Spanish for Health Professionals

Given the growing size of the Spanish-speaking community in the U.S., communication with this population is more important than ever for health professionals. This certificate program is designed to provide health professionals the vocabulary and cultural competencies necessary to communicate effectively with Spanish-speaking clients and colleagues.

Nurse and patient share a high five
  • Program Description
  • Application Requirements
  • Faculty
  • Tuition and Curriculum

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Office of Graduate Admissions
Bendetson Hall
Medford, MA 02155
(617) 627-3395

Certificate in Spanish for Health Professionals

This one-year, three-course certificate program is ideal for doctors, nurses, EMTs, administrators and other health professionals who have an introductory knowledge of Spanish (one year+).

With this certificate, students gain:

  • The ability to effectively communicate with clients in Spanish.
  • An understanding of cross-cultural differences that can impact healthcare.
  • Knowledge about the similarities and differences between the various Hispanic communities in New England.

Key program features:

  • Part-time program with one class meeting per week, complemented by online coursework
  • Program can be completed in one year (Spring, Summer, and Fall terms)
  • Classes are held in the evening in the Longwood Medical Area

Courses will utilize the flipped-classroom model of learning. The weekly in-class meetings focus on using Spanish in a variety of real-life situations that elicit the vocabulary and grammar that students will have studied independently. In addition to the weekly in-class session, students are required to complete online assignments to be submitted twice weekly. Dates will be specified on the syllabus.

Application Deadline

Spring: December 31 

Application Requirements

> A bachelor's degree is required to apply. 
> One letter of recommendation. 
> Spanish Proficiency test required prior to submitting your application – email for additional details. 
> GRE General Test scores are not required. 


For more information, email


Nancy Levy-Konesky, Senior Lecturer/Certificate Program Advisor

Nancy Levy-Konesky has a Ph.D. in Curriculum, Instruction and Administration and an M.A. in Spanish Literature and Language. Her expertise is in foreign language methodology, second language acquisition and immersion techniques, which she taught at Yale for many years. Her numerous textbook publications and videos include Así es first-year Spanish language program, the accompanying sit-com video, Así es Mariana, and Nuevos Horizontes intermediate Spanish language and Hispanic culture text.  At Tufts, Professor Levy-Konesky teaches all levels of Spanish language courses, as well as courses that focus on the growing Latino populations in the U.S.

Marta Rosso-O’Laughlin, Senior Lecturer/Spanish Language Coordinator
Marta Rosso-O’Laughlin studied at the University of Cordoba, Argentina, and did graduate work at London and Reading Universities in England where she got her M.A. in Applied Linguistics. Her expertise is in second language teaching methodology and second language learning. She has co-authored a number of Spanish language textbooks including Encuentros, Cuéntame, Ya verás and Atando Cabos. Her current research focuses on online language learning.

Josep Vicente, Lecturer
Pep Vicente has been teaching Medical Spanish at Tufts University for 10 years, first at the Experimental College and then in the Department of Romance Languages. In addition to his teaching, he also works at MGH as a medical interpreter and community health worker with an immigrant population. In his role as a community health worker, Pep addresses social determinants of health to improve health outcomes. He studied Linguistics and Romance Languages at the University of Barcelona.


Tuition for the three-course program for academic year 2018 is $8,922.00 ($2,994.00 per course).


Spanish for Health Care I (Spring)
Using a communicative approach to language learning, students are presented with everyday situations that medical professionals encounter in emergency rooms, doctor’s offices, clinics and hospitals when dealing with Spanish-speaking patients. Vocabulary development and grammatical structures are contextualized in culturally relevant activities, role-play and dialogues. Readings focus on the diverse cultural backgrounds of Hispanic patients in New England.
Prerequisite: One year of college Spanish (Placement test required) 

Spanish for Health Care II (Summer)
This course advances the study of grammar and vocabulary necessary for effective communication with, and examinations of Hispanic patients. Students will improve their Spanish language skills while they learn about Hispanic cultural attitudes as they relate to health care. Readings explore attitudes towards preventive medicine, nutrition and obesity, problems of malnutrition, home remedies, and medical customs and traditions.
Prerequisite: Spanish for Health Care I

Spanish for Health Care III (Fall)
This course offers a review of more advanced grammatical structures with the aim of achieving greater accuracy. It provides students with the aural/oral and written skills necessary to deliver competent health care to Hispanic communities. Discussions on topics related to mental health, OBGYN, end of life issues, addiction, and more.
Prerequisite: Spanish for Health Care II