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Getting Spanish Teacher Jobs

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Bilingual opportunities abound for teaching Spanish in the United States. A growing Hispanic population and increased trade with Spanish-speaking countries have created a strong demand for Spanish language skills. Many employers are seeking to employ people who, in addition to the necessary job skills, also speak Spanish fluently. Government service providers and customer service employees also increasingly need to have strong Spanish-speaking skills in order to connect with large segments of the population in various parts of America. These communication demands have opened new doors for people who wish to work as Spanish teachers.

Spanish teaching jobs are available in high schools, universities, private language schools, community colleges, online, and within organizations themselves which need to train staff to communicate in Spanish. For example, call centers directing calls to or receiving calls from native Spanish speakers often engage trainers to teach colloquial Spanish for their purposes.

If you're looking at traditional high school jobs in teaching, then you will need to have a bachelor's degree with a major in Spanish and a teaching certification. If you are bilingual, then you may be able to have a different major and be certified as fluent in Spanish. This will depend upon the state you wish to teach in, so it is important to do your homework and contact your local board of education or the equivalent to find out their requirements for employment as a teacher.



Teaching Spanish at university level will usually require a master's degree or a PhD. You also need to be fluent in Spanish and possess some direct teaching, tutoring, or training experience. Many of these Spanish teaching jobs are part-time, but the hourly rates tend to be high. You can usually find out if there are current teaching vacancies in a college by going to their website and clicking on “employment” or a similar link. You can also identify opportunities by directly contacting the language faculties of universities to see if they have a current or upcoming need for a Spanish teacher. If you are still studying at college, talk to your professors and express a genuine interest in teaching at the university level and ask for advice about how to get your first job. You will often be given tutoring opportunities if you are studying for your PhD, and even if these are unpaid, you should take them. They will provide valuable experience and skills that will help you obtain paid work in a college environment.

Private language colleges such as Berlitz frequently employ native Spanish teachers to teach Spanish in individual or group lessons. You can travel the world and teach Spanish as you go. This is a great way to earn a good income in a job for which there is increasing demand. You can also work in language colleges in America teaching locals Spanish, however, you will need to check with individual colleges as to their selection criteria. Different levels of qualifications may be required depending on the nature of the position and the location.

Spanish teachers can also find work as online facilitators in courses provided over the Internet, as well as finding work marking assignments for language students studying by correspondence. You will generally need a degree and assessment experience for these jobs, but they tend to pay well and can be easily fitted around other commitments. In fact, you can work as a tutor for a correspondence course while doing face-to-face teaching for someone else. It is quite possible to create a very good full-time income out of a couple of different Spanish teaching jobs.

If you are bilingual in Spanish and English, you can seek an ESL qualification and teach English as a second language to native Spanish speakers. Fluency in Spanish can greatly facilitate the understanding of students who need to learn English as you can translate from one language to the other. You generally need a bachelor's degree with additional ESL certification for ESL teaching jobs. The opportunities for employment in this area, however, have grown substantially. Most colleges employ ESL teachers for students whose first language is not English, and Spanish speakers are increasingly demanded for these positions.

If you want to obtain work as a Spanish teacher but do not have formal high school teaching qualifications or the credentials to teach college, there are ample opportunities to work in the private sector. However, competition for these positions is growing, and you may well need some experience to land these jobs. One way to get such experience is to volunteer to teach Spanish to overseas volunteers. There are many community organizations who send aid workers overseas who need to speak fluent Spanish. Doctors, nurses, teachers, and builders, amongst many other volunteers, often need to learn Spanish in order to work effectively in South America and other parts of the world. Local community workers also need these skills to work amongst various disadvantaged communities within the United States. Volunteering to teach Spanish for these community organizations will not only give you important teaching experience, it will give you an opportunity to contribute and make friends along the way.

You can find jobs teaching Spanish by searching on Internet job sites, reading employment ads in Spanish newspapers, contacting potential employers directly, and reading the employment advertisements in your regional newspapers. It is important to identify the type of Spanish teaching job you are interested in and then read different selection criteria for these positions to give you an idea of the qualifications and experience you need. When you are confident that you can fulfill these criteria, begin to look for positions that suit you and write your letters of application to address the selection criteria. Your resume should be professional and may need to be adjusted slightly to appeal to different jobs.

By taking these steps, you will increase the likelihood of being offered an interview. It is important to dress professionally for this occasion and to bring documentary evidence to support your claims. Try to relax during your interview. If you persist and do not become discouraged, even if you don't immediately get a job offer, you will soon get the job you're looking for.
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