Latino and Latina studies came out of student demands in the 1960s for programs that focused on the role that Latinos play in shaping the United States. Many programs in the field still reflect that sense of activism and political involvement. Students are often required to complete service projects and field studies in which they work with local citizens to improve the community.
Back in the classroom, students approach the subject from a range of perspectives, generally drawn from the humanities and social sciences. This makes sense considering the range of Latino populations in the United States and the vast contributions they've made to American society.