Master of Arts in Spanish
This information is intended for prospective graduate students and students who are
already in the graduate program. All students pursuing the Master of Arts degree in
Romance Languages with a concentration in Spanish should read this document in its
entirety. If further information is needed or if any of the aspects described in this
document requires clarification, the student should immediately make an appointment
to speak with the Coordinator of Graduate Studies, Dr. Burgos.
The student is also expected to be aware of the academic regulations described in
the Graduate Catalog. Prospective graduate students should also familiarize themselves
with the material contained herein, for it will provide an overview of the program
along with information about what is expected of the student, stipends available,
and course offerings. Prospective graduate students are encouraged to meet the Spanish
graduate faculty and the Spanish graduate students, to visit undergraduate and graduate
classes, and to contact the Coordinator of Graduate Studies to arrange a personal
OVERVIEW AND PROGRAM OBJECTIVES
The Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures offers a program leading to the
Master of Arts degree in Romance Languages with a concentration in Spanish. The MA
program prepares students in the areas of literature, culture, education, grammar,
and linguistics and is oriented toward the preparation of students who may be interested
in teaching in public and private elementary and secondary education, teaching as
a part-time or full-time instructor at the college level, enhancing the student's
skills for a career in law or business as well as in government agencies, pursuing
a PhD in the field of concentration often at highly-ranked universities. All graduate
students must comply with the general requirements of the Graduate School (see Admissions
Regulations, Academic Regulations, and Minimum Degree Requirements) as well as the
program requirements of the degree being pursued.
MA DEGREE PROGRAM
A student entering the program will be assigned a major advisor, usually the graduate
coordinator for Spanish, Dr. Burgos. This advisor is to be consulted in all matters
concerning the student’s program of study. It is the student’s responsibility to familiarize
himself/herself with the detailed online description of the program concerning requirements,
policies, and procedures including--but not limited to--the reading list, coursework
requirements, course descriptions, comprehensive examination procedures, reading knowledge
of a second language, independent studies, language proficiency, grade point average
requirements, time limitation, academic misconduct policies, and other issues. It
is also the student's responsibility to consult with his/her graduate coordinator
and/or the chair for further clarification.
The application deadline for the spring is November 1. The application deadline for
the fall is February 15. However, prospective students who are also applying for
a graduate assistantship are strongly encouraged to apply much earlier than the indicated
deadlines since these awards are very competitive.
A. Program Prerequisites
1. The applicant must provide an official transcript showing that a bachelor's degree
was awarded by an accredited college or university. Official transcripts should be
sent to the Office of Graduate Admissions.
2. A minimum of a 3.0 quality point average on a scale of 4.0. Students with less
than a 3.0 quality point average may be admitted with the approval of the Department
Chair and the Coordinator of Graduate Studies.
3. A minimum of 24 upper-division semester hours or the equivalent in Spanish. Examples
of an equivalent preparation in Spanish include having native or near-native proficiency,
university studies in a Spanish-speaking country, etc.
4. A reasonable proficiency in the language of concentration, to be determined by
the Department prior to admission. In particular, an oral interview in Spanish is
required. The applicant must contact the coordinator in Spanish early in the admission
process to make arrangements for the interview.
5. A writing sample in Spanish must be submitted to the respective coordinator.
This documentation is intended to demonstrate the student's adequate command of writing
skills in his/her field of concentration.
6. A letter of intent explaining the applicant's motivation and objectives in pursuing
a graduate degree in Spanish.
7. Two letters of recommendation from professors who have taught the applicant.
8. A 3.0 GPA for upper-division courses in the field. A GPA below 3.0 requires the
approval of the Department Chair and the Coordinator of Graduate Studies.
9. International students, i.e. applicants whose highest degree is from a foreign
university, must have their credentials evaluated. The university will accept evaluations
done by any credentialing agency listed on the National Association of Credential
Evaluation Services web site http://www.naces.org. The course-by course report is required. International students must therefore:
- score a minimum of 94 on the web-based TOEFL, and a minimum of 26 on the speaking portion of the same exam;
- convert their educational credentials–grades and diploma—into their US equivalents
with an appropriate agency listed on the National Association of Credential Evaluation
- Ask the same agency to submit the official transcript and diploma along with their
respective conversion and translation to Graduate Admissions, University of Memphis.
B. Program Requirements
- A total of thirty-three (33) semester hours.
- Students interested in taking collateral hours — i. e. coursework in another discipline
or department which is related to the field of concentration— will need to consult
with the coordinator to see if these hours are available in their concentration and
if they are eligible. At least 23 hours must be taken in 7000-level courses (eight
 courses in all).
- Satisfactory completion of minimum standards for eligibility to take the comprehensive
exams. Students in the program must seek advice from the coordinator to determine
that the coursework they carry fulfills these minimum standards.
- A reading knowledge of a foreign language other than that of the concentration. This
may be demonstrated in the following ways:
- achieving a grade of B (3.0) or higher in a fourth-semester language course (e.g.
FREN/GERM/ITAL 2020 or equivalent),
- achieving a grade of B (3.0) or higher in a graduate reading course (FREN 7000 and
GERM 7000 are the only two courses available for this option. They are usually offered
in the summer. Or,
- achieving a grade of B (3.0) or higher in an upper-division course at the 3000 or
4000 level (e.g. FREN 3302, GERM 3790, ITAL 3311, PORT 3301),
- achieving a grade of B (3.0) or higher in a graduate course taught in the target language
at the 6000 or 7000 level (e.g. FREN 6302, PORT 6024).
- Providing evidence of knowledge of a foreign language other than that of the concentration
equivalent to a fourth-semester language course or superior, and passing written test
to prove competency, with approval of the section head of the specific language.
- A comprehensive written and oral examination after completion of 33 hours and fulfillment
of the reading knowledge requirement. These examinations will be conducted in the
language of the concentration. For a full description of the comprehensive examination
procedures see the corresponding section below.
SPAN 6306 - Applied Spanish Linguistics (3) Current research in linguistics, psycholinguistics, and sociolinguistics and
their contribution to second language teaching and second language learning.
SPAN 6307 - Advanced Grammar/Writing (3) Special problems in Spanish grammar pertaining to the preterite and the imperfect,
"ser" and "estar," special verb constructions, the subjunctive, and the definite and
indefinite articles; also emphasizes writing styles, vocabulary, and idiomatic expressions.
Strongly recommended for MA students who have not taken this course at the undergraduate
level. Since this is a 4000/6000 level course it cannot count twice toward graduation.
SPAN 6308 - Advanced Grammar/Speech (3) Special problems in Spanish grammar pertaining to prepositions, placement of
descriptive adjectives, passive voice, reflexive substitute, past participle in absolute
constructions, and reflexive pronouns; also emphasizes speech production, vocabulary,
and idiomatic expressions. Strongly recommended for MA students who have not taken
this course at the undergraduate level. Since this is a 4000/6000 level course it
cannot count twice toward graduation.
SPAN 6410 - Spanish Literature/Civilization (3) Survey of literary movements and major figures with readings in literature and
civilization. Strongly recommended for MA students who have not taken this course
at the undergraduate level. Since this is a 4000/6000 level course it cannot count
twice toward graduation.
SPAN 6510 - Spanish Amer Literature/Civilization (3) Survey of literary movements and major figures with readings in literature and
civilization. Strongly recommended for MA students who have not taken this course
at the undergraduate level. Since this is a 4000/6000 level course it cannot count
twice toward graduation.
SPAN 6563 - Hispanic Literary Genres (3) Study of literary genres with concentration on Hispanic literature; selections
from origins to present time; emphasis on textual analysis. Strongly recommended for
MA students who have not taken this course at the undergraduate level. It is necessary
to clarify that students taking this course are not taking it twice since it will
not count toward graduation.
SPAN 7101 - Intro Hispanic Culture/Business (3) Hispanic community and family, customs, geography, demography of Spain and Spanish
America; United States business in Latin America and Hispanic business in the United
States. Course is conducted in Spanish. Open only to students admitted to International
MBA program. PREREQUISITE: Successful completion of proficiency examination.
SPAN 7102 - Comm Hispanic World (3) Hispanic markets and techniques of penetrating them; international advertising,
import-export and economic review of Hispanic nations; history and circumstances of
the Hispanic corporate world. Course is conducted in Spanish. Open only to students
admitted to International MBA program. PREREQUISITE: SPAN 7101 or equivalent.
SPAN 7103 - Span Comm/Corresp Doc I (3) Various letters and documents for conducting business among Hispanic nations.
Conducted in Spanish. PREREQUISITE: SPAN 7102 or equivalent.
SPAN 7201 - Workshop Spanish Language (3) Idiomatic construction, word formation, culturally connotated vocabulary and
modern style techniques through intensive text analysis and writing. RECOMMENDED:
SPAN 7301 - Spanish Phonology (3) Principles of analysis of the sound system of human language; general sound system
(phonetics) of Spanish; and phonemic contrastive analysis of sound systems of Spanish
SPAN 7302 - Spanish Syntax & Semantics (3) Spanish syntax and compositional semantics: constituent structure, syntactic
categories and grammatical relations, prepositional semantics, quantification, modality,
SPAN 7304 - Evolution Of Spanish (3) General history of the Spanish language based on political and cultural history
of Spain and Spanish America; history of sound system, grammatical structures, word
borrowings, and changes in meaning.
SPAN 7305 - Spanish American Dialectology (3) Fundamental notions of language variation, regional and social varieties, stylistic
varieties and linguistic demography of general features of Latin American Spanish
with respect to phonology, morphosyntax, and semantics.
SPAN 7420 - Medieval Span Literature (3) Reading of Old Spanish; Medieval Spanish literature from Mozarabic lyric through
SPAN 7421 - The Golden Age (3) Don Quixote and other classic works of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
SPAN 7430 - 18th/19th Century Spanish Literature (3) Romantic and post-romantic poetry and drama; costumbrismo and rise of regional
novel, realistic novel, and naturalistic novel.
SPAN 7431 - 20th Cenury Peninsular Literature (3) A look at different aspects of the literary culture of this century through various
genres (poetry, novel, theatre and film). Special attention dedicated to Modernism,
the Civil War, Literature during the Franco years and Postmodernism.
SPAN 7451 - Studies Spanish Culture (3) Literary history of Spanish autonomous regions as viewed through important writers;
emphasis on regional dialects, character, economy, and culture; readings and discussions
in Spanish. May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit hours. RECOMMENDED: SPAN 6410.
SPAN 7452 - 19th-20th Century Hispanic Culture/Literature (3) Literary developments and major cultural events affecting Spain and Latin America,
including issues pertaining to the question of national identity, modernismo, the
Generation of 1898, the narrative of the Mexican revolution, and Hispanic avant-garde
SPAN 7453 - Studies Latin American Culture (3) Literary survey of social issues that affect perceptions of Latin America, its
peculiar problems and its social upheaval; readings and discussions in Spanish. May
be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit hours. RECOMMENDED: SPAN 6510.
SPAN 7532 - Spanish American Drama (3) Development of the drama in Spanish America, with an emphasis on the twentieth
century. PREREQUISITES: Permission of instructor.
SPAN 7561 - Pre-Contemporary Spanish American Prose (3) Evolution of the Spanish American novel and short story from their beginnings
through early twentieth century.
SPAN 7562 - Contemporary Spanish American Prose Fiction(3) Representative Spanish American novels and short stories of the twentieth century
SPAN 7591 - Seminar Spanish American Literature (3) Topics in Spanish American literature designed to be of special interest for
the advanced graduate student. May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credit hours.
SPAN 7691 - Research in Hispanic Studies (1-6) May be repeated for credit toward the concentration in Spanish up to 12 hours.
SPAN 7692 – Research in Literature and Culture (3-6) Directed readings in the field. Several reports and a research paper will
be required. May be repeated for credit toward the concentration in Spanish up to
SPAN 7790 - Spanish for LSP and Civic Engagement (3) This course presents a multicultural approach to the teaching of Spanish for Specific
Purposes (SPP) and civic engagement. We will discuss/study the effects of multiculturalism
on the communication practices of the professional setting as well as theoretical
and experimental research in Languages for Specialized Purposes (LSP). In addition,
we will analyze new insights into the adoption of culturally oriented perspectives
in LSP, communication and comprehensive approaches to the discourse of professional,
domain-specific communities, and communication practices and procedures operating
in those communities. Finally, we will become familiar with how to design a teaching
portfolio focusing on Spanish for specific purposes and civic engagement. This course
has been designed for traditional as well as non-traditional students.
LANGUAGES AND LITERATURES (LALI)
LALI 6441 - Dante (3) Vita Nuova and Divina Commedia; presented in English.
LALI 6493 - Contemporary French Literature (3) Emphasis on widely translated, well-known works by major French writers; presented
in English translation.
LALI 6890 - Literary Criticism (3) Study of the history and theory of literary criticism as exemplified by texts
selected from various literary traditions. PREREQUISITE: Six hours of coursework in
a foreign language at the 3000 level or above.
LALI 7780 - Individual Studies in Business Language (1-3) Directed individual study in selected areas of language and culture chosen
in consultation with instructor. May be repeated for a maximum of 10 credit hours.
PREREQUISITE: Permission of instructor.
LING 7101 - Intro To Linguistics I (3) Nature of language; history of linguistic theory; morphology and syntax, concentrating
on languages other than English.
LING 7174 - Spec Method/Lang Ed (3) (Same as ICL 7174). Examines theoretical and practical issues relating to teaching
of foreign languages K-12 through lectures, reading of current literature, class discussion,
guest speakers, etc.; explores role of context in comprehension and learning, listening,
reading, oral proficiency, writing, testing, culture, and curriculum.
LING 7201 - Intro To Linguistics II (3) Principles and applications of phonology, with major emphasis on languages other
than English; historical linguistics, concentrating on Romance and other language
families; psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics, semantics.
PORT 6024 - Brazilian Short Story (3) Accelerated introduction to Portuguese for graduate students with a solid command
of Spanish; provides an introduction to Brazilian contemporary literature and focuses
on Portuguese grammar, emphasizing the differences between Spanish and Portuguese.
This course fulfills the language reading knowledge requirement.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR GRADUATE STUDENTS AND TEACHING ASSISTANTSHIPS
1. Graduate Teaching Assistantships
Teaching Assistantships carry a stipend of $7,000 per academic year and covers the
cost of tuition for the entire program. This award is offered on a competitive basis. Students
interested in obtaining a teaching assistantship must be officially admitted into
the MA program in Romance Languages. Part-time students or students who have a full-time
job or any other activities that may interfere with their academic responsibilities
are not eligible for these assistantships. There is no stipend for the summer. Graduate
students who obtain a graduate assistantship are usually supported for two academic
years provided their academic and teaching performance are satisfactory. GA’s may
also request to teach courses in the summer provided their academic and teaching performance
are satisfactory. Summer courses cannot be assigned or guaranteed in advance since
they are offered according to enrollment figures. In previous years our graduate assistants
have generally been assigned courses, especially in the second summer session. This
additional source of income may increase significantly the total amount of the stipend.
In addition to satisfying all the previous requirements set by the Graduate School
and the Department, students interested in obtaining a teaching assistantship should
submit a letter of intent, addressed to Dr. Will Thompson, Chairman, Department of
Foreign Languages and Literatures with a copy to Dr. Fernando Burgos, Coordinator
of Graduate Studies. Prospective candidates will be interviewed by the Spanish faculty
to determine their command of the language. Candidates are also interviewed by the
Chairman of the Department.
2. Duties and Responsibilities of Teaching Assistants
Each semester TA's must register for a minimum of nine (9) credit hours of graduate
work chosen from courses taught in the Department of Foreign Languages unless an exception
is approved by the coordinator. All courses must be approved by the Coordinator of
Graduate Studies. The maximum number of hours is 12. However, students must be careful
in deciding to take 12 hours. A student who decides to take 12 hours is expected
to keep this number of hours for the semester rather than dropping a course at the
beginning of the semester.
Graduate Assistants are not permitted to teach during their first and second semester
unless they have eighteen (18) credit hours of graduate work in Spanish, teaching
experience in the field, and the approval of the graduate coordinator. Graduate Assistants
will receive training in the teaching of lower-division courses. The training requires
a total of 20 hours per week for two semesters. As part of this training, they will
be required to visit classes taught by the faculty, and make an oral and written report
to the Supervisor of Graduate Assistants as well as to the Coordinator of Graduate
Studies. [Please refer to specific guidelines regarding class visitation]. TA's will
also assist Spanish faculty with the teaching of upper-division courses for six hours
per week. TA’s may also be required to perform other functions such as assisting instructors
in the teaching of lower-division courses. All of the aforementioned activities constitute
a significant part of the graduate assistant training. Starting with their third semester
TA's will teach two courses per semester. At this point graduate assistants become
instructors of record and the total number of hours related to teaching is 20 per
week, which includes actual teaching of 2 courses, class preparation, office hours,
participation in online and on-campus workshops, and meetings with the TA supervisor.
TA's will be monitored every semester by the TA Supervisor. This supervision will
include weekly meetings, seminars and class visitations. The TA Supervisor and the
Coordinator of Graduate Studies will also determine the teaching schedule of each
All TA's who are assigned to teach courses or to assist in the teaching of courses
are required to hold office hours (three  hours per week) and to post them at the
Non-native English speakers must pass the SPEAK test or score 26 (or higher) on the
speaking portion of the TOEFL iBT before they can be appointed as teaching assistants.
For further information you can visit http://www.memphis.edu/iei/speak.php
3. Visitation guidelines for in-training graduate assistants
Graduate Assistants (GA’s) who are in the in-training teaching observation period
must perform a series of visitations during the semester to satisfy the requirements
of their position. The following guidelines may be adjusted and/or changed, in which
case you will be informed by the supervisor.
By week 4 of the semester the GA who is not teaching will submit to the Spanish Language
Supervisor the appropriate number of Class Visitation Reports, proving that he or
she has successfully visited 14 classes. Nine of these visits will be of Spanish faculty
or instructors. Five (5) of the 14 visits will be of faculty or instructors in a Foreign
Language other than Spanish. No particular instructor in any language shall be visited
more than once during this period.
From week 5 to week 8 of the semester the GA who is not teaching will submit to the
Spanish Language Coordinator 11 new Class Visitation Reports, proving that he or
she has successfully visited 11 classes. No particular instructor shall be visited
more than once during this period.
In week 9 of the semester, the GA will perform a teaching demonstration, in consultation
with the Supervisor. During such event, he or she will teach a class following a plan.
The GA’s teaching performance will be used to consider if he or she is prepared to
teach without direct supervision.
Although these are the minimum requirements, it is encouraged that GA’s visit as
many other classes as possible.
These regulations apply to all GA’s who are not teaching a class even if such visits
have already been performed during a previous semester. Failure to comply with the
reports by the required dates will be considered as evidence of non-compliance with
their responsibilities as Graduate Assistants.
Assisting instructors in the teaching of lower-division courses during the first two
semesters is also a significant aspect of the GA training. All graduate assistants
are required to have the 20 hours of training per week, which will include aspects
such as class observation, participation in workshops, preparation of mini-classes
and full classes, assisting faculty in the teaching of upper-division courses, and
assisting instructors in the teaching of lower-division courses.
4. Reappointment of Teaching Assistants
Graduate Teaching Assistantships are normally granted for four semesters. Appointments
beyond the fourth semester are contingent upon the number of positions and funds available
in the Department of Foreign Languages. In order to be reappointed, a graduate teaching
- Show good academic performance. A minimum 3.0 GPA each semester must be maintained
in order to retain your assistantship.
- Demonstrate a pedagogical competency meeting the requirements of the TA Supervisor.
During their first and second semesters, TA's must comply with the required class
visitation as stated in the specific guidelines, submit an oral and written report
to the TA Supervisor and Graduate Coordinator, participation in online and campus
workshops, and assist in the teaching of lower- and upper-division courses.
c. Give evidence of an improved proficiency in Spanish.
5. Reading List
In addition to the course work, candidates are provided with a reading list, which
is found at the end of this document. This particular reading list serves as a guide
and a general orientation only. However, the emphasis is on the actual reading list
discussed in each class.
6. Language Proficiency
All graduate students must demonstrate proficiency in Spanish. Deficiencies must be
corrected. Lack of proficiency in Spanish can and will be used as a basis for termination
of the student’s graduate assistantship.
7. Reading Knowledge of a Second Language
All candidates shall acquire a reading knowledge of a foreign language other than
that of the concentration. (See #4 under the section "Program Requirements" in this
document). In the case of international students, English will not be accepted to
satisfy this requirement.
8. Independent Studies
An independent study is a planned activity, under the direct supervision of faculty,
involving a project not covered in any other format in the Department. Independent
studies must not be taken in lieu of other courses being offered. Independent study
courses should only be approved in extraordinary situations. Furthermore, independent
study courses depend on the willingness and/or availability of faculty members.
9. Minimum Coursework Requirements for the MA Program in Spanish
3 courses in Peninsular literature
3 courses in Latin American literature
1 course in Spanish Linguistics
1 course Optional (any one of the above)
Each of these courses carries 3 credit hours. They must be taken in the Department
of Foreign Languages (unless an exception was approved by the graduate coordinator)
and they must be at the 7000-level. This is minimum coursework without which the student
is not eligible to take the comprehensive exams.
There are also additional requirements for eligibility. The listing above corresponds
to what is usually referred to as a combination of:
This minimum coursework gives you 24 hours of graduate work. The rest of the courses
to reach the minimum of 33 may be (these are only suggestions):
1. SPAN 6563 - Spanish Lit Genres (3), unless this course was taken at the
undergraduate level (4563)
2. PORT 6024 Introduction to Brazilian Short Stories (3), unless this course
was taken at the undergraduate level (4024)
3. Additional 7000-level courses in SPAN Linguistics
4. Additional 7000-level courses in Spanish literature or Spanish –American
In regard to 4000/6000 level courses. Students who have already taken a combination
4000/6000 level as an undergraduate student or whose topic is determined to have already
been covered as an undergraduate student (although the title may be different) WILL
NOT be able to count these courses (if taken at the 6000 level) for graduation.
10. Comprehensive Examinations
Before being recommended for graduation, every candidate for the Master’s degree is
required to pass a final written and oral comprehensive examination. Eligibility to
take the comprehensive exams includes the following:
1. The student must have already completed a minimum of thirty-three (33)
semester hours of graduate work including the minimum required coursework: 3-3-2/
4-3-1 / 3-4/1 which is a combination of Spanish Literature, Spanish American Literature
and Linguistic courses. All of these courses must be taken in the Department of Foreign
Languages and Literatures (unless permissions was granted by the graduate coordinator)
and must be at the 7000-level.
2. At least twenty-three (23) hours must be taken in 7000-level courses (eight
 courses in all). Only three courses at the 6000 level will count toward the degree.
3. The reading knowledge requirement must be satisfied prior to the comprehensive
exams. A reading knowledge of a foreign language other than that of the concentration
is required of all students in order to graduate. This is explained under the Program
4. The student must have at least a 3.0 average in all graduate work.
It is the student's responsibility to confer with the Coordinator one semester prior
to the examination date regarding the time and place of this examination. At that
time, the candidates should also arrange individual meetings with the professors of
Peninsular literature, Latin American Literature and Linguistics to discuss material
to be included in the comprehensive exams.
The comprehensive written and oral examinations will be conducted in Spanish. All
exams are proctored by a faculty member or by personnel designated by the Coordinator.
After the written exam candidates are required to take an oral examination which may
include questions related to the written part (further analysis, clarification of
points, etc.) as well as questions related to the reading list and/or content of the
courses or any other material indicated by each member of the examining committee
which may not have been included in the written exam.
In order to obtain a passing grade on the comprehensives, the candidate must pass
the areas covered by these exams with a grade of B or better (80-100). A student who
does not perform satisfactorily on the first comprehensive examination will be given
an opportunity to retake the areas that he/she has failed when the exams are offered
again. The Spanish faculty will recommend relevant coursework which the student may
elect to take in preparation for retaking the exam. If the student's performance is
unsatisfactory on the second examination, he/she will be dropped from the program.
The oral and written comprehensive exams are mandatory for all the students in the
After the administration of both the written and oral exams, the chair of the examining
committee will ask each faculty member participating in these exams to sign the Comprehensive
Examination Results Form which will be submitted to the Graduate School within a week.
This form will indicate if the student passed or failed the comprehensive exams.
11. PROCEDURES FOR COMPREHENSIVE EXAMS
1. All students will take the exams during the same period of time.
2. Exams will be administered by a faculty member or designated personnel.
3. Written and oral exams are always in Spanish.
4. Students must finish the exam within the allotted time. Missing any of
these exams --including the oral-- will subject the student to a failing grade.
5. The student can use a dictionary (Spanish-Spanish or Spanish-English).
Notes, books or any other materials are not permitted and their usage will subject
the student to a failing grade.
6. Students who decide to postpone the date of the comprehensive exams should
inform the Graduate Coordinator the semester they are completing their coursework.
When the student decides to postpone the exam date, he/she will need to arrange with
the Coordinator to schedule a new date. The new scheduled date will fall within the
policy according to which comprehensive exams are given twice a year. Therefore, the
student needs to be very careful when postponing these exams because he/she will have
to wait an entire academic semester or more to retake them.
7. Eligibility to take the comprehensive exams includes: a) 33 hours in the
field; b) passing the Reading Knowledge requirement.
8. The written and oral comprehensive exams may include the following sections
in the areas of Spanish and Spanish American literature. These are only guidelines.
It is mandatory to consult with each faculty member who is participating in the exam.
The comprehensive exam in Linguistics, for instance, may have a totally different
a. Questions requiring that the student identify literary works from the
reading list and/or from the course work. The student should always consult with the
corresponding faculty member to agree on a final reading list in each particular area.
b. Questions that require specific knowledge regarding the content of the
c. Questions that require analysis and interpretation of literary works.
This would usually be an essay intended to demonstrate the student's ability to analyze
literary works at a level corresponding to the critical thinking required of graduate
Each section must be allotted a certain percentage. The following percentages are
Part a: 20-30%
Part b: 20-30%
Part c: 40-60%
12. Additional Information regarding the Comprehensive Exams
The student will have three written and oral exams 1) Spanish Literature; 2) Spanish
American Literature; and 3) Linguistics.*
The student will have a written and an oral exam in each of these subjects that they
will take the same day. For the written exam the student has a maximum of two and
a half hours, but it may only be two hours.
Written Exam 1:00 pm- 3:30 pm 1:00-3:30 1:00-3:30pm**
Break 3:30 pm -4:30 pm 3:30 -4:30pm 3:30-4:30 pm
Oral Exam 4:30 pm- 6:00 pm 4:30-6:00 pm 4:30-6:00 pm
Each of these written exams may have questions from all of the different professors
and their specified area, or only some of them. In any case, you should be well prepared
and know all of the material covered by each of the professors. In the oral exams
from each subject- except Linguistics- a minimum of two professors will participate,
but all of the professors of the subject may be there even if they have not participated
in any of the questions for the written exams. In the oral exams of each subject
there may be questions or comments about the questions from the written exam, or questions
from professors who did not participate in the written exam.
**Depending on the courses that the student has taken in Linguistics, the exam duration
time may vary from one hour to one and a half hours to two hours to two and a half
hours at the maximum.
The content of the exams may refer to any of the following situations:
a) The material of the course or courses from the professor with whom the student
took the class
b) New readings or materials- essays, for example- that the professor determines
relevant in relation to a specific class
c) A combination of the course material with the new lectures or materials that
the professor determines relevant in relation to a specific class
The student must have an interview with each professor who will test the student
to determine which of the situations mentioned will correspond to the student. This
may be different with each professor that may participate. The responsibility of scheduling
the interview relies on the student and is not the responsibility of the professor.
In order to graduate, students are required to submit to the Graduate School the
- Intent to Graduate Card
- Master’s Degree Candidacy Form
Students are responsible for submitting both forms and making sure to comply with
the deadlines. The Coordinator of the program and/or faculty members are not responsible
for informing the students about the deadlines or for filling out these forms. In
the case of the Master’s Candidacy Form, students need to secure each of the required
approvals and signatures requested on the form.
14. Time Limitation
All requirements for the degree must be completed in six calendar years. Courses more
than six years old will not be allowed as credit toward the Master's degree. There
are no exceptions to this policy. However, students may request the option of validating
old courses as described in the catalog under the section "Course Validations." It
should be noted that even though validation of old courses is provided as an option,
this procedure is very restricted and subject to several regulations.
15. Grade Point Average (GPA)
Graduate students must maintain a 3.00 GPA (the equivalent of a "B"). A grade below
"C" will not apply toward any graduate degree, but will be computed in the GPA. No
more than seven (7) hours of "C" will be applied towards meeting degree requirements.
Grades of “D” and “F” will not apply toward any graduate degree, but will be computed
in the GPA. Grades earned at another university will not be computed in the cumulative
GPA. A graduate student whose cumulative grade point average drops below 3.00 will
be placed on probation. A second consecutive semester on probation can result in suspension.
16. Academic Misconduct
Graduate students at The University of Memphis are expected to observe the regulations
and policies that govern the behavior of students as members of this academic community.
These regulations and policies are published and available online. In particular,
graduate students should become familiar with the University's policies on plagiarism
in its various forms. Furthermore, term papers may not be used to meet the requirements
of more than one course unless approved in advance by both instructors.
17. Invitation to evaluate the MA program
Graduate students have the opportunity to evaluate each course every semester by
means of the standard student evaluation (SETE). Additionally, all graduate students
who have passed their comprehensive exams are invited to submit an evaluation of the
program, which should be addressed to the Coordinator of Graduate Studies.
18. Current Graduate Course Offerings
Please refer to the corresponding schedule of classes.
19. Spanish Graduate Faculty (you can also visit our Faculty Website)
Pilar Alcalde, Associate Professor of Spanish. Ph.D. University of Southern California. Area of Research: Golden Age
Vania Barraza, Associate Professor. Ph.D. University of Arizona. Area of Research: Spanish American Literature
Fernando Burgos, Professor of Spanish. Ph.D. University of Florida. Area of Research: Nineteenth- & Twentieth-Century Spanish American narrative
Inmaculada Gomez Soler, Assistant Professor. Ph.D. University of North Carolina, Chapel
Hill. Area of Research: Linguistics
Yuki Matsuda, Associate Professor of Japanese and Linguistics. Ph.D. University of
Southern California. Area of Research: Linguistics
Fatima Nogueira, Associate Professor. Ph.D. Vanderbilt University. Area of Research: Latin American Literature. Spanish and Portuguese languages
Iván Ortega Santos, Associate Professor. Ph.D. University of Maryland. Area of Research: Linguistics
Diana Ruggiero, Assistant Professor. Ph.D. Ohio State University. Area of Research: Spanish for Professional Purposes
Francisco Vivar, Professor. Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles. Area of Research: Golden Age prose and drama. Colonial Spanish American literature
Lan Zhang, Associate Professor of Chinese and Linguistics. Ph.D. University of South
Carolina. Area of Research: Linguistics
Fernando Burgos, Professor of Spanish. Ph.D. Coordinator of Graduate Studies (901)
678-3158. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
These readings are recommended for all graduate students throughout their program but
it is not a specific listing of works required for the comprehensive exams. For the
material to be included in the comprehensive exams you need to consult with each faculty
member who will participate in the exams. The reading list is subject to revision.
Any changes will be reflected/ posted on this site.
I. PENINSULAR LITERATURE, comprising the following areas of specialization:
1. Medieval period
2. Sixteenth and Seventeenth centuries
3. Nineteenth century
4. Twentieth century
II. LATIN AMERICAN LITERATURE, comprising the following areas of specialization:
1. Colonial period
2. Spanish American narrative & poetry from 1800-1955.
3. Spanish American narrative, poetry & essay from 1955-1994.
4. Spanish American drama (twentieth century).
I. PENINSULAR LITERATURE
1. Medieval period
El Mío Cid, Per Abat (copista).
Milagros de Nuestra Señora, Berceo.
El Conde Lucanor, Don Juan Manuel.
El libro de buen amor, Juan Ruiz.
La celestina, Fernando de Rojas.
El Mío Cid (Madrid: Cátedra, 1976. Colin Smith, ed.)
Milagros de Nuestra Señora (Londres: Tamesis, 1971. B. Dutton, ed.)
El Conde Lucanor. (Madrid: Castalia, 1969. J. M. Blecua, ed.)
El libro de buen amor (Madrid: Cátedra, 1992. A. Blecua, ed.)
La celestina (Madrid: Clásicos Hispánicos, 3a ed., 1970) Criado de Val, ed.
If any of these editions is unavailable, please consult with Dr. A. Torres Alcalá.
2. Sixteenth and Seventeenth centuries
Don Quijote, Cervantes. Recommended Edition: Martín de Riquer.
La gitanilla, Cervantes.
Rinconete y Cortadillo, Cervantes.
La vida es sueño, Calderón.
El gran teatro del mundo, Calderón.
El mágico prodigioso, Calderón.
A secreto agravio, secreta venganza, Calderón.
El pintor de su deshonra, Calderón.
El Caballero de Olmedo, Lope de Vega.
Fuenteovejuna, Lope de Vega.
El burlador de Sevilla, Tirso de Molina.
Sonetos 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, Garcilaso. In Poesías castellanas completas. Elías L. Rivers,
ed. Madrid: Castalia, 1985 or latest edition.
Egloglas I y III, Garcilaso. In Poesías castellanas completas. Elías L. Rivers, ed.
Madrid: Castalia, 1985 or latest edition.
Lazarillo de Tormes, Anónimo.
Guzmán de Alfarache, Alemán [Selection]
Vida del buscón, Quevedo [Selection]
Selection of poetry from the following authors: San Juan de la Cruz, Fray Luis de
León, Santa Teresa de Jesús, Quevedo, Góngora. In Poesía lírica de Siglo de Oro. Elías
L. Rivers, ed. Madrid: Cátedra, 1985 (or latest edition).
3. Nineteenth century
"Navidad 1836," Larra.
"Día de difuntos," Larra.
"Canto a Teresa," Espronceda.
"Canción del pirata" Espronceda.
Don Juan, Zorrilla.
Leyenda "Los ojos verdes," Bécquer.
Leyenda "El rayo de luna," Bécquer.
Leyenda "Maese Pedro, el organista," Bécquer.
Doña Perfecta, Galdós.
Los pazos de Ulloa, Pardo Bazán.
"La cuestión palpitante," Pardo Bazán.
4. Twentieth century
El idearium, Ganivet.
San Manuel Bueno Mártir, Unamuno.
El árbol de la ciencia, Pío Baroja.
La rebelión de las masas, Ortega y Gasset.
La familia de Pascual Duarte, Camilo José Cela.
La mazurca para dos muertos, Camilo José Cela.
Nada, Carmen Laforet.
El camino, Miguel Delibes.
Tiempo de silencio, Martín Santos.
Señas de identidad, Juan Goytisolo.
Volverás a Región, J. Benet.
El jinete polaco, Antonio Muñoz Molina.
La dama del alba, A. Casona.
La casa de Bernarda Alba, Federico García Lorca.
En la ardiente oscuridad, A. Buero Vallejo.
Escuadra hacia la muerte, Alfonso Sastre.
Selections from the poetry of Antonio Machado, Valle Inclán, Unamuno, Juan Ramón
Jiménez, Federico García Lorca, Alberti, Vicente Aleixandre, Dámaso Alonso, Salinas,
Guillén, Otero, Rosales, Miguel Hernández in Angel Del Río; Antología general de la
literatura española. II. New York: Holt, 1960.
II. LATIN AMERICAN LITERATURE.
1. Colonial period
Brevísima relación de la destrucción de la Indias (1552), Bartolomé de Las Casas.
La araucana (1569-1589), Alonso de Ercilla y Zúñiga [Selection].
Comentarios Reales (1609) [Selection of Part I], El Inca Garcilaso de la Vega.
Respuesta a sor Filotea de la Cruz (1691), Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz [Selection].
Primero sueño (1692), Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz.
2. Spanish American narrative & poetry from 1800-1955.
El matadero (1839/1871), Esteban Echeverría.
"Don Dimas de la Tijereta" (1864), Ricardo Palma.
Martín Fierro (1872-1879), José Hernández [Selection]
Martín Rivas (1862), Alberto Blest Gana.
María (1867), Jorge Isaac.
Sin rumbo (1885), Eugenio Cambaceres.
"El combate de la tapera" (1892), Eduardo Acevedo Díaz.
"El cuento azul" (1899), Manuel Díaz Rodríguez.
"El sueño de Rapiña" (1899), Carlos Reyles.
Los de abajo (1915), Mariano Azuela.
Doña Bárbara (1929), Rómulo Gallegos.
Azul (1888), Rubén Darío.
Prosas profanas (1896), Rubén Darío.
"La compuerta Número 12" (1904), Baldomero Lillo.
"La lluvia de fuego" (1906), Leopoldo Lugones.
"Poncho de verano" (1908) Roberto Payró.
"A la deriva" (1912), Horacio Quiroga.
"El hijo" (1928/1935), Horacio Quiroga.
"El hombre que parecía un caballo" (1915), R. Arévalo Martínez.
"El ermitaño del reloj" (1915), Teresa de la Parra.
Alsino (1920), Pedro Prado.
Desolación (1922), Gabriela Mistral.
Residencia en la tierra I (1925-1931), Pablo Neruda.
"La biblioteca de Babel" (1941), Jorge Luis Borges.
"Funes el memorioso" (1942), Jorge Luis Borges.
El señor presidente (1945), Miguel Angel Asturias.
"El guardagujas" (1952), Juan José Arreola.
El llano en llamas (1953), Juan Rulfo.
"Mr. Taylor" (1954), Augusto Monterroso.
"Chac Mool" (1954), Carlos Fuentes.
Pedro Páramo (1955), Juan Rulfo.
3. Spanish American narrative, poetry & essay from 1955 to the present.
"Viaje a la semilla" (1958), Alejo Carpentier.
"Borrador de un informe" (1958/1966), Augusto Roa Bastos.
"Los jefes" (1959), Mario Vargas Llosa.
Rayuela (1963), Julio Cortázar.
"La autopista del sur" (1967), Julio Cortázar.
"La tregua" (1960), Rosario Castellanos
La muerte de Artemio Cruz (1962), Carlos Fuentes.
La casa verde (1966), Mario Vargas Llosa.
Cien años de soledad (1967), Gabriel García Márquez.
"Final del tango" (1969), Antonio Skármeta.
"A las arenas" (1969), Antonio Skármeta.
"El ahogado más hermoso del mundo" (1968/1972), García Márquez.
"Un señor muy viejo con unas alas enormes" (1972) G. Márquez.
"La increíble y triste historia de la cándida Eréndira y de su abuela desalmada"
(1972), Gabriel García Márquez.
Concierto barroco (1974), Alejo Carpentier.
Los hijos del limo (1974), Octavio Paz.
Confieso que he vivido (1974), Pablo Neruda.
"El lugar de su quietud" (1975), Luisa Valenzuela.
El beso de la mujer araña (1976), Manuel Puig.
La casa de los espíritus (1982), Isabel Allende.
"Ondina" (1983), Carmen Naranjo.
"El ángel caído" (1986), Cristina Peri Rossi.
4. Other Twentieth century Spanish American Readings (Drama, Poetry, Essay and Novel)
Las manos de Dios (1956), Carlos Solórzano [Guatemala].
Los fantoches (1958), Carlos Solórzano [Guatemala].
Los huéspedes reales (1957), Luisa Josefina Hernández [México].
Los soles truncos (1958), René Marqués [Puerto Rico].
Medusa (1958), Emilio Carballido. [México]
Teseo (1962), Emilio Carballido. [México]
Medea en el espejo (1960), José Triana [Cuba]
El cepillo de dientes (1961), Jorge Díaz [Chile]
Lo que dejó la tempestad (1961), César Rengifo [Venezuela]
En la diestra de Dios Padre (1962), Enrique Buenaventura. [Colombia].
Y nos dijeron que éramos inmortales (1962) Osvaldo Dragún [Argentina].
Juicio final (1962), José de Jesús Martínez [Panamá].
El campo (1968), Griselda Gambaro (Argentina).
La colina (1958), Daniel Gallegos [Costa Rica].
Flores de papel (1970), Egon Wolff [Chile].