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General Education Common Graded Assignment: Spanish 101: Introductory Spanish I


Please NOTE: This assignment is used in the 101 level of all World Languages.


Introductory Spanish I is a general education course designed to assist students in the development of critical life skills.  One of the goals of this assignment is to assess student competence for each of these objectives:


  1. Written communication skills– write a coherent and well-developed essay and conform to the grammar, punctuation, and spelling rules of standard written English with a minimum of errors.
  2. Critical analysis and reasoning—communicate and organize ideas clearly and concisely and provide thorough and relevant supporting evidence.
  • Technological competence—utilize learning management systems and word processing programs as appropriate to the academic environment.
  1. Information literacy — conduct independent research using library electronic or print resources; evaluate resources for authority, accuracy, reliability, coverage, and timeliness; incorporate outside material into essays by summarizing, quoting, and paraphrasing correctly; and provide documentation for sources with a Works Cited page and parenthetical citations, using the MLA or APA format.
  2. Local and global diversity—demonstrate knowledge of an under-represented group in a Spanish-speaking country or Spanish-speaking immigrants in the United States and explore their cultural contributions experiences, values, struggles, or the history of this group.




Write a three-page academic research paper on a diverse, underrepresented group of people in a Spanish-speaking country.




Within heterogeneous societies, some diverse groups end up being underrepresented and thus marginalized. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to demonstrate knowledge of a diverse, underrepresented group in a heterogeneous Spanish-speaking country.  Explore the cultural aspects of the group that you choose; research and discuss its cultural contributions, experiences, values, histories and power struggles as a diverse group.




First, select a Spanish-speaking country that you would like to research.  This can include Spanish-speaking populations in the United States. Then, research an underrepresented group in that country that has distinct cultural aspects that make them diverse, and result in experiences of marginalization. A group of people can be underrepresented due to a variety of factors such as their race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sex, sexual orientation, disability, language, or class. Some examples of such groups are:


  • the Quechua people in Peru
  • the Jews in Argentina
  • women in Mexico
  • Basque speakers in Spain.

Next, write an academic research paper describing the experiences of this diverse group living in a plural society.  You should focus on the values and traditions of the group you have selected with a particular emphasis on any one of the following:


  • Political system
  • Government
  • Technological achievements
  • Philosophy
  • Religion
  • Language (if this group is a language minority in the country you have chosen)
  • Literature
  • Other cultural contributions

In your paper, as you discuss the experiences of your group, be sure also to discuss what it means to be diverse in relation to power, privilege and inequality in a society in which one is a member of an underrepresented group.


Here are some possible topics:


  • Describe a Spanish-speaking country that is linguistically diverse (more than one language is spoken in the country), religiously diverse (more than one religion is practiced in the country), or ethnically diverse and explore the benefits and problems for one of the underrepresented groups living in that plural society;
  • Explore gender roles in a specific Spanish-speaking country and examine issues related to power and opportunity for women;
  • Investigate the experiences of Spanish-speaking immigrants in the United States, or of another group of immigrants in a Spanish-speaking country.



  • Must show proof of factual knowledge of the under-represented group in the Spanish-speaking country or Spanish-speaking immigrants in the United States, as well as reflection on cultural contributions, experiences, values, struggles, or the history of this group. Thus, it will require thorough preparation (e.g. interviews, research data, or a combination of both).
  • Should be organized, with a logical sequence of ideas, well-structured paragraphs, varied sentence structure and appropriate level of language, a variety of vocabulary appropriate to the subject, and flawless grammar and spelling.
  • Should communicate ideas clearly and concisely with cultural sensitivity and provide thorough and relevant supporting evidence. Cultural sensitivity means being aware that cultural differences and similarities exist and have an effect on values, learning and behavior.
  • Should demonstrate a thoughtful description of an issue related to a category of diversity (such as gender, language, race, class, etc.).
  • Should contain one inserted object, image, or graph, for example. The inserted object should be relevant to the content of the essay and should be placed thoughtfully within the essay.

Audience: Your audience is your instructor and other members of the class, representative of an adult, educated, academic audience.

Assignment Specifications:


The paper must:


  • Be typed.
  • Be three pages, written in English, double-spaced, with a 12-point font.
  • Be submitted through Blackboard.
  • Show evidence of research, organization, and depth.
  • Have a minimum of 3 appropriate academic resources.  Try using the CCBC Library Research Databases page under Cultures.  See and click on Citations: MLA | APA | Chicago to see how to cite your references.


*If you need assistance with your writing, please go to the Writing Center (E-338–

Essex, L-123—Dundalk, or Y-121–Catonsville) and/or refer to the CCBC Student Guide to Writing in the Disciplines:



  • This assignment will account for 10% of the total course grade.
  • See attached rubric for details about how your essay will be graded


Submission Guidelines:

  • Please upload your Annotated Bibs to Blackboard via Assignment Links (instructions will be discussed in class).
  • Please upload your final typed paper to Blackboard via Assignment Links.

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