College of campus, Latin America, and recent BA students/advisers

About the Major

Latin American and Caribbean Studies (LACS) is an interdisciplinary program for students who want to engage critical issues in the social sciences and humanities through deep immersion in the histories, cultures, economies, politics, and natural environments of Latin America and the Caribbean. In addition to gaining deep knowledge of a region closely tied to Chicago and the United States, LACS students will develop strong linguistic, research, and analytical skills; most also spend significant time studying or conducting fieldwork in a Latin American country.

Major at a Glance

Major At a Glance (detailed in text below)

Program Requirements

The major requirements include: coursework; language proficiency in Spanish or Portuguese; experiential learning that aims to broaden students’ appreciation of Latin American and Caribbean perspectives and deepen their cultural fluency; and a fourth-year BA colloquium and capstone project that allow students to develop their capacity for independent, creative, rigorous inquiry. Students can choose every year from dozens of course listings across the disciplines and can expect individualized mentorship and advising from our dedicated faculty and staff.

Please visit the LACS page of the College catalog for more detailed program requirements of the Latin American and Caribbean Studies major.

Declaring a Major

Students who plan to declare a major in Latin American and Caribbean Studies should follow the guidelines below. 

  1. As early as possible, meet with your College adviser to discuss your interest.

  2. Please contact Diana Schwartz Francisco, LACS program adviser, to schedule a meeting and go over your plan of study. You may want to complete the BA Major Plan in preparation for the meeting.

  3. Declare your major and notify CLAS Student Affairs of your declaration no later than Winter Quarter of your third year.

NOTE: Students who plan to study abroad during their third year should meet with Dr. Schwartz Francisco before leaving campus.


Each of the required courses for the LACS major must be taken for a quality grade.


Students who have done exceptionally well in their coursework and on their BA capstone project are considered for honors. Candidates must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher overall and 3.25 or higher in the major.


Contact Diana Schwartz Francisco,
LACS program adviser.