Graduate Study Checklist

Check list for completing the graduate program:

  1. See the graduate advisor to discuss the course of study upon entering the program. All new graduate students should meet with the graduate advisor upon beginning the MA program at SFSU, or before entering the program. The MA degree requires 30 units of postgraduate coursework.  Up to 9 of those units may be upper division courses (500-level and above), but at least 21 of those units must be seminars.  With careful planning you should be able to complete all of your necessary coursework within two years (four semesters).
  2. Graduates are admitted to the program as “classified” or “conditional” students.  If you have been conditionally admitted to the program, you need to discuss with the graduate advisor the classes you will need to take to advance to “classified” status.  Depending on your preparation, you may end up taking 15 units of conditional work in addition to the 30 units you need for your degree.  You will advance to classified status when you have completed the conditional coursework.  Conditional coursework may not be used to meet degree requirements.  In other words, conditional coursework does not count toward the 30 units you need to complete the MA.
  3. File the ATC (Advancement to Candicacy form) with the graduate advisor/department chair. The ATC should show at least 6 units yet to be completed for the degree (file it before the semester in which you plan to graduate). The ATC form and more information about filing the ATC is available online.
  4. Complete the Culminating Experience requirement. The culminating experience for our program consists of a series of comprehensive written and oral exams covering Spanish Peninsular and Latin American. The oral exam is given one week after the written exams.

Procedures for completing the Culminating Experience requirement:

  1. Six months before taking the exams, students must have a pre-qualifying oral interview, called a fogueo.  This interview helps you assess your preparation.  If necessary, the fogueo committee will advise you to delay taking your exams until you are ready. 
  2. After the fogueo the candidate can request a copy of the questions for the written exams.  Exam questions will be drawn from the list given to the candidate. The candidate will have six months to prepare for the comprehensive exams.
  3. Comprehensive written exams are given twice annually over a two-day period, generally at the end of November/April or the first week of May/December.  The exam is given over two days and takes a total of five hours: three hours the first day and two hours the next. Students who pass the written exams will sit for their oral exam the next week. The oral exam takes one hour. 
  4. Receive the Graduate Coordinator's signature on "Report of Completion of Specified Graduate Program Requirements" and file it with the Foreign Language Department Office (which submits the report to the Graduate Studies). 

Submitting an Application for Graduation

  • Submit an "Application for Graduation" form. Information about where, when, and how to submit this form can be found at the Graduate Studies website. Submit the "Application for Graduation" form to the Graduate Division typically before the third week of instruction of the term you expect to graduate. Check for the deadline in the Class Schedule.  Submission of this form is the responsibility of the student; without it you cannot receive your diploma.