Undergraduate Certificate

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Undergraduate Certificate in Latin American Studies

Certificate Goals

The undergraduate certificate in Latin American studies will prepare students to become active agents of social change in academics, business, non-governmental organizations and many other careers.

The program offers a wide variety of interdisciplinary courses, academic conferences, language training opportunities and access to visiting scholars from this region of the world. Students will develop cross-cultural fluency, deepen their knowledge of the region and learn to develop moral arguments about issues of social justice in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Learning Objectives

  • Develop a comprehensive knowledge base of the history, culture and politics of Latin America & the Caribbean
  • Effectively apply research methodologies to understanding social, political, and cultural processes in Latin America & the Caribbean
  • Develop strong oral and written communication skills in one or more of the following languages: Spanish, Portuguese, French, (or other languages including: Aymara, Yucatec Maya, Quechua, or Haitian Kreyol)
  • Develop a cultural and moral awareness about the social, political and economic challenges confronting the people of Latin America & the Caribbean

Certificate Requirements

Introduction to Contemporary Latin America (LATAMER 136): This course will serve as an introduction into a number of problems and themes that currently shape Latin American society and culture, including efforts to come to terms with recent political violence, environmental change, economic transformation, migration and cultural expressions. Offered once a year. 

Capstone Seminar in Latin American Studies (LATAMER 498S): An interdisciplinary course specifically targeted at reflecting upon, synthesizing, integrating and applying the knowledge and experience gained in the courses previously taken for the certificate. Taught by the Mellon Visiting Professor from Latin America each spring for juniors and seniors. Additional upper level courses may be designated as “capstone” equivalents. 

Three additional area studies courses (two of which must be at or above the 300 level): See course lists for a full listing of courses that have been offered at Duke that count toward the certificate. Duke students are also encouraged to enroll in Latin American & Caribbean Studies courses at UNC-CH. The two universities offer more than 100 courses dealing directly with Latin America and the Caribbean. 

Language Requirement: The language requirement can be fulfilled in one of three ways: 1) by taking three language courses below the 300 level in any one of the most commonly taught languages spoken in Latin America: Spanish, Portuguese, French; 2) by taking one course taught in any one of these languages at the 300 level or above; or 3) by taking two courses in any one of the less commonly taught Latin American languages (such as K'iche' Maya, Yucatec Maya and Haitian Kreyol).

Special Rules: 

  • In order to stress the interdisciplinary aspect of the certificate, at least three different departments must be represented overall, with no more than three courses counting from one single department. 
  • Eligible undergraduates satisfying the certificate requirements may use no more than two courses that are also used to fulfill the requirements of any major, minor or other certificate program.

To officially enroll in the undergraduate certificate program please contact the Registrar's office: 919-684-2813 or registrar@duke.edu

Please contact las@duke.edu for questions regarding this program.