whenever there are Spanish speakers that prefer to handle their claim in Spanish rather than English. I have found much joy in assisting those who need Spanish speakers to handle their business.

I think it’s fascinating that I have been able to incorporate the language I love into my career, which makes it very rewarding for me. To hear the relief that comes from the people I assist while speaking Spanish is a clear indicator that I’m helping them through a difficult time in a way that they feel comfortable. I wouldn’t be able to do that if I hadn’t studied Spanish or studied abroad in Spain.

Since being here in the company, I have learned that because I speak Spanish, there are more opportunities for me than those who speak just English. Not only are there more opportunities, but there are more people reaching out to me simply because I speak Spanish, and that in itself is a good sign that whatever my future holds, I know that I will be able to use my Spanish, and maybe even more than my English.


 

Benefits of Studying Spanish...

  • Fulfill your Foreign Language requirement by taking Elementary Spanish I (FLS 1101) and II (FLS 1102).
  • Fulfill your General Education Humanities requirement by taking Intermediate Spanish I (FLS 2201G) and II (FLS 2202G).
  • Improve your career prospects with a Minor in Spanish!
    • With three years of high school Spanish, students take Intermediate Spanish I and II (FLS 2201G and 2202G), and four classes at the 3000 and/or 4000 level. Honors students may take Intermediate Spanish I and II for honors credit.
    • With four or more years of high school Spanish, students may be exempted from Intermediate Spanish, and take classes at the 3000 and/or 4000 level.
    • Students with high school Spanish who begin their Minor at the intermediate level and complete two courses are eligible to receive up to six credits advanced competency free of charge.
  • Immerse yourself in Hispanic culture with a Minor in Latin American Studies.
  • Combine a Minor in Spanish with another interdisciplinary Minor such as Latin American Studies,Women’s Studies, Medieval Studies or Entrepreneurship.

Spanish Activities and Organizations

Get involved in our Spanish Activities and Organizations!

Spanish in the Community

Earn credit through guided and reflective service learning projects and internships!

Study Abroad in the Spanish-Speaking World!

What would you prefer: spending Spring Break in the beautiful colonial town of Antigua, Guatemala; a summer in Argentina’s heartland, Córdoba; four weeks--or a semester--in tropical Costa Rica; a semester or even an entire year in the venerable medieval intellectual hub that is Salamanca, Spain? These are only a few of the many study abroad options across the Spanish-speaking world offered at EIU. Earn credit towards a Spanish major or minor while having the experience of a lifetime! Study Abroad scholarships available.

Spanish Courses

(click here)

Develop real-world speaking proficiency in our small classes.

Some of our Courses

On the 3000 and 4000 level you will find courses such as...

  • Hispanic Short Story
  • Hispanic Cinema
  • Business Spanish
  • Civilization and Culture of Spanish America
  • Civilization and Culture of Spain 
  • Writing Through Literature
  • Introduction to Hispanic Literary Analysis
  • Latin American Women’s Novel
  • Cultural Perspectives on the Tango
  • Race and Gender in Spanish American Literature
  • Space and Identity in Spanish American Literature
  • Women in the Hispanic World
  • Argentine Literature and Culture
  • Contemporary Latin American Drama 

Related Pages

Contact Information

Department of Foreign Languages

Coleman Hall, First Floor
217-581-3021
Fax: 217-581-3113
ckeydt@eiu.edu


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