LSO115 - Spanish Language and Culture

Outline info
Last revision date 2017-07-21 16:20:30.538
Last review date 2017-07-21 16:20:30.539

Subject Title
Spanish Language and Culture

Subject Description
This course provides an introduction to the cultural and language traditions within the Spanish-speaking world from an interdisciplinary perspective. The course focuses on the interaction between language and the cultures that underlie it, paying equal attention to the Spanish language (studied both experientially and theoretically) and the distinct societies that speak it. Consequently, to study the Spanish language as a cultural product provides the student a more meaningful way to gain cultural and linguistic proficiency.

Credit Status
One lower-level Liberal Studies Option (LSO) for Degree students

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

  • Explore the origins of Spanish, its cultural heritage, and its evolution.
  • Examine Spanish within social contexts; language attitudes and misunderstandings; differences between Spanish and regional variants; and, Spanish and globalization ("borrowing" from and into Spanish)
  • Communicate ideas, thoughts and feelings using vocabulary appropriate at this level
  • Acquire a command of  the essential grammatical structures and vocabulary appropriate at this level 
  • Practice different ways of thinking as expressed through idiomatic expressions, metaphors, slang, time and space and the language of gestures

Essential Employability Skills
Communicate clearly, concisely and correctly in the written, spoken and visual form that fulfils the purpose and meets the needs of the audience.

Respond to written, spoken, or visual messages in a manner that ensures effective communication.

Use a variety of thinking skills to anticipate and solve problems.

Show respect for diverse opinions, values, belief systems, and contributions of others.

Interact with others in groups or teams in ways that contribute to effective working relationships and the achievement of goals.

Take responsibility for one's own actions, decisions, and consequences.

Cheating and Plagiarism
Each student should be aware of the College's policy regarding Cheating and Plagiarism. Seneca's Academic Policy will be strictly enforced.

To support academic honesty at Seneca College, all work submitted by students may be reviewed for authenticity and originality, utilizing software tools and third party services. Please visit the Academic Honesty site on for further information regarding cheating and plagiarism policies and procedures.

All students and employees have the right to study and work in an environment that is free from discrimination and/or harassment. Language or activities that defeat this objective violate the College Policy on Discrimination/Harassment and shall not be tolerated. Information and assistance are available from the Student Conduct Office at

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Disabilities Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.


Topic Outline

  • The nature and different definitions of culture
  • The relationship between culture and language
  • Etymology (origin) of Spanish words
  • Vocabulary building within social or regional variations
  • Basic grammatical structures
  • Formal vs. informal language
  • Numbers, Dates, and Time

Mode of Instruction
To ensure that students are engaged as much as possible in the learning process, instructors can use such teaching methods as class and small group discussions,  individual and group presentations, readings, lectures, workshops, in-class exercises, and/or web-based instruction. 

Prescribed Texts
No prescribed text required.

Reference Material
Any pocket English/Spanish: Spanish/English dictionary 

Promotion Policy

Grading Policy
A+ 90%  to  100%
A 80%  to  89%
B+ 75%  to  79%
B 70%  to  74%
C+ 65%  to  69%
C 60%  to  64%
D+ 55%  to  59%
D 50%  to  54%
F 0%    to  49% (Not a Pass)
EXC Excellent
SAT Satisfactory
UNSAT Unsatisfactory

For further information, see a copy of the Academic Policy, available online ( or at Seneca's Registrar's Offices.

Modes of Evaluation

Assignments (presentations, quizzes, tests) 50%
Research Project 25%
Final Exam 25%

Approved by: Fiona Bain-greenwood