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HP102-30 Modern Spanish Language for Beginners

School of Modern Languages and Cultures
Undergraduate Level 1
Module leader
Raquel Navas
Credit value
Module duration
22 weeks
30% coursework, 70% exam
Study location
University of Warwick main campus, Coventry
Introductory description


Module web page

Module aims

This foundation module in Modern Spanish for beginners covers the main linguistic (oral, aural, written, spoken) skills. It looks for the acquisition of grammatical awareness, essential communicative competences, and an understanding of cultures and societies across the Hispanic world. By the end of the year students will be able to sustain everyday conversations in Spanish, read authentic texts (e.g. newspaper articles), follow the gist of TV extracts and be able to write an intermediate range of texts in Spanish. Students will work on basic translation into and out of Spanish as a means of consolidating relational grammatical and syntactic competence. In addition to class-time, students will be required to complete a range of directed study tasks aimed at complementing and deepening the material covered in formal instruction.

Outline syllabus

This is an indicative module outline only to give an indication of the sort of topics that may be covered. Actual sessions held may differ.

Classes integrate listening, speaking, reading and writing – with an emphasis on form by
targeting some essential structures for intensive practice within a communicative context.
Students will also practice some elementary translation. All these activities will entail students´ self-study
to broaden vocabulary and aural understanding.
Every week, students will learn grammar, vocabulary and functional aspects of Spanish. They will have
several activities in the classroom and through VLE, to improve their understanding of the language and
their performance through practice of oral, listening and writing exercises. Below it is the description of
grammar, vocabulary and functional aspects of the language, which will be covered in this module:

  1. Pronunciation, alphabet, introducing oneself, regular conjugations.
  2. Subject pronouns, definite and indefinite articles, numbers, conjunctions, colours and adjectives.
  3. Gender and number of nouns, demonstrative and possessive adjectives, uses of ser and estar.
  4. Reflexive verbs and pronouns, adjectives of origin and numerals.
  5. Adverbs of location, verbs of motion and prepositions, estar + gerund, easy irregular present
  6. Verb gustar and other verbs with similar conjugation pattern (interesar, doler, encantar).
  7. Interrogative pronouns, radical changing present tense verbs and intonation.
  8. Direct and indirect object pronouns.
  9. Possessive adjectives and pronouns, demonstrative pronouns
  10. Comparatives and superlatives.
  11. Irregular verbs in present tense.
  12. The infinitive, days of week/seasons/months, temporal markers and perfect tense.
  13. Exclamations, comparatives and conjunctions.
  14. Preterite tenses: Indefinido and perfecto, preterite temporal expressions (hace + time, desde/hace
  • time).
  1. Contrast between preterite tenses (indefinido and perfecto).
  2. Introduction to imperatives and instructions, tener/hay que
  3. Exclamations of surprise and joy. Verb ir + a + infinitive (near future).
  4. Verb poder + infinitive.
  5. Adverbs of time.
  6. Future tense, temporal expressions in the future.
  7. Accentuation and punctuation.
Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • demonstrate individual skills in writing and reading in Spanish, and initial cross-lingual awareness through translation.
  • single out and discuss, when necessary, specific problems of grammar and syntax
  • demonstrate familiarity with different language variations and register
  • demonstrate a strong command of basic structures of Spanish grammar and their use in various contexts
  • demonstrate competence in different registers
  • demonstrate skills of oral communication over a wide range of topics
  • identify and discuss intercultural awareness in the Hispanic context and Spanish-English-speaking contexts
Indicative reading list

Course textbooks:

  • Gramática de uso del español. Teoría y práctica. A1-A2 (SM-Ele)

View reading list on Talis Aspire


All modules delivered in SMLC are necessarily international. Students engage with themes and ideas from a culture other than that of the UK and employ their linguistic skills in the analysis of primary materials from a non-Anglophone context. Students will also be encouraged to draw on the experiences of visiting exchange students in the classroom and will frequently engage with theoretical and critical frameworks from across the world.

Subject specific skills

This module will develop students’ linguistic skills through engaging with primary materials in the target language. It will build students’ capacity to engage with aspects of Hispanic culture through analysis of this primary material and through seminar discussion aimed at deeper critical thinking. In particular, students’ awareness of the modern Spanish language will be enhanced through lectures and seminars which engage in scholarship in the field.

Transferable skills

All SMLC language modules demand critical and analytical engagement with artefacts from target-language cultures. In the course of independent study, class work and assessment students will develop the following skills: written and oral communication, creative and critical thinking, problem solving and analysis, time management and organisation, independent research in both English and their target language(s), intercultural understanding and the ability to mediate between languages and cultures, ICT literacy in both English and the target language(s), personal responsibility and the exercise of initiative.

Study time

Type Required
Lectures 22 sessions of 5 hours (37%)
Private study 190 hours (63%)
Total 300 hours
Private study description

Students will be expected to make use of the TRC, directed learning and self-study options to complement taught class hours e.g. through VLE / Moodle.


No further costs have been identified for this module.

You do not need to pass all assessment components to pass the module.

Assessment group D5
Weighting Study time
Grammar test 20%
Written assessment 10%
Oral Examination 20%
In-person Examination 50%

A 2-hour exam on grammar in context, translation, reading and writing.

  • Answerbook Pink (12 page)
Feedback on assessment

Feedback will be provided in the course of the module in a number of ways. Feedback should be understood to be both formal and informal and is not restricted to feedback on formal written work.
Oral feedback will be provided by the module tutor in the course of seminar discussion. This may include feedback on points raised in small group work or in the course of individual presentations or larger group discussion.
Written feedback will be provided on formal assessment using the standard SMLC Assessed Work feedback form appropriate to the assessment. Feedback is intended to enable continuous improvement throughout the module and written feedback is generally the final stage of this feedback process. Feedback will always demonstrate areas of success and areas for future development, which can be applied to future assessment. Feedback will be both discipline-specific and focussed on key transferrable skills, enabling students to apply this feedback to their future professional lives. Feedback will be fair and reasonable and will be linked to the SMLC marking scheme appropriate to the module.

Past exam papers for HP102

Post-requisite modules

If you pass this module, you can take:

  • HP202-30 Modern Spanish Language 2 (Post Beginners)


This module is Core for:

  • Year 1 of ULNA-R9Q2 Undergraduate Modern Languages with Linguistics

This module is Core optional for:

  • Year 1 of ULNA-R1A4 Undergraduate French with Spanish
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R2R4 Undergraduate German with Spanish
  • Year 1 of UHPA-R400 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies
  • Year 1 of UIPA-R4L8 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and Global Sustainable Development
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4RH Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and Italian
  • Year 1 of UHPA-R4T6 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies with Arabic
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4RJ Undergraduate Hispanic Studies with French
  • Year 1 of UETA-Q1A4 Undergraduate Linguistics with Spanish (with Intercalated Year)
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R9Q2 Undergraduate Modern Languages with Linguistics

This module is Optional for:

  • Year 1 of ULNA-R2R4 Undergraduate German with Spanish

This module is Core option list A for:

  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4L1 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and Economics (4-year)
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4V1 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and History
  • Year 1 of UFRA-R900 Undergraduate Modern Languages
  • Year 1 of UPOA-M166 Undergraduate Politics, International Studies and Hispanic Studies

This module is Core option list B for:

  • Year 1 of UHPA-R4T1 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies with Chinese

This module is Core option list C for:

  • Year 1 of UHPA-R4T6 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies with Arabic
  • Year 1 of UFRA-R900 Undergraduate Modern Languages

This module is Core option list D for:

  • Year 1 of UHPA-R4R7 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies with Russian

This module is Core option list E for:

  • Year 1 of ULNA-R9L1 Undergraduate Modern Languages and Economics (4-year)

This module is Core option list G for:

  • Year 1 of UHPA-QR34 Undergraduate English and Hispanic Studies
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4RF Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and French
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4RG Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and German
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4Q1 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and Linguistics
  • Year 1 of UHPA-R4W4 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and Theatre Studies
  • Year 1 of UHPA-RP43 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies with Film Studies
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4RL Undergraduate Hispanic Studies with Italian
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R9Q1 Undergraduate Modern Languages and Linguistics

This module is Option list A for:

  • Year 1 of UHPA-QR34 Undergraduate English and Hispanic Studies