MA (Hons) Modern Languages, Communication and Cultures with Spanish

The course

UCAS code
4 years
Delivery type

Study Spanish from beginner’s level to a proficient standard. Develop advanced communications skills as well as in-depth knowledge of the societies, cultures and political systems where Spanish is spoken.


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Heriot-Watt University’s MA Modern Languages, Communication & Cultures with Spanish gives students the opportunity to study Spanish from beginner level to a proficient standard. On this degree, Language skills are combined with advanced communication skills and studied alongside the societies, cultures, and political systems of the countries where Spanish is spoken. 

This degree allows students to choose either Chinese, French, German or Spanish and spend Year 3 studying one or two semesters abroad, immersed in their chosen language and culture. On this version, the main language is Spanish. 

This degree can be studied by individuals with no prior language learning, using Heriot-Watt’s tried and tested intensive beginners approach to language learning, which allows students to ‘catch up’ over year 1 and join standard language courses by Year 2 of the degree. 

There is sufficient flexibility in the programme structure to allow students to select courses in areas of specific interest. 

Course content

Year 1

If starting from beginner level, students will follow our tried and tested accelerated intensive beginners course. Students with Higher/ A-level qualifications in the language of study will take one language course per semester at intermediate level.

Mandatory courses explore intercultural issues, the history and culture of countries where the chosen language is spoken, and academic or professional skills. Those who take intermediate level language courses can also choose two courses from a range of electives.

Year 2

Level 2 moves into the advanced study of the students’ chosen language. Students will take two language courses, one course on general linguistics, and continue to develop understanding into the key aspects of cultures, societies and political systems in contemporary Europe and the wider world. Two elective courses can be chosen from a range of electives offered in LINCS.

Year 3

Students will spend at least one semester working or studying abroad but may spend the full year abroad if they wish. If one semester is spent abroad, students will return to Edinburgh to undertake supervised project work in the other semester.

Year 4

Level 4 comprises one language course in each semester, two mandatory courses on international politics and social and cultural issues from a comparative perspective, as well as two optional courses from a selection including, for example, applied linguistics and sustainable development. Students will also complete an Honours Dissertation in the course of the year. 

Entry requirements

Year 1

Standard entry requirements

  • Highers AABB 
  • A-Levels BBC 
  • Int. Baccalaureate 30 points (with main language at Higher Level 5)
  • BTEC DDM (Main language at A-Level B or equivalent required)
  • HNC B in graded unit (with main language Higher A or A-Level B grade or equivalent)
  • HND BB

Minimum entry requirements*

  • Highers BBBC 
  • A-Levels BCC 

* Minimum: under our Fair Access Policy, we will relax our standard entry requirements for some Scottish students depending on their circumstances. Our minimum requirements will apply if you:

  • live in an area within the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation lowest 20% (SIMD20), or
  • are care experienced.

We can also make exceptions for some Scottish students with grades above minimum but below standard. Read more about our Minimum and standard entry requirements

Year 2

As our languages courses include a compulsory year abroad at Level 3, the normal entry route for all languages courses is to Year 1 of a four-year honours course. However, candidates with outstanding Advanced Highers or A-Level results may be considered on an individual basis.

Year 3

As our languages courses include a compulsory year abroad at Level 3, the normal entry route for all languages courses is to Year 1 of a four-year honours course. However, candidates with outstanding Advanced Highers or A-Level results may be considered on an individual basis.

Additional information

English language requirements

  • If English is not your first language, you have to show that your English is good enough to succeed on your course. Please see our English language requirements.


Tuition fees for 2022 entry
Status* Scotland England / Wales / N Ireland / Rep of Ireland International**
Fee Paid by SAAS £9,250 £16,000

* Your residency 'status' is usually defined as the country where you have been ordinarily resident for the three years before the start of your course. Find out more about tuition fees.

** 'International' includes applicants from European Union countries who do not hold Pre-Settled or Settled status in UK. (This does not include students from the Republic of Ireland - see above). Read more about the application process for EU nationals.

Additional costs

You may incur additional costs in the course of your studies at Heriot-Watt over and above tuition fees in an academic year. Depending on your programme of study, these may include: protective equipment, field trips, professional memberships, studio fees, required course texts or other study resources.

Scholarships and bursaries

Featured scholarships

Bursaries for students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales starting undergraduate degree courses in 2021

In addition to government loans and grants towards the costs of fees and living costs, we are offering generous financial support to attract and support eligible students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales:

  • Heriot-Watt University Bursary (up to £3,100 per year)
View details about Bursaries

View our full range of undergraduate scholarships.