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Graduate Certificate in Latin American Studies

The Graduate Certificate in Latin American Studies is open to all Princeton University graduate students currently enrolled in any Ph.D. program in the humanities, social sciences, or natural sciences. Students enrolled in the Masters in Public Administration at the Woodrow Wilson School may also enroll in the certificate if they write a research paper on a Latin American topic in consultation with the Program director.

The Graduate Certificate is designed to allow students who are taking seminars in the Program, working closely with our faculty, and writing dissertations on a Latin American topic to receive a formal credential in the field. Many such students prepare a generals field in Latin America, but that is not a requirement for the certificate. Upon fulfilling all of the requirements, a student will receive a certificate from the Program in Latin American Studies and is entitled to list the credential on his or her curriculum vitae. The certificate does not appear on a student’s official transcript.

The Director of the Program in Latin American Studies oversees the graduate certificate program.

Students cannot be admitted to the Latin American Studies graduate certificate program since it is not a degree program.


  • Fluency in Spanish, Portuguese, or French (for students working on the Caribbean). Students can satisfy this requirement by completing a course taught in Spanish, Portuguese, or French.
  • 4 full-term approved graduate courses on a Latin American topic or substitutes approved by the program director. At least one course should be outside the student’s home department.
  • Participation in the graduate colloquium
  • A dissertation that includes a significant amount of research on a Latin American topic; students enrolled in the Masters in Public Affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School will be required to write a research paper on a topic approved by the Program Director.

Graduate students should complete at least four courses on a Latin American topic. The courses listed below have been approved by the PLAS Executive Committee for graduate certificate credit. In addition, the Program Director may approve other graduate courses, on a case-by-case basis, for which the student has written a final paper focusing on a Latin American topic.

In addition to the coursework, students enrolled in the graduate certificate will be required to participate in the Program’s graduate colloquium at least once during their course of study. The colloquium consists of informal, weekly meetings – usually over lunch –, during which advanced graduate students present their research to an audience of faculty and graduate students.

Students are expected to either: 1) write a dissertation on a Latin American topic; or 2) write a dissertation that includes significant research on Latin America. Ideally the dissertation should be directed by a faculty member affiliated with the Program.

Register for the certificate

Please see the brief online registration form.

Approved courses

(*) = Only when the student writes on a Latin American Topic

ANT 491 Perspectives on Global Health (*)
ANT 522 Topics in Theory and Practice of Anthropology (*)
ANT 570 Interdisciplinary Research (*)
ARC 492 Topics in Formal Analysis of the Urban (*)
ARC 571/ART 581/MOD 573/LAS 571 Research in Architecture (*)
ART 566/SPA 593/LAS 566 Seminar in Contemporary Art and Theory - The Aesthetics of Hunger (*)
COM 546 Topics in Latin American Studies
COM 574/SPA 587/LAS 574 Roberto Bolaño: Adventures in Cultural Land
COM 582/LAS 582/SPA 590 1968 and the Present: Arts andPolitics of Change in Latin America
ENG 567 Special Studies in Modernism (*)
FRE 528 Francophone Literature (*)
HIS 504 Colonial Latin America to 1810
HIS 506 Modern Latin American History Since 1810
LAS 374/HIS 486 Politics and Social Change in Latin America, 1968-Present
LAS 503/SPA 592/POR 570 Exit, Voice, and Loyalty: Intellectuals in Latin America and the Caribbean
MOD 500 Media and Modernity (*)
POR 561 Modern Brazilian Literature
POR 563 Luso-Brazilian Seminar-Visual Arts & the Humanities
REL 505/LAS 505 Studies in the Religion of the Americas: Religion and Church in Mexican History
SOC 507 Topics in Comparative, Regional and Political Sociology (*)
SOC 510 Comparative Historical Analysis (*)
SOC 509 Comparative Public Policy (*)
SOC 511 Comparative Perspectives on Gender and Development (*)
SOC 513 Political Sociology (*)
SOC 514 Political Sociology of Transition (*)
SOC 517 Social Movements (*)
SOC 574 Race and Ethnicity in Latin America
SOC 575 Topics and Migration and Development (*)
SOC 576 Migration and Development (*)
SOC 577 Sociology of Development (*)
SOC 578 Sociology of Immigration and Ethnicity(*)
SPA 547 Narrative Prose in Latin America
SPA 548 Seminar: Modern Spanish-American Literature
SPA 551 Body Writing
WWS 572B/SOC 577 Topics in Development, Implications of Globalism
WWS 572D/POL 524 Topics in Development: Democracy, Violence and Citizen Security (*)