Spanish Culture and Society Today: Pluralities and Diversities (Service Learning Course) (in English)

ISA Study Center with Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo-Sevilla

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Spanish Culture and Society Today: Pluralities and Diversities (Service Learning Course) (in English)

  • Host University

    ISA Study Center with Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo-Sevilla

  • Location

    Seville, Spain

  • Area of Study

    Service-Learning, Spanish Culture

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Contact Hours

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Course Description and Objectives: This course employs a cultural anthropological approach to the study of modern day Spain with a particular focus on Andalusia, the diversity of its peoples, and the challenges that they face. It shall analyze the evolution of Spanish culture and values in the 21st century through the examination of some of the complexities/concerns that qualify current Andalusia reality (and that of Spain overall) including social integration, education, gender relations, immigration, unemployment and housing. As cultural anthropology is a field-based science that emphasizes direct participation in a culture, students will participate in service-learning projects that relate to items mentioned above. This component of the course strives to facilitate students´ access to a more profound understanding of the current day Andalusia, while increasing their ability to critically examine challenges in the world around them, and make a real difference through personal agency.

    1. Introduction to Andalusia:
    --The Land, its People
    --Politics and Economy
    --Values and Customs

    2. The Gypsy Culture, More than Flamenco
    --From Triana to Tres Mil Viviendas, An Overlooked Presence
    --Family and Tradition
    --The Evangelical Church
    --Societal Struggles, Social Discrimination

    3. The Sagrada(s) Familia(s) of the 21st Century
    -- New Roles, Same Problems?: Violencia de género and Zapatero´s Response
    -- Same Sex Marriage, Same Sex Adoption
    -- Divorce and the Single Parent
    -- La Junta de Andalucía and Family Services
    4. The (Un)Educated and Unemployed, Spanish Youth Culture
    --The Spanish Educational System, Up to Par with EU Standards?
    --Out of school, Out of Work: Societal implications
    --Creating Opportunities

    5. From Emigration to Immigration: the "New Andalusians"
    -- Street Vendors, the Sub-Saharan Presence
    -- Caregivers to the Elderly, Latin American Arrivals
    -- The Return of Islam, Maghreb Immigrants

    6. Cultural Divides, Cultural Challenges: Finding Common Ground
    --The Success or Lack of Social Integration
    -- Adapting to Multiculturalism in the Classroom
    -- Adult Educational Programs
    -- Support Through Private Organizations

    7. The Spanish Response: Xenophobia, the Celebration of Diversity, or a Little Bit of Both?
    --Violent Crimes Against New Comers
    --The Hijab in the Classroom Controversy
    --Multicultural Celebrations
    --TVE: Con todos los acentos, Extranjeros en España

    8. A Unifying Struggle: La crisis económica
    -- Making Ends Meet
    -- The Housing Dilemma: No Place to Call Home, Empty Apartments
    --Creating Jobs in Andalusia
    --Rethinking Wants Versus Needs
    --Spanish Health Care

    9. The Future of Andalusia, Projections into the Future
    --The Question of Identity
    --Globalization and the Andalusian Lifestyle

    Bibliography: In addition to current magazine and newspaper articles, students will be provided with selections from cultural and socio-historical texts including but not limited to:

    Hirsch, Edward. The Demon and the Angel: Searching for the Source of Artistic Inspiration. Orlando, Florida: Harcourt Books, 2002.

    Hooper, John. The New Spaniards. London: Penguin Books, 2006.

    Jordan, Barry and Morgan-Tamosunas, Rikki, eds. Contemporary Spanish Cultural Studies. Great Britain: Arnold, 2000.

    Graham, Helen and Labanyi, Jo, ed. Spanish Cultural Studies: An Introduction, The Struggle for Modernity. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

    Nash, Elizabeth. Seville, Córdoba and Granada: a Cultural and Literary History. Oxford:
    Single Books Limited, 2005.

    Tremlett, Giles. Ghosts of Spain: Travels through Spain and its Silent Past. New York:
    Walker & Company, 2006.

    Course Evaluation:
    Class Presentations: 10%
    Homework Assignments, Service Journal and Participation (attendance is obligatory): 10%
    Midterm Exam: 20%
    Final Exam: 20%
    Service Learning Project and Paper: 40%

    Spanish Grading Scale:
    Matrícula de Honor 10
    Sobresaliente 9 ? 9,9
    Notable 7 ? 8,9
    Aprobado 5 ? 6,9
    Suspenso 0 ? 4,9
    No Asistencia (Student has exceeded the allowed number of unexcused absences)

    Class Presentations: Each student will present two 10-15 minute presentations on a particular topic related to the course content or an assigned reading. Presentations may include visuals, audio supplements, etc. Presentations are scheduled to complement the particular themes being discussed the given day; therefore, it is the student's responsibility to make sure that s/he is in class the days of his/her presentations.

    Homework Assignments, Service Learning Journal and Participation: Students are responsible for completing assignments in a timely manner. Late assignments are only accepted/allowed with a justified absence and must be submitted upon the return of the student to class (first day) if they are to be considered for credit. A component of students´ homework assignment will be a service journal (students will be provided questions to guide their entry writings) that will facilitate the writing of the final paper.

    Midterm and Final Exams: The midterm and final exams will include essay questions (given to students prior to the exams) and one or more of the following: identification, short answer and multiple-choice questions. The tests shall be completed in class within the two-hour time period. Exam dates are given to students at the beginning of the course and are to be respected; make-up exams will not be given to accommodate family visits, travel plans, etc.

    UIMP Attendance Policy: Attendance is obligatory. It is checked every class day and is reflected in the course attendance sheet that is sent directly to the Universidad Internacional Menéndez Pelayo. Missing more than 10% of the course (more than four hours) will negatively impact the final grade. However, not missing any class will be considered positively. If a student has four hours (240 minutes) of unexcused absences, (s)he will not be penalized by the University -- although professors will take these absences into account in regards to the class participation portion of the final grade. If a student exceeds this limit (four hours of unexcused absences), the final grade on the transcript for this class may appear as " did not attend course." Tardiness: It is expected that students arrive to class on time and that they return directly to class after any given class break. Arriving 10 minutes late (or more) and/or early class departures are considered unexcused absences and will be taken into account as half an absence (one hour). Courses cannot be audited; attendance is only possible for students enrolled in the specific class.

    Justified absences: Medical absences are excused with the prompt receipt of proper documentation. Medical certificates will only be considered if issued by a physician (notes from the family explaining the absence will not be accepted). The certificate must include the exact days for which the student should be excused for having missed class.

    Class Protocol: Students are required to be involved in class activities. They are expected to show their preparation by participating in discussions, by asking relevant questions, being critical and analytical with the content presented in class as well as by sharing their ideas and opinions. In class the student is required to maintain a polite demeanor always and under every circumstance. All electronic devices should be put away and turned off/placed on silent. Use of blackberries, cell phones, text messaging, laptops (unless in relation to class presentation) is not allowed. Eating in class is not permitted. Please respect class expectations.

    Service Journal: Students will maintain an electronic service journal documenting his/her experiences with the organization with which s/he is working. This journal will serve as a tool for reflection and class discussion, as well as provide students with solid information for the final paper. It will be submitted regularly for evaluation. A final hard copy will be turned in the day of the roundtable.

    Service Learning Volunteer Sheet: Each student is required to complete a minimum of 15 hours of service learning (this does not include travel time to the given site). Each student will be provided with a Service Learning Volunteer Sheet and is asked to have his/her supervisor sign it upon completion of each service round.

    Service Learning Project and Final Paper: Students will be placed with an organization according to his/her academic schedule and Spanish language capabilities. Each student is expected to be open minded, act professionally and carry through with the commitment (changing placement will not be allowed). Students will give regular verbal updates in class regarding the service learning experience, maintain a journal, and write a final reflection paper about their experience, connecting the service experience to course material.

    Possible placements are:

    The National Organization of the Spanish Blind (ONCE)Fundación Tres Culturas (Three Cultures Foundation)

    Hermanas de la Caridad Soup Kitchen

    Regional Blood Transfusion Center/Blood Donation

    Asociación de Estudios Sociales por la Igualdad de la Mujer (A.E.S.I.M.)

    **Please note that placements are subject to change and are determined on-site in Sevilla. Placements are determined based on language level and scheduling. Please contact the ISA Sevilla Site Specialist for more information regarding these organizations.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations