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Catalog 2011-2012
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Latin American Studies (LASP)
Off-Campus Semester and Summer Programs

LASP 3006   Latin American Studies Spanish Language Study
Students participating in LAS study grammar, conversation and literature in a Spanish class that is determined by the student’s level of proficiency. Class 6.

LASP 3153   Latin American History, Contemporary Issues and Perspectives
This seminar introduces the social, historical, political, economic, philosophical and theological currents that constitute Latin American society and culture. The course includes personal discussions with Latinos and field trips to various sites designed to introduce students to the: (1) historical development of Latin America, including selected case studies; (2) variety of analytical perspectives from which the Latin American reality is explained and understood; (3) character, past and present, of the U.S. policy in the region; and (4) nature and influence of the economic reality in the region. Class 3.

LASP 3181   Travel Practicum
The LAS group travels to several countries in Central America during the semester. The travel practicum component is not a vacation trip; it is an integral part of the learning process. Among other assignments, students will be required to attend conferences and maintain a journal of ideas and perceptions developed throughout the trips. Class 1.

LASP 3203   Latin American Studies Seminar
This is 1 of two courses in the Latin American Studies Concentration. This concentration is interdisciplinary by design. Students are challenged in a seminar that includes diverse perspectives, broad readings and group presentations that respond to scenarios drawn from the contemporary scene. Participants also gain valuable first-hand experiences in related service opportunities. In recent semesters, these have been organized in neighboring countries throughout Latin America. Entitled “Uniting Faith and Practice in Latin America,” the concentration is designed to: (1) introduce students to several perspectives on faith and practice in the context of Latin America; (2) consider the historical development and current character of multiple religious perspectives in Latin America [Protestant, Catholic, Maya, etc.] and the major issues the Christian church now confronts, including liberation theologies; (3) help students gain an understanding of the approaches to Third World development and the associated policies, especially those of para-church agencies; and (4) challenge students to reflect biblically on the above-mentioned faith perspectives and development theories in order to more fully develop their own Christian approaches to the dilemmas of Latin America. Course content is adapted to changes in Latin American society. Class 3.

LASP 3253   LASP Service Opportunity
This is 1 of two courses in the Latin American Studies Concentration. This concentration is interdisciplinary by design. Students are challenged in a seminar that includes diverse perspectives, broad readings and group presentations that respond to scenarios drawn from the contemporary scene. Participants also gain valuable first-hand experiences in related service opportunities. In recent semesters, these have been organized in neighboring countries throughout Latin America. Entitled “Uniting Faith and Practice in Latin America,” the concentration is designed to: (1) introduce students to several perspectives on faith and practice in the context of Latin America; (2) consider the historical development and current character of multiple religious perspectives in Latin America [Protestant, Catholic, Maya, etc.] and the major issues the Christian church now confronts, including liberation theologies; (3) help students gain an understanding of the approaches to Third World development and the associated policies, especially those of para-church agencies; and (4) challenge students to reflect biblically on the above-mentioned faith perspectives and development theories in order to more fully develop their own Christian approaches to the dilemmas of Latin America. Course content is adapted to changes in Latin American society. Class 3.

LASP 3303   Business Seminar
This is 1 of two courses in the International Business: Management and Marketing Concentration. Business concentration students spend an intense five weeks addressing the fundamentals and application of international business. Business concentration students are exposed firsthand to the political, social and economic realities of Latin America and must constantly answer the question: “What should the role of Christians be in the face of these realities?” Throughout this concentration, students will: (1) meet Latin American business and government leaders; (2) visit plantations, cooperatives, maquilas, and the Bolsa de Valores [the Costa Rican stock exchange]; and (3) participate in a hands-on case study project. Class 3.

LASP 3353   ITB Case Study
This is 1 of two courses in the International Business: Management and Marketing Concentration. Business concentration students spend an intense five weeks addressing the fundamentals and application of international business. Business concentration students are exposed firsthand to the political, social and economic realities of Latin America and must constantly answer the question: “What should the role of Christians be in the face of these realities?” Throughout this concentration, students will: (1) meet Latin American business and government leaders; (2) visit plantations, cooperatives, maquilas, and the Bolsa de Valores [the Costa Rican stock exchange]; and (3) participate in a hands-on case study project. Class 3.

LASP 3404   Science Seminar
This is 1 of two courses in the Environmental Science and Sustainable Development Concentration. Participants in this concentration explore the natural sciences in a tropical setting and study their influence on the process of sustainability. Students are immersed in a variety of ecosystems: dry forests, lowland rain forests, mountain cloud forests, volcanic regions and beautiful reefs. Costa Rica serves as a natural laboratory. Students of the Environmental Science Concentration will: (1) aid in longitudinal research projects ranging from ecology to ecotourism; (2) examine sustainable development and management of Costa Rica’s protected natural areas; (3) investigate the general ecology of several tropical biomes, including highland cloud forests, mangrove forests, coral reefs, lowland rain forests and dry forests; and (4) study from the perspective of an informed Christian steward of the Creation. Class 3.

LASP 3452   Field Research
This is 1 of two courses in the Environmental Science and Sustainable Development Concentration. Participants in this concentration explore the natural sciences in a tropical setting and study their influence on the process of sustainability. Students are immersed in a variety of ecosystems: dry forests, lowland rain forests, mountain cloud forests, volcanic regions and beautiful reefs. Costa Rica serves as a natural laboratory. Students of the Environmental Science Concentration will: (1) aid in longitudinal research projects ranging from ecology to ecotourism; (2) examine sustainable development and management of Costa Rica’s protected natural areas; (3) investigate the general ecology of several tropical biomes, including highland cloud forests, mangrove forests, coral reefs, lowland rain forests and dry forests; and (4) study from the perspective of an informed Christian steward of the Creation. Class 2.

LASP 3503   Language and Literature Seminar
This class is 1 of two classes the make up the Advanced Language and Literature Concentration. This concentration focuses on the social, cultural, political, economic and religious issues of Latin America in the target language. Students examine how Latin Americans view their neighbors to the north and around the world through conversations, conferences and related literature. This concentration is designed to: (1) expand students’ Spanish language skills through a seminar taught exclusively in Spanish, a practicum with a Latin American organization, and the daily use of Spanish while living with a Costa Rican host family; (2) examine Latin America through its literature, using it as a means to examine society and culture; (3) meet and interact with prominent literary figures in the region; (4) take part in work/service opportunities; and (5) attend local theatrical and film productions. Class 3.

LASP 3553   Language and Literature Service Opportunity
This class is 1 of two classes the make up the Advanced Language and Literature Concentration. This concentration focuses on the social, cultural, political, economic and religious issues of Latin America in the target language. Students examine how Latin Americans view their neighbors to the north and around the world through conversations, conferences and related literature. This concentration is designed to: (1) expand students’ Spanish language skills through a seminar taught exclusively in Spanish, a practicum with a Latin American organization, and the daily use of Spanish while living with a Costa Rican host family; (2) examine Latin America through its literature, using it as a means to examine society and culture; (3) meet and interact with prominent literary figures in the region; (4) take part in work/service opportunities; and (5) attend local theatrical and film productions. Class 3.