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The Honors Program in Spanish


1. Eligibility for the Honors Program:  junior status, 3.0 overall GPA, 3.25 GPA in Spanish courses

2. Application for the Honors Program and questions regarding the program:see Professor  Edward  Friedman  (, office  321 Furman Hall, phone 322-6929.

3. Course "enrichment" This involves doing extra work in an advanced Spanish class. It usually involves some extra reading and an essay (of around 6 to 10 pages). The student and the instructor develop a "contract" as to what the enrichment will entail.

Note from Professor Paz Pintane: Those students who are Honors Scholars can usually count the enriched course for an Honors point if they are pursuing the program of Honors in the College.

4. The Honors Thesis

a. Choice of topic

b. Choice of director

c. Six hours of credit for Span 4998-4999 Senior Honors Thesis (3 fall, 3 spring) in addition to the 30 hours for the standard major. Contact Professor Paz Pintane (, office 308 Furman Hall, about enrolling in these courses.

d.Topic and choice of director should ideally be determined by the end of the junior year. Outline, preliminary bibliography, general work schedule, general plan for consultation with the director must be turned in prior to the beginning of fall classes in the senior year.

e.The Honors thesis may be written in Spanish or in English. The average length for a thesis in Spanish is 50-60 pages, and, for a thesis in English, 75-100 pages. The number of pages will depend on the particular topic and approach.

f. The Honors thesis should follow a recognized style sheet, such as that of the Modern Language Association (MLA). Your director may choose to work with you on this. The Honors advisor is also willing to hold a session on MLA style during the fall semester.

g. Thesis committee: the director and two other faculty members, one of whom can be from outside the department. The committee members read a version approved by the director and may offer comments and suggestions for revision.

h. Defense: in April, before the committee. The student often gives a brief introduction: the topic, the approach, the findings or conclusions, commentary on the process of research and writing. The committee then comments and asks questions. (Note: The defense is dialogical rather than adversarial.)


The time to consider the Honors program is the junior year. Those students who will be spending the spring semester of the junior year abroad or off-campus should make arrangements for application and other matters before leaving. It has proven difficult for students abroad to choose an advisor, a topic, etc.

If you would like to enrich a course during the spring semester of the junior year, contact

Professor Friedman and then the course instructor.

The ideal student for Honors is one who would like to do independent research and who recognizes that doing an Honors thesis will involve MORE work, not less, than two "regular" classes. That person should be dedicated and disciplined, since this will involve reading, reflecting, and writing alongside other courses with daily or weekly assignments, etc.

The professors in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese are specialists in a number of areas, but those areas include primarily Hispanic literature, linguistics, and culture. The thesis topic should most strongly be related to Hispanic studies rather than to other disciplines. That is, there should be a discernible Hispanic studies component to any topic, even though the range of topics chosen by Honors students in recent years has varied greatly.

If interested, please contact Professor Friedman ( or

Professor Paz Pintane (