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The tiled walls of Plaza de Espana in Seville, Spain.


We could give you a couple good reasons to study Spanish language and culture… but wouldn’t you rather have 400 million? That’s about how many people speak Spanish the world over. Now imagine how many opportunities each of those people represents: opportunities for friendship, for careers, for lifelong learning, for seeing the world from 400 million different perspectives.

Degree Types
Major , Minor
Complementary Programs
Distinctive Requirements
Capstone, Study Abroad
Study Abroad
Mexico, Spain & more

There are many practical reasons why you should study Spanish, but above all else, you should study Spanish because something about it truly resonates with you: maybe you feel at home in Spanish or Latino culture, whether you’re Latino or not. When it really comes down to it, it is about human connection. At McDaniel, we help forge that connection by giving you numerous opportunities to experience the language and culture—through study abroad and January term opportunities, by living in the Spanish House right here on campus, or taking part in numerous field trips locally (like our frequent journeys to Baltimore and Washington, D.C. to see flamenco, plays, and concerts, and to visit special museum exhibitions and enjoy authentic cuisine).

Future Career Paths

With a firm grasp of a different country’s language and culture, you’ll be equipped to explore careers in fields such as:

  • Politics
  • Economics
  • International relations
  • International business
  • Education
  • National security
  • Translation

Distinctive Courses

MUL 2212 - World Music

Surveys in musical traditions other than those of the Western European-American stylistic periods.

SPA 2211 - The Hispanic World: Language and Society I

Practice in oral and written Spanish while analyzing the social elements and cultural expressions of the Hispanic world.

SPA 3303 - Cultura Latinoamericana Contemporánea

This course is a study of contemporary Latin American culture. Topics addressed include socioeconomic class, ethnicity, urbanization, changing family structure, education, religion, nationalism/globalization and the environment.

PSI 3310 - Politics of Latin American Development

An examination of the political, social, environmental policy, and economic problems of “third world” development with Latin America as the regional area of focus. The models of corporatism, bureaucratic-authoritarianism, civil-military relations, and dependency theory are applied to case studies in Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, and Peru. An examination of the role of women in development as well as the impact of development on the environment is also included. Sustainable development models are offered as an alternative to the failed attempts at development.

Special Opportunities

There are multiple ways to make the most of your study of Spanish at McDaniel.

Student interacting at desk with elementary school children.

Spanish Major – Education Minor

Students can major or minor in Spanish, or combine a Spanish major with a minor in Education.

Students outside of Budapest campus.

The Spanish House

The Spanish house is a wonderful opportunity for you to live together with a group of people who love Spanish. Each year, a Spanish house director comes from Spain or Latin America to study at McDaniel, share their culture, and help you improve your Spanish.

McDaniel Commitment in Action

The McDaniel Commitment—a series of opportunities guaranteed to all students—provides enhanced mentoring and coaching, and ensures every undergraduate student completes at least two meaningful experiential learning opportunities.

Photo of a woman standing on an overlook wearing a yellow flowered shirt with horizon behind her.

Faculty Q&A Marti Barrera, M.A., M.S.

Do you draw on your background when you teach?
Absolutely. When I was working in Colombia for GlaxoSmithKline, I traveled around South and Central America. To do my job, I needed to know the cultures in different countries, how they speak, what they call things, and their food and music. Now, I can share that knowledge with my students. For example, I visited Colombia this summer and saw that motorcycle taxis are popular there right now, and I get to share that piece of culture in my classes. I can also recommend the absolute best places to visit — like the city of Barranquilla!
Photo of professor Magdalena Olivares.

Magdalena Olivares, Ph.D. Faculty Spotlight

Magdalena Olivares is a dedicated teacher-scholar in the Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. Her passions include Latin American theatre and cinema, gender studies, and second language pedagogy, and she coordinates the first-year Spanish courses at McDaniel. Her desire to introduce students to Hispanic culture has led her to serve as resident director for study abroad in Mexico.