It’s never too early to start Spanish at Colby, and many students begin their study of Spanish in the first semester. By beginning study of a language immediately and continuing it in consecutive semesters, students not only develop linguistic skills, but also fulfill prerequisites for upper-level study, requirements for various language, literature, and international studies majors, and application requirements for many of our programs abroad.

In addition to our on-campus classes, Colby offers the opportunity to study Spanish language and Hispanic cultures in countries across the globe. Students who may have been unsuccessful in previous classroom study of a language may find that they are much more motivated and able to learn it abroad. More information on Colby’s language semesters abroad may be obtained from the Office of Off-Campus Study.

The Colby College language requirement applies to all students except those whose native language is not English. In Spanish, it may be met in one of three ways:

  1. By achieving a score of 64 or more on a Spanish SAT-II test taken in the student’s senior year in high school or on the Online Spanish Placement Exam; by scoring 4 or 5 on Advanced Placement Spanish Exams; by scoring a 6 or 7 on an International Baccalaureate higher-level exam or a 7 on a standard-level International Baccalaureate exam.
  2. By successful completion of a Spanish course numbered 127 or higher.
  3. By successful completion of Colby’s intensive language semester abroad program in Salamanca (Spain). This program is offered both fall and spring semesters. If you are interested in a language semester abroad, contact the Off-Campus Study Office after the beginning of your first semester at Colby.

Students who plan to continue studying Spanish must take the Online Spanish Placement Exam (OSPE) during its open period. We strongly recommend that students take the placement exam regardless of their current plans for foreign language study; it is useful information for both student and advisor planning purposes, and students will not have the opportunity to do so after the orientation period. Students interested in Spanish MUST take the OSPE regardless of their SAT-II test score.