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Hispanic Studies and Global Sustainable Development (BASc) (Full-Time, 2019 Entry)



Full-time 2019 entry, AAB, IB 36

Gain specialist knowledge and understanding of the language, culture and sustainability issues of the Hispanic world.

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Can we end world poverty by 2030? How can we ensure our cities are safe? How can we tackle the effects of climate change on our world? If you’re keen to search for the answers and make a difference to our world, Global Sustainable Development can show you how.

This course provides you with the unique opportunity to acquire excellent written and oral communication skills in the Spanish language (from beginners level) alongside a profound understanding of cultural aspects of specific societies in the Hispanic world and the particular challenges of sustainable development faced by the region. You will explore the environmental issues, economic inequalities, and issues around human rights and social justice that are affecting Latin America and the Caribbean. You’ll consider these issues from many different perspectives, understand their complexity and learn to use a variety of approaches to think creatively about potential solutions. Meanwhile, you will balance your studies with the Global Sustainable Development. Department by delving into the Big Questions of today, including food and water security, gender equality, and climate change.

We’ll challenge you to become an active participant in your own learning and help you to develop professional skills through certificates you’ll complete as part of the course. You’ll also have the opportunity to spend part of your second year studying abroad at our partner institution in Monash, Australia – home to the world-leading Sustainable Development Institute.

The ability to communicate and express oneself confidently in more than one language is a key skill for a Global Citizen and Spanish is a world language with around 400 million speakers; one of the most important languages for business and cultural exchange. At the end of the course you will be a proficient Spanish speaker with a sophisticated awareness of cultural difference and interaction and the sustainably issues affecting the Hispanic regions of the world. You will be able to employ your skills and knowledge gained on the course to seek out careers around the globe.

Year 1: Six core modules - four in GSD worth 60 CATS and two in Hispanic Studies worth 60 CATS. One of your Hispanic Studies modules will be language orientated, according to your ability, and the other focused on culture. You will also have the opportunity to take Certificate of Digital Literacy.

Year 2: For the GSD half, 60 credits of GSD modules comprised of one 30 CAT optional core (Food Systems, Security and Sovereignty or Bodies, Health and Sustainable Development) plus further module(s) totalling 30 CATS selected from the range of modules available across the University (including from within the Global Sustainable Development Department) which have a global sustainable development focus. With Hispanic Studies, you will further your language skills with a 30 CATS language module, and also undertake a 30 CATS cultural module.

Year 2 (with Term Abroad): If you opt to travel abroad to study at Monash University for part of the year, you will take one of two optional GSD core modules in the first term whilst at Warwick, together with further relevant second year modules from within or outside of the School totalling 15 CATS. With Hispanic Studies you will study Spanish Language through Films (15 CATS) and a further. 15 CATS optional module.

Final Year: Core GSD module 'Dissertation' (30 CATS) plus further relevant modules from within or outside of the School totalling 30 CATS. With Hispanic Studies, you will undertake a 30 CATS language module based on your ability and a choice of optional cultural modules totalling 30 CATS.

You will attend lectures and take part in seminars, workshops and tutorials and work with your fellow students in teams on controversial, topical problems that pose significant sustainable development questions. You will undertake fieldwork, archival research, interviews with members of the local area and engage in peer discussion to propose alternative solutions. You will review the work of your fellow students.

You will be taught by a range of academics, from different disciplines, who will communicate their expertise on a specific issue and describe their methodology for addressing it. Your role is to bring together these various approaches and to develop your own informed stance on each issue.

Contact hours

Core first year GSD modules have 23 hours of contact time each made up of lectures, workshops and, for the 'mini-project' module, group supervision sessions and a field trip. In the second year, optional core GSD modules have around 45 contact hours each for the 30 CATS versions and half this for the shorter 15 CATS versions.

Teaching is via workshops. Optional GSD modules are available with between 20 and 50 hours for scheduled contact time depending upon how the module is taught. For example, some modules have lectures, seminars, film screenings and research supervision whereas others have lectures and workshops. Some modules include field trips.

Hispanic Studies language modules typically have 4-5 hours contact time per week, across a combination of seminars, presentations, and small group teaching.

Class size

Seminar groups comprise between 10 and 15 students.

Research papers, reports, policy briefings, posters, portfolios and critical commentaries, presentations in public fora, language assignments, traditional academic essays and examinations including written and oral language examinations.

Two options for study abroad. Study abroad is not compulsory for students

Integrated study abroad – taking place during Terms Two and Three of Second year, at Monash University in either Australia or Malaysia. Students study approved courses that complement their Global Sustainable Development studies at Warwick. Grades from Monash are accredited and will contribute towards overall final degree classifications

Intercalated study abroad – organised with the International Office, opportunity to study for a year long unaccredited period at one of Warwick’s partner universities. This takes place between Second and Third year, with students studying a full course load but without any formal contribution towards their overall degree grade.

 Student blogs

meredith"The modules in first year have given new perspectives on topics I thought I knew a lot about, and it has helped me think more about my life."

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A level: AAB, to include an A level in a modern or classical language and Grade B in English and Mathematics at GCSE

  • IB: 36 points, including 5 at Higher Level in a modern or classical language, and Mathematics and English

You will also need to meet our English Language requirements.

  • Contextual data and differential offers: Warwick may make differential offers to students in a number of circumstances. These include students participating in the Realising Opportunities programme, or who meet two of the contextual data criteria. Differential offers will be one or two grades below Warwick’s standard offer (to a minimum of BBB).

  • Access Courses: Access to HE Diploma (QAA-recognised) including appropriate subjects with distinction grades in level 3 units. Candidates must meet essential subject requirements.
  • Warwick International Foundation Programme (IFP) All students who successfully complete the Warwick IFP and apply to Warwick through UCAS will receive a guaranteed conditional offer for a related undergraduate programme (selected courses only). For full details of standard offers and conditions visit the IFP website.
  • We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications. For more information please visit the international entry requirements page.
  • Taking a gap year Applications for deferred entry welcomed.

    Interviews We do not typically interview applicants. Offers are made based on your UCAS form which includes predicted and actual grades, your personal statement and school reference.

    Open Days All students who have been offered a place are invited to visit. Find out more about our main University Open Days and other opportunities to visit us.

Year 1

GSD Modules

Economic Principles of GSD

You’ll start your studies with an introduction to the concepts and perspectives related to the measurement of global sustainable development, and the links between economics and policy. You’ll progress to analysing real-world problems, such as the connection between poverty and the environment, to deepen your conceptual understanding of how economic activity relates to development. You’ll be expected to critique alternative economic models and interventions, using theories and explanations based on externalities, game theory, and theories of decision-making under risk and uncertainty. You’ll also learn to use quantitative information to evaluate policy design, this will also improve your skills of oral and written communications and independent learning.

Social Principles of GSD

You’ll engage with the social and political principles of global sustainable development, and use stimulus and simulation techniques to grapple with the ideas through a combination of practical activities, groupwork, seminars and online collaboration. By the end of this module, you will be able to offer well-informed, evidence-based evaluations of key global challenges, and to explain how particular forms of economic development cause social problems. You will be able to provide ideas for strategies that could tackle problems of social inequality in food, education and health, and be able to write competently and proficiently on topics such as goal-based development, in preparation for your second-year.

Environmental Principles of GSD

You’ll investigate a range of perspectives on sustainable development from the standpoint of environmental studies, to equip you with the capacity to engage in critical discussion of the world’s most pressing environmental issues, as outlined by the framework of the nine planetary boundaries. You’ll demonstrate your understanding of the causes and impacts of anthropogenic activities, and appraise discourses of environmental decline and sustainability from a rigorous and interdisciplinary perspective. You’ll also gain important employability skills, such as independent research and persuasive communications, through creating and presenting a briefing paper and policy pitch.

GSD Mini-Project

During this module, you will collaborate with your peers on a task of investigating the issue of sustainable transport. Immersing you in a wealth of qualitative and quantitative data that you will gather, examine, analyse and critique. As well as deepening your understanding of the economic case for sustainable transport, you’ll be strengthening your academic research skills to deconstruct a major problem, formulate and test hypotheses, evaluate the evidence, and undertake field research, including interviews and focus groups.

Hispanic Studies Modules

Modern Spanish Language

Do you have A-level or an equivalent in Spanish and want to consolidate, extend and refine your skills to advanced level? This module will equip you with sound grammatical and linguistic foundations, with the aim of increasing your confidence in reading, listening, speaking and writing in Spanish. You will use authentic resources in a variety of media from around the Hispanic world, including books, articles, newspapers, television and radio, as well as taking part in our virtual language exchange with students in Colombia, and culminating in production of a language portfolio to demonstrate your competence in the spoken and written language.


Modern Spanish Language for Beginners

As a beginner in the acquisition of the Spanish language, you’ll gain a keen grammatical awareness, a sound understanding of cultures and societies across the Hispanic world, and most of all, confidence in reading, listening, speaking and writing in Spanish. Using authentic resources, including newspapers, television and radio, and our virtual language exchange with students in Colombia and Ecuador, you are expected to end your course able to sustain everyday conversations in Spanish, read authentic texts, follow the gist of TV extracts and write at an intermediate level in Spanish. You will also work on basic translations to and from Spanish as a means of consolidating your knowledge.

Language, Text and Identity in the Hispanic World

How has the Spanish language travelled around the world and what happens when it co-exists with other languages? How do writers exploit language to explore identity, and what happens when they work between two (or more) languages? This module will equip you with the skills to understand and appreciate the cultural and sociolinguistic diversity of the Hispanic world, and give you a strong grounding in the literary and cultural analysis of texts that address this diversity. Through the work of the Dominican–American writer Junot Díaz and the plays of Lope de Vega and Tirso de Molina, you’ll explore the use of language-switching and manipulation and disguise to explore and express identity.


Images and Representations of the Hispanic World

Where did the familiar stereotypes of Spain and Latin America come from? How have they circulated and been received at different times and in different places? And how have Spaniards and Latin Americans represented themselves to travellers, tourists, artists, and even invaders? Through the study of representations of the Hispanic world, you will investigate significant topics including (de)colonisation of the Americas, stereotypical views of the Hispanic world and the imagining of Spanish identify through art and film in the 20th century. You will be expected to read widely and independently, and to gain the analytical skills needed to conduct close textual and film analysis.


Icons of the Hispanic World

You’ll be introduced to major cultural landmarks from across the temporal, geographical and disciplinary range covered within Hispanic studies. You’ll engage with iconic figures at the heart of the Hispanic cultural imagination, and with canonical authors whose work has been influential in a Hispanic context and beyond. You will acquire the skills required to conduct close analysis and critique of primary sources, both written and visual, in a variety of genres, and in so doing, foster your linguistic competence and increase your awareness of the range and diversity of Hispanic culture. There will be opportunities to improve your research techniques and to present clear and cogent arguments based on your analysis of primary sources.

Year 2

GSD Modules

Bodies, Health and Sustainable Development

Your starting point on this module is the sustainable development goals for health and well-being, gender equality and reducing inequalities, with an overarching theme of how our bodies relate to various forms of development. You can expect to articulate your knowledge of major global inequalities and apply your understanding across different cultural and social norms. Asking provocative questions and critically engaging with the way the environment is affecting health outcomes, and critiquing the efficacy of policy measures that aim to address health-related global crises. You’ll also improve your research skills by generating original, well-researched arguments for policies that address health and inequalities outcomes.


Security, Sovereignty and Sustainability in the Global Food System

At least 800 million people are chronically undernourished globally, and the global population is projected to increase to a staggering 10 billion by 2050. From this challenging starting point, you’ll be working with active researchers from across various disciplines at the University of Warwick, especially those involved in the Global Research Priority on Food. You will become acquainted with contrasting disciplinary approaches to the investigation of food systems, and be able to analyse scholarly concerns surrounding food security, sovereignty and sustainability. You’ll evaluate competing solutions, and research, evaluate and synthesise academic and other credible research and analysis in order to respond critically to the essential topics and questions in this exciting field.

Hispanic Studies Modules

Modern Spanish Language 2

On this module, you will extend your competence in Spanish. You will deepen your understanding of advanced grammatical and linguistic structures, increase the range and sophistication of your vocabulary, and refine your use of register in authentic spoken and written discourse. You will use resources from a variety of media from around the Hispanic world, and take part in our virtual language exchange with students in Latin America and Spain. At the end of the course, you should have sufficient mastery to discuss different topics, report on your independent reading and support your opinions with solid arguments.


Modern Spanish Language II (Postbeginners)

Year 3

GSD Modules

Dissertation/Long Project

Hispanic Studies Modules

Modern Spanish Language 3

On this module, you will consolidate your fluency in spoken and written Spanish, and refine your translation skills to advanced level. You will practise oral and discursive expression using a range of advanced linguistic structures, vocabulary and registers. You will be engaged in independent study, for example in researching and preparing work for presentation in class in order to develop your communicative and intercultural competence and the capacity to structure your own learning.

Selection of optional modules that current students are studying:

Challenges of Climate Change; Human Rights and Social Justice in Latin America and the Caribbean; Nature and Modernity in Latin America; Journeys and Cityscapes in Latin American Film

To view all of GSD modules, visit this page.

To view all Hispanic Studies modules, visit this page.

Our degree programmes have been developed to provide you with a set of skills that will enable you to compete for existing and emerging roles across a variety of professions. Your options are varied across a range of industries, from working in the United Nations to advising small businesses on issues that will affect the local community. Additionally, a strong language proficiency is one of the most desirable skills sought by employers in the globalising world. Speaking Spanish would give you a key edge, for example, if you were to consider working for an organisation whose work focuses on Central or South America.

You will also learn valuable transferable skills that will help you with your employment prospects including:

  • Analytical and problem solving: Through your study of economic principles and models, you’ll learn how to extract the essential features of complex systems, providing useable frameworks for evaluation.
  • Critical thinking: Assess arguments, make judgements, formulate reasoned debates and generate feasible solutions.
  • Communication: Develop advanced communication skills that enable you to communicate with a variety of audiences and in different settings.
  • Research: An integrated programme of research skills training, teaching you how to source, evaluate and use different forms of information and data.
  • Organisational: Through a rigorous assessment schedule and a compulsory dissertation module in your final year, you’ll learn the essentials of time management, prioritisation and how to be well organised.
  • Team working: You’ll have plenty of opportunities to work with others and nurture your emotional intelligence, developing a professional attitude.
The nature of our GSD degrees is such that graduates can go into global sustainable development itself, or take their interdisciplinary skills, along with the specialist knowledge gained from subject-specific modules into a wide range of roles, such as:

  • Project work / lobbying for international organisations, NGOs and charities
  • Advisory / consultancy roles in public services, education or the environmental or energy sectors
  • Roles in communications, public relations and the media
  • Sustainable finance

A level AAB, to include an A level in a modern or classical language and Grade B in English and Mathematics at GCSE

IB 36 points, including 5 at Higher Level in a modern or classical language, and Mathematics and English


Degree of Bachelor of Arts and Sciences (BASc)

3 years full time

Start Date

24 September 2019

Location of study
University of Warwick, Coventry and optional study abroad in Year 2 at a partner institution in Australia.

Tuition fees
Find out more about fees and funding

Additional costs

There may be costs associated with other items or services such as academic texts, course notes, and trips associated with your course.

This information is applicable for 2019 entry.

Given the interval between the publication of courses and enrolment, some of the information may change. It is important to check our website before you apply. Please read our terms and conditions to find out more.

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