B.A. Latin American Studies

Bachelor of Arts

Latin American Studies

Get a broad interdisciplinary education while studying the history, culture, and society of Latin America.

About the Major

Majoring in Latin American Studies at the University of Arizona will give you the chance to work with internationally renowned Latin American scholars near a politically-charged border town. 

You'll explore the languages, cultures, history, and politics of Latin America, with an emphasis on community engagement, foreign language acquisition, and international relations. We offer a wide variety of courses and encourage close relationships between faculty, staff, undergraduate, and graduate students.

A focus on Latin American Studies also pairs well as a second major to almost any degree program, including business, public health, journalism, food studies, geography, and more.

BA Program Learning Outcomes

Upon Completion of a Latin American Studies major, students should be able to:

  1. Explain historical, political, socio-economic, and cultural patterns in Latin American societies. 

  2. Analyze how major themes (e.g. race, ethnicity, gender, development, democracy, coloniality, health, environment, the arts) are constructed historically and expressed in contemporary Latin America.

  3. Develop substantive academic or policy-related arguments using the methods and scholarly perspectives of two or more disciplines. 

  4. Critically interpret and use scholarship from Latin America, including diverse and non-traditional sources and formats (e.g. knowledge produced by Indigenous and Afro-descendent peoples or other civil society-based actors).

Areas of Study

Our faculty have expertise in border issues, Brazil, Mexico, and Central America, and you are able to take a wide range of courses across departments. Fieldwork, study abroad, internships, foreign language acquisition, and community engagement are strongly encouraged.

Many of our undergraduates also complete study abroad programs and international internships that allow them to dive more deeply into an area of Latin America. We provide a variety of scholarships and funding opportunities to help you broaden your horizons.

See Degree Requirements

Immersion Experience

You are strongly encouraged to undertake a learning experience that directly connects you with a Latin American country and its people. Ideally, you will study abroad in Mexico, Central or South America or the Hispanic Caribbean. Summer language and cultural programs also provide excellent opportunities to meet this expectation.

The LAS major advisor, in coordination with the Study Abroad Office, will assist you in selecting a foreign study experience. An international internship experience would provide a valuable immersion experience – even one conducted in the United States, such as along the border with Mexico.


Many students complete 3 to 6 credits of internships as part of the Latin American Studies major. The LAS major advisor will work with you in selecting and coordinating an internship. Currently, the UA’s Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology and the local NGO Borderlinks offer transnational internship opportunities along the U.S. – Mexico border. See internships.

Career Pathways

A B.A. in Latin American Studies will prepare you for a variety of careers in government, business, non-profit organizations, and teaching. Many of our graduates have gone on to become lawyers, physicians, politicians, journalists, academics, artists and humanitarian aid workers, or to attend graduate school in the social sciences, law, business or public health.

Potential jobs in this field of study include:

  • Lawyer
  • Translator
  • ESL teacher
  • Foreign service officer
  • Historic preservationist
  • Nonprofit program director
  • International business
  • International journalist
  • Humanitarian aid workers
  • Politician