Spanish is spoken in 23 countries by over 300 million people. Italian is an official language of the EU spoken in one of its major economies. This degree will allow you to become fluent in both languages while gaining an appreciation of their vibrant cultural, political and historical contexts.
With an A-level in Spanish, you'll learn Italian from scratch and explore the politics, geography, literature, history, cinema and social issues of the Italian and Spanish-speaking worlds.
You'll take core modules in both languages, and you'll spend a year in Italy as well as a term in Spain to develop your skills. But because our School of Languages, Cultures and Societies is so large and diverse, we can offer an impressive variety of optional modules allowing you to pursue your interests.
You could try another completely new language or study translation, the Spanish Civil War, the Italian Renaissance, Latin American cinema or minority languages in Italy.
Leeds offers great facilities for language students. Our fully-equipped Language Centre hosts digital language labs, audio/video practice booths and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). Our Interpreter Training Suites also offer you the chance to explore a career in interpreting, and our Electronic Resource Information Centre houses specialised computing facilities to support translation studies.
For SPLAS students, the most exciting resources we have are the cultural branches of the governments of Spain and Portugal - the Cervantes and Camões Institutes have branches on campus, as does the cultural arm of the Catalan autonomous government, the Ramon Llull Institute.
The institutes seek to promote language teaching and greater understanding of Spanish-speaking, Lusophone and Catalan cultures around the world. Working with our degree programmes, they host many cultural events and academic activities for our students.
A Joint Honours degree allows you to study the same core topics as students on each Single Honours course, but you'll take fewer options and discovery modules so you can fit in both subjects.
You'll spend your first year improving your Spanish and getting to grips with Italian through intensive language classes, as well as being introduced to Italian and Spanish history and culture. You'll also study one of our Cornerstone modules to bring the two subjects together - or you'll have the choice to try one of the other languages we offer from scratch. You could try Catalan or Portuguese, or something less directly related such as Punjabi, Mandarin or Hebrew.
By the following year, you'll have a firm foundation on which you'll build through further language modules. But you'll also be able to choose from optional modules on topics such as Dante, Hispanic cinema and regional identities in each country. You'll also prepare for your time abroad, which begins with a term in Spain in your second year and the whole of your third year in Italy.
When you return to Leeds, your language skills will be much sharper and you'll have a deeper appreciation both cultures. You'll refine your language skills in advanced classes and you could try translation or interpreting, as well as choosing from an even wider selection of optional modules - from the African diaspora in Spanish and identity in Chicano culture to Italian crime fiction or minority languages. You'll also have the option to apply your skills to a dissertation on a topic of your choice.
These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
Entry requirements, fees and applying
A-level: AAB including A in Spanish.
A Joint Honours degree in Italian and Spanish can lead to a wide range of careers. Fluency in two major world languages opens doors to working abroad, as well language-based roles. You'll also have a broad base of transferable skills that employers value.
You'll be an excellent communicator with good presentation and teamwork skills, as well as being a confident researcher. Spending time abroad demonstrates that you're independent, adaptable and resilient, and managing two subjects will equip you with organisational skills.
Graduates have pursued careers in a number of areas such as the creative industries, journalism, business and finance, education, law, publishing and the charity sector. Others have pursued further training or postgraduate study in language-based fields such as translation or interpreting.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That's one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
Study abroad and work placements
You'll spend a term of Year 2 and the whole of the following year in Italy and Spain. It's the perfect opportunity to surround yourself with another culture while sharpening and refining your language skills every day. For many of our students, it's the highlight of their degree.
You'll spend a term in Spain, studying a dedicated language course at a Spanish university. Then you'll spend a year in Italy, where you can also study but may also decide to teach English or undertake a work placement. Whatever you decide, you'll gain a new perspective and valuable experience.
Read more about Italian Residence Abroad