Spanish for Health Sciences (Intermediate & Advanced) Online | Abroad

Develop Spanish language skills for health sciences through online and classroom learning, as well as cultural immersion and experiential learning activities in northern Chile.

At a Glance


3 (+3)


3 semesters Spanish, online term or equivalent is prerequisite for in-country term.

Language of Study


Language Levels

Intermediate, Advanced

Courses taught in



Jul 13 ‎– Jul 31

Online Term

Jul 13 ‎– Jul 31

In-Country J-Term (optional)

Dec 28 ‎– Jan 15

Program Base

Online, Arica, Chile

Critical Global Issue of Study

Identity & Human Resilience

Identity & Human Resilience Icon

Global Health & Well-being

Global Health & Well-being Icon


This course offers three weeks of online study and three weeks abroad. The online course is open to all applicants with three semesters of college-level Spanish (or equivalent). The in-person J-term is open to college undergraduates who have completed the online term or who provide proof of completion (or the equivalent) of at least four semesters of college-level Spanish.

This program, aimed at students and professionals in health-related fields, offers resources for building Spanish language skills for ​​public health, with an emphasis on topics such as epidemiology, biostatistics, global health, environmental health, and mental health, among others.

This program will be delivered through a three-credit online course and a three-credit immersion course in Arica, Chile. The program will employ experiential learning opportunities and include lessons in grammar and vocabulary related to the program theme. Discussion sessions will provide opportunities to practice and develop Spanish language skills for use in medical contexts and other practical health care scenarios.

Northern Chile has a well-established network of professionals in medical and public health services. While in Arica, you will have opportunities to practice your Spanish through interactions with medical and public health professionals. You will also visit urban and rural health care centers in Arica and surrounding area.

You will spend several days in the rural area of Putre, in the Andean highlands, examining intercultural health care systems for the indigenous Aymara people and learning from conversations with rural health care workers.

In both Arica and Putre, you will be living with a host family, advancing your Spanish outside of the classroom.


  • Build Spanish language skills to prepare for a career as a health professional.
  • Develop and practice your language skills during field visits. (J-term)
  • Experience daily life with homestay families in Arica and Putre. (J-term)
  • Learn about traditional medicine and intercultural health practices.


3 semesters of college-level Spanish, students are recommended to complete SIT's summer online component first, or have the equivalent of 4 semesters of college-level Spanish when starting the J-term program.

Program Terms

Online Term Details

During this three-week online course, you will be placed in a small class based on a written and oral proficiency evaluation. The course will feature 45 hours of online teaching including a program orientation, icebreaker activities, language instruction, and discussions on health topics and alternative medicine from an indigenous perspective. This course aims to strengthen your fundamental Spanish skills and improve your understanding of Spanish for the health sciences. You will also have outside readings and assignments and built-in feedback sessions.

In-Country (J-Term) Details

During this three-week course, you will complete the next level of Spanish for Health Sciences in a small class, with placements based on a written and oral proficiency evaluation.  Hone your speaking, reading, and writing skills through classroom activities, field excursions, the homestay family experience, and lectures related to public and indigenous health, with built-in feedback sessions included. Read professional health science literature and learn formal terms and local expressions needed to discuss health and healthcare issues.

Please note that SIT will make every effort to maintain its programs as described. To respond to emergent situations, however, SIT may have to change or cancel programs.



The following syllabi are representative of this program. Because courses develop and change over time to take advantage of dynamic learning opportunities, actual course content will vary from term to term.

Please expand the sections below to see detailed course information, including course codes, credits, overviews, and syllabi.

Program Components

  • Earn Spanish for health sciences from experienced language instructors
  • 45 hours online with video lectures, audio recordings, and practice lessons on health topics
  • 45 hours of immersive language learning in Chile with health-focused talks and activities (J-term)
  • Readings, assignments, and excursions compliment your language learning
  • Live with Chilean homestay families in Arica and Putre and immerse yourself in Spanish (J-term)

Faculty & Staff

Chile: Spanish for Health Sciences (Intermediate & Advanced) Online | Abroad

Daniel Poblete, PhD
Pedro Arriagada, MA

Discover the Possibilities


    The total cost for the online program is $960, while the optional in-country term is $3,675, including tuition, room & board, health insurance, and more. Financial aid may apply. Contact your study abroad office or SIT Admissions for more information.