Latin American Studies offers an interdisciplinary approach to learning about the politics, economics, cultures, and societies of Latin America and the Caribbean. Undergraduate courses are offered in Africana Studies, American Studies, Anthropology, Architecture, Art and Art History, Biology, Communication, Economics, Geography, History, Journalism, International Studies, Marketing, English, Modern Languages and Literatures, Music, Musicology, Political Science, Religious Studies, Sociology, and Women’s and Gender Studies. The major in Latin American Studies is designed for the student who wants to acquire background knowledge about the area or who is interested in some aspect of Latin American and Caribbean affairs, such as government, law, business, research, journalism, or education. Students are strongly encouraged to spend at least one semester abroad on a program with a Latin American and Caribbean Studies component (see Office of International Education and Exchange Programs, 212 Allen Hall).

The goal of the BA in Latin American Studies is to acquire, advance and disseminate knowledge of the history, literature, culture, politics, economics, and natural and social sciences of the regions within an interdisciplinary framework, while at the same time emphasizing the languages and cultures of Hispanophone, Francophone and Lusophone Americas including the transnational study of Latin Americans, Caribbeans and their descendants in the United States. Students should leave the program with the following:
• the analytical and methodological tools needed to conduct interdisciplinary research;

• the ability to read, write and think critically about primary and secondary sources.

• a general knowledge of the different regions that comprise Latin America, the Caribbean and their Diaspora as well as a critical understanding that the geographic, political, and cultural boundaries that have traditionally defined the “area” as an object of study are not isomorphic and are connected to the interests of European and North American powers;

• a critical understanding of the competing ways in which Latin American and Caribbean peoples have represented themselves paying particular attention to race/ethnicity, class, gender and sexuality, language, religion, migration, transculturation, and other historical, social, economic, and political factors;

• a language competency in French, Spanish, Portuguese, or Haitian Creole at an intermediate level and a beginning competency in a language other than the above or in an indigenous language of Latin America and the Caribbean;

• a “Beyond the Books” experience that will bridge the gap between the university and the surrounding communities, and will help solidify a long-term interest in and commitment to the regions.

Bachelor of Arts


Program of Study:

1) Gateway Course in LAS (LAS101) 3 credits

2) Advanced language proficiency in Spanish, French, Portuguese,
or Haitian Creole: This requirement may be met with SPA214,
FRE214, POR212, or HAI201 or equivalent. 3 credits

3) Secondary language competence in another Latin American
or Caribbean Language: This requirement may be met with
SPA105, FRE105, POR105, HAI102 or equivalent,
or by successfully completing a Latin American, Caribbean,
or Indigenous language course in the DILS program. 3 credits

4) Six credits in Latin American history 6 credits

5)  Eighteen (18) credits (six courses) in classes listed in LAS
or cross-listed with LAS, 12 credits of which must be
completed at the 300-level or higher. Courses that are not
co- or cross-listed with LAS but do have a significant focus
on Latin America may be taken with the approval of the degree
director. A freshman seminar with a significant
focus (25% or more) on Latin America or the Caribbean may
be counted towards this requirement. SPA214 and FRE214
may be counted towards this requirement. 18 credits

6) Senior Seminar (LAS501) or Independent Study (LAS494) 3 credits

TOTAL 36 credits

**A C- or better for all major courses, with a GPA of 2.0


Latin American Studies Minor
The minor in Latin American Studies may be obtained by completing 15 or more credits in courses on Latin America and the Caribbean, provided that they are selected from courses that fall outside the department of the student’s major. As part of the required 15 credits, students must successfully complete LAS501 or LAS494 to obtain a minor.

FILAS (Fellows in Latin American Studies)
In this highly selective Honors Program, students follow a rigorous, accelerated curriculum to complete a dual degree (B.A./M.A.) in Latin American and Caribbean Studies in five years.  The program provides exciting collaborative research, travel, and work opportunities.

Working with UM’s world-class faculty in various academic disciplines, FILAS participants design individualized curricula. In addition to the regular general education course requirements of the College of Arts and Sciences, FILAS students choose one focus track for their most advanced courses: Social Sciences, Literature & Culture, Communication, Environmental Studies, Public Health, or History. For broad-based, multi-disciplinary preparation, students choose courses that focus on Latin America and the Caribbean from the following categories (at least ten of these courses must be taken at the Master’s level):

• One gateway seminar in Latin American Studies
• Two History courses
• Two International Studies courses
• Two Economics courses
• Two advanced Languages and Literatures courses (SPA, POR, FRE, or HAI)
• Seven courses in Study Abroad
• One course as internship/co-op credits
• Five courses above the 300-level (third-year) in a range of disciplines
• Ten courses in one focus track
• Six thesis credits (LAS710)
150 total credits

FILAS students also write a thesis based on an original research project. In addition, they present their findings in a meeting of the UM Center for Latin American Studies in their final semester.


• SAT1 composite score of 1360 or ACT 31.

• Top 10% of high school graduating class.

• Regular Application for Admission to the University of Miami. We recommend students submit their applications by November 15.

• Recommendations from three high school teachers.

• Statement of interest in FILAS, emphasizing prior language or area study

• To continue through the Master’s level, students must maintain at least a 3.4 GPA and they must take the GRE Exam.


Students with an appropriate GPA are encouraged to contact the program to apply for departmental honors.
For more information, contact:
LAS Degree Programs
University of Miami
1111 Memorial Drive
Coral Gables, FL 33124-2302
(305) 284-8180
FAX (305) 284-2796