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Spanish studies 2: language and culture of the Spanish-speaking world

This module takes you to an upper intermediate level of competence in Spanish, which is equivalent to level B2 of the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework of Reference. You’ll further develop your cultural knowledge, and practical language skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and interacting in a variety of situations – ranging from everyday conversation to putting forward your point of view in a debate. You’ll also consolidate and further develop academic, digital and employability skills in Spanish-speaking contexts. A residential school takes place in Spain, or an online alternative will be provided.

What you will study

This module further extends your language competence as well as enhancing your cultural knowledge and developing key skills necessary for studying at a higher level. The themes of the module cover different aspects of life in Spanish-speaking countries today.

You’ll work with online materials, and study a variety of texts, and audio and video materials that will develop your reading, speaking, listening and writing skills. The activities provided will also develop your academic, digital, professional and intercultural skills in Spanish-speaking contexts.

The module has six themes:

  • Work and education
  • Media and popular culture
  • Environment
  • History
  • Social issues
  • Individuals and institutions

Through each theme, you’ll gradually develop your knowledge and skills by:

  • consolidating and expanding your knowledge of Spanish vocabulary and grammar
  • learning about and reflecting on language, culture and intercultural communication skills
  • studying with audio recordings and videos that explore topical issues in Spanish-speaking cultures and societies
  • engaging in a wide variety of speaking and interactive activities
  • practising translation to support your language learning
  • consolidating and expanding your academic skills
  • using digital tools and resources to support your language learning
  • finding and using information from external sources
  • working independently and in collaboration with others
  • reviewing your personal goals and monitoring your progress using checklists and reflective questions.

The study materials provide confidence-building strategies to improve your learning skills. We’ve carefully structured these to equip you gradually with the key skills necessary for studying at a higher level.

Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements to study this module.

However, as this is an OU level 2 module, you’ll need appropriate knowledge of Spanish through any of the following:

  • Spanish studies 1 (intermediate) (L116)
  • En rumbo: intermediate Spanish (L140) – now discontinued
  • Spanish knowledge equivalent to the above

If you’re not sure you’re ready, talk to an adviser.

Preparatory work

Anything you can do to keep practising your Spanish will be helpful. For example:

  • listening to Spanish radio broadcasts and podcasts
  • accessing authentic resources online
  • checking out the language materials available in iTunes U
  • borrowing Spanish books and films from the local library
  • reading a Spanish newspaper
  • redoing some of the activities in L116 (or L140)
  • watching and listening to the L116 (or L140) audio and video materials.

You can also visit OpenLearn to explore the free materials available for Spanish.

What's included

You'll have access to a module website, which includes:

  • a week-by-week study planner
  • course-specific module materials
  • audio and video content
  • access to the Open University online library that contains resources for Spanish
  • assessment details and submission section
  • online tutorial access
  • access to forums where you can communicate with your fellow students.

You'll also be provided with a printed grammar book.

Computing requirements

You'll need a desktop or laptop computer with an up-to-date version of 64-bit Windows 10 (note that Windows 7 is no longer supported) or macOS and broadband internet access.

To join in spoken conversations in tutorials we recommend a wired headset (headphones/earphones with a built-in microphone).

Our module websites comply with web standards and any modern browser is suitable for most activities.

Our OU Study mobile App will operate on all current, supported, versions of Android and iOS. It's not available on Kindle.

It's also possible to access some module materials on a mobile phone, tablet device or Chromebook, however, as you may be asked to install additional software or use certain applications, you'll also require a desktop or laptop as described above.

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

You’ll have a tutor to help you with the study material and mark and comment on your written and spoken tutor-marked assignments (TMAs). You can also ask your tutor for advice and guidance. This module usually includes a mix of face-to-face and online tutorials. Depending on where you live and on current guidance regarding face-to-face events, the mix will vary. Until October 2021, at least, all tutorials will be held online. Although you’re not obliged to attend, we strongly encourage you to take part, as they will provide you with plenty of opportunities to speak and listen to Spanish.

Assessment

You can find the assessment details for this module in the facts box.

The TMAs test your writing and speaking skills. The EMA tests your writing skills.

Residential school

This module includes a compulsory residential school element. This will be offered online if you begin studying this module in October 2021, due to the impact of the ongoing pandemic. Details of residential school for the 22/23 academic year will be confirmed at a later date.

You’ll join either a one-week intensive online school or a more extended online school running over several weeks. These programmes offer opportunities to enhance and develop skills covered in the module, to practise your Spanish in a variety of situations and learn more about the country.

To pass the module, you must take part in the residential school programme or Online Alternative.

If you have a disability

The OU strives to make all aspects of study accessible to everyone and this Accessibility Statement outlines what studying L226 involves. You should use this information to inform your study preparations and any discussions with us about how we can meet your needs.

Future availability

Spanish studies 2: language and culture of the Spanish-speaking world starts once a year – in October.

This page describes the module that will start in October 2022. We expect it to start for the last time in October 2028.

Course work includes:

4 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
End-of-module assessment
Embedded residential school