How Do I Become a Spanish Teacher?
Requirements for becoming a Spanish teacher vary depending on where you wish to work. To work as a public high school Spanish teacher, you will have to meet licensing requirements, which specify the education and training needed. To work in a private high school or at the postsecondary level, where licensing is not mandatory, you need to meet requirements set by your prospective employer. Schools offering Teaching & Learning degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
As a Spanish teacher, you'll help students learn how to speak the language, understand grammar rules, learn vocabulary words and study the cultures of those who speak Spanish. To become a Spanish teacher, you'll need to complete at least a bachelor's degree program in Spanish and complete a teacher's education program.
To teach in high school, you must also complete a student teaching assignment to meet licensing requirements. This involves working in a classroom under the guidance of a licensed teacher. You'll learn the aspects of running a classroom, interacting with students and designing and teaching class assignments.
If you're interested in teaching Spanish at the college or university level, you'll usually need a master's or doctoral degree in Spanish. Student teaching is typically not required.
Important Facts About Spanish Teachers
|Median Salary (2014)*||$56,310 (for high school teachers)||$59,490 (for postsecondary foreign language teachers)|
|Job Outlook (2012-2022)*||6% (for high school teachers)||19% (for postsecondary teachers)|
|On-the-Job Training||Student teaching/internship||None|
|Online Availability||Coursework online, in-person student teaching||Coursework online (for Spanish degree)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
If you wish to teach at the high school level, you must be licensed by the state in which you will teach. Licensure is usually not required to teach in private schools. Frequent requirements for licensure include holding a bachelor's degree, completing a teacher's education program, having student teaching experience and passing a licensing exam. Many states also require passing a criminal background check.
Some states may ask for special licensing or endorsements to teach Spanish, which might include passing proficiency tests. Obtaining a master's degree may be necessary in some states, and you could be given a time period within which you must earn your master's degree to keep your license.
Alternative Licensure Programs
Alternative licensure programs are an option if you have a bachelor's degree in Spanish, but you haven't completed a teacher's education program. Earning a provisional license is an option in some states. A provisional license allows you to work under the supervision of a licensed teacher for a set time to gain teaching experience before earning your teaching license. In other states, you might have to take the education courses you lack to qualify for a license.
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