MA Degree

MA DEGREE AND REQUIREMENTS

The program of Spanish & Portuguese offers a Master of Arts (MA) in Spanish. At the MA level, students are expected to demonstrate an understanding and make use of the core knowledge needed to function in their professional field. MA level students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of the research process, and/or creative or problem-solving activity or application of the knowledge appropriate to literary and cultural studies or linguistics.

For the MA degree in Spanish, students may choose either a thesis-type program or a course-type program. For the thesis-type program, the student must complete a minimum of thirty (30) semester hours of credit including thesis credit. At least eighteen (18) of these hours must be taken on a letter-grade basis (A, B, C). The minimum/maximum number of thesis hours for completion of an MA degree shall be six (6) hours and a minimum of two (2) of these must be in the final semester. For the course-type program, the student must complete a minimum of thirty-two (32) semester hours of course work. At least twenty-one (21) of these hours must be taken on a letter-grade basis (A, B, C). For both thesis and course-type MA in Spanish, students may choose from three tracks for specialization:

1. Iberian and Latin American Literatures and Cultures
2. Linguistics
3. Linguistics & Literature

Regardless of specialization, all students must complete FOL 5934 Research and Practice in Second Language Instruction (3 hours) during the Fall semester of their first year. The sections below describe the required courses for each specialization. Required courses should be taken as early in the student’s program as possible. Furthermore, upon recommendation by the Division, graduate students may be required to take SPN 5900 Advanced Spanish Composition and Translation, which will not count toward the course-area requirement but will count toward the hour requirements for graduation.

No graduate credit can be transferred from another school to count toward the MA degree at FSU. In general, undergraduate courses taken at FSU will not apply toward graduate credit. However, on approval by the minor professor (see below MA Comprehensive Examination), some courses at the 4000-level (no more than 6 semester hours) may be counted toward the minor field of the MA degree.

By the end of the student’s second semester, the Program of Studies form (see Appendix III) must be prepared by the candidate for approval by the Graduate Adviser and the Associate Chair for Graduate Studies. This Program of Studies is placed in the student’s file. In addition, students are to meet each semester with the Graduate Adviser and/or their thesis director to review his/her progress toward the degree.

Specialization in Iberian and Latin American Literatures and Cultures

Students pursuing the track in Iberian and Latin American Literatures and Cultures must complete a minimum course requirement of five courses in various areas (see bulleted chart below). At least two of these courses must be in Iberian Literatures & Cultures (from different time periods) and two in Latin American Literatures & Cultures (from different time periods).

Iberian Literatures & Cultures

  • Medieval Literature
  • Golden Age
  • 18th & 19th Centuries
  • 20th & 21st Centuries

Latin American Literatures & Cultures

  • Colonial
  • 19th Century
  • 20th & 21st Centuries

Courses corresponding to each area are posted each semester on the MLL website.

In addition, all students must complete SPW 6806: Research Methods and Bibliography in Literary and Cultural Studies (3 hours).

Specialization in Hispanic Linguistics

Students pursuing the track in Hispanic Linguistics must complete a minimum course requirement of five courses in various areas (see bulleted chart below). At least two of these courses must be in Formal Linguistics and two in Applied.

Formal Linguistics

  • Spanish Phonetics / Phonology
  • Morphology
  • Spanish Syntax
  • History of the Spanish Language

Applied Linguistics

  • Psycholinguistics
  • Second Language Acquisition
  • Sociolinguistics

In addition, all students must complete LIN 5932 Quantitative Research Methods in Language Studies (3 hours).

Specialization in Language and Literature

Students pursuing the track in Language and Literature must complete a minimum course requirement of five courses in various areas (see bulleted charts above). At least one course must be in Iberian Literatures and Cultures, one in Latin American, one in Formal Linguistics, and one in Applied.

In addition, all students must complete either SPW 6806 Research Methods and Bibliography in Literary and Cultural Studies (3 hours) or LIN 5932 Quantitative Research Methods in Language Studies (3 hours).

Minor Field of Study

If the student elects to have a minor within the department, nine semester hours must be earned in courses in this minor field. Current minors include Amazonian Studies, Luso-Brazilian Studies, Second Language Studies, among others. A minor outside the department will be in addition to the required course work in Spanish/Modern Languages; specific details will be coordinated with the particular department.

MA Comprehensive Examination (for both thesis-type and course-type program)

The MA Comprehensive Examination is in writing and covers three areas from the areas listed above for each specialization (see charts). The examination in the Literatures and Cultures areas is based on the MA reading lists (see link MA Reading List); in Hispanic Linguistics the examination is based on reading lists prepared in consultation with the examining professor(s). Each area will be covered in one exam. Students in the specialization in Iberian and Latin American Literatures and Cultures must take at least one exam in Iberian and one exam in Latin American literature and cultures. Similarly, students in the specialization in Hispanic Linguistics must take at least one exam in Formal and one exam in Applied. Students in the specialization in Linguistics and Literature must take at least one exam in Linguistics and one exam in Literature. Questions will be specific in nature, and may include identifications, essay questions, and/or problem solving.

MA Thesis

Students who choose the thesis-type program need to take their MA Comprehensive Examination as described above. In addition, the student must submit and orally defend a thesis that reveals independent investigation and knowledge of the methods of scholarship within the major field. The student needs to constitute an MA Supervisory Committee made up of a Major Professor, two other faculty members from the Spanish and Portuguese program, and the Minor Professor (if any).