Best California Colleges for Students Majoring in Spanish

There are many reasons for a college student to choose a major in Spanish. Apart from being the world’s second most widely spoken language, Spanish is a language of business, diplomacy, culture, and arts.

Receiving a degree in Spanish prepares students for careers; such as teaching, international relations translation, interpretations, public services, publishing, and editing communications.

Why Major in Spanish?

  • The United States is home to the world’s second largest Spanish speaking population with 52 million Spanish speakers
  • Spanish is the official language in 21 countries, with at least 3 million native speakers in 44 countries.
  • California is among the highest concentration of Spanish speakers in the US: 38% of California’s population is Spanish speaking

Biola University

A bachelor’s of art degree in Spanish requires a student to complete a minimum of 30 credits (24 of these credits must be from upper division).

Why choose a Spanish major at Biola University?
  • A strong Spanish curriculum with expert faculty
  • All Spanish majors at Biola University are encouraged to undertake a travel practicum or participate in a study abroad program, such as in ‘Biola in Ecuador’ or the Latin studies program
  • Location of Biola University in Southern California offers an excellent opportunity for students to engage with Spanish speaking businesses and community members. The school features small classes that give a student a chance to form deep relationships with professors and fellow students
  • Spanish chapel services are offered at various times throughout the year to help the students engage deeply in the Spanish language

Loyola Marymount University

A Spanish degree at Loyola Marymount University is offered through the department of modern languages and literature. The major aims at equipping students with language proficiency in Spanish, since it introduces the students to the multicultural learning and historical evaluation of literacy as well as cultural expressions in Spanish.

Fact: Any student who has been taught Spanish in high school or another college must take the Loyola Marymount University Spanish placement exam before undertaking the major.

Outstanding students in the Spanish program are hired as teaching and research assistants as well as are engaged at the Loyola Marymount University language center. The faculty members in the Spanish department are multilingual experts at teaching languages. The faculty members are active researchers and writers who contribute to Spanish forums and other published works.

Concordia University

Spanish majors at Concordia University, Irvine are offered coursework through the department of classics, modern languages and linguistics. The Spanish program integrates innovative approaches to the study of Spanish and exposes students to the Spanish language, translation, culture, and literature.

The program features various exchange programs, such as:

  • Concordia in Spain summer program: Concordia University offers a ‘Concordia in Spain’ Spanish language and culture program.  The program offers students of Concordia University the opportunity to take part in the educational and cultural immersion that is hosted at the Universidad Portificia de Salamanca.  Students earn 12 Concordia University credits while studying abroad.
  • Field schools (various locations)
  • External credit transfer from other institutions and/or experience

Spanish majors progress from basic language skills to advanced speakers who are comfortable in conversation, grammar, composition, and linguistics. Students will also study masterpieces of Spanish literature and be exposed to the diversity of the Spanish culture.

Why Study Spanish at Concordia University, Irvine?
  • Students become certified to teach in Spanish
  • The program features volunteer work and internships that offer hands-on experience in the US and abroad
  • The department features small classes. Student-faculty ratio is 8:1 that leads to very intimate classes.

University of Southern California

The Spanish department at University of Southern California offers both a major and minor in Spanish, with an emphasis on the language, linguistics, and culture of Spain. Students are encouraged to combine a Spanish major with a double major in a different discipline.  A placement test is required for all students with prior knowledge of Spanish.  The department features a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish with honors, which is available to students who have a G.P.A. of 3.5 in courses that count for major credit.

Why Study Spanish at the University of Southern California?
  • University of Southern California offers a strong Spanish major. The Spanish program ranks number 56 in the US and number 9 in California
  • The University of Southern California also ranks number 19 Spanish and Romance school in the West Regional ranking

California State University, Northridge

California State University, Northridge offers three options: literature, language and culture as well as Hispanic linguistics to Spanish majors. The structure of the program requires that a student writes a capstone paper in a 500-level course of the student’s choice. The program features a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish with two specializations: a literature option and a culture option. The program also offers a Master of Arts in Spanish.

Why Study Spanish at California State University, Northridge?
  • The university offers one of the most affordable Spanish major programs
  • California State University, Northridge is the best program for students interested in teaching Spanish in secondary schools. The Spanish program offers a subject matter program that is approved by California commission on teacher credentialing. After completing the program, a student is required to take the California subject exam for teachers in Spanish

What Does a Strong Spanish Program Entail?

An excellent Spanish program must be hosted by a college whose library maintains a wide range of Spanish literature. Also, a student should desire a department that sponsors cultural activities, such as readings by Spanish language authors and cultural exchange programs.

California College Bound admits that choosing the right Spanish major program can be overwhelming, but that is where we come in. We will walk with you through the selection process-from identifying the schools to learning more about them. Sign up for a California College Bound tour and visit California’s best Spanish degree programs.

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