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About the Program

Spanish is the fourth most commonly spoken language in the world with approximately 350 million speakers. 

Due to the increasing numbers of Spanish speakers in the United States as well as the economic growth of Latin American countries, knowing Spanish is an even greater career asset than ever before. Native speakers of Spanish can enhance their career opportunities as they refine their spoken social Spanish into more educated or professional Spanish. 

Knowing Spanish can also be an asset when traveling to many countries and can help people develop cultural sensitivity as they experience how others think and view the world.

Develop your potential. Improve your career opportunities and enjoy your interactions with your neighbors and your travels more. Study Spanish at Foothill College.


What you can do with a degree in Spanish

  • Teacher
  • Translator
  • Interpreter
  • Immigration office
  • Classifier of foreign documents
  • Museum work

Degree & Program Types

View list below for programs offered at Foothill. Then select program map for a possible schedule that fulfills program and college requirements.

For program requirements and full course listings, view degrees and certificates information.

Associate in Arts

Associate in Arts for Transfer

Certificate of Achievement (CA)


Foothill offers first year (SPAN 1, 2, 3) and second year (SPAN 4, 5, 6) Spanish.

Clearing Prerequisites

You may be eligible to skip certain lower-level language courses if :

  • you have studied a language at another college or high school, or 
  • you are a native speaker, or 
  • you have other knowledge of the language 
Please note: The Spanish department does not provide certification services at this time. 
To enroll in a class higher than Spanish 1 you need to “clear the prerequisite."  
We place students based on the following: 
  • SPAN 1 - no previous course work in Spanish  
  • SPAN 2 - 2 years of Spanish in high school, or Spanish 1 at any college, or proficiency with present tense: regular, irregular, and reflexives 
  • SPAN 3 - 3 years of Spanish in high school, or Spanish 2 at any college, or proficiency with past tenses:  preterite and imperfect.  
  • SPAN 4 - 4 years of Spanish in high school, or Spanish 3 at any college, or proficiency with past tenses and subjunctive. For this level and any levels higher, we will ask that you speak with a Spanish faculty so that they can confirm your readiness for this level.  

To request a prerequisite clearance for SPAN 2 or SPAN 3, please submit the Prerequisite Clearance Online Form

If you are a native speaker of Spanish, you can self-place based on your self-assessment for the grammatical structures listed above for each level. Please contact the Language Arts Division Office to clear the prerequisite. 

For SPAN 4 or higher, please contact the Spanish department at the email listed on this page. A Spanish faculty member will arrange a brief phone interview to determine your readiness. 

When contacting the division office or the department with your request, please provide your requested level and your CWID.

Credit by Exam

Students with prior knowledge of Spanish can get credit by exam for one quarter of Spanish.

Follow These Steps

  1. Register for the class you wish to challenge.
  2. Fill out a Petition for Credit by Examination, which must be approved by the course instructor and the Dean of the Language Arts Division.
  3. Take the final exam for the course before the end of the second week of instruction.
  4. The grade on the exam becomes the grade for the course.

You do not need to continue attending the class but you must remain registered in the class for the entire quarter and cannot register for another class at the same time.

  • If you fail the exam, you cannot take the final with the rest of the class but you do have the option of repeating the class as a regular student in a subsequent quarter.
  • You may only challenge one course in the sequence.

Get ahead. Expand your horizons. Study a language!


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We're Here to Help!

Julio Rivera-Montanez,

Spanish Department

Division Office Contacts

Valerie Fong, Division Dean
Phone: 650.949.7135
Language Arts Division

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