The Master of Arts in Latin American Studies is a 30 credit hour interdisciplinary degree characterized by a high degree of flexibility in allowing students to create a course of study focused on Latin American and the Caribbean that serves the interests of the student. Combining core courses offered by the program with a large variety of courses combined with departments, programs, and units throughout the University of Miami, the program offers tremendous diversity in courses available for credit hour towards this degree. This encourages students to combine course offerings from around the university into a cohesive course of study that enables specialization  in an area, topic, country, theme, or issue of their choosing and thus to tap into the many resources available at the University of Miami for students with a passion for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Curriculum Requirements

The program consists of two core Latin American and Caribbean seminars, two regional fundamentals, and a minimum of three additional seminars to be taken as electives. Students will also be required to take one research methods course at the 600-level.

LAS 601Interdisciplinary In Latin American And Caribbean3
LAS 602Research Design in Latin American Studies3
Two Regional Fundamentals courses 16
Three electives from the list of LAS designated or combined courses (600-level or above) 29
One research methods course in the disciple of the student's specialization 33
LAS 810Pre-candidacy thesis credits (students must enroll in two semesters of this 3-credit course)3
LAS 810Pre-candidacy thesis credits3
Thesis, Capstone, or Comprehensive Exam 4
Language Proficiency 5
Total Credit Hours30

Regional Fundamentals are those courses that have a clear regional or sub-regional focus (e.g. Andean Region; the Caribbean; South America; Central America; Southern Cone; Brazil; South Florida) rather than a specific country focus.


Electives may be taken from any pre-approved combined or core LAS courses at the 600-level or above, or from other courses  approved by the academic director.


 A Research Methods course may be chosen from any available and accessible Research Methods courses available at the University of Miami, but must be appropriate to the course of study chosen by the student and requires approval of the academic director. Under special circumstances, the research methods requirement may be waived with the prior approval of the academic director.


Students are required to write a master’s thesis, create an equivalent capstone project, or pass a comprehensive exam. The latter two options require the approval of the academic director. For each of these options, a committee consisting of at least three members is required. Students who opt for the comprehensive exam will take one more elective in the place of the Research Methods course and enroll in 6 credit hours of LAS 697, rather than LAS 810.


Students must demonstrate advanced language competence in Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, or French by passing a course taught in the target language at the 600-level or above, or by passing a language competency exam.


With approval from the academic director, students may also take their elective credit hours with Latin Americanists in other Schools such as Communication, Law, Business, or Marine Sciences.


Students who are simultaneously enrolled in a certificate program (other than GIS) at the University of Miami may double-count courses between the certificate program and the Master of Arts in Latin American Studies, with approval of the academic director.

In select cases (such as methods courses), seminars and courses at the 600-level that do not specifically target Latin America or the Caribbean, but for which the final project or paper produced by the student is focused on Latin America may be counted towards the Master of Arts in Latin American Studies, subject to the approval of the academic director.