The MALAS specialization in Latino/a Studies draws from many disciplines to provide students with a broad view of the history and the main social and intellectual issues that have shaped the different groups that make up the Latino community. Given the special role that Florida plays as point of contact with Latin America, the specialization looks at the Latino community as a whole, not as fragmented units, and in terms of its relation to Latin American culture and history.


MALAS students must complete 30 credit hours, including a thesis, internship, or capstone project related to the specialization, and demonstrate advanced proficiency in Spanish, Portuguese or Haitian Creole.

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

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

Courses in the Specialization

Required Courses

  • LAS 6938 Latino/a Culture
  • LAS 6938 Latin American and Caribbean Migration to the US

Optional Courses

  • LAS 6938 Latino Politics
  • LAS 6938 Latin American Politics (must complete a paper on Latinos)
  • SYD 6706 Racial and Ethnic Relations
  • SYA 6935 Race and Film
  • SYA 7933 Sociology of Latinos/as in the US
  • REL 5195 Topics in Religion and Society
  • MMC 6936 Intercultural Communications
  • MMC 6615 Race, Class, Gender, and Media
  • AML 6077 Latina/o Studies
  • SPN 6735 Spanish in the US


  • Efraín Barradas (Cultural Studies; Literature)
  • María Coady (Education; ESOL for Spanish speakers)
  • Amy Jo Coffey (Telecommunications)
  • Ester de Jong (Education; Bilingualism)
  • Carmen Diana Deere (LAS/FRE)
  • Joan Flocks (Law; Social Policy)
  • Olivia Garcia (Political Science)
  • Tace Hedrick (Chicano Studies)
  • Berta Hernández-Truyol (Law)
  • Pedro Malavet (Law)
  • Tony Mata (Theater)
  • Paul Ortiz (Oral History)
  • Milagros Peña (Race relations; Religion)
  • Edil Torres Rivera (Counselor Education)
  • Manuel Vásquez (Religion)
  • Philip Williams (Political Science)
  • Barbara Zsembik (Sociology; Demography)

Contact Information

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

Graduate Advisor
Susan Paulson

Specialization Coordinator
Nicholas Vargas