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Health professionals and students of the health professions understand that because the Spanish speaking population in the US is growing at a steady rate and many Hispanics have very limited proficiency in English, the need for doctors, nurses and other health professionals who can communicate directly with patients is critical. This 15 credit certificate will give participants a solid grounding in oral and written medical Spanish proficiencies and strong cultural competence in order to deal effectively with Spanish speaking patients. This will be done through the advanced study of medical terminology in Spanish and the creative use of Spanish language in simulated conversations that enact real professional medical settings. 

The Certificate of Advanced Spanish for the Health Professions and First Responders is open to all students specializing in the Health Professions at the University of Akron (majors in the College of Health Professions, BS/MD, Premed, biology, psychology, biomedical engineering, biochemistry, chemistry, pre-physical therapy, first responders, etc.). Currently enrolled UA students who wish to pursue the certificate must have completed 202 (or equivalent) with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 in Spanish. Admission for all others seeking the certificate is contingent on satisfactory performance on an Oral Proficiency Interview conducted by a member of the Spanish faculty. The certificate may be earned along with the Spanish minor and major.

Core courses (9 credits)

    • SPAN 307 Spanish Conversation: Health Professions and First Responders (3 crd) (Development of Spanish medical oral expression through the study of health terminology and the practice of conversational skills within a medical context. Conducted in Spanish)
    • SPAN 308 Spanish Composition: Health Professions and First Responders (3 crd) (Development of Spanish medical writing skills through intensive practice and study of health terminology and medical written expression in Spanish. Conducted in Spanish)
    • SPAN 360 Hispanic Culture through Film (3 crd)
    • (The study of Hispanic culture and its societal norms and traditions through the analysis of Hispanic Film. Conducted in Spanish)

Optional courses (6 credits)
  • SPAN 301 Spanish Conversation (3 crd)
  • SPAN 302 Spanish Composition (3 crd)
  • SPAN 303 Spanish Grammar (3crd)
  • SPAN 311 (Spanish / Spanish-American Cultural experience) (1-6 crd)
  • SPAN 401 Advanced Conversation (3 crd)
  • SPAN 402 Advanced Composition (3 crd)
  • SPAN 417 (Spanish / Spanish American Study Abroad Experience) (3-6 crd)



The requirements for the Certificate are 15 credits beyond 202.

The classes that students need to take are a combination of core medical classes and optional classes at the 300 and 400 levels.

Advanced Spanish for Health Professions



Certificate students will also have the opportunity to earn hands-on experience by participating in Hispanic Health Fairs, where they will work with physicians that are not proficient in Spanish to provide free health screenings, consultations and advice for living a health lifestyle to members of the Hispanic Community.



Please contact the certificate coordinator below to make an appointment.

Dr. Camelly Cruz-Martes

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Spanish Major

Spanish Minor

  • The 2019 Akron Community Health and Screening Fair

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    On Sunday, April 28, 2019, 16 students earning Spanish certificates offered by the Spanish section of the Department of Modern Languages participated in the 2019 Akron Community Health and Screening Fair at St. Bernard's Church, 44 University Ave. The event ran from 1 to 6 p.m. The certificates are directed by Dr. Parizad Dejbord-Sawan who assisted along with Dr. Cortney Benjamin. Working with cardiologist Dr. Christine Ciello, who earned the Certificate of Beginning Medical Spanish onsite at Akron Children’s Hospital were students earning the Certificate of Advanced Spanish for the Health Professions and First Responders on campus. The UA students served as linguistic and cultural mediators for members of the Hispanic community with limited English proficiency.
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    During this health fair, organized by the Latino Medical Student Association of Northeast Ohio Medical University, there were free screenings provided for blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, visual acuity and HIV testing. There were also free health consultations with a physician.
  • jeopardy.jpgParticipating students were:

    Jasim Abbasi, Victor Akinditan, Ashley Ames
    Selena Barrow, Kailey Christman, Jenna Frantz
    Irene Kotyk, Anna Nyszczy, Megha Mokkapati
    Vincent Pham, Juliana Stierl, Nichole Santangelo
    Alondra Lopez, Corinne Plas, Nathaly Contreras