Scott M. Bennett, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Spanish

Dr. Scott Bennett teaches Latin American literature, culture, and Spanish language courses. He has visited numerous Latin American countries, and has lived in Guatemala City; Mexico City; and Campinas, Brazil. He enjoys exposing his students to Latin American reality through literature, music, film, art, and especially photography. Bennett’s scholarly interests include Latin American literature (with an emphasis in contemporary Mexican narrative), Mexican border literature, literary translation, Brazilian literature, film studies, and visual literacy and pedagogy. He is fascinated to learn about how art, music, photography, and literature relate to and manifest themselves through and in contemporary Latin American culture. Bennett is also an award-winning photographer who has shown his work in two solo exhibitions, and he has published photos for various nonprofit organizations, such as Nazarene Compassionate Ministries and Plant with Purpose. He joined the PLNU faculty in 2007.


  • Ph.D., Hispanic Languages and Literatures, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • M.A., Spanish, San Diego State University
  • B.A., Spanish, San Diego State University

Courses Taught

  • Elementary Spanish I and II – SPA 1001 
  • Intermediate Spanish I and II – SPA 2050
  • Advanced Grammar and Reading – SPA 3002
  • Advanced Conversation and Composition – SPA 3003
  • Latin American Culture and Civilization – SPA 3010
  • Mexican American Literature and Culture – SPA 3020
  • Genre / Period Studies in Hispanic Literature or Film - SPA 3080
  • Latin American Literature before 1910 - SPA 4037
  • Latin American Literature since 1910 – SPA 4039
  • Senior Seminar in Spanish – SPA 4085

Experience in Field

  • Research interests: Latin American literature (with an emphasis on contemporary Mexican narrative), visual literacy (photography) and how it connects with language learning pedagogy
  • Associate Professor of Spanish, PLNU, 2007 – Present
  • Assistant Professor of Modern Languages, Azusa Pacific University, 2004 – 2007
  • Teaching Assistant Consultant, University of California at Santa Barbara, 2001 – 2002
  • Teaching Assistant, University of California at Santa Barbara, 1999 – 2003
  • Teaching Assistant, San Diego State University, 1995 – 1997

Professional and Community Involvement

  • American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese
  • American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages
  • Sigma Delta Pi (National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society), Honorary Member
  • Christian Association of World Languages

Awards and Honors

  • PLNU sabbatical grant approved for spring 2017. The title of the project is Documenting Latin America: Essential Themes Through Photography and Reflection
  • Featured professor for the "Faculty Spotlight" in Viewpoint, PLNU Alumni Magazine Vol. 27, No. 3 (pp. 12 – 13). Article by Christopher Hazell, fall 2015
  • Won First Place in the Scott Kelby 8th Annual Worldwide Photo Walk competition, Little Italy, San Diego, October 2015
  • Department of Spanish and Portuguese Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award, University of California, Santa Barbara, 2001 – 2002

Dissertations, Presentations, and Publications

  • ""Serving Along the Way: Stories from People on the Move," NCM Magazine (Nazarene Compassionate Ministries), 2019, Issue 1.
  • "More Than a Wall: Más que un Muro," Crossing the Lines, an interdisciplinary diversity conference, PLNU, San Diego, October 2019.
  • "Fleeting Roots: Moments in Latin America (A Photo Book Presentation)," American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese / Southern California, USC, Los Angeles, November 2019.
  • “Visions of Rio: Beauty, Life, and Dignity in the Favelas.” Global Vantage Magazine, Issue 6, Spring 2013. (Article and Photo Essay)
  • “The Constant of Exile in Buñuel” by Víctor Fuentes, in the book Luis Buñuel: New Readings. London: British Film Institute (2004) (Translation)
  • "Bennett, Scott M. and Pablo Brescia. “¿Nueva narrativa? Entrevista con David Toscana.” Mexican Studies / Estudios Mexicanos  Vol. no. 18 (2) Summer 2002, Berkeley: University of California Press, 351-362. (Article and Interview)
  • “Abrir la puerta: conocer y ser conocido en la zona fronteriza.” Critical review of Where Thirsts Intersect by Anthony Seidman. (Ciudad Juárez: Bagatela, 2003). Entorno 60/61. Universidad Autónoma de Ciudad Juárez (2004)
  • “Essential Latin America: Culture through Documentary Photography.” Paper presented at the CAWL Conference, Houghton University, Houghton, New York, April 15, 2016
  • “Visual Literacy as Culture in the Foreign Language Classroom” Conference paper presented at the AATSP/SoCal (The American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese / Southern California) conference at USC in Los Angeles, California, October 25, 2014
  • Dissertation: “Cavar prosas en el Panteón regiomontano: hacia una estética del realismo desquiciado en la narrativa de David Toscana” Dissertation Director: Sara Poot-Herrera (UCSB, 2007)