SPA 101

Beginning Spanish I
Professor: Carol Lacy-Salazar
Tel: 4311 (

Class hours Texts Grading Exams
Office hours Course objectives Schedule Written work
Horas de clase: Lunes a jueves:: 9:00 - 11:00 y 1:00 - 3:00 / Viernes: 9:00 - 11:30
Horas de oficina: Immediately after class / Lunes a jueves: 3:00 - 4:00

Objetivo del curso: Spanish 101-102-103 is a three-term sequence that presents the essential structure of the Spanish language and basic vocabulary in a four-skill approach: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. The same text is used in all three courses; approximately one-third of the material will be covered this term. Your goal is correct self expression in Spanish as well as understanding of both written and spoken Spanish and a nascent understanding of the Hispanic culture. There will be daily quizzes plus two written exams and one oral final exam. There will be no make-up quizzes unless you have an official medical excuse; however, the lowest quiz grade will be dropped. There will be three short compositions written on themes that allow you to use the vocabulary that has been introduced up to that point and that reinforce the grammar points being studied in class. They should be typewritten (double spaced) or handwritten in blue or black ink and written on every other line. Students should try to organize and write these exclusively in Spanish, using and practicing structures already learned in class and not write them in English and then translate them into Spanish. Students are responsible for correcting these compositions after they have been graded by the professor. Approximately 3-4 hours should be spent daily on the homework assignments, which will include reading over the chapter--paying particular attention to the grammatical explanations and exercises--, going over class notes, and doing and correcting the exercises in the workbook that correspond to the chapter we have covered in class that day. Languages classes, in particular, go very rapidly on the Block Plan and absences should be avoided at all cost. Students having difficulty with the material should inquire about getting additional help as soon as possible. Working in study groups in strongly encouraged.

This course supports the Educational Priorities and Outcomes of Cornell College with emphases on knowledge, communication, intercultural literacy, and vocation:

  • The Spanish Program strives to meet the educational objectives of Cornell College, especially those related to effective communication, intercultural knowledge, questioning of unexamined assumptions about other cultures, and thinking critically and analytically about language and the semiotics of culture.  At all levels, students gain experiential knowledge of Hispanic culture through films, music, newspaper articles, and discussions of current events in Spain, Latin America, and the United States.
  • Our program prepares students to be life-long learners with an appreciation for and sensitivity to other languages and literatures in their cultural and historical context and to acquire an understanding of themselves as participants in a global community. 
  • We strive to emphasize the interconnectedness of knowledge,  to challenge students' unexamined assumptions, and to encourage reflection on their own cultural values, beliefs, and behaviors through an in-depth study/experience of another culture.
  • In the introductory sequence the overarching goal is effective communication in the target language.  There is an emphasis on the four communicative skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking.  Maximum use of the target language in the classroom is a constant goal; however, under OCAAT it is apparent that there must be some use of English in grammatical explanations in order to maximize the time available to actually practice the principle being taught.  Thus, in spite of a few explanations in English, there is a maximum use of Spanish in classroom activities.

Special Accommodations: Cornell College is committed to providing equal educational opportunities for all students. If you have a documented learning disability and will need any special accommodations in this course, you must request the accommodations as early as possible and no later than the third day of the block.

Academic Honesty: Cornell College expects all members of the Cornell community to act with academic integrity. When a piece of work is submitted for credit, a student is asserting that the submission is her or his work unless there is a citation of a specific source. If there is no approprite acknowledgement of sources, whether intended or not, this may constitute a violation of the College's requirement for honesty in academic work and may be treated as a case of academic dishonesty. The procedures regarding how the College deals with cases of academic dishonesty appear in The Compass, our student handbook, under the heading "Academic Policies -- Honesty in Academic Work."


Puntos de partida, 9th edition, Dorwick, Pérez-Gironés, Becher, Isabelli
Workbook/Laboratory Manual, Volume 1 to accompany Puntos de partida

Evaluación: Your final grade will be based on the following:

20%-- Daily quizzes
30%-- Exams
20%-- Class participation and Oral Work
10%-- Final Oral Exam
20%-- Written work: Compositions and Workbook exercises

A (93-100%) / A- (90-92%) / B+ (87-89% / B (83-86%) / B- (80-82%) / C+ (77-79%) / C (73-76%) / C- (70-72%) / D+ (67-69%) / D (63-66%) / D- (60-62%) / F (Below 59%)

SEP 2 L Introduction to the course / Pronunciation / Capítulo 1
  3 M Capítulo 1
  4 M Capítulo 1 / Capítulo 2
  5 J Capítulo 2
  6 V Capítulo 2 / Composición 1 / Presentaciones orales
  9 L Capítulo 3
  10 M Capítulo 3
  11 M EXAMEN (Midterm) / Película
  12 J Capítulo 4
  13 V Capítulo 4 / Composición 2 / Presentaciones orales
  16 L Capítulo 4
  17 M Capítulo 5
  18 M Capítulo 5
  19 J Capítulo 6
  20 V Capítulo 6 / Composición 3 / Presentaciones Orales
  23 L Capítulo 6 / Repaso general

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On-line Learning Center
On-line Spanish Grammar Tutorial
Pronunciation Practice