940:313 Advanced Spanish Conversation and Contemporary Issues (3)

Advanced Spanish Conversation and Contemporary Issues

Spanish 313 : Fall 2014



Course Synopsis



Spanish 215, 261 or 325 or departmental permission.

N.B. If a student takes both 940:313 and 195:334, only one course will count for credit.


Course Overview

This course is designed to develop a student’s oral proficiency of the Spanish language to an advanced level as described by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). The course combines thematic content with practical exercises drawn from real-life situations in both formal and informal contexts. Students will practice their oral expression by way of diverse activities that will improve and refine the accuracy and fluidity of their spoken proficiency. The course also includes the advanced practice of auditory comprehension, reading skills, and writing ability. Fluidity of speech, correct pronunciation, grammatical precision and discursive cohesion will each be emphasized. Course content includes diverse reading assignments, specialized vocabulary, digital material, film, art, culture and current events that all offer students varied opportunities for in depth and detailed discussion of the course themes. Active participation in course discussions and activities, as well as earnest and diligent participation outside of course meetings, are crucial for success in this class.


Course Learning Goals

1. The global and detailed comprehension of distinct registers of spoken Spanish in both formal and informal


2.  To speak Spanish, correctly pronounced, in an extended and sophisticated manner and with cohesion in the

present, past and future in both formal and informal contexts. The linguistic flexibility to speak about and around certain subjects in a way that native speakers of Spanish will understand without difficulty.

3. To read and understand texts related to Hispanic culture and the world from varied genres originally written for a

      native reading public.

4. To write a variety of formal and informal texts about the world in general, personal life, and abstract topics.

5. To develop cultural and technological competency, as well as critical thinking skills, by way of digital

presentations and the discussion of controversial and relevant topics. To establish connections between a student’s own culture and the rest of the world.

*For further information about learning goals, please visit


Required Texts

Course materials will be made available to students on the instructor’s Sakai page.



  • preparation and participation: 15%

  • oral exercises (podcasts) (3): 25%

  • oral presentations: flash presentations (3, 5% each), group presentation (1, 10%): 25%

  • blogs and homework: 15%

  • in-class debates (2): 20%

    *grade breakdown is subject to change