Marinelli, Patti and Lizette Mujica Laughlin. Puentes. Spanish for Intensive and High-Beginner Courses, Heinle Cengage Learning, 2011 (Fifth edition) plus iLrn (ISBN: 0538459727)
Bilingual Visual Spanish-English Dictionary. New York: DK Publishing, 2005.
A Spanish-English Dictionary of your choice (Larousse Concise or Oxford recommended).
A. Tulane University Department of Spanish and Portuguese Basic Language Program Objectives:
The main objectives guiding the program are to:
B. Course Goals:
Following the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages’ (ACTFL) Proficiency Guidelines 2012, Spanish 1120 seeks to increase students’ Spanish-speaking ability to a novice high to intermediate low proficiency level via the Course Objectives listed below.
People with Intermediate Low proficiency “are able to handle successfully a limited number of uncomplicated communicative tasks by creating with the language in straightforward social situations. … They are also able to ask a few appropriate questions” (ACTFL).
For additional details of what this entails refer to the Proficiency Objectives section of the BLP website.
In addition to the Proficiency Objectives detailed on the Basic Language Program’s website for this level, the course maintains the following objectives, based upon ACTFL’s National Standards for Foreign Language Learning.
A. Communication: the use of Spanish.
Students will review and/or learn how to:
B. Cultures: gain knowledge and understanding of Hispanic cultures.
Through the accompanying readings and videos, students will learn about a range of peoples and cultures from Latin America and Spain.
C. Communities: participate in a community of language learners and in a multilingual world.
Through group and class work, a sense of community will be developed as students practice their communicative skills, preparing themselves to use Spanish throughout their lives. As a group, students will explore their own notion of community as this compares to this concept in the Hispanic world.
D. Comparisons: make informed comparisons between English and Spanish and between themselves and others.
The written activities will be the most obvious venue for the presentation of comparisons between a student’s known reality and the Hispanic world. Students will also compare ideas with each other in pair and group work based upon the conversational goals of each chapter. In linguistic terms, students will reflect on how the structures of Spanish compare to the structures of English and other languages they know.
E. Connections: the ability to connect this course to other courses and self to others.
The different themes explored in each chapter will inform students in such a way that they can make connections between their own cultural traditions and those of some members of the Hispanic world, with particular emphasis on the ideas presented in the interviews that the students watch.
Students will demonstrate that they have met the...
A. Communication Objectives via their ability to produce the vocabulary and structural forms necessary for the stated conversation topics in written (exams, essays, quizzes, on-line assignments) and oral (oral exams, skits presentation, debate, participation) work.
B. Cultures Objectives via their ability to discuss these points during in-class discussions as well as reflectively in the written exercises and exams.
C. Community Objectives via their class participation and oral work.
D. Comparisons Objectives via their class participation, oral, and written work.
E. Connections Objectives via their class participation and through their written exercises and written work.
A. Grades are based on the standard 10-point scale:
B. Grade Breakdown. Your grade will be determined according to the following criteria:
C. Expectations for each category are as follows. Students will demonstrate that they have met the Objectives stated above by successful completion of these assignments. See calendar for due dates.
Exams (20%): There will be 2 communicative, essay-based exams, each worth 10% of the final grade. Language learning is inherently cumulative: each exam will focus upon the material of study for that unit, with the assumption that all previously studied material will be utilized as needed. Each exam will focus on interpretive, interpersonal and presentational modes of communication as well as intercultural competencies. Students can expect exams to include short readings, essays and reflective questions.
Final Exam (15%): The final exam will be similar in format to the written exams, with short readings, essays and reflective questions, but it will also include a listening comprehension portion. The vocabulary and cultural information will primarily be drawn from the last chapters studied; however, the entire range of grammatical material studied throughout the semester is expected to be utilized.
Listening Comprehension Quizzes (5%): Students will complete two short listening comprehension quizzes which may include listening to short anecdotes read by the instructor, after which the student would respond to discrete questions about it; or listening to a series of questions posited by the instructor, with the student expected to write their responses to the questions.
Oral Exams (10%): At two points in the semester, students will engage in a conversation about their personal interests that includes the instructor and a classmate (5% each). Students will be graded individually, based upon their accuracy and the content and fluidity of their side of the conversation.
Skit (5%): At two points in the semester, small groups of students will perform short skits to demonstrate their ability to use the material they have been studying to complete a given task (i.e. ordering food in a restaurant; negotiate a price at a market). All students will complete one (1) skit for a grade.
Presentation (5%): At two points in the semester, students will give short presentations to demonstrate their ability to use the material they have been studying to present a specific issue (i.e. present the schedule of a professional, narrate the life of a friend or family member). They also have to hand in written documentation of the presentation. All students will complete one (1) presentation for a grade.
Debate (5%): At the end of the semester students will have a full class debate about a particular topic. Small groups will present their take on the designated issue to the class, and all students will then have to discuss arguments in favor of and against the issue. As a class, you will have to come to an agreement on the topic. The debate will last at least 30 minutes (including the initial presentations). Students will be evaluated based upon their individual contributions to their group’s presentation AND their participation in and contributions to the full class discussion.
Essays (20%): Students will complete a series of four writing assignments based upon activities in the textbook. Each entry will be graded individually for accuracy as well as content and creativity. USING TRANSLATION PROGRAMS OR HAVING ANOTHER PERSON DO THIS WRITING ASSIGNMENT CONSTITUTE CHEATING AND ARE CLEAR VIOLATIONS OF THE HONOR CODE.
Participation and Quizzes (10%): Active participation and regular attendance is crucial to the learning of a language. The participation grade is based both on the quantity and the quality of a student’s participation, with quality being determined by active, on-task participation in class, group and pair activities, volunteerism in class, use of Spanish in class, and overall preparedness. Excessive absenteeism will result in a substantial drop in this grade, as will tardiness. Cell phone use during class time will negatively affect your participation grade. Short announced and unannounced quizzes will be administered regularly over the course of the semester. Quizzes may cover any of the course materials including grammar, culture and vocabulary. No make-ups will be given.
On-line Assignments (5%): Regular usage of the electronic manual (vhlcentral.com) is required and will be monitored. All students should complete at least 75% of the assigned on-line exercises. Students should note that a direct correlation has been observed between final grade in the course and regular completion of the manual exercises, with students who work regularly on the manual generally attaining higher grades in the course.
Tulane University, Spanish & Portuguese Dept., 304 Newcomb Hall, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5518 firstname.lastname@example.org