Spanish is one of the major languages of Western Europe, and the most widely spoken language of the Americas, with a substantial number of native and second language speakers, ranging from Metropolitan areas of Canada and the US through Mesoamerican countries, most of South America and even in the Philippines.

Briar Thompson

Bachelor of Communication Studies
Whangarei girl Briar Thompson was awarded a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford after completing her communications degree at Waikato - and now she's taking a bite out of the Big Apple in New York.

Spanish is a Romance language with approximately 470 million speakers. Some Romance languages acquired with relative ease are Portuguese, French, Italian, and even Romanian. A significant number of people also speak Spanish as a foreign language. Spanish is spoken in Spain and 22 other countries including: Andorra, Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, the USA and Venezuela.

The Spanish-speaking world is home to many cultures: Iberian, Afro-Caribbean, and Amerind, as well as the cultural mixes resulting from five hundred years of American/European/African contacts.

 Career opportunities

  • Ethnographer
  • International Development Worker
  • Lecturer
  • Museum Curator
  • Overseas Aid Worker
  • Research or Policy Analyst
  • Teacher
  • Travel and Tourism Operator

100 level

International Languages and CulturesINTLC10115.0 Points
Spanish for Beginners 1SPNSH13115.0 Points
Spanish for Beginners 2SPNSH13215.0 Points

200 level

300 level

Work PlacementFASS39620.0 Points
Study Abroad 1INTL38020.0 Points
Study Abroad 2INTL38120.0 Points
Study Abroad 3INTL38220.0 Points
Directed StudyINTL39020.0 Points
Topics in Latin AmericaSPAN30520.0 Points
Spanish Advanced LanguageSPAN31020.0 Points
Spanish in ContextSPAN31220.0 Points
Translation Methodology and PracticeSPAN32120.0 Points
Study Abroad 1SPAN38020.0 Points
Study Abroad 2SPAN38120.0 Points
Study Abroad 3SPAN38220.0 Points
Directed StudySPAN39020.0 Points

Prescriptions for the GradCert(Span) and GradDip(Span)

A Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma are available to graduates who have not included Spanish at an advanced level in their first degree.

For further details, contact the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Office.

Graduate Study

To be eligible to be considered for enrolment in graduate Spanish papers, a student should normally have at least a B average in either the best three of their 300 level Spanish papers or all their undergraduate Spanish papers. Students are advised to consult with the Convenor of Spanish about their programme of study.

Varieties of SpanishSPAN50130.0 Points
Special Topic: Visual Poetry in the Hispanic WorldSPAN50230.0 Points
Directed StudySPAN59030.0 Points
DissertationSPAN59130.0 Points

Prescriptions for the PhD

The Doctor of Philosophy is a three year research-based degree in which students undertake a programme of approved and supervised research that leads to a thesis which critically investigates an approved topic of substance and significance, demonstrates expertise in the methods of research and scholarship, displays intellectual independence and makes a substantial original contribution to the subject area concerned, and is of publishable quality.

Spanish PhD ThesisSPAN900120.0 Points

Spanish is available as a pathway within the International Languages and Cultures major or supporting subject for the BA, as a specialisation (set out below), and as a supporting subject within other undergraduate degrees, subject to academic approval of the Faculty or School of Studies in which the student is enrolled.

Spanish pathway within International Languages and Cultures major
International Languages and Cultures is available as a major for the BA. International Languages and Cultures may also be taken as a second major or as a supporting subject within other undergraduate degrees, subject to academic approval of the Faculty or School of Studies in which the student is enrolled. For full details see International Languages and Cultures major.

Spanish language specialisation
Within the BA, BBA, BCS, BECom, BMS, BSocSc and BTour a Spanish Language specialisation is available, and within the BSc and BSc(Tech) a specialisation in Science International in Spanish is available. The focus of the specialisation is to provide students with the opportunity to develop language skills that might enhance their ability to compete in an increasingly global marketplace.

A specialisation in Spanish for the BA and BSocSc requires 60 points above 100 level in Spanish, which can be made up of SPAN231, SPAN232 and SPAN310.

The point of entry into the Spanish programme depends on previous experience. Those with no previous experience of Spanish take SPAN131 and SPAN132, followed by SPAN231 and SPAN232 in the second year. Students with some experience of Spanish (Year 11 or equivalent) will begin with SPAN132. Students with 14 credits at Level 3 in NCEA Spanish, or equivalent, will gain direct entry into SPAN231.


Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences:
Phone: 0800 800 145 or +64 7 838 4932
General and Undergraduate Email Enquiries:
Graduate and Postgraduate Email Enquiries: