How to Be a Spanish Teacher in Maryland
To become a Spanish teacher in Maryland, you'll need to meet certain education and experience requirements, including a demonstration of Spanish proficiency, and then apply for certification. Learn the steps in this article.
Maryland Spanish Teacher Career Overview
In Maryland, the world language teaching certification is considered a specialty area. A certification in teaching Spanish will allow you to work with children in preschool through grade 12. To get certified, you'll need to study Spanish (or prove your proficiency) and education. Then, you can take the relevant exams and receive your certification.
|Education/Experience Required||Bachelor's degree; teacher preparation coursework approved by the state|
|Exams Required|| Basic skills test|
Praxis Subject Area Assessment in Spanish or American Council on Teaching a Foreign Language (ACTFL) Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) and Writing Proficiency Test (WPT)
|License Validity Period||5 years|
|License Renewal Requirements||6 hours of credit/professional development in reading|
|Advancement Requirements||3 years of teaching experience, 6 college credit hours and a graduate-level professional development plan|
|Mean Salary (2018, for general teaching*)|| $38,440 (preschool)|
$72,610 (high school)
|Estimated Job Growth (2016-2026, nationwide)*|| 10% (preschool)|
7% (kindergarten and elementary)
8% (middle and high school)
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
Step 1: Complete a Bachelor's Degree and Teaching Program
To teach Spanish in Maryland, you must have completed a bachelor's degree with the following coursework:
- A major in Spanish or at least 30 semester hours of coursework in the language, or pass Spanish content assessment
- 21 semester hours of professional education training that include at least 3 hours each in human learning, human development, world language teaching methods, teaching special needs students, and student assessments
- 6 semester hours in reading methods and strategies
- Supervised experience teaching Spanish or a year of full-time experience teaching Spanish
More detailed coursework requirements are available on the Maryland Department of Education website.
Step 2: Take the Certification Exams
All Maryland teachers need to pass a basic skills test. This can be through the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators Exams in reading, writing and math, or through SAT, ACT or GRE scores.
To teach Spanish, you'll also need to prove your Spanish skills through either:
- Praxis Subject Assessment exam 5195, World Languages: Spanish, with a score of 168 or higher or
- American Council on Teaching a Foreign Language (ACTFL) Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) and the Writing Proficiency Test (WPT).
Candidates who did not complete an approved world language teaching program and are instead using an alternate route to certification must also take Praxis Subject Assessment 5841, World Languages: Pedagogy, and get a score of 158.
Step 3: Apply for Your Certification
Once you have completed your degree, teaching experience and exams, you're ready to apply for the teaching certification in Maryland. The first step is to create an account in the educator certification portal, which will allow you to view the status of your certification and more.
Then, apply by filling out an application form available on the Maryland State Department of Education website, which includes basic information like education history, teaching experience and employment history. You'll need to send this application, along with official transcripts and test scores, to the department of education's certification branch. You can do this by mail or email (in this case, the university itself needs to submit the electronic version of the official transcript). The state will charge a fee only once it decides you are qualified for a teaching certification.
Step 4: Understand Your Certification
Once your application is accepted, you'll receive a Professional Eligibility Certificate (PEC) if you aren't currently employed at a school or a Standard Professional Certificate I (SPC I) if you are.
From the SPC I, you can advance to a Standard Professional Certificate II (SPC II) after you teach for 3 years, gain 6 more college credit hours and submit a professional development plan to continue to the Advanced Professional Certificate (APC). To get an APC, you must complete a relevant master's degree; 36 hours (21 at the graduate level) of education-related coursework; or a National Board Certification with 12 graduate-level hours.
Step 5: Know When to Renew Your Certificate
To renew your teaching certificate, you'll have to complete 6 semester hours of coursework related to teaching reading. If you are employed by a school when you need to renew your certificate, you will renew it through your employer. If not, you will have to send a cover letter, with proof of the coursework, to the state.