Why Study Spanish at SMC?
Citizenship. It’s when an individual belongs to a certain territory and enjoys the rights and privileges that go along with said belonging. Many times we think that citizenship pertains to only one specific country (maybe two in some instances). However, when one starts to learn a language other than their own, that individual begins to become a citizen of a much larger territory. They begin to become a global citizen.
Learning Spanish not only opens doors for you in terms of your job, or communicate better in the local Hispanic restaurant, but it begins a process. This process is one in which you begin to grow outside of your box. You begin to realize that learning a language is not just learning a language. It is beginning to recognize your own humanity in others around the globe. It connects us to the rest of humanity. So whether you major in Spanish or not at your next college, starting to study Spanish here at SMC will start you on a path of self-awareness and give you some very marketable career skills at the same time.
Michael Burriss, Professor
Office: Ellis Building, Office 112
Dr. Burriss received his Ph.D. in Spanish Literature from the University of Georgia in 2013. He completed a Master’s Degree in Spanish from Auburn University in 2008 and a Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish from Erskine College in 2006.
Dr. Burriss has 10 years of teaching experience in both secondary and post secondary institutions. He teaches all levels of Spanish at SMC. His teaching/research interests include technology in and as it relates to second language acquisition, the 21st century Spanish novel and El Camino de Santiago de Compostela (“The Way of St. James”), a historic 500-mile pilgrimage to the tomb of the apostle St. James in northwest Spain.
Spanish Course Descriptions
AA in Arts Degree Requirements
SPAN-101: ELEMENTARY SPANISH I. (3 hours) An introductory course in modern standard Spanish, designed to help students acquire basic conversational skills, understand grammatical patterns, and improve pronunciation. The course is intended for students who have had little or no experience in foreign-language study. Placement is dependent upon meeting established criteria.
SPAN-102: ELEMENTARY SPANISH II. (3 hours) A continuation of SPAN-101, with continued emphasis on conversation, grammar, and pronunciation. Placement is dependent upon meeting established criteria or satisfactory completion of SPAN 101.
SPAN-201: INTERMEDIATE SPANISH I. (3 hours) An intermediate course in modern standard Spanish, designed to help students acquire additional expertise in conversation, grammar, and pronunciation. Students are also introduced, through lecture, class participation, and readings, to Spanish geography, history, and culture. The course is intended for students with two or more years in the study of Spanish. Placement is dependent upon meeting established criteria or satisfactory completion of SPAN 102.
SPAN-202: INTERMEDIATE SPANISH II. (3 hours) A continuation of SPAN-201, with additional emphasis on conversation, grammar, and pronunciation. Lecture, class participation, and selected readings help students gain additional knowledge of geography, history, and culture. The course is intended for students who have successfully completed SPAN-201, or through previous experience, have developed sufficient expertise in Spanish. Placement is dependent upon meeting established criteria or satisfactory completion of SPAN 201.
Student Organizations and Opportunities
In an effort to help students connect to the language better, the Hispanic Students Association is active on campus and seeks to promote Hispanic culture, provide service to the Spartanburg Methodist College and Hispanic community, as well as provide an opportunity for Hispanic students to meet and discuss issues deemed important to the Hispanic Community.
In addition to the aforementioned club, students will also have the opportunity to participate in occasional study abroad trips to a Spanish-speaking country to help further their language acquisition. For more details see Dr. Burriss.