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Dual Degree in Latin American Studies

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Learn how to improve the health of Latin Americans and Latinos, especially in the Southwest and border region. Enroll in the Master of Public Health/Master of Arts in Latin American Studies (MPH/MALAS) dual degree program at the University of New Mexico College of Population Health. You’ll enjoy in-depth study of languages, cultures and societies while preparing to work in either Latin America or the United States.


You must apply separately to the MPH degree program and MALAS program. Preference goes to students with paid or volunteer public health experience, such as community development, research, education, health promotion or health science.

Requirements for Dual Degree

You must complete just 63 graduate credit hours—less than the 78 hours you’d need to earn the two degrees separately. Talk to your MPH advisor about choosing the right courses for your professional goals.

Public Health Coursework

You must complete 42 hours of public health coursework, including:

  • PH 501, 502, 506, 511, 513, 538, and 552
  • PH 507, 533 or 555
  • MPH courses with Latin American studies content (13 hours):
    • PH 579, 583 and 598
    • PH 596 or 597
    • Public health courses with Latin American/U.S. Latino content or courses throughout the university with demonstrated content on Health and Latin America (three credit hours)
    • Relevant electives (10 hours), which must include three hours of shared public health/Latin American studies content

Latin American Studies Coursework

You must complete 21 hours in Latin American studies courses. Coursework for the MALAS portion of the dual degree includes:

  • LTAM 510
  • Six hours of graduate seminar course credits
  • Nine graduate credit hours in each of two areas of concentration you choose from the following:
    • Anthropology
    • Art history
    • Brazilian literature and culture
    • Brazilian studies
    • Communication
    • Community and regional planning
    • Economics
    • Gender studies
    • History
    • Human rights
    • International management
    • Political science
    • Religion and philosophy
    • Sociology
    • Southwest studies
    • Spanish-American literature
    • Spanish linguistics

Your two chosen concentrations must come from different disciplines. Only one of your concentrations can be interdisciplinary (such as human rights or gender studies).

Language Proficiency

If you don’t concentrate in Brazilian literature and culture, Spanish-American literature or Spanish linguistics, you must take an upper-division language course such as:

  • SPAN 307 or above
  • PORT 276 or above
  • Course in one of Latin America’s indigenous languages

MPH/MALAS Exit Requirements

To complete your dual degree program, you’ll take:

  • Comprehensive exam in one of your concentrations in Latin American studies
  • Master’s exam in public health
  • PH 596–Professional Paper or PH 597–Public Health Integrative Experience