4+1 Degree Programs

Save Time & Money with a 4+1 Degree Program in Romance Languages at Binghamton University

Take your mastery of Romance languages and culture to the next level at Binghamton University, which is offering a fascinating slate of graduate courses in Spanish, French and Italian.

Romance Languages, BA + Romance Languages, MA (French/Italian/Spanish)

Our 4+1 program allows Harpur College students to graduate with a BA and an MA in Italian, French or Spanish in just five years! This program allows students to save time and money, as it is shorter than the traditional BA + MA combination.

Why you should consider a master’s degree in Spanish, French or Italian

With the addition of a Master's — students acquire superior oral and written proficiency in the target language, an understanding of its linguistic aspects; and a sound knowledge of the cultural context in which it is used.

An MA in Romance languages also enhances your prospects in the job market with demonstrated language and cultural competency skills. You can tailor the highly customizable curriculum to accommodate your interests in teaching, translation or research, or take advantage of study abroad opportunities in Italy and Colombia, once traveling can safely resume.

No GRE is required, and additional certificates in community college teaching or translation are also available for students to consider. We encourage students interested in the 4+1 programs to begin preparing to apply as early as their freshman year on campus.

How To apply


Our classes

Our classes are taught by professors from all over the world, classes are also open to students at other SUNY schools. Classes include:

  • Advanced Italian Language and Culture 

    Advanced Italian Language and Culture 
    ITAL 451/581J 
    Prof. Monica Straniero

    The course focuses on strengthening the student’s knowledge and use of Italian at an advanced academic level while introducing students to major themes of Italian modern culture. Through the viewing of films and reading and analysis of literary texts, essays and articles, the course enlarges the students’ perspectives on Italy today by exploring various interpretations of cultural phenomena, with particular attention to artistic, social and historical aspects. Conducted in Italian.

  • Giovanni Bocaccio’s Decameron 

    Bocaccio’s Decameron 
    ITAL 481E/561B
    Prof. Olivia Holmes 

    Giovanni Boccaccio’s fourteenth-century story-collection has become newly relevant in the current pandemic, especially its opening depiction of the Black Death and people’s diverse responses to it, as well as its Preface dedicating the stories to lovesick young ladies pent up within the narrow confines of their rooms, brooding over unhappy topics. The Decameron’s frame-story tells of ten young women and men who escape from the plague-stricken city of Florence to an idyllic country villa, where in ten days they recount 100 tales, providing a multi-faceted (at times smutty, at times sublime) portrait of the medieval world. We will read Boccaccio’s Italian prose text in English translation as a starting point for exploring issues of ethics and aesthetics, especially the uses and dangers of literature. Are the tales best understood as naturalistic documents promoting personal and sexual freedom or as allegorical lessons on the consequences of sin?

  • French in North America

    French in North America 
    FREN 480A/580A
    Prof. Yulia Bosworth

    A sociolinguistic introduction to the main varieties of French in North America, examining aspects of language, language use, and the socio-historical context in which these varieties emerged and continue to exist today. We begin our journey with an overview of the sociolinguistic history of the French language in France and continue on to the North-American continent, focusing mainly on français québécois, but also looking at français acadien, French spoken in Franco-American communities of New England, and Louisiana French. Our exploration completes with a brief voyage to the Caribbean where the students are introduced to the status of French in Haiti and to créole haïtien and its speakers. A special focus on language attitudes and ideologies that shape these linguistic communities today and are likely to influence the future of French on the North American continent.

  • Haiti’s New Narratives

    Haiti’s New Narratives
    FREN 481K/581K
    Prof. Robyn Cope

    In the wake of the world’s well meaning but ruinously misguided humanitarian response to the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, it had become clear that widespread and deeply held notions of Haitian exceptionalism continued to plague Haiti’s relationship with the rest of the world. As a result, many Haitian and Dyaspora authors and scholars called for “new narratives for Haiti” that inspire neither admiration nor pity, but real empathy with Haitians among their transnational readership. In this course, learners will read and analyze a cross-section of post-earthquake Haitian and dyaspora writing, evaluating its effectiveness  in inspiring genuine empathy (as opposed to sympathy) with Haitians and interrogating the reader’s role in that process. Learners will further contextualize the target corpus by exploring basic elements of Haitian history, culture, and daily life, especially with regard to Haitian relationship(s) to community.

  • Humor and Culture in Contemporary Spanish Cartoons

    Humor and Culture in Contemporary Spanish Cartoons
    SPAN 481D/581H
    Prof. Marta Aguero Guerra

    Why do we laugh? What makes us judge a cartoon as funny? What boundaries can (or cannot) be crossed when using humor? Through an interdisciplinary approach that combines humor studies, comics studies, and cultural studies, students will learn to analyze how cartoonists use humor and the multimodal language of comics to comment on some of the most relevant cultural topics in contemporary Spanish society. This course will be entirely taught in Spanish. As part of the evaluation system, students will do oral presentations, work on creative projects and produce written pieces on subjects of their interest. Prerequisites: Span 350, 360 or 370 (equivalent course or instructor's permission).

  • Borderland Fictions

    Borderland Fictions
    SPAN 483B/581O
    Prof. Gabriela Buitrón Vera

    In this course, we will examine a variety of cultural artifacts (texts, visual and audiovisual works, oral archives) that express, through a plurality of voices, how people try to comprehend, cope with, inhabit, and transgress liminal spaces, i.e. spaces not clearly defined by categories or borders (geographical, social, mental, physical, emotional, etc). We will analyze works that deal directly or indirectly with (historical and individual) wounds: we will explore themes such as territorial and gender violence, corruption, mourning, and death. This class will be taught in Spanish.

  • Puerto Rican Narrative in the 21st Century

    Puerto Rican Narrative in the 21st Century
    SPAN 483G/581G
    Prof. Sandra Casanova-Vizcaíno

    This course explores Puerto Rican literature, film, poetry, and performance of the last 15 years, in the context of the socioeconomic and political crisis, hurricane María, the summer 2019 protests, the 2020 earthquakes, and the pandemic. We will study how the recent cultural production tackles these issues and the violence associated with them and with colonialism. Course will be in Spanish.

  • Language Endangerment and Revitalization

    Language Endangerment and Revitalization
    SPAN 480C/552A
    Prof. Bryan Kirschen

    The Ethnologue accounts for just over 7,000 living languages worldwide. Throughout the first part of the semester, we will explore what it means for languages to be endangered, how they reach this status, and how their vitality is measured. The second half of the course will focus on processes of preservation, documentation, and revitalization of languages by looking at several revealing case studies. Aside from addressing theoretical approaches to these topics, we will also ask why one should care about endangered languages, an overarching question that has received much attention in the public domain.


Course sequence samples

Majors should start working on their combined MA requirements at the Spanish intermediate level (SPAN 215) so they can dedicate their last terms to Master courses only.

  • Course sequence sample for Spanish

    Semester 1
    SPAN 215 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Undergraduate Elective (4)

    Semester 2
    SPAN 250 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Undergraduate Elective (4)

    Semester 3
    SPAN 251 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)

    Semester 4
    SPAN 344 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)

    Semester 5
    SPAN 360 or 370 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Undergraduate Elective (4)

    Semester 6
    SPAN 370 or 360 (4)
    SPAN 400 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Undergraduate Elective (4)

    Semester 7
    SPAN 400 (4)
    SPAN 400 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur Req. (4)
    Undergraduate Elective (4)

    Semester 8
    SPAN 400 (4)
    SPAN 500 (4)
    SPAN 500 (4)
    SPAN 500 (4)

    Semester 9
    SPAN 500 (4)
    SPAN 500 (4)
    SPAN 500 (4)

    Semester 10
    SPAN 500 (4)
    SPAN 500 (4)
    Elective 500 (4)

    Comprehensive Examination: late April–early May

  • Course sequence sample for French

    Semester 1
    FREN 215 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 2
    FREN 241 or 341 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (2)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 3
    FREN 341 or 351 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)

    Semester 4
    FREN 380 or 381 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 5
    FREN 380 or 381 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 6
    FREN 480 or 481 (4)
    FREN 480 or 481 (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 7
    FREN 480 or 481 (4)
    FREN 480 or 481 (4)
    FREN 580 or 581 (4)

    Semester 8
    FREN 480 or 481 (4)
    FREN 580 or 581 (4)
    Undergraduate elective (4)
    Graduate elective (4)
    (Up to here fulfills requirements for graduation with the BA in French 126 credits)

    Semester 9
    FREN 580 OR 581 (4)
    FREN 580 OR 581 (4)
    Graduate elective or thesis (4)

    Semester 10
    FREN 580 or 581 (4)
    FREN 580 or 581 (4)
    Graduate elective or thesis (4)

  • Course sequence sample for Italian             

    Semester 1
    ITAL 111 Elementary I (counts as elective)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 2
    ITAL 115 Elementary 2
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (2)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 3
    ITAL 211-Intermd ITAL I
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)

    Semester 4
    ITAL 215- Intermd ITAL 2
    ITAL 400x in English
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)

    Semester 5
    ITAL 241 -Conv & Comp
    ITAL 300x Lit/Lang/Culture
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)
    Gen Ed/Harpur (4)

    Semester 6
    ITAL 300x Lit/Lang/Culture
    ITAL 400x Lit/Lang/Culture
    Undergrad elective (4)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 7
    ITAL 400x Lit/Lang/Culture
    ITAL 400x Lit/Lang/Culture
    Undergrad elective (4)
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 8
    ITAL 500x Lit/Lang/Culture
    ITAL 500x Lit/Lang/Culture
    ITAL 500x Lit/Lang/Culture
    Undergrad elective (4)

    Semester 9
    ITAL 500x Lit/Lang/Culture
    ITAL 500x Lit/Lang/Culture
    Elective 500

    Semester 10
    Italian 500x Lit/Lang/Culture
    Italian 500x Lit/Lang/Culture
    Elective 500

    COMPREHENSIVE EXAMINATION:
    late April-early May


Additional 4+1 Programs

  • Romance Languages, BA + Master of Public Health (MPH)
    • For more information, please visit the MPH page

  • Romance Languages, BA + Master of Science (Human Rights)

  • Romance Languages, BA + Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) 
    • BA in French/Spanish + MAT in French/Spanish Adolescence Education (Grades 7–12)
    • For more information, please visit the MAT page

  • Romance Languages, BA + Master of Business Administration (MBA)

Romance Languages, BA + Master of Public Administration (MPA)

  • BA in Spanish/Italian/French + MAP in Spanish/Italian/French

This degree program allows students to major in a Romance languages plus prepare for a career in the public or nonprofit sector. This program is ideal for students who are interested in management careers in government and the nonprofit sector:

  • Prepare for management careers in public and nonprofit organizations

  • Collaborate with an energetic faculty committed to students, teaching and community service

  • Gain real world experience while making a difference in the community

  • For more information, please consult Brianna King or call at 607-777-2719

Have Questions?