Spanish
Diana Spinar, M.S.
Adjunct Professor of Spanish
dispinar@dwu.edu

Diana graduated from Black Hills State University and her first Spanish teaching position was in a remote part of South Dakota. After her first year of teaching, Diana married and moved back to the family farm with her new husband.

The demographic change the rest of the country had been experiencing for decades arrived in rural South Dakota in the early 1990s when a Spanish-speaking family moved to Plankinton. Diana, as the only Spanish-speaking person in town, was asked to teach English. She became an English as a Second Language teacher and developed an ESL instructional program that would be used for the K-12 students at Plankinton.

After five years of teaching ESL, she pursued her master’s degree from Southwest State University in Marshall, Minn. Her thesis related to the affects of second language acquisition at the elementary school level.

Diana started teaching Spanish at Dakota Wesleyan in 1996 and for the past three years she has taught 1012-week Spanish courses at the elementary level for neighboring schools. She has also served as translator and interpreter for schools, the police, the courts, medical clinics, the hospital and private businesses.

When not reading, she enjoys watching her son play basketball, encouraging her daughter’s obsession with cats and chasing her younger son around the farm.


Why study Spanish?

  • More than 500 million people in the world speak Spanish!
  • Spanish is the main language of 21 countries around the world.
  • Spanish is the second most used language in international communication.
  • In the U.S. 13 percent of the population speak Spanish as their primary language.
  • The Hispanic population in the U.S. has grown by 60 percent in just a decade.
  • Because of the increase of Spanish speakers in the U.S. there is a demand for media to be in Spanish also: radio, television, newspapers and magazines.
  • In the United States and Canada, Spanish is the most popular foreign language to learn.
  • Spain has become the third most desirable country to live based on standard of living, health and economy.

Job possibilities in:
  • Business
  • Medical Field
  • Teaching
  • Law
  • Social Services Field
  • Law Enforcement



Requirements for a Spanish Minor
Successful completion of the following 20 credits:

LAN 101
Beginning Spanish
Four credit hours
Offered every Fall semester
No prior knowledge of Spanish is required
Focus on speaking, reading, writing and listening skills

LAN 102
Beginning Spanish
Four credit hours
Offered every Spring semester
Continuation of LAN 101

LAN 201
Intermediate Spanish
Three credit hours
Fall semester
Continuation of 102 with focus on literatureand culture

LAN 202
Intermediate Spanish
Three credit hours
Spring semester
Continuation of 202

LAN 301
Spanish Conversation and Composition
Three credit hours
Fall semester (as needed)
Focus on linguistic proficiency via conversation and compositions

LAN 302
Spanish Conversation and Composition
Three credit hours
Spring semester (as needed)
Continuation of LAN 301

An individualized major in Spanish is also available.
Dakota Wesleyan University was named to the 2013 President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. This designation is the highest honor a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement.
Dakota Wesleyan University is proudly affiliated with the Dakotas Conference of the United Methodist Church. Members of any and all faiths are welcome and encouraged to experience an education based on learning, leadership, faith and service.
Dakota Wesleyan University has been honored as a College of Distinction through demonstration of excellence in these areas: engaged students, great teaching, vibrant communities and successful outcomes.
The Chronicle of Higher Education named Dakota Wesleyan University one of the “Great Colleges to Work For®” for 2014-2015. DWU won honors in three categories: facilities, workspace and security, and supervisor/department chair relationship.
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1200 W. University Ave
Mitchell, SD 57301
800-333-8506
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