Mexican American Studies (Certificate)

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The program offers courses leading to the Graduate Certificate in Mexican American Studies. UTRGV's Mexican American Studies recognizes its role in this region in fostering unique opportunities for research focusing on the Mexican American experience. UTRGV graduate students will greatly benefit from doing work in Mexican American Studies with the receipt of a Graduate Certificate. Mexican American Studies graduate students will be able to compete with other students from universities across the state and the nation.
 
Completion of the certificate will position students as competitive job candidates in various fields including Humanities, Education, Law, Social Services, Communication, Health, among many others. These and other fields require a specialized knowledge in Mexican American Studies, as well as Master's Students wanting to pursue a PhD. Once the student fulfills the requirements, the certificate would be listed on their official transcript.
  • Admission Requirements

    Step #1: Submit a UTRGV Graduate Application at www.utrgv.edu/gradapply. The university application fee of $50 ($100 for International Applicants) can be paid online by credit card or electronic check (in the online application). All application fees are nonrefundable.

    Step #2: Request your official transcripts to be sent electronically to gradapps@utrgv.edu or mailed to:

    The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
    The Graduate College
    Marialice Shary Shivers Bldg. 1.158
    1201 W. University Drive
    Edinburg, TX 78539-2999

     
    *Please Note: If you are a graduate of UTPA, UTB/TSC, or UTRGV you do not need to request an official transcript to be sent to the Graduate College.

    Review and submit all Program Requirements:

    • Bachelor's  degree  from  a  regionally  accredited  institution  in  the United States or a recognized international equivalent in a similar or related field.
    • Undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0.
    • Official transcripts from each institution attended (must be submitted directly to UTRGV).
    • Submit the Graduate Certificate Application form provided by the program.

    Students whose native  language is not English  or  who studied at a University outside the U.S.:

    • TOEFL or IELTS Language Proficiency Test with minimum scores: 550 on paper-based, 213 on computer based, or 79 on Internet-based for the TOEFL; 6.5 for the IELTS. TOEFL and IELTS scores are valid for 2 years. For additional information, visit the English Proficiency Exam section of our website.
    • Certified English translation of educational records.

    UPDATE ON INTERNATIONAL ADMISSIONS FROM U.S. IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT:

    • SEVP regulations prohibit the issuance of a Form I-20 based on conditional admission, effective July 13, 2016. University officials can only issue a Form I-20 when students have met all standards for admission for the program of study listed on the Form I-20. These standards for admission include any English proficiency requirements.

  • Program Contact

     Program Coordinator: Dr. Christopher Carmona

    Phone: (956) 882-7302

    Office: Brownsville Campus, BSABH 2.418

    E-mail: christopher.carmona@utrgv.edu

  • Deadlines

    Deadlines:

    Applications will be accepted year round and prospective students are encouraged to apply at least 2 months before classes start to ensure a timely application review.  Applying early will also give prospective students the best opportunity to be considered for scholarships and other possible funding opportunities.

    *Note:

    • This program only admits applicants during Fall and Spring semesters.
    • Students admitted only to a Certificate Program are not eligible to obtain a Student Visa from UTRGV.
  • Course Requirements

     
    Required Courses (No more than 6 hours in any one discipline) 12
    Chosen from the following:
    ANTH 6306: Anthropology of Borders 3
    ANTH 6323: Mexican American Culture 3
    ANTH 6338: Music Ethnography and Fieldwork Methods 3
    ANTH 6350: Mexican American Folk Medicine 3
    ANTH 6375: Mexican American Folklore 3
    ARTS 6352: Art History Seminar III: Topics in Latin American Art Prior to A.D. 1521 3
    ARTS 6353: Art History Seminar IV: Topics in Latin American Art Since A.D. 1521 3
    COMM 6352: Media, Race, and Ethnicity 3
    EDBE 6322: Bilingualism/Multiculturalism: Critical Issues and Practices 3
    EDBE 6335: Bilingual Content Areas Across the Curriculum 3
    EDUL 6305: Socio‐Cultural Contexts of Education 3
    EDUL 6345: School‐Community Relations 3
    ENGL 6308: Studies in Mexican American Literature 3
    ENGL 6310: Studies in Ethnic Literature 3
    ENGL 6390: Special Topics in English - (Chicana/o Poetry and Poetics) 3
    ENGL 6390: Special Topics in English - (Chicana/o Literature and Writing for Social Action) 3
    HIST 5340: Readings in Latin American History 3
    HIST 5345 Readings in Borderlands History 3
    HIST 5350: Readings in Texas/Southwest History (when content is Mexican American) 3
    HIST 5355: Readings in Mexican American History 3
    HIST 6325: Research Seminar Borderlands History 3
    HIST 6330: Research Seminar in Latin American History 3
    HIST 6340: Research Seminar in Mexican American History 3
    MASC 6340: Directed Readings in Chicana/o Studies 3
    MASC 6350: Learning and Reflective Experience: The Mexican American Experience 3
    MASC 6390: Special Topics in Chicana/o Studies 3
    MUSI 6335: Music of Greater Mexico 3
    MUSI 6336: History of Border Music and Performance 3
    MUSI 6338: Music Ethnography and Fieldwork Methods 3
    MUSI 6374: Music of Latin America and the Caribbean 3
    RLIT 6305: Conducting Literacy Research 3
    SOCI 6362: Mexican American Society 3
    SOCI 6363: Border Studies 3
    SOCI 6365: Society and Culture of Latin America (when content is Mexican American) 3
    SOCW 6315: Social Work with Diverse Populations 3
    SOCW 6332: Social Work Practice with Latinos 3
    SOCW 6399: Special Topics in Social Work Practice (Latino Mental Health) 3
    SPAN 6312: Language in Policy and Training 3
    SPAN 6318: Special Topics in Spanish Linguistics: Mexican American Language Experience 3
    SPAN 6380: Latina/o Literature before 1960 3
    SPAN 6381: Latina/o Contemporary Writers 3
    SPAN 6382: US/Mexico Border Literary and Cultural Productions 3
    SPAN 6383: Studies in US Latina/o Literature and Language 3
    SPAN 6384: Introduction to US Latina/o Linguistics 3
     
    Capstone Requirement:
    Presentation of a research or creative paper related to the field of Mexican American Studies during the final semester of graduation/or end of coursework for fulfillment of the Certificate
     
    **Students may count coursework from their main program with permission of advisor.
     
    Total graduate hours required for completion: 12
     

    Course Descriptions:

    MASC 6300: Research Methods in Mexican American Studies               [3‐0]
    An introduction to the broad range of transdisciplinary approaches and methodologies used in Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies. Students are introduced to the historical and contemporary development of Chicana/o and Latina/o studies as a field.

    MASC 6340: Directed Readings in Chicana/o Studies              [3‐0]
    A directed study of selected readings in Chicana/o and/or Latina/o Studies. Topics are varied according to availability of faculty and student interest. Course can be repeated once as topic changes.

    MASC 6350: Learning and Reflective Service: The Mexican American Experience              [3‐0]
    This course will provide students with an experiential learning opportunity in a topic related to social justice in Mexican American communities. Students will gain hands on experience while reflecting on that experience critically through the lenses of Chicana/o and Latina/o studies. The purpose is different from an internship in that the process is geared towards developing a lifelong ethic of service and civic engagement and is not necessarily career or job oriented. (May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit hours total)
    Prerequisite: MASC 6300.

    MASC 6390: Special Topics in Chicana/o Studies              [3‐0]
    This course is a specifically designed for focused study of a single topic of importance in the field of Chicana/o and/or Latina/o Studies. May be repeated for credit as topic changes.

    ANTH 6306: Anthropology of Borders              [3‐0]
    Anthropology of Borders takes border zones and issues crucial to understanding them both as its field site and point of comparative analysis. From Spanish‐French Catalonia to the borderlands of Indonesia, this course investigates issues commonplace to zones of contact such as linguistic variation and innovation as well as the role of the state in construction and codifying notions of citizenship. By looking at borders from a comparative ethnographic perspective the course seeks to contextualize issues faced by borderlanders of South Texas within a global framework.

    ANTH 6323: Mexican American Culture              [3‐0]
    An introduction to the culture and traditions of Mexican Americans. The cultural history, organization of the family, traditions, lifestyle, kinship patterns, values, social organization of Mexican American culture will be examined using appropriate methodologies and theoretical perspectives set within a multicultural context.

    ANTH 6338: Music Ethnography and Fieldwork Methods              [3‐0]
    This course introduces students to a variety of musical case studies drawn from the fields of ethnomusicology, folklore, anthropology and sociology. They will analyze research methodologies, approaches to fieldwork, issues and ideas, and analytical methods locally and globally. They will conduct fieldwork and write an ethnography.

    ANTH 6350: Mexican American Folk Medicine              [3‐0]
    A study of popular medical traditions found among Mexicans and Mexican Americans. Influences from European and Native American sources will be identified and ongoing changes in the folk medical landscape will be examined.

    ANTH 6375: Mexican American Folklore              [3‐0]
    This course is an in‐depth study of Mexican‐American folklore. The course includes the study of Chicano legends, folk tales, riddles, folk music, ballads and festivals. Students have the opportunity to collect and archive folklore materials.

    ARTS 6352: Art History Seminar III: Topics in Latin American Art Prior to A.D. 1521              [3‐0]
    Seminar/lecture on selected topics in Latin American art prior to A.D. 1521 will be presented. Paper required. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

    ARTS 6353: Art History Seminar IV: Topics in Latin American Art Since A.D. 1521              [3‐0]
    Seminar/lecture on selected topics in Latin American art since A.D. 1521 will be presented. Paper required.
    Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

    COMM 6352: Media, Race, and Ethnicity              [3‐0]
    This course examines the historical and philosophical roots of the concepts of race and ethnicity, and their relation both to migration/immigration and personal/collective identity construction. It also examines the impact of mass media on racial and ethnic identity, using mass communication theory to understand the political and social dimensions of the concepts in question. Topics Particular attention is given to racial and ethnic identity in the U.S.‐Mexican border, and the media’s influence on conceptions and perceptions.

    EDBE 6322: Bilingualism/Multiculturalism: Critical Issues and Practices              [3‐0]
    Students review social, cultural, political and educational issues that affect bilingualism/multiculturalism in education, especially those that impact the education of Latino students. The course reviews the history, effective models, and best practices of bilingual and ESL education.

    EDBE 6335: Bilingual Content Areas Across the Curriculum              [3‐0]
    This course emphasizes a variety of advanced instructional strategies appropriate for teaching elementary mathematics, science and social studies through the Spanish and English language to the bilingual child. Specifically, competency will be assessed in the areas of planning, teaching/learning, communication, management, concept development and assessment. Appropriate classroom application of content‐area terminology in Spanish/English will be emphasized.

    EDUL 6305: Socio‐Cultural Contexts of Education              [3‐0]
    This course develops an understanding of how socio‐cultural forces and emerging issues impact the school leader’s role in creating culturally responsive learning environments. Attention will be given to leadership strategies and best practices essential for addressing diverse learners. Future leaders learn to promote the success of all students and shape campus culture by facilitating the development, articulation, implementation, and stewardship of a vision of learning that is shared and supported by the full community. Applicable laws, policies, and regulations will be emphasized.

    EDUL 6345: School Community Relations              [3‐0]
    This course examines the relationships between the school and its internal and external constituencies. The course focuses on collaborative strategies to involve families and community members to shape the campus culture in responding to diverse community interests and needs, and to mobilize community resources for success of all student learners. Applicable laws, policies, and regulations will be emphasized. A minimum of 10 hours of field‐based experiences are required.

    ENGL 6308: Studies in Mexican American Literature              [3‐0]
    Advanced study of the literature by and about Mexican Americans, with emphasis on the literary techniques and the cultural reflections in this literature. May be repeated for credit when the topic varies.

    ENGL 6310: Studies in Ethnic Literature              [3‐0]
    Focuses on the literature of specific ethnic groups with special attention to critical race theory, cultural theory, and the cultural productions of traditionally underrepresented minority groups. May be repeated for credit when the topic varies.

    ENGL 6390: Special Topics in English              [3‐0]
    In depth trans‐disciplinary studies of intersections among English sub‐disciplines.
    Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.

    HIST 5340: Readings in Latin American History              [3‐0]
    A directed study of selected topics in Latin American history. Topics are varied according to availability of faculty and student interest. Course can be repeated as topic changes.

    HIST 5345: Readings in Borderlands History              [3‐0]
    A directed study of selected topics in Borderlands history. Topics are varied according to availability of faculty and student interest. Course can be repeated as topic changes.

    HIST 5350: Readings in Texas/Southwest History (when content is Mexican American)              [3‐0]
    An intensive investigation of selected problems in southwestern history with emphasis on Texas. May be repeated for credit when topic varies.

    HIST 5355: Readings in Mexican American History              [3‐0]
    A course examining selected elements of Mexican American History with topics and time periods varying according to faculty interests. Course can be repeated as topic changes.

    HIST 6325: Research Seminar Borderlands History              [3‐0]
    This course introduces students to major themes and topics of the history and historiography of the Mexican‐American borderlands. Emphasis will be put on the economy, immigration, culture and society.
    HIST 6330: Research Seminar in Latin American History              [3‐0]
    A survey and critique of the bibliography and problems of various eras in Latin American history. May be repeated once for credit when topic varies.

    HIST 6340: Research Seminar in Mexican American History              [3‐0]
    A course directing students in primary source research on selected topics in the field of Mexican American history. Course can be repeated as topic changes.

    MUSI 6335: Music of Greater Mexico              [3‐0]
    This course is an exhaustive survey of Music of Mexico focusing on regional folk and popular genres as well as art music traditions informed by indigenous and folk genres. The course will explore how economics, politics, migration and globalization have all affected the evolution of music in Mexico. Likewise we will discover the work of important composers, songwriters and performers who have helped shape Mexican music and popular culture. To that end, music in Mexican films will also be examined.
    Prerequisite: Graduate standing or permission of instructor.

    MUSI 6336: History of Border Music and Performance              [3‐0]
    This course is designed to promote a greater awareness of music’s role in the US/Mexico border region, with special attention to the historical development of folk and popular genres in South Texas. However, just as much as this course is about history of music on the U.S.‐Mexico border, it is also about exploring “the border” itself and how it is defined based on geographic, political, cultural, historical, ideological references. We explore this rather “fluid” notion of the border, which contributes to the conflict and
    contradictory circumstances of living on, near, and “in‐between” the border space.
    Prerequisite: Graduate standing or permission of instructor.

    MUSI 6338: Music Ethnography and Fieldwork Methods              [3‐0]
    This course is an introduction to ethnographic fieldwork in ethnomusicology. The first part of the course introduces students to influential musical case studies written by ethnomusicologists, anthropologists and folklorists. In the second part, students will learn and critique research methodologies, approaches to interviewing and fieldwork, issues, and ideas, archiving strategies, and analytical methods from different world regions.
    Prerequisite: Graduate standing or permission of instructor.

    MUSI 6374: Music of Latin America and the Caribbean              [3‐0]
    This course provides the student with an overview of music from diverse cultures in Latin American and the Caribbean. It will serve as an introduction to the many styles and traditions that grew out of pre and postcolonial Latin America and European‐African‐Caribbean developments. In particular, we will explore distinct European, African, and Indigenous aesthetic and instrumental influences as well as the social, cultural and religious contexts for musical expression and practices.
    Prerequisite: Graduate standing or permission of instructor.

    RLIT 6305: Conducting Literacy Research              [3‐0]
    Students design and implement a research study as they examine major traditions of literacy research, with a focus on contemporary research of interest to teachers and researchers in the Rio Grande Valley. Strategies in interpreting and analyzing the professional literature will also be emphasized.
    Prerequisite: EDFR 6300.

    SOCI 6362: Mexican American Society              [3‐0]
    The course examines the history, culture, and structural relations of Mexican Americans in U.S. Society.

    SOCI 6363: Border Studies              [3‐0]
    The course examines the U.S. – Mexico borderlands, with attention to such topics as demographics, culture, history and social structure.

    SOCI 6365: Society and Culture of Latin America (when content MAS)              [3‐0]
    The course surveys regional social groups, classes and cultures in Latin America with emphasis on current economic and political developments.

    SOCW 6315: Social Work with Diverse Populations              [3‐0]
    This course prepares students for effective professional intervention in a diverse world, and provides an understanding of how discrimination and oppression operate to limit the life opportunities of members of minority, vulnerable, at risk, and disenfranchised groups. A conceptual framework for understanding diversity, discrimination and oppression is presented and used to understand discrimination based on factors such as race, ethnicity, social class, gender, and sexual orientation. Selected theoretical perspectives are used to critically analyze the manifestations of discrimination and oppression and their impact on affected populations. Social world’s responses to discrimination and inequality, including strategies for intervention, are also examined.

    SOCW 6332: Social Work Practice with Latinos              [3‐0]
    Social work practice implications of the characteristics of the Latino population of the Southwest. The course will analyze distinctive practice in engagement, communication, and service with Latino clients, differential modalities and helping processes for clinical and macro practice with this population.
    SOCW 6399: Special Topics in Social Work Practice (Latino Mental Health)              [3‐0]
    Examination of special topics in social work practice. Prerequisite: Approval of faculty advisor and department chair.

    SPAN 6312: Language in Policy and Planning              [3‐0]
    Review of major policies relating to language in health care, comparative analysis of major efforts undertaken to implement language‐in‐healthcare policy in health services organizations and comparisons of methods of language assistance delivery and their relation to quality health services.

    SPAN 6318: Special Topics in Spanish Linguistics              [3‐0]
    Special topics oriented to the field of Spanish linguistics (Applied Linguistics, Sociolinguistics, and Psycholinguistics). Can be repeated up to three times as topics vary.

    SPAN 6380: Latina/o Literature before 1960              [3‐0]
    A critical focus on immigration, exile and native texts with focus on Hispanic, Mexican American, Puerto Rican, and Cuban Americans before 1960.

    SPAN 6381: Latina/o Contemporary Writers              [3‐0]
    An approach to contemporary literary production by U.S. Latina/o authors in the United States from 1960 to the present. Students analyze issues of race and ethnicity, language, identity, gender, sexuality, politics, and immigration.

    SPAN 6382: US/Mexico Border Literary & Cultural Productions              [3‐0]
    The course will explore border authors, filmmakers, and texts (in English and Spanish) from both countries focusing on issues of transnationalism, sexuality, ideology, politics, race, migration and immigration.

    SPAN 6383: Studies in US Latina/o Literature and Language              [3‐0]
    Special topics in Latina/o literature, including but not limited to a focus on specific literary writers, periods, movements, or genres.

    SPAN 6384: Introduction to US Latina/o Linguistics              [3‐0]
    Introduction to the main concepts and analytical techniques of linguistics, applied specifically to the Spanish language usage in the United States. An overview of fundamental issues related to the nature of human verbal communications, language ability, phonetics/phonology, morphology and syntax, semantics and pragmatics, and linguistic variation present in Latino populations in the United States.

    SPAN 6385: Bilingualism and Language Contact in the U.S.              [3‐0]
    Introduction to the linguistic and sociolinguistic aspects of language contact in the United States, including theoretical approaches to bilingualism and Spanish/English acquisition.