The degrees offered are the master of arts and doctor of philosophy in Spanish. In addition, the department offers a doctoral minor in Spanish or Portuguese, consisting of 12 credits of graduate study.

An integrated curriculum in Spanish language, literatures, cultures, and linguistics provides training at the master's and Ph.D. levels and assures that graduates are prepared to contribute as professionals in the fields of teaching and research. An active program of research contributes to new knowledge in Spanish. A comprehensive group of courses is offered in rotation during the academic year so that candidates may take courses in all fields. Classes are conducted in Spanish.

The department's graduate program in Spanish is consistently among the finest in the country. Teaching assistantships are offered each year to graduate candidates in Spanish and Portuguese. A full complement of courses in Spanish and Spanish American, literatures, cultures, and linguistics is offered on a regular basis.

Fellowships, scholarships, teaching assistantships, and project assistantships are available to qualified graduate degree candidates.

Students pursuing advanced degrees in this department are advised to include in their training work in other languages and literatures, art, social sciences, linguistics, film studies, and philosophy. Knowledge of other languages is required for advanced work in Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian fields.

Prospective students should see the program website for funding information.

Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress

To make progress toward a graduate degree, students must meet the Graduate School Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress in addition to the requirements of the program.

Doctoral Degrees

Ph.D., with available tracks in literature, and linguistics

Minimum Graduate Degree Credit Requirement

51 credits

Minimum Graduate Residence Credit Requirement

32 credits

Minimum Graduate Coursework (50%) Requirement

A minimum of 33 credits out of 51 total must be in graduate-level coursework; courses with the Graduate Level Coursework attribute are identified and searchable in the university's Course Guide.

In practice all doctoral coursework (with the exception of some language requirements or some doctoral minors) is designed exclusively for graduate students.

Prior Coursework Requirements: Graduate Work from Other Institutions

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of graduate coursework from other institutions. Coursework earned ten years or more prior to admission to a doctoral degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison Undergraduate

No credits from undergraduate courses from a UW–Madison undergraduate degree are allowed to count toward the degree, but students who have taken graduate level courses are allowed to petition with their advisor’s consent up to a maximum of 7 credits.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison University Special

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 6 credits of coursework numbered 300 or above taken as a UW–Madison University Special student. Coursework earned ten or more years prior to admission to a doctoral degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Credits per Term Allowed

15 credits

Program-Specific Courses Required

Yes. Doctoral candidates in both Hispanic literature must take 12 graduate credits in their major field (including 6 credits of seminars), 6 credits in each of two supporting fields, and 3 credits in each of the two remaining fields. They must also take a literary theory courses, which usually means one of the two offered in the program.

For the Ph.D. in Spanish linguistics, The minimum requirements are: 12 credits in the major and 6 in each supporting field. SPANISH/​FRENCH/​ITALIAN/​PORTUG  817 Romance Philology or SPANISH/​FRENCH/​ITALIAN/​PORTUG  429 Introduction to the Romance Languages may satisfy course requirements in any of the three areas of concentration. A maximum of 3 credits of SPANISH 899 Independent Reading in each of the areas of concentration may be used, with prior departmental approval, when corresponding courses are not offered in a timely fashion. In addition, majors in Peninsular Spanish must take 6 credits in medieval literature and 3 in Golden Age literature; majors in American Spanish must take 6 credits in Colonial Spanish American literature and 3 in medieval literature; majors in applied Spanish linguistics must take 3 credits in Modern Peninsular literature, 3 in Modern Spanish American literature, and 3 in Peninsular or Spanish American literature. Course credits earned in the M.A. program, with the exception of SPANISH 545 College Teaching of Spanish, SPANISH 323 Advanced Language Practice with Emphasis on Expository Writing, and any transfer credits used to satisfy M.A. requirements, do satisfy the Ph.D. course requirements.

Doctoral Minor/Breadth Requirements

Doctoral students are required to complete a doctoral minor.

Overall Graduate GPA Requirement

3.00 GPA required

Other Grade Requirements

No other grade requirements.

Probation Policy

Satisfactory progress depends on: maintaining a GPA of at least 3.0, adhering to the rule whereby students must take two courses within the department (or have the rule waived by petition), and fulfilling all academic requirements. Students who are not in good standing will not be given sections to teach as TAs, and those whose GPA goes below 3.0 are put on academic probation. If a semester of 3.0 is not attained during the subsequent semester, the student may be dismissed from the program.

Advisor / Committee

All students have a substantial meeting with their advisors every semester to review their progress and work out the best strategies for future coursework and degree progress.

Assessments and Examinations

All Ph.D. candidates are required to take written and oral Ph.D. preliminary examinations (four written exams, one oral).

Time Constraints

Students are required to finish their doctoral dissertation within five years of the time they pass their Ph.D. preliminary examinations, unless they receive an extension.

Doctoral degree students who have been absent for ten or more consecutive years lose all credits that they have earned before their absence. Individual programs may count the coursework students completed prior to their absence for meeting program requirements; that coursework may not count toward Graduate School credit requirements.

Language Requirements

Ph.D. students are required to demonstrate advanced proficiency—via specified sequences of language courses or via exam—in two languages other than Spanish and English. These languages are generally selected from among the other Romance languages, Latin, Arabic and German, but may also include such languages as Turkish, Catalan, Galician, Maya, Nahuatl, Quichua, etc. Advanced proficiency is defined as six college semesters with a grade of B or better.

Admission to candidacy for the master's degree presupposes an undergraduate major in Spanish at UW–Madison or its equivalent. Candidates entering with a B.A. in Spanish must have an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale), and a GPA in Spanish courses of at least 3.25.

Knowledge and Skills

  • [Literature] Articulates research problems, potentials, and limits with respect to theory, knowledge, or practice within the field of Hispanic literary/cultural studies, with a view to interdisciplinarity.
  • [Linguistics] Articulates research problems, potentials, and limits with respect to theory, knowledge, or practice within the field of Spanish linguistics, with a view to interdisciplinarity.
  • [Literature] Formulates ideas, concepts, and theoretical approaches beyond the current boundaries of knowledge and practice within Hispanic literary/cultural studies.
  • [Linguistics] Formulates ideas, concepts, and theoretical approaches beyond the current boundaries of knowledge and practice within Spanish linguistics.
  • [Literature] Develops archival and/or bibliographic research skills or other evidence-gathering techniques with the aim of furthering historical and cultural knowledge of the specific field of inquiry.
  • [Linguistics] Develops archival and/or bibliographic research skills or other evidence-gathering techniques with the aim of furthering knowledge of the specific field of inquiry.
  • [Literature] Produces scholarship that makes a substantive contribution to Hispanic literary/cultural studies.
  • [Linguistics] Produces scholarship that makes a substantive contribution to Spanish linguistics.
  • [Literature] Demonstrates breadth within learning experiences.
  • [Linguistics] Demonstrates breadth within learning experiences.
  • [Literature] Advances contributions of the field of study to society.
  • [Linguistics] Advances contributions of the field of study to society.

Professional Conduct

  • [Literature and Linguistics] Fosters ethical and professional conduct.

Additional Learning Goals

  • [Literature] Communicates complex ideas in both Spanish and English in a clear and understandable manner, and demonstrates reading knowledge of two other languages pertinent to the field of inquiry.
  • [Linguistics] Communicates complex ideas in both Spanish and English in a clear and understandable manner, and demonstrates reading knowledge of two other languages pertinent to the field of inquiry.
  • [Literature] Develops speaking and writing skills necessary for articulating cogent and original arguments that enter into conversation with new and existing critical paradigms in literary and cultural studies.
  • [Linguistics] Develops speaking and writing skills necessary for articulating cogent and original arguments that enter into conversation with new and existing critical paradigms in linguistics.

Spanish Faculty: Professors Beilin (modern Spanish literature), Bilbija (modern Spanish American literature), Close (modern Spanish American/trans-Atlantic literature), Corfis (medieval Spanish literature), De Ferrari (modern Spanish American literature), Egea (modern Spanish literature), Frantzen (second language acquisition and linguistics), Hildner (Golden Age literature), Hutchinson (Golden Age literature), Medina (modern Spanish American literature), Podestá (colonial Spanish American literature); Associate Professors Alcalá-Galán (Golden Age literature), Ancos-García (medieval Spanish literature), Goldgel-Carballo (colonial Spanish American literature), Hernández (modern Spanish American literature), Pellegrini (modern Spanish American literature), Rao (Spanish linguistics), Stafford (second language acquisition and linguistics), Tejedo-Herrero (Spanish linguistics); Assistant Professors Armstrong (Spanish linguistics), Cerezo Paredes (modern Spanish literature), Comparone (modern Spanish literature)

Portuguese Faculty: Professors Albuquerque (Brazilian literature and culture), Madureira (Portuguese, Brazilian, and Luso-African literature and culture), Sapega (Portuguese and Luso-African literature and culture); and Sanchez (Portuguese and Brazilian literature and culture)