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Handbook> Electives > Humanities and Ethics in Medicine > Elementary Medical Spanish

Electives - Humanities and Ethics in Medicine

Medical Spanish - Language and Culture I

Elective Number: (Oasis E18q) 3520

Course Supervisors: Dr. Beatriz Cortabarria

Coordinator: Dr. Marcia Day Childress, 434.924.5974;

Duration: 4 weeks

Available: Rotation 5 & Rotation 7

Prerequisite: NO prior knowledge of Spanish is required. Students with some working knowledge of the language should enroll in Medical Spanish - Language & Culture II #3515

Report to: TBA

Time to Report: TBA

Place to Report: Center for Biomedical Ethics and Humanities Office, Barringer 5

Typical day: TBA

Attendance: A student may not take time away during this rotation.
• Anyone who is ill or has a personal or family emergency must contact Student Affairs and the Instructor and make arrangements to make up for the absence.

Number of students per rotation: 10 students in Rotation 5 & 20 students in Rotation 7

Course Description: The Hispanic population is the largest and fastest-growing minority population in the U.S.—50 million people, according to the 2010 census. This course is designed to help develop basic communicative proficiency in Medical Spanish and intercultural competence to be able to communicate effectively with Spanish-speaking patients in a variety of health care situations in the United States. It combines content-based language instruction with an interactive task-based approach. This course will also touch briefly on the dynamic involved in language-mediated medical encounters.

No prior knowledge of Spanish is required. This course is intended for students who have never studied Spanish before.
Students learn to communicate clearly and effectively in Spanish in order to successfully complete everyday communicative tasks (e.g. greeting, describing, giving simple instructions and recommendations, narrating events in the present, comparing and contrasting).

Learning objectives: By the end of four weeks, students are able to

• Have a working knowledge of basic communicative skills and some specialized medical vocabulary
• Conduct basic interviews in Spanish
• Appreciate relevant general and health-related cultural notions
• Qualify for the elective course in more advanced medical Spanish (Humanities #3515, Medical Spanish - Language and Culture II).

Instruction focuses on grammar and vocabulary fundamentals combined with medical terms, medically related phraseology and idioms, language for specific clinical situations (admissions, emergencies, etc.) and health-related cultural information. The course also gives students opportunities to practice applying Spanish in mock medical settings. Cultural studies may include readings, presentations by clinicians working with Spanish-speaking populations, case studies, role-plays, and student-initiated activities and projects. The instructor evaluates students' language proficiency and cultural awareness on the basis of class performance and participation, presentations, and possibly, quizzes or tests.

This course meets for a total of ten hours per week in the late afternoon/evening for four weeks. The typical schedule is Monday through Thursday. To the extent possible, especially in the latter weeks, class is conducted in Spanish. Some additional class time may be scheduled to accommodate clinic and/or community visits and cultural activities. Students should expect to invest a minimum of 15-20 hours of their own time each week in language practice and reviews. Students purchase the assigned texts (approximate cost: $160).