CLACS Summer 2024 Languages Courses


This summer, the KU Center for Latin American & Caribbean Studies (CLACS) is offering free credit-bearing courses in 3 indigenous languages: Quechua, Guaraní, and Me’phaa (more popularly known as Tlapanec).  Quechua (pronounced KE chwa), the official language of the Inca Empire and later the Spanish Empire in the Andes, is the most widely spoken indigenous language in Latin America, with some 12-20 million speakers of many dialects in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Argentina, and Chile.  Guaraní (pronounced Gwar ah KNEE) was also a lingua franca of lowland South America, namely Brazil, Uruguay, Bolivia, Argentina, and Paraguay.  Today it has some 6 million indigenous and non-indigenous speakers and is an official national language of Paraguay.  Me’phaa (pronounced May PA) belongs to the widespread Oto-Manguean language family, which ranges from northern Mexico to Nicaragua, and its 40,000 speakers are concentrated in the southwest Mexican state of Guerrero, although as many as 2,000 have migrated to Lawrence, Kansas.  Local Me’phaa-speakers will be co-teaching this course.

The courses take place ONLINE and are taught by our faculty and native speakers in their country of origin. These four-week courses are designed to fulfill the equivalent to 3-credit hours of university-level language instruction. Classes are taught from June 3 to June 28, and July 1 to July 26. 

Learning about these new languages can not only enhance communication skills but also promote cultural awareness and understanding of the importance of valuing global diversity. Studying one of Latin American indigenous languages can provide a unique and enriching experience for learners, broadening their linguistic and cultural horizons. It can also open up new opportunities for employment and academic research in the region. These courses help build relationships and connections with the local communities, which can be particularly important for business or social interactions.

Enrollment and costs

The Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies Title VI National Resource Center grant funding provided by the U.S. Department of Education and the College for Liberal Arts at the University of Kansas are sponsoring these courses this Summer.

The 2024 Summer language courses are tuition FREE for KU students, high school students and high school teachers. 

CLACS will cover the cost of tuition and the students will only pay KU fees.

  • Tuition FREE (a value of $1060 for 3 credit hours)
  • $40 application fee to non-degree seeking domestic student; $85 for international students. Apply here for admission: https://admissions.ku.edu/apply.  (KU students don’t have to pay this, since they are already admitted to KU.)
  • Campus fee – Tuition is free, but if a student wishes to receive official university credit, they must pay a $160.50 KU campus fee per course, or $267.50 if they take both Quechua I (June) & II (July).

         o Enrollment instructions for non-degree seeking students: https://registrar.ku.edu/non-degree-seeking-students

         o Enrollment instructions for high school students: https://registrar.ku.edu/high-school-students

         o Enrollment instructions for auditing students (no university credit): https://registrar.ku.edu/auditing-classes

If you have questions about the enrollment process write to mraple@ku.edu.

This is Amaru. Among the Quechua, Amaru was the god of wisdom. For over 40 years, he has stood daily at the entrance to Red Valley (in Peru) and welcomed visitors.

Elementary Quechua I & II

Elementary Quechua I - ONLINE (early evening, TBD)
Session 1, June 3 - June 28, 2024

Possible course codes: LAC 602, QUEC 110, QUEC 610, ISP 504 or ANTH 502.

Elementary Quechua II – ONLINE (early evening, TBD)
Session 2, July 1 - July 26, 2024

Possible course codes: LAC 602, QUEC 114, QUEC 610, ISP 504, or ANTH 502.

For questions, contact the instructor Heaven Snyder at: heavensnyder@ku.edu

Find your class here

Guarani People Paraguay

Elementary Guaraní I

Elementary Guaraní I – ONLINE (early evening, TBD)
July 1 - July 26, 2024
Possible course codes: LAC 302, LAC 602
For questions, contact the instructor David Martínez at: pardez2021@gmail.com

Find your class here