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Continuing Studies


This highly practical low-intermediate course (A2.1) will give you a solid introduction to the Spanish past tenses while teaching you to converse about travel, work and customs in the Spanish-speaking world. A proven communicative approach that teaches real-life situations will improve your speaking, listening, reading and writing abilities. We have added an additional conversation session at no additional cost while we transition from one curriculum to another. See Outline for more details.

Prerequisite: Spanish 2.

Find out if this is the right level for you with these placement tests: Spanish 2 self-placement test, Spanish 3 self-placement test

Course format

Instructional videos and interactive online materials in the Canvas course platform introduce new grammar and vocabulary and teach pronunciation, listening and reading skills. Participants should budget 3-4 hours a week to work through the online asynchronous materials in preparation for the live online conversation groups. Participants practice speaking live with the instructor in weekly sessions. For the first sessions, you will meet with your instructor in small groups of 3-6 students for 30-minutes, then move to one-hour sessions with 6-12 students. Participants should be available for the entire one-hour time slot. Online course materials are available one week before the first live conversation class and remain accessible for one month after the course ends.

Want to know more about learning a language online? Read Dr. Julie Dahl's blog post about our online course format.

A printable workbook (PDF) is included in the price.

Textbook purchase required Spanish 3 & 4 textbook.

Sections available for fall 2022 (See Upcoming Dates for more detail):

Wednesdays, Sept. 14–Dec. 14, 5:30–6:30 p.m. CT

Wednesdays, Sept. 14–Dec 14, 6:45–7:45 p.m. CT

Tuesdays, Sept. 27–Dec. 20, 5:30–6:30 p.m. CT

Course Outline

Lesson 1: My luggage

Themes and communication goals

  • Expressing preferences
  • Language learning
  • Material and function
  • People's character
  • Emphasizing

Language skills

  • Irregular past verbs
  • Workplace vocabulary
  • Lo que
  • Adjectives
  • How long with hacer and desde


  • Spanish as an international language
  • Famous people
  • Christmas traditions in Mexico and Spain

Lesson 2: Time for rest

Themes and communication goals

  • Symptoms and illness
  • Making recommendations
  • Going to a pharmacy
  • Narrating a story in the past

Language skills

  • Parts of the body
  • Demasiado, bastante
  • More adverbs
  • More adjectives
  • The imperfect tense


  • La siesta
  • Hot springs today and in the pre Colombian world
  • Carnaval in Bolivia and in Spain

Lesson 3: Remember when?

Themes and communication goals

  • Talking about childhood memories
  • Describing the way it used to be
  • Telling stories

Language skills

  • Past tenses contrasted
  • Connectors
  • Diminutives
  • Animals
  • Reflexive verbs


  • El ratoncito Pérez
  • Las Fallas de Valencia

Lesson 4: Let's review and practice!

Lesson 5: I want it all

Themes and communication goals

  • Asking for things in a store
  • Describing clothes
  • Shopping habits
  • Introducing and ending a story

Language skills

  • Indefinite pronouns
  • Definite pronouns
  • Que vs. cual
  • Empezar a, dejar de, seguir…


  • Flea markets in Madrid
  • Famous people
  • Semana Santa

Lesson 6: How nice!

Themes and communication goals

  • Congratulating
  • Accepting and turning down invitations
  • Introducing people
  • Offering food and drinks
  • Giving permission

Language skills

  • Affirmative commands
  • Pronoun positions
  • Ir vs. venir
  • Llevar vs. traer
  • Good, better, best
  • -ísimo


  • Cultural differences with invitations
  • Fiestas in Venezuela

Earn Continuing Education Hours

By participating in this class you will earn:

Instructional Hours 35
University of Wisconsin Continuing Education Units 3.5

Explanation of Continuing Education Hours

Upcoming dates

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Program Questions?

Contact Christopher Moore at christopher.moore@wisc.edu or 608-262-7389

Registration Questions?

Email registrations@pyle.wisc.edu or call 608-262-2451.

Continuing Studies FAQs

Meet your instructor

Pedro de Jesus Gonzales Duran

Biography forthcoming. 

What Attendees Are Saying

"I had a great time in this class, and I learned a lot. It was exactly what I needed: a low-stress learning environment."
— Bryn Sutherland
"I looked forward to class each week because of the instructor."