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Office of Professional Studies

World Languages Program for Teachers

Known for its active learning pedagogy, Merrimack College provides the opportunity for teachers to engage in seminars and courses that range from practical application to powerful inquiry.

Merrimack offers a wide array of innovative, active and content-rich programs for teachers in public, private and religious schools, K-12. The College awards non-degree graduate credits.

Registration: For your convenience, you may register online via a secure online registration form.

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Program Offerings Summer 2015

GIE542C Exploring Caribbean Culture, History, Literature, Music & Dance
GIE540C Advanced Spanish Grammar for K-12 Educators
GIE536C Puerto Rico & Mexico through Literature 
GIT521C Secondary French/ French Cinema II



GIE542 Exploring Caribbean Culture; History, Literature, Music and Dance

(Hybrid three-week course)

Course Dates:
  June 30 - July 22    **Registration must be completed by May 15, 2015.

Join us as we explore Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and Venezuela - four Caribbean countries that have distinct cultures, histories, literature, music, and dance. This hybrid course includes three face-to-face full-day workshops led by educators whose identities have been shaped by their Caribbean heritage, as well as online activities and a collaboration of innovative lesson ideas. All post meeting online assignments are due before July 22.  Conducted in Spanish.

Full-day Workshops: June 30*, July 1, July 2 from 8:30-4:30 p.m. 
*If you are unable to attend the first workshop on
 June 30, there will be an alternative assignment due on Blackboard. 

The course begins with an overview of Caribbean culture followed by a presentation by Professor McGovern on her recent trip to Havana, Cuba. We will discuss the implications of President Obama’s announcement to resume diplomatic relations with Cuba. As Americans, we have watched the contentious relationship between the U.S. and Cuba for 55 years, however, today’s secondary and college students are far removed from the pre-Castro era of Batista, the Cuban Revolution, the Cuban missile crisis and the Bay of Pigs Invasion. They have not lived through the numerous waves of Cuban immigrants arriving in Miami with the hopes of establishing new beginnings in the USA. How can we help them understand this historical moment which is unfolding before us? How might we catch the wave of opportunity, help heal the relationship, and build something new? In the afternoon, Dulce Rodriguez, a Venezuelan national, will provide a panoramic view of the Venezuela in which she was raised. She will address waves of immigration and “mestizaje” of races and cultures, cuisine, architecture, and the arts. She will reference the impact oil production has had on the economy and end by contrasting the political situation in which she grew up with Venezuela today. On Wednesday, beloved writer Catalina Rios, of Puerto Rican heritage, returns to Merrimack to engage in a poetry writing workshop around the theme of landscape, language and identity. Through readings of Puerto Rican poets: Nancy Morejón, Richard Blanco, Victor Hernández, and Naomi Ayala, students will explore themes such: as the sea as border, mainland vs. island culture, the evolution of identity, race, class, and the impact of colonialism. On Thursday, our last face-to-face day of class, renowned local author César Sánchez Beras will share the art of writing and we will at once comprehend the extent to which his Dominican roots influence his work. Under his skillful eye, teachers will have an opportunity to collaborate on a short story of their own.  

Professor Mellissia Walles will guide students and lead the electronic component of the course which involves resources and activities  and is posted on BlackBoard.


Lynn McGovern, Spanish Professor, World Languages and Cultures

Mellissia Walles, Adjunct Lecturer, Graduate and Professional Studies

Credits: Three (3) non-degree Graduate credits from Merrimack College through affiliation with the Division of Graduate Education. 

$850 – 3 non degree Graduate Credits

$525- 67.5 PDP’s only 


GIE540C Advanced Spanish Grammar for K-12 Educators

(Guided Online Independent Study; 6 week course)

Course Dates: May 18 - June 26 


**Course is full. Please e-mail Stephanie Sullivan at if you would like to be added to the wait list. **


Using explanatory text and practical exercises, this independent study seminar provides a comprehensive review of Spanish grammar, targeting problem areas of grammar for many advanced learners. Designed for students preparing for licensure exams, teachers preparing to teach advanced levels, as well as native speakers of Spanish charged with teaching advanced grammar concepts.  The seminar offers a collaborative environment to share tips and best practices on how to teach these difficult concepts. It focuses on challenging grammar areas, such as:

  • pronouns and their uses
  • distinctions between ser/estar and preterite/imperfect
  • intricacies of relative clauses and relative pronouns
  • comparative constructions
  • adjective position and word order
  • reflexives and se constructions
  • imperative and subjunctive usage
  • neuter pronouns
  • gerunds and participles
  • impersonal constructions
  • prepositional usage

This online, guided independent study seminar is delivered in six assignment packages which must be turned in on a weekly basis. Each week, participants will study the text, complete the online grammar practice activities and share teaching strategies for teaching and integrating Spanish grammar into their own classes. This seminar requires Internet access and all materials must be posted on the Blackboard course management system (CMS). Conducted in Spanish. 

Instructor: Mellissia Walles, Adjunct Lecturer, World Languages and Cultures

Credits: Three (3) non-degree Graduate credits from Merrimack College through affiliation with the Division of Graduate Education. 

$850 – 3 non degree Graduate Credits 

$525- 67.5 PDP’s only 



GIE536C Puerto Rico & Mexico through Literature

 (Online course; six-week course)

Course Dates:  July 6 - August 14  

Learn about the history and culture of Puerto Rico and Mexico by examining the works of the writers Rosario Ferre and Elena Poniatowska. Participants can improve their oral and written language skills in interpretive and interpersonal modes of Spanish communication. Participants will keep a weekly journal, present a book review, participate in discussions using Blackboard Discussion Board and develop a lesson plan that incorporates readings from this course. This course will be conducted entirely in Spanish with occasional readings in English.By the end of the course, students will be able to:

1. Understand issues related to integrating Spanish literature, history and culture in teaching Spanish as a second language.

2. Demonstrate in-depth knowledge of several seminal Spanish literary texts, films, art and the social and intellectual circumstances under which they were originally produced.

3. Develop a complete lesson plan related to the topic of this course

4. Share personal and professional opinions on the use of literature, culture and history in the Spanish classroom

Instructors: Olyan Rosal, Adjunct Lecturer, World Language and Cultures

Credits: Three (3) non-degree Graduate credits from Merrimack College through affiliation with the Division of Graduate Education. 

$850 – 3 non degree Graduate Credits 

$525- 67.5 PDP’s only 


GIT521C Secondary French/ French Cinema II

 (Online Course)

Course Dates:  July 6 - August 14  

Participants will have the choice to take this course online only or take it as a hybrid class by participating in some or all three Saturday workshops.

Full-day Workshops: July 11th, July 25th and August 8th from 8:30 a.m. -4:30 p.m. in Sullivan Hall 201

This course uses French films to help improve language skills and learn about French civilization. Before seeing each film participants must read an introduction to the film, vocabulary lists, and learn about the cultural and historical context of the film. After the film projection, they will answer a list of written questions on the film.

For hybrid classes the questions will be discussed in class. There will be a series of essay questions on each film: such as analyses of characters, quotes, subtitle comparisons, parallel with other films. If the movie is based on a novel, there will be studies of excerpts on the novel. There will be a quiz on each film. The following movies will be studied:

  • Cyrano de Bergerac (RAPPENEAU)
  • Ridicule (LECONTE)
  • Madame Bovary (CHABROL)
  • Le Dernier Métro (TRUFFAUT)
  • Entre les Murs (CANTET)

Instructors: Sylvie Pressman, Associate Professor, World Language and Cultures

Credits: Three (3) non-degree Graduate credits from Merrimack College through affiliation with the Division of Graduate Education. 

$850 – 3 non degree Graduate Credits 

$525- 67.5 PDP’s only 

Payment Information 

The Bursar’s Office is open Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Instructors are not able to accept payment from students the day of the course. The Bursar’s Office is not open on Saturdays.  Be sure to make alternate arrangements if you plan to pay in person.

Payment by check may be mailed to 

Merrimack College
Bursar’s Office
315 Turnpike Street, North Andover, MA 01845 

*Note: payment should be made before the start of the first class to ensure enrollment and receipt.

If you are paying in person with a check or cash 
Payments by cash will be accepted at the Bursar’s Office, Austin Hall, Room 12, 315 Turnpike Street, North Andover, MA 01845.

*Note: please make checks payable to Merrimack College

When registering for the course, you will have the option of paying via credit card.  Please note a 3% fee.

Withdrawals and Refund Policy

A student is entitled to a refund of tuition according to the following schedule:
Withdrawals received by end of day Friday on first week of term Full Refund
Withdrawals received in the second week of the term  50% Refund
Withdrawals received after the second week of the term  No Refund


For more information about the World Language Program, please contact Stephanie Sullivan, Office of Graduate and Professional Studies, at or 978-837-3563.