SPAN 201 Fall 2014


La clase de Español

María Gómez Rubio

Office hours : Thursday 12 to 1 pm or by appointment.

Location: Sherman Hall , Wing B, office 149
( former Academic Bldg IV)

Course materials

Course materials are the following:

1) Dos Mundos, Terrell, et al. 7th Edition, McGraw Hill

2) Password code for Quia, On-line Workbook /Lab Manual.

Students should open a Quia account. On the first day of class, the instructor will provide information on how to access the online workbook/lab manual.

If student has previously acquired the course package, it is necessary to get a new class password code.

3) Spanish/ English Dictionary.

4) Notebook or binder to keep class notes , worksheet and handouts.


Course Description and Rationale

SPAN 201 is the first course of intermediate level Spanish which emphasizes language for communication as it is used in real situational contexts, and the functional use of language with four skills: listening, reading, speaking, and writing, as well as grammar and culture.

This course is for students who have completed SPAN 102 or 103(or an equivalent course in another academic institution) or level 3 of high school Spanish with a grade of C or better.

Students are expected to have a solid foundation of elementary level of Spanish: regular and irregular forms of the preterit, and imperfect tenses; object pronouns; articles, question words, prepositions, uses of verbs ser/ estar. time expressions. In terms of vocabulary, students should know words and expressions related to: leisure and academic activities, daily routines, classes, food, places, family members.

This 4 credit-course will fulfill the language credits of the general education requirement. Please consult the UMBC Undergraduate catalogue for details regarding the Language & Culture component of the GDR, GER, and GFR.

UMBC Undergraduate catalogue

Course goal & objectives

Students will continue the development of Spanish language skills related to vacations trips, health, shopping, advices, suggestions, instructions, directions, and future plans. Students will also continue to broaden their knowledge of the Hispanic world and cultures of today. By the end of the semester, students will be able to:

· Narrate past experiences on vacations, at the doctor office, in stores, and social events.

· Carry out directions and instructions.

· Give advices and suggestions to family members and friends.

· Talk about future plans, personal goals, possibilities and consequences.

· Recognize cultural diversity in the Spanish speaking countries and USA

· Have a deeper understanding of cultural issues/ topics of relevance for Hispanic societies.

Intercultural communicative competency

All Spanish courses at UMBC involve learning the language in the framework of intercultural communicative competency. Spanish, like all languages, is embedded in specific cultures, and you will learn relevant cultural issues and culturally appropriate ways to communicate with Spanish speakers from a variety of cultural backgrounds.

Grading / evaluating students performance

The emphasis of this course is on Spanish for communication. Skills in listening comprehension, reading, writing, speaking, accuracy in grammar and vocabulary, and knowledge of the cultures of the Spanish -speaking world will be evaluated.
  • Class Participation ......................................... 10%
  • Quizzes ............................................................ 10%
  • Online Activities (DB and Chats ) ...................20%
  • Writing assignments ...................................... 15%
  • Oral evaluations ..............................................10%
  • Midterm exams ................................................15%
  • Final exam......................................................... 20%

Class Expectations


The final grade includes an assessment based on your active involvement, attendance and preparation for class (daily assignments collected). In order to be able to actively participate, it is essential that you prepare all exercises and assignments prior to the class indicated in the “Plan de estudios.” You will receive two participation grades (midterm and final).

  • Participation means contributing, asking and answering questions, being actively involved in discussions, group activities and tasks both, in person and online. There will be many oral activities in which you will be expected to participate and contribute to the best of your ability. Errors are a natural and integral part of any learning process, considered normal steps towards proficiency. Those who do not take chances, and risk making mistakes, don't become fluent.

  • More than 2 justified absences will adversely affect your grade, and a pattern of continual lateness will be taken into account when computing the final grade. Please discuss any absence due to a serious emergency with your instructor; you may be required to provide written documentation regarding such an absence. Student athletes should present their schedule highlighting conflicting games/meets at the beginning of the semester. PLEASE DO NOT CALL THE MLL OFFICE if you are going to be absent from class or miss a test. Instead, send an Email directly to your instructor.
  • Making up the missed class work and homework is expected, and it is your responsibility to find out what class material/activities you missed and/or additional assignments to be prepared for the subsequent class session. Make up assignments or exams will be given only for documented-justified absences at the Instructor’s criteria. Make ups for the whole semester should not be more than three (even if justified) and will carry a deduction of 10% of the grade earned in that make up.
  • Communication with the instructor should remain professional inside and outside the classroom.
  • CELL PHONES and other devices need to be silenced during class sessions. Use of electronic devices is NOT permitted in class, INCLUDING THEIR USE AS TRANSLATORS-DICTIONARY. Three (3) points from each participation grade will be discounted for the use of these devices in class with no need from the instructor to remind you of this policy every class.


There will be 5 quizzes. Each quiz intends to evaluate aspects related to vocabulary, grammar, writing, listening, and reading comprehension related to each unit covered.


This is a Hybrid class. A whole credit hour is granted for your work completed online. You are expected to spend online the equivalent to another hour of weekly class meeting in addition to the standard study/homework time. There will be eight online pair or group activities: 4 online chats and 4 discussion boards/ Wikies and sets of individual activities from the workbook. Use of online translators for these assignments will be considered a violation of the Academic Honesty Standards expected to be honored by students at UMBC.


For the On-line Chats, students will engage in a written dialogue with a partner, on-line and in "real-time", without previously prepared notes, dictionaries, or any other assistance. The goal of this activity is to have a "free-flow" conversation while practicing the structures and vocabulary that students have been working with during class. The primary goal is communication. Students will bring a hardcopy of the Chats to edit in class.


For the Discussion Board/Wikies, students will research and write to engage with peers on a discussion about issues related to different Hispanic countries and/or regions. Postings on the group’s discussion boards will be in English and will clearly express their own ideas, insights and reactions to the opinions of their peers. A summary of the general discussion and of each individual post will be required. A WIKI, containing the most relevant information from each of the discussion posts and a general summary/ conclusion, will be written collaboratively by each group. This WIKI will be written in Spanish (focusing on the use of what was learned in class), and will be used for the overall grading of the Discussion.

UMBC LIBRARY Albin O. Kuhn Library & Gallery has different databases where you can find articles, neswspaper, journals and resources than can help you with the discussion boards.


QUIA-HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENTS: The assignments come from the electronic workbook which can be accessed through the Quia books website. The Calendario lists all daily activities to be completed. Due dates can be found in the calendario and also are listed in your Quia account. These electronic assignments are due at 11:30 pm EST on the assigned date. Plan ahead and do not wait until the last moment to do your homework. Technical problems and sudden emergencies are not valid excuses for turning homework in late. It is suggested to do homework using Microsoft Internet Explorer using the Microsoft Windows operating system due to known compatibility issues with other setups.


Writing activity (2)

There will be two writing activities throughout the course. In preparation for the assignment you will keep your daily writing from class and homework activities organized to be used as study material. In class you will review necessary vocabulary and (when required) will organize an outline. To complete the writing process you will free write in class during a set time responding to writing prompts. After receiving the instructor’s feedback and grade for the first version you will have time in class to edit your writing. The rubric for the assessment of both versions will be discussed in class.


Given the communicational goals of this class you will review all appropriate content and prepare in a group to demonstrate that you can engage in interpersonal verbal communication (listening comprehension/speaking). The particulars of the assignments as well as the rubric will be discussed in class.


There will be two exams to evaluate the proficiency of the student in regards to specific content covered up to that point for reading and listening comprehension and appropriate use of vocabulary and grammar to communicate ideas and concepts by writing.

Required and graded evaluations and assignments to be completed are the following:

· MIDTERM EXAMS : There will be two exams (exam 1 on chapters 10 & 11; exam 2 on chapters 12 & 13) and a cumulated final evaluation which includes materials from chapters 14 & 15. Since there are NO make-up examinations for midterm or final exams, students will be required to provide appropriate written documentation regarding any absence on scheduled test/exam days in order to be granted permission to take the exam.


This will be an exam to evaluate if the student has met the proficiency standards expected, based on the material from the whole semester. This exam will be administered as a final common exam for all Spanish 201 sections.


Extra credit points: up to 3 extra credit points can be earned for only one of the midterm exams. The points will be awarded to students who attend a cultural event at UMBC related to Latino/Hispanic cultures and language after submission of a one page reflection about the cultural insight gained by attending. The quality of the response will determine the extra credit to be received.


Student athletes must submit their schedule of athletic competitions to instructor during the first week of classes. If students fail to do so, alternate testing arrangements cannot be made. Student must take any missed quiz/exam or assignments before the next class session.

Information for students with disabilities

UMBC is committed to eliminating discriminatory obstacles that disadvantage students based on

disability. Student Support Services (SSS) is the UMBC department designated to:

· receive and maintain confidential files of disability-related documentation

· certify eligibility for services

· determine reasonable accommodations

· develop with each student plans for the provision of such accommodations, and

· serve as a liaison between faculty members and students regarding disability-related issues.

If a student has a disability and wants to request accommodations, contact SSS in the Math/Psych Bldg., Room 213 or at 410-455-2459 at the beginning of the semester. SSS will require students to provide appropriate documentation of disability. If a student requires accommodations for this class, make an appointment to meet with instructor to discuss SSS-approved accommodations. For more information, refer to


TUTORING: LEARNING RESOURCE CENTER provides free tutoring for all UMBC students, in all academic areas. The office is located in B-wing of AC IV Room 345. Students can schedule weekly tutorial sessions at ext 52444.

Tutoring is also available weekly, on a walk-in basis. Contact LRC for the semester hours

There also other strategies or tips that student can do to help them to perform well in this course:

• Study frequently- 30-40 minutes daily

• Focus on what function or structure that it is being emphasized in class

• Practice what you have learned

• Be prepared before come to class by: reading calendario de trabajo, and textbook pages that will be covered; completing all necessary textbook and other practical exercises.

• Study out loud. Read a loud

• Flash cards for vocabulary and grammar structures. These are excellent study tools. Direct translation is not recommended. Use the textbook dictionary to look for vocabulary meaning.

• Watch Quia Grammar Tutorial Videos. Check BB for a complete videos for this course.

• Visit textbook website for extra practical exercises/ quiz. On BB has a link.

• Speak to anyone who speaks the language. Practice expressions and vocabulary learned

in class. Become a risk taker. Don’t be afraid to make mistake

• Write yourself notes in Spanish so you are practicing grammar structures and vocabulary.

• Attend to the instructor office hours for questions and concerns.



The IMC is located in ACIV 219 B-Wing. Students will find here a quiet environment with supportive staff and computers with the necessary software needed to complete online assignments (although it does not provide you with the access code for online textbook). In addition, you can find useful software for other research/tasks, as well as access to international material/sources.


Academic integrity information

UMBC Statement of Values for Academic Integrity

“By enrolling in this course, each student assumes the responsibilities of an active participant in UMBC's scholarly community in which everyone's academic work and behvior are held to the highest standards of honesty. Cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, and helping others to commit these acts are all forms of academic dishonesty, and they are wrong. Academic misconduct could result in disciplinary action that may include, but is not limited to, suspension or dismissal. To read the full Student Academic Conduct Policy, consult the UMBC Student Handbook, or the Office of Undergraduate Education

For more information, refer to

Grading guidelines



A (90-100%)

Exceptional (superior)

B (80-89.90%)

Above average (good)

C (70-79.90%)

Completed assignment (adequate)

D (60-69.90%)

Unsatisfactory (minimally acceptable)

F (59%-0)

Unacceptable (failure)


NO grades of Incomplete are to be given. Exceptions are granted ONLY in truly exceptional cases. An Incomplete is not to be given to allow students to “makeup” work they did not complete during the semester. The conditions for granting an Incomplete are stringent: The reasons have to be valid and verified, for example prolonged, serious illness or some other emergency during exam week. A note from a health care professional is necessary in the case of illness. The student should request the Incomplete in writing, including an explanation of the reasons for his/her challenges to complete the class in the standard mode. If the instructor finds the request to be justified, should still get the approval of the Spanish coordinator. If the case is approved instructor and coordinator should fill and sign an agreement for the request. This document will describe the student’s situation, the work to be completed as well as the schedule and means for completing the work. Incompletes automatically become a grade of F if work is not completed as scheduled or by the end of the following semester.

Format and procedures

The emphasis of this course is on Spanish for communication. Skills in listening comprehension, reading, writing, speaking, accuracy in grammar and vocabulary, and knowledge of the cultures of the Spanish-speaking world will be evaluated. Instructor will use a variety of class activities such as individual, in pair and groups. There will be many oral and active activities in which students will be expected to participate and contribute to the best of their ability in all classroom tasks.

Speaking skills will be assessed on the basis of daily in-class performance throughout the semester. Errors are a natural and integral part of any learning process, and are considered normal steps towards proficiency. Those who do not take chances, and risk making mistakes, don’t become fluent.

There will be no curve, adjustments of grades or points for “extra credit” work. Good study habits and completion of assigned work and activities will insure your success in this course.


Classroom behavior. University seeks to provide an environment where discussion and expression of all views relevant to the subject matter of the class are recognized and necessary to the educational process. However, students do not have the right to obstruct the faculty member’s ability to teach nor the ability of other students to learn. The instructor has the right to determine appropriate conduct in the classroom, and it is expected that students will conduct themselves at all times in a manner that is respectful of their instructor and their peers.

Inappropriate behaviors include (but are not limited to) the following:

1. Socializing with other students once class has begun.

2. Refusing to participate and to complete assigned tasks in the class.

3. Sleeping in class, arguing with the professor or other students, showing disrespect towards

4. Using cell/smart phones, iPods/MP3s, gaming devices and PDAs during class. CELL/SMART PHONES are to be silenced during class sessions. Use of such devices NOT permitted in class.the professor or other students, or disrupting the class in any way.

· Making up the missed class work and assignments is expected. It is the students' responsibility to find out what class material/activities were missed and what assignments to prepare prior to the next class. In addition, to communicate to your instructor. Academic style is expected in ALL communication in English. Make sure to include full name and course time in all your communication to the instructor.

· Incompletes will be granted only for qualitatively satisfactory course work which cannot be completed due to circumstances beyond the student's control. The request must be submitted in writing to the instructor before the scheduled final examination date, in order to obtain the required Departmental approval. (Cf. UMBC Undergraduate Catalog 2008-2010, pp.29-30)

· Students must bring the textbook and notebook every class.



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