Why study Spanish and Portuguese?

Spanish, the second most spoken language in the world with approximately 559 million speakers, is the official language in 21 countries. Moreover, according to the Instituto Cervantes, the United States ranks second behind Mexico in the number of Spanish speakers. Similarly, Portuguese, the official language in 9 nations, is spoken by approximately 210 million people over the world (the sixth most spoken language). Fluency in more than one language and an understanding of literary and cultural texts create educated citizens who can contribute to the betterment of our society.

A  minor in Brazilian Studies demonstrates to future employers and/or graduate schools that you have achieved a certain level of linguistic ability and understanding of Hispanic cultures. Our curriculum is designed to help students hone their oral and written language skills and to learn more about Spanish, Spanish American, and Luso-Brazilian cultures through literature and cultural studies. This knowledge is highly beneficial if you plan a career path with an international component or with an orientation toward the predominantly Hispanic populations in the United States. The Brazilian Studies Minor is useful in such diverse careers as advertising, marketing, journalism, health services, government, social welfare, and public administration (to name a few). For a list of possible career paths in Spanish and Portuguese, visit the University Career Center website at  https://career.ku.edu/.

Requirements for the Brazilian Studies Minor

This program consists of 6 3-credit-hour courses (for a total of 18 credit hours) in which students pursue Brazilian studies beyond the 3 first semesters of basic language classes. In consultation with departmental advisors, students combine their course work in several academic areas, such as language, business, economics, film and media studies, geography, history, political science, and theatre.

Brazilian Studies Minor Course Requirements

Students selecting this minor must complete the following:

Prerequisite Knowledge
Satisfied by Intermediate Brazilian Portuguese I-PORT 212 or equivalent placement.
Requirements for the Minor
Satisfied by 3 courses from each of the following groups:
Group I:9
Intermediate Brazilian Portuguese II
Intensive Intermediate Brazilian Portuguese (Open only to students abroad)
Brazilian Culture
Introduction to Portuguese and Brazilian Literatures
Textual Analysis and Critical Reading
Intensive Advanced Portuguese (Open only to students abroad)
Group II:9
Geography of Brazil
The History of Brazil
Brazilian Studies: _____
Portuguese Language and Brazilian Culture for Business
Studies in Brazilian Film: _____
Special Readings in Brazilian Studies
Studies in Brazilian Culture and Civilization: _____
Studies in Brazilian Literature: _____
Studies in Brazilian Film: _____
Depending on their content, the following courses may substitute for required or elective courses by petition:
Economic Development
Violence and Conflict in Latin American History
Violence and Conflict in Latin American History, Honors (with at least 1/3 of focus on Brazil and a paper on Brazil)
Economic History of Latin America (with at least 1/3 of focus on Brazil and a paper on Brazil)
Political Dynamics of Latin America (with at least 1/3 of focus on Brazil and a paper on Brazil)
Advanced Studies in Spanish Language: _____ (Phonetics and Phonology of Spanish and Portuguese in Contrast. Taught in Spanish.)

Minor Hours & Minor GPA

While completing all required courses, minors must also meet each of the following hour and grade-point average minimum standards:

Minor Hours
Satisfied by 18 hours of minor courses.

Minor Hours in Residence
Satisfied by a minimum of 9 junior/senior (300+) hours of KU resident credit in the minor. 

Minor Junior/Senior Hours
Satisfied by a minimum of 15 hours from junior/senior courses (300+) in the minor.

Minor Graduation GPA
Satisfied by a minimum of a 2.0 KU GPA in all departmental courses in the minor. GPA calculations include all departmental courses in the field of study including F’s and repeated courses. See the Semester/Cumulative GPA Calculator.

Study Abroad

The department offers summer programs in Barcelona, Spain; Buenos Aires, Argentina, Salvador (Bahia), Brazil. KU offers semester/academic year programs in San José, Costa Rica, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Salamanca, Spain. More information is available from the Office of Study Abroad.

Graduate students have the opportunity to teach and conduct research during summer sessions in Buenos Aires, Argentina; or Barcelona, Spain. The department also has a graduate exchange agreement with the Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Spain.