The Master of Arts in Latin American Studies (MALAS) specialization in Development Studies is a multi- and inter-disciplinary plan of study focusing on theories of economic, political, and social development and development policy. A goal of the specialization is to understand the evolution of thinking about development from the nineteenth century to the current period. Another is to deepen understanding of contending positions in policy debates as well as of alternative development strategies, programs, and projects.


MALAS students must complete 30 credit hours, including a thesis, internship or capstone project on a topic related to the specialization, and demonstrate advanced proficiency in Spanish or Portuguese. The course requirements are distributed as follows:

  • 6 hours of gateway seminars:
    • LAS 6220 Issues and Perspectives in Latin American Studies
    • LAS 6292/3 Research Design and Methods in Latin American Studies
  • 12-15 hours of courses in the specialization (see below)
  • 3-6 hours of courses with Latin American content outside the specialization, selected in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator, Dr. Richmond Brown.

Thesis students must register for LAS 6971, Master’s Research, in the semester of graduation—at least 3 credit hours for fall and spring, or 2 credit hours for summer.

Courses in the Specialization

Required Courses (two required)

  • LAS 6938 Anthropology of Development in Latin America
  • LAS 6938 Gender in Latin American Development
  • AEB 6933 Latin American Economic Development
  • CPO 6307 Latin American Politics
  • GEO 6938 Seminar: Latin American Geography
  • LAS 6943 Development Theory and Practice
  • LAS 6938 Environmental and Social Movements in Latin America
  • URP 6424 Sustainable Urbanism in the Americas

Optional Courses (In these courses, the student must write a paper on a Latin American development issue)

  • AEE 5073 Agriculture, Resources, People and the Environment
  • ANG 5303 Women & Development
  • ANG 6453 Human Rights in Cross-Cultural Perspective
  • ANG 6930 Gender and Change in the African Diaspora
  • ANG 6930 Topographies of Law
  • ANG 6930 Roads and Road Publics
  • ANG 6930 Ethnography and Illicit Flows
  • ANG 6930 War and Forgetting
  • ANG 6930 Anthropology of the Media
  • ANG 6930 Anthropology of Borders
  • ANG 6930 Peoples of Brazil
  • ECO 5708 International Macroeconomics
  • ECO 7716 International Economic Relations
  • EDH 6931 International Higher Education
  • FYC 6330 Theories & Community Development
  • FYC 6932 International Perspectives on Aging and Caregiving
  • FIN 6638 International Finance
  • FIN 6930 International Financial Markets in Brazil/Chile/Argentina
  • SUR 6427 Land Tenure and Administration
  • FOR 6170 Tropical Forestry
  • FOR 6934 Forest Policy Field Course
  • AEB 5167 Economic Analysis of Small Farm Livelihoods
  • AEB 6645 Economic Development and Agriculture
  • AEB 6674 International Agricultural Policy and Trade
  • AEB 6933 International Humanitarian Assistance
  • AEB 5232 Farming Systems Research and Extension Methods
  • GEO 5809 Geography of World Agriculture
  • GEO 6905 Amazonia
  • GEO 6938 Land Use and Land Cover Change
  • GEO 6938 Management of Protected Areas in Africa and Latin America
  • HSC 6625 Trends in International Health
  • PHC 6937 International Health
  • LAH 5607 History of the Amazon
  • LAS 6290 Community Forestry Management
  • LAS 6291 Conflict and Collaboration Management
  • LAS 6291 Facilitation Skills for Adaptive Management
  • LAS 6295 Latin American Business Environment
  • LAS 6938 Development Administration
  • LAS 6938 LA and Caribbean Migration to U.S.
  • LAS6938 Law and Order in Latin America
  • LAS 6938 Trade and Human Rights in the Americas
  • LAS 6938 The Amazon: Public Policies for Conservation and Development
  • LAS 6938 Violence & Crime in L.A.
  • LAW 6930 International Human Rights
  • LAW 6930 Law of NAFTA
  • LAW 6930 Comparative Environmental Law in the Americas
  • LAW 6930 Law and Public Policy in the Americas
  • LAW 6930 International Trade and the Environment
  • MMC 5306 International Communications
  • MMC 6936 Intercultural Communications
  • CPO 6077 Comparative Social Movements
  • CPO 6932 Democratic Regime Transition
  • CPO 6091 Introduction to Comparative Policy Analysis
  • INR 6507 International Organizations
  • INR 6607 International Institutions
  • INR 5935 Advanced Topics in International Relations
  • INR 6933 Comparative Environmental Politics
  • PAD 6835 Development Administration
  • LEI 6834 Ecotourism
  • REL 5195 Religion and Social Change
  • SYA 7933 Environment and Society
  • URP 6541 Econ Dev Planning
  • URP 6905 Urban Planning in Brazil
  • WST 6348 EcoFeminism
  • WST 6935 Feminist Ethnography
  • WST 6935 Gender and Cultural Politics in Latin America
  • WST 6935 Human Rights: Women in the Americas


  • Leslie Anderson (Political Science; popular politics and citizen empowerment, development of democracy; Central America, Argentina)
  • Grenville Barnes (SFRC; land tenure, cadastral and land information systems; Central and South America, Caribbean)
  • Carleton Davis (Food and Resource Economics; agro-economic systems, trade and development; Caribbean)
  • Carmen Diana Deere (LAS and Food and Resource Economics; agricultural development, gender and development, political economy; Brazil, Andes, Central America, Caribbean)
  • Faye Harrison (Anthropology; African diaspora, social inequality, human rights, political economy; Caribbean)
  • Michael Heckenberger (Anthropology; tropical and historical archeology; Brazil, Caribbean)
  • Berta Hernandez-Truyol (Law; human rights, gender and race; general)
  • Ieva Jusionyte (LAS and Anthropology; crime, law & violence, journalism; Argentina, Paraguay, Brazil)
  • Joseli Macedo (Urban & Regional Planning; international planning; Brazil)
  • Juan Carlos Molleda (Public Relations; public relations practices and education; Andes
  • Charles Moss (Food and Resource Economics; agricultural finance, agricultural policy; Mexico)
  • Andy Naranjo (Finance; International Finance and Capital Markets; general)
  • Jeffrey Needell (History; Modern Latin America; Brazil)
  • Susan Paulson (LAS, Gender, Environment, Poltical Ecology)
  • Stephen Perz (Sociology; environmental sociology and demography, sociology of development; Brazil)
  • Anna Peterson (Religion; social ethics and environmental ethics, Christianity; Central America)
  • Ignacio Porzecanski (SNRE; biodiversity, sustainable development; general
  • Stephen Powell (Law; international trade law, dispute settlement, trade and environment; general)
  • Marianne Schmink (LAS and Anthropology; sustainable development, regional development, women and development; Brazil)
  • Cynthia Simmons (Geography, Brazil)
  • Jane Southworth (Geography; climate change, remote sensing; Central America)
  • Marilyn Swisher (Family, Youth & Community Services; sustainable agriculture; Central America)
  • Mark Thurner (History and Anthropology; Modern Latin America; Andes, Mexico)
  • Pilar Useche (LAS & Food and Resource Economics; land policy, natural resource economics; Andes, Central America)
  • Diego Valderrama (Food and Resource Economics; environmental and natural resource economics; Honduras, Nicaragua
  • Robert Walker (Geography, Brazil)
  • Philip Williams (Political Science; social movements, transnational migration, democratization, religion and politics; Andes, Central America)

Contact Information

319 Grinter Hall
P.O. Box 115530
Gainesville, FL 32611-5530
USA Tel: (352) 392-0375
Fax: (352) 392-7682

Graduate Advisor
Susan Paulson

Specialization Coordinator
Carmen Diana Deere