College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences > Academics > Modern Languages > Faculty > Spanish > Maria Luisa Ortega Hernandez

María Luisa Ortega Hernández

  • Teaching Associate Professor, Spanish
  • ​​​​​PhD - University of Pennsylvania
    ATA-​​Certified Translator
  • Modern Languages; Spanish
  • Faculty
  • 773-325-8565
  • SAC 311


  • Spanish Golden Age and Colonial Latin American Literature
  • Areas of concentration:
    • ​Women and the Divine
    • Poetry
    • Medical Spanish and Spanish for the Professions
    • Translation Studies

​​MARÍA LUISA ORTEGA HERNÁNDEZ is originally from Spain. Her life in Central America has given her a deeper understanding of the Spanish-speaking world. It is from this vantage point, enriched by her many years as a US Latina, that she passionately teaches the beauty of its language, the magical syncretism of its roots, and the shared responsibility we all have towards effective and peaceful communication at the service of others.

Prior to joining DePaul in 2014, she was associate professor of Spanish at the Community College of Philadelphia and lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania.

Her Spanish for Health Care courses and her Spanish TV program, ENTRE NOSOTROS, are two of her main contributions to the Community College of Philadelphia. As a senior lecturer at Penn, she taught Spanish literature, language, and communication in the Department of Romance Languages and the Wharton School of Business. She was responsible for conducting the Spanish proficiency interviews for the Penn Language Link Interpreters program, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Selected works

Current research
Although rooted in earlier centuries, Dr. Ortega’s research offers valuable insights into contemporary issues. At the intersection of language, religion, and culture thrives her current national research, INHERITING SEXUAL GUILT: SIN AND SEXUAL SUBJECTIVITY AMONG U.S. LATINAS (2019). Dr. Ortega has translated into Spanish our Institutional Review Board’s “Adult Consent to Participate in Research,” her complete survey, and all recruitment materials. Her translation, therefore, facilitates communication, honors language preference, and ensures meaningful access to potential participants among the limited-English-proficient population in the United States.

Dr. María Luisa Ortega Hernández is part of the team of linguists and translators currently working on the standardization of Medical Spanish in the United States. ​​

Summer 2017
Ortega Hernández, María Luisa. “Vox populi, vox Dei: Catalina de San Juan, ‘la niña santa’ de la Angelópolis (India, 1605? – Puebla de los Ángeles, México, 1688).” Colonial Latin American Review. 26.2 (2017): 219-54. Print. Taylor & Francis Online, 28 July 2017.

[Debate Forum on Medical Spanish]. Foro de debate sobre el español médico. Real Academia Nacional de Medicina, Instituto Cervantes y la Universidad de Harvard. Harvard University, Cambridge. 31 May – 2 June 2017. Address.

Winter 2017
“Our Mother Language.” Saved by Language: An International Mother Language Day event. Guest speakers: Fanny Sampson, Illinois Holocaust Museum; Dr. Bryan Kirschen and Ms. Susanna Zaraysky, co-directors of documentary Saved by Language. DePaul University, Chicago. 23 Feb. 2017. Address.

Spring 2016
“Rubor y temor: la deshumanización del cuerpo femenino en aras de la belleza celestial.” Las prácticas corporales en la búsqueda de la belleza. La Cifra Editorial: Mexico, D.F., 2016.​