http://www.as.miami.edu/las

Dept. Code:  LAS

Introduction

The Latin American Studies Program at the University of Miami takes an interdisciplinary approach to the study of the politics, economics, cultures, and societies of Latin America and the Caribbean. Courses in the program are offered in departments from every school and college at the University of Miami, and the program's faculty research topics ranging from development economics to immigrant health care, from indigenous music to Caribbean colonial literature, from the archaeology of the region's earliest people to present-day questions of resource conservation and management. Our students become true experts who can speak to a wide range of issues confronting Latin America; experts who can contribute proactively to development and cooperation as well as to business and political analysis in ways that their peers with a more traditional disciplinary focus simply cannot.

Educational Objectives

The goal of the BA in Latin American Studies is to acquire, advance and disseminate knowledge of the history, literature, culture, politics, economics, and natural and social sciences of the regions within an interdisciplinary framework. This program also places special emphasis on the languages and cultures of Hispanophone, Francophone and Lusophone Americas, including the transnational study of Latin Americans, Caribbeans and their descendants in the United States. Students should leave the program with the following:

  • the analytical and methodological tools needed to conduct interdisciplinary research;
  • the ability to read, write and think critically about primary and secondary sources;
  • a general knowledge of the different regions that comprise Latin America, the Caribbean, and their Diaspora, as well as a critical understanding that the geographic, political, and cultural boundaries that have traditionally defined the “area” as an object of study are not isomorphic and are connected to the interests of European and North American powers;
  • a critical understanding of the competing ways in which Latin American and Caribbean peoples have represented themselves paying particular attention to race/ethnicity, class, gender and sexuality, language, religion, migration, transculturation, and other historical, social, economic, and political factors;
  • a language competency in either French, Spanish, Portuguese, or Haitian Creole at an intermediate level and a beginning competency in a second language spoken in the region (either French, Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, or an indigenous language of Latin America or the Caribbean);
  • a “Beyond the Books” experience that will bridge the gap between the university and the surrounding communities, and will help solidify a long-term interest in and commitment to the regions.

Degree Programs

  • Bachelor of Arts

Departmental Honors

The Latin American Studies Program invites its undergraduate majors and minors to apply for departmental honors and expand their knowledge of Latin America and the Caribbean. Admission into the departmental honors program is by invitation, but any student who believes her or himself qualified may apply to the academic director of Latin American Studies, preferably during the sophomore or early junior year. Candidates for departmental honors work closely with one faculty member for two semesters to engage in original research in an area of her/his choice.  LAS majors and minors with a cumulative G.P.A. of at least 3.0 and an overall G.P.A. of at least 3.5 in the LAS major or minor may earn departmental honors by completing two honors thesis courses, LAS 495 and LAS 496 (Honors I & II). Candidates for departmental honors are responsible for finding a faculty member who is willing to serve as honors thesis advisor and obtain written approval of the Academic Director. The faculty member with whom the student works will help determine the nature of the independent research project.  Candidates must complete a thesis (with a grade of at least a B+, which must be approved by the thesis advisor) and present the work at the LAS Annual Student Symposium or another similar event showcasing undergraduate research at the university. 

Advanced Writing and Communication Requirement

To satisfy a portion of the College of Arts and Sciences writing requirement, students majoring in Latin American Studies should take at least one Latin American Studies course with a "W" (writing) designation.

Requests for Information

Dr. William J. Pestle
Academic Director, Latin American Studies Program
Merrick Hall 102-E 
University of Miami 
Coral Gables, FL 33124-2005 
las@miami.edu

The Latin American Studies major is designed for students who desire a comprehensive understanding of Latin America and the Caribbean; its history, cultures, languages, economics, politics, and societies. Majors often combine their studies with concentrations in other departments or schools. LAS majors also learn outside of the classroom, through interaction with visiting experts, participation in symposium and conferences, and travel courses. Students are required to attain at least competency in two Latin American languages, and are advised (but not required) to spend at least one semester in Latin America.

FILAS is a highly selective Honors Program, in which students follow a rigorous, accelerated curriculum to complete a dual degree (B.A./M.A.) in Latin American and Caribbean Studies in five years. The program provides exciting collaborative research, travel, and work opportunities. Working with UM’s world-class faculty in various academic disciplines, FILAS participants design individualized curricula. In addition to the regular general education course requirements of the College of Arts and Sciences, FILAS students choose one focus track for their most advanced courses: Social Sciences, Literature & Culture, Communication, Environmental Studies, Public Health, or History.

Majors in Latin American Studies

The minor in Latin American Studies is designed for students who have an interest in Latin America and the Caribbean, but may not have the flexibility to pursue a Major.  The minor may be obtained by completing five courses (detailed below), or through participation in the UBuenos Aires program. 

Minor in Latin American Studies

LAS 101. Introduction to Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 3 Credit Hours.

Course will focus on culture, economy, geography, history, politics, and society of Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as on the ways in which scholars have studied the region. LAS101 replaces LAS201.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 110. Students in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 111. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 112. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 113. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 114. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 115. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 211. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 212. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 213. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 214. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 215. Studies in LatinAmerica and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 301. Interdisciplinary Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary, Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic (e.g.: revolutions, new social movements, women's rights, Latin Americanism, testimonio, culture industries,etc.) or regional/national (e.g.: Andean Studies, Southern Cone Studies, Caribbean Studies, Mexican Studies, etc.)
Components: SEM.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 302. Interdisciplinary Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Studies-Travel Course. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary, Interdisciplinary focus is thematic and regional (i.e. tourism in Yucatan; civil society in Chile, civil society in Haiti, cultural policy in the Caribbean, environmental policy in Panama.). Course involves travel during Spring Break and it has a program fee.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

LAS 311. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 312. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 313. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 314. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 315. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 320. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Environment. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus on policies and impact on globalization on the environment.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 321. Latin American Environmental Issues. 3 Credit Hours.

A comprehensive course on Latin American and Caribbean environmental issues in their political, economic, and social dimensions.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

LAS 330. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Religions. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic or regional (eg: Liberation Theology, Latin American and Latino Religions, Caribbean Religions.)
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 340. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Economics. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Focus may be thematic or regional, but will address issues in Latin American and Caribbean Economics and Economic Development.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 350. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Art and Culture. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Focus may be thematic or regional, but will address issues in Latin American and Caribbean Art and Culture.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 360. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Politics. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics Vary. Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic or regional (eg: democracy, new social movements, globalization, politics and society.)
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 362. Drug Trafficking in Latin America and the Caribbean. 3 Credit Hours.

This course introduces students to the study of drug trafficking in Latin America and the Caribbean and its relationship with organized crime, understanding both as important aspects in the dynamics of globalization, international relations, and domestic politics.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 370. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Media and Communications. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Focus may be thematic or regional, but will address issues in Latin American and Caribbean Media and Communication.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 410. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 411. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 412. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 413. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 414. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 415. Studies in Latin America and the Caribbean. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Latin American and Caribbean Studies Courses taken at other institutions with no direct equivalent.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.

LAS 491. Debates on Current Issues in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 3 Credit Hours.

Content may vary from semester to semester. This is an upper level course to allow debate and discussion on current issues and events affecting Latin America, the Caribbean and Latino communities in the United States.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

LAS 494. Independent Study in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Independent study leading to a thesis, original piece of research, or creative project on a Latin American or Caribbean subject.
Components: THI.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 495. Senior Honors Thesis I. 3 Credit Hours.

This course pairs students with a faculty mentor to set and guide a research agenda in preparation for writing the senior honors thesis. Students will study advanced topics in Latin American and Caribbean Studies, according to faculty interests.
Prerequisite: LAS 101.
Components: IND.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

LAS 496. Senior Honors Thesis II. 3 Credit Hours.

This course pairs students with a faculty mentor to guide the writing process for the senior honors thesis. Students will study advanced topics in Latin American and Caribbean Studies, according to faculty interests.
Prerequisite: LAS 101.
Components: IND.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

LAS 501. Interdisciplinary in Latin American and Caribbean. 3 Credit Hours.

Interdisciplinary methods and politics of Latin American and Caribbean area studies.
Components: SEM.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

LAS 502. Research Design in Latin American Studies. 3 Credit Hours.

Interdisciplinary research methods and skills in Latin American and Caribbean studies.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

LAS 503. Program Seminar in Latin American Studies and Caribbean Studies. 3 Credit Hours.

Content of course will vary by semester.
Components: SEM.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 504. Interdisciplinary Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Studies - Travel Course.. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus is thematic and regional (e.g.: tourism in Yucatan; civil society in Chile, Haiti-Dominican Republic relations, cultural policy in the Caribbean, environmental policy in Panama.) Course involves travel during Spring Break and it has a program fee.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

LAS 505. Internship in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 1-3 Credit Hours.

On-site experience in business, governmental organization, or non-profit organization dealing with Latin America and/or the Caribbean.
Components: THI.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

LAS 506. Civic Engagement in Latin America. 1-3 Credit Hours.

On site experience in a civic engagement project in Latin America or the Caribbean.
Components: IND.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

LAS 520. Interdisciplinary Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Environments. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus on policies and impact of globalization on the environment.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 521. Latin American Evironmental Issues. 3 Credit Hours.

A comprehensive course on Latin American and Caribbean environmental issues in their full political, economic, and social dimensions.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

LAS 530. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Religions. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic or regional (e.g., Liberation Theology, Latin American and Latino Religions, Caribbean Religions), but will address Latin American and Caribbean religion.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 540. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Media and Communication. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic or regional (e.g., global media, Spanish- or Portuguese-language television or radio, social media) but will address Latin American and Caribbean media and communication.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 550. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Art and Culture. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic or regional, but will address Latin American and Caribbean Art & Culture.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 560. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean Politics. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic or regional (e.g., democracy, new social movements, globalization, politics and society), but will address Latin American and Caribbean politics.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 580. Special Topics in Latin American and Caribbean History. 3 Credit Hours.

Topics vary. Interdisciplinary focus may be thematic or regional, but will address the history of political, social and economic development in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

LAS 591. Debates on Current Issues in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 3 Credit Hours.

Content may vary from semester to semester. This is a graduate course to allow debate and discussion on current issues and events affecting Latin America, the Caribbean, and Latino communities in the United States.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.