- Major Requirements
- Minor Requirements
- Clarifications & Recommendations
- Learning Outcomes
- LACAS Advising
The undergraduate major in Latin American and Caribbean Area Studies is a well-established program that began in 1973. The Latin American and Caribbean Studies major offers an interdisciplinary and transnational approach to the study of Latin America, the Caribbean and peoples of Latin American and Caribbean descent. LACAS majors learn methodologies and theoretical perspectives for studying historical processes, cultural dynamics, and social and economic problems across the Americas. LACAS majors build skills in research, critical thinking, and effective communication.
- Complete a minimum of 10 courses selected from among those parented by or cross-listed
with LACAS; courses with content on U.S. Latin@s, the Caribbean and/or Latin America;
or any other course approved by the LACAS Committee. The following requirements apply:
- At least one course in each of the three separate departments;
- Two of the following three courses: LACS 200, LACS 210, LACS 202. None of these can be taken Pass/Fail;
- One course in library research (e.g., LACS 271) or research methodology, in which the major project focuses on Latin America and/or the Caribbean. The course cannot be taken Pass/Fail;
- One literature course related to Latin America and/or the Caribbean;
- Five advanced courses (300 level or above), of which one must be 400 level;
- No more than half of the courses may be taken outside Binghamton University;
- No more than one of the non-required courses can be taken Pass/Fail.
- Show a proficiency in a language relevant to the area of specialization (e.g., Spanish,
French, English, Portuguese, Creole, Dutch). The LACAS language requirement can be
met through one or more of the following means:
- By taking an intermediate level course in a language relevant to the LACAS major (e.g., SPAN 211, SPAN 212, SPAN 215, SPAN 244, FREN 211, FREN 215).
- If a student has taken the Advanced Placement Test in High School in a language relevant to the LACAS major (e.g., Spanish, French, English, Portuguese, Creole, Dutch).
- By taking the CLEP, or College Level Examination Program in a language relevant to the LACAS major (e.g., Spanish, French, English, Portuguese, Creole, Dutch). (http://clep.collegeboard.org/).
- Students who are native or heritage speakers in a language relevant to the LACAS major may request a waiver of the requirement from the program.
Students whose language of preference is not offered by the university or tested by the Advanced Placement Test in High School or CLEP will be formally evaluated by a professor appointed by the LACAS Director for that purpose.
The LACAS minor offers an interdisciplinary and transnational approach to the study of Latin America, the Caribbean and peoples of Latin American and Caribbean descent. The minor is designed for undergraduates who wish to graduate with formal recognition for coursework in the field without undertaking all the requirements of a major. To qualify for the LACAS minor, a student must complete a minimum of six courses selected from among courses parented by or cross listed with LACAS; courses with content on U.S. Latin@s, the Caribbean and/or Latin America; or any other course approved by the LACAS Committee. The following stipulations apply:
- At least two courses must be upper-level courses (300 or above) (excluding LACS 395, LACS 397);
- LACS 200;
- At least one of the following two courses: LACS 202, LACS 210;
- Only one of the six courses can be LACS 395 or LACS 397;
- All courses for the minor must be passed with a minimum of C-;
- No more than half the courses may be taken outside Binghamton;
- A course taken under the Pass/Fail grading option may not be used to fulfill requirements for the minor.
Any student interested in pursuing a LACAS minor should meet with the LACAS Director or Associate Director to discuss the requirements and their plan of study.
Students interested in the major or minor should keep the following in mind:
- The main difference between the major and the minor is that the major requires a minimum of 10 courses and the minor requires a minimum of six courses;
- The Honors Program includes the design and execution of a research project that can include fieldwork abroad;
- Depending on the nature of the courses, some courses taken in Latin American and/or Caribbean universities may be used to fulfill part of the requirements for the major and/or the minor;
- It is strongly recommended (but not required) that students interested in the LACAS major combine that major with a major or minor in another department or program. This ensures further background in a related field.
In accordance with normal Harpur College policy, students may use the same course(s) to fulfill part of the course requirements for both their LACAS major and a second major. At least four of the courses for student’s LACAS minor must be in addition to those counted towards the student’s major.
By graduation, all LACAS majors will be able to:
- Demonstrate knowledge of historical processes, cultural dynamics, and social and economic problems affecting Latin America, the Caribbean, and people of Latin American and Caribbean descent.
- Demonstrate ability to carry out original research, including the ability to (1) design independent research projects, (2) evaluate scholarship, and (3) implement research projects by searching for, obtaining, critically evaluating, and utilizing sources for information on Latin America, the Caribbean, and/or people of Latin American and Caribbean descent
- Demonstrate ability to communicate original arguments and research findings clearly and effectively in writing and oral presentation. Students might show additional competency in communicating through digital, audiovisual, or visual media.
- Demonstrate knowledge of methodologies or theoretical paradigms drawn from more than one discipline for studying Latin America, the Caribbean, and people of Latin American and Caribbean descent.