Additional Info for the MA in Spanish

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The graduate program in Spanish at Miami University offers students the opportunity to earn the Master's Degree through advanced study of Spanish and Spanish American culture and Spanish linguistics. Faculty's interests and areas of research comprise Spain, Spanish-America, and a Trans-Atlantic perspective from a variety of literary, cinematic, and cultural studies standpoints. Graduate students are therefore able to concentrate on specific areas of study according to their interests.

Master of Arts Program

Admission

You must have an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.25. Applications are on a rolling basis, but you are encouraged to express your interest to the graduate adviser as soon as possible. Funding opportunities may be available. To apply you will need a letter of application in Spanish (statement of purpose), copies of academic transcripts, and two letters of recommendation.

Course Requirements

(30 semester hours)

At least 30 semester hours of graduate courses will be completed: , six three-credit courses or seminars plus four three-credit courses numbered 600 or above. Students will have two options:

  1. Write a MA thesis
  2. Complete a written and oral Comprehensive Examination and complete a Research Tutorial.

For the thesis option, it is strongly recommended that six (6) semester hours of SPN 700 be devoted to work on the thesis during the Fall and Spring semesters of the second year.  For the examination option, students should take six (6) hours of SPN 680 in either semester.

Combined Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts Program

The combined BA/MA program allows highly qualified students to simultaneously pursue both a bachelor’s and a master degree in Spanish. Areas of interest can include Peninsular literature, film and culture; Latin American literature, film and culture, Spanish linguistics and individualized studies. If you are interested contact the graduate director as soon as possible and ask for more information and a brochure.

Admission

Upon earning a minimum of 64 hours (including at least one 400 level course) and having a cumulative GPA of 3.25 (GPA in Spanish of 3.5) students may apply. Applications are on a rolling basis, but you are encouraged to express your interest to the graduate adviser as soon as possible. Funding opportunities may be available.

Course Requirements

In the 4th and 5th years, at least 30 semester hours of graduate courses will be completed toward the graduate degree component, six three-credit courses or seminars plus four three-credit courses of SPN 600 or above. Students will have two options:

  1. Write a MA theses
  2. Written and oral Comprehensive Examination and complete a Research Tutorial.

It is strongly recommended that six (6) semester hours (SPN 700) be devoted to work on the thesis during the Fall and Spring semesters of the second year, or for students selecting the Comprehensive Exam, SPN680 (3) in either semester. At the end of the Fall Semester, students must complete a second draft of their theses.

Faculty Teaching and Research Interests

Professor María Auxiliadora Álvarez, Ph.D., University of Illinois
Contemporary Latin American and Peninsular Poetry; Creative Writing, Colonial Studies

Professor Marisol del Teso Craviotto, Ph.D., Cornell University
Sociolinguistics, Discourse Analysis, Language and Gender

Professor José Domínguez Búrdalo, Ph.D. Johns Hopkins University
Contemporary Peninsular Literature, Spanish Cinema, Transatlantic Studies

Professor Paula Gândara, Ph.D., University of Massachusetts
Lusophone African Narrative

Professor Raúl Ianes, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
19th-Century Spanish-American Literature, Transatlantic Studies

Professor Luis I. Prádanos (graduate adviser), Ph.D., Texas Tech University
21st-Century Spain, Environmental Humanities, Ecocritical Theory

Professor Ken Wireback, Ph.D., Penn State University
Hispano-Romance Linguistics, Phonetics and Phonology

About The Comprehensive Examination

To be eligible for the examination, students may not have any incomplete grades. During the fourth semester, either early in January or around the Spring Break recession, students must pass a comprehensive exam. (The date for the exam will be set by the third week of November in the semester prior to the exam.) This exam covers the three areas of interest of the Program: Peninsular, Latin American and Linguistics. For each section, students will provide one written answer while preparing the second question of the oral exam. Essays will conform to the following format: six to eight pages for each area, double spaced on a word processor using a 12-point font. Students will have ten (10) days to prepare the exam. The oral will take place during the two weeks following the completion of the written exam. Spanish is to be the sole language used for both exams. Examinations will be based both on the course work that the student has taken and on the Master's Reading List.  It is assumed that each student's set of examination questions will be different, depending on the courses taken.  Each written exam will be evaluated as a whole by all three members of the examination committee; all three areas must be passed in order to proceed to the oral.  An exam that is deficient in any area will result in failure for the entire exam; failed sections must be rewritten, resubmitted, and reevaluated by the committee.  A second failure will be deemed final.  The oral segment of the exam will not only be an elaboration of the written; it will also explore other materials both from the reading list (see departmental web page) and class syllabi. 

Composition of examination committees

The MA Comprehensive Examination committee will be composed of three graduate faculty members representing the three areas of study.  The Director of Graduate Studies will appoint the examination committee and its chair in consultation with the Graduate Advisory Committee (GAC).  It is the responsibility of the chair of each committee to see that a copy of the exam is given to the Graduate Director for the permanent files of the student.

About The Thesis

Students will write a thesis (60-80 pages or whatever decided by thesis director) under the guidance of an appropriate faculty member of their choosing. The committee’s responsibilities include ensuring the quality of the written work in all respects and advising students when the thesis is ready for the oral defense. All theses will be written in Spanish. Students are also advised to select a thesis topic and a director as early as possible. Ideally, this should be done by the end of the first year.

The Research Tutorial

In consultation with a faculty member, students must plan a program of directed research on a specific topic in the field of linguistics or culture. Readings for the program of directed research will include approximately 12 sources. When the plan has been established a copy will be given to the Director of Graduate Studies who will distribute it to the examination committee.  The examination over the directed research will consist of an oral presentation by the degree candidate, followed by a discussion of the topic with the committee.  It is the responsibility of the chair of each committee to see that an outline of the research tutorial be given to the Graduate Director for the permanent files of the student.

Time Limit

Normally the M.A. Degree is obtained after four semesters of study.  Work for a Master's Degree must be completed within a maximum of five calendar years.  Partial credit may be given for work five to ten years old, but such credit must be gained by way of petition to the Graduate School.