Module code: SPA3025

Module Overview

This module is taught in the target language in semester 1 of FHEQ Level 6.

This module examines how the Arts have shaped the history, politics and identities of the Hispanic world. Some of the most transcendental artistic movements have occurred during the most turbulent periods of Spanish and Spanish American history. Students explore the role the Arts have played in both articulating and participating in these socio-historical turning points from conquest and colonisation, dictatorship and resistance, to identity politics and intercultural communication across the Hispanic world.

The module is designed to offer breadth and depth. Students will gain an understanding of the development and significance of Hispanic Arts from pre-colonial times to the present day, while the assessment structure gives students the opportunity to autonomously develop their knowledge of one or more periods or topics of interest in much greater depth.

Module provider

School of Literature and Languages

Module Leader

FAY Stephen (Lit & Langs)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 51

Seminar Hours: 22

Guided Learning: 66

Captured Content: 11

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Definition of the Arts

  • Focus on specific areas: painting, literature, music, dance, film, sculpture, architecture, digital arts

  • Historical overview of the Arts in the Hispanic world

  • Decolonising the Arts: cultural conquest and cultural exchange across the Hispanic world

  • Art as activism

  • Artistic expression and identities (including marginalised identities)

  • Digital Arts in the 21st century

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Oral exam or presentation In-Class Presentation 40
Coursework Written Assignment (2500 words) 60

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate:

  • knowledge and understanding of the use of the target language

  • ability to analyse and interpret texts

  • ability to select and synthesise information from written and oral texts

  • ability to take notes effectively and use IT skills to find and present relevant information

  • subject-specific knowledge of Spanish language in an artistic and cultural context

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • written assignment of 2500 words (to be submitted after week 10). Takes the form of an analytical essay enabling students to develop subject specific knowledge, improve their written Spanish, and develop research skills.

  • In-class presentation. Students present a cultural artefact in Spanish. Assesses ability to speak in accurate and appropriate Spanish, demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the topic.

Formative assessment and feedback

  • Formative assessment will focus on student participation and class discussions throughout the module. Students will be provided with detailed written feedback following coursework assignments. Verbal feedback will also occur in class and individual appointments if required.

Module aims

  • This module aims to develop a knowledge and understanding of the development of the Arts and their impact on Hispanic histories, politics and societies. It will enable students to develop and apply the conceptual and linguistic tools needed to critically analyse and discuss cultural and artistic issues in the Spanish-speaking world. The module enhances students' understanding of Hispanic cultures, building on knowledge and skills developed at FHEQ Levels 4, 5, and PTY. The module builds upon the linguistic and cultural immersion of students who completed part or all of their placement year in Spain or Latin America, and complements the dissertation modules where students may work on culture and arts-related topics.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 On successful completion of this module, students will: have developed knowledge and understanding of the role and impact of the Arts in the Spanish-speaking world KC
002 Be able to critically evaluate texts (including multimedia) relating to the Arts KCPT
003 Be able to extract linguistic and cultural aspects from the texts under examination KCT
004 Have acquired an appreciation of the importance of the Arts in Hispanic societies KC
005 Be able to undertake independent research into related areas and present their ideas in written form, using a range of sources KCPT
006 Be able to undertake independent research and present their ideas in an oral presentation KCPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy will enable students to:

  • develop their language skills as a medium for understanding, expression and communication, through listening, speaking, reading and writing in the target language

  •  acquire explicit knowledge of the linguistic structures, grammar and stylistic registers through attending classes and reading in the target language

  • confidently work and learn independently through reading outside contact hours and preparing for and participating in seminars

  • develop research skills, through reading and presenting findings, through informal class presentations and in the written assignment

  • engage in analytical and evaluative thinking, to analyse and interpret texts and other cultural products, through attending classes and engaging in individual study

  • refine communication skills through interactions in class; Acquire a broad knowledge of the Arts across the Hispanic world

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • two contact hours per week over Semester 1

  • classes will include lectures and seminars; students are expected to read extensively outside classes in order to follow lectures and participate in seminars

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: SPA3025

Other information

Surrey's Curriculum Framework is committed to developing graduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module is designed to allow students to develop knowledge, skills and capabilities in the following areas:

Global and Cultural Capabilities
Art is an insightful lens through which to explore and analyse the diverse histories, societies and contemporary realities of the 22 countries that make up the Hispanic world. Through careful consideration of themes such as 'high' and 'low' arts, art and political activism and art as a medium of cross-cultural conquest and/or intercultural communication, and through close reading of pertinent case studies (either suggested by tutors or selected by students themselves), students will acquire and hone sophisticated abilities to access, interpret and engage with global Hispanic cultures, and reflect on the links between these and their own cultures. Both the core and independent learning on this module will call on students to challenge canonical interpretations of Hispanic arts and culture, seek out and engage with alternative (and often marginalised) perspectives and recalibrate their own viewpoints as a result.

Digital Capabilities
Students on this module learn to use and critically assess a wide range of online resources, drawn from academic databases, from arts and heritage digital archives and exhibitions, and from the mass media, social networks, podcasts and platforms such as YouTube. These resources will be discussed critically each week, both through online (SurreyLearn) discussion forums and in face-to-face exchanges in the classroom. In terms of module content, students gain insights into how new technologies have shaped both working and consumption practices in the Arts in the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

Resourcefulness & Resilience
A great deal of independent work in a wide range of demanding new tasks is essential to ensure progress and the successful completion of the module. The regular problem-solving activities, and the tutor-led and peer-peer formative feedback that students will receive on these, will enable the development of agile thinking and acting through low-stakes opportunities to test, experiment, and potentially fail, before applying these experiences in the module's summative assessments and in 'real-world' scenarios beyond the University.

Weekly activities in this module will require students to work together and learn to plan and delegate tasks, thus developing communication and project management skills useful in professional life. The in-class presentation will enable students to consolidate the communication skills developed through the professional training year and develop high-level capabilities in giving and receiving peer-to-peer feedback. The written assignment will offer opportunities to work under time pressure to deliver complex tasks, to develop sophisticated research capabilities, and to acquire and use specialist terminology in the context of critical analyses.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
English Literature and Spanish BA (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Modern Languages (French and Spanish) BA (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Business Management and Spanish BSc (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2024/5 academic year.