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Introduction to Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language

Bilbao campus


The University of Deusto is organizing, in collaboration with the Instituto Cervantes, a course for teachers of Spanish as a foreign language.

 Instituto Cervantes

Course description and participant profile

The Spanish language is becoming increasing important on today's international scene. It is now the second most widely studied language.

According to information provided by the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science, Spanish is the most widely studied language at all educational levels in the United States. It ranks second in number of students in France, Sweden, Brazil and a large part of the United Kingdom. It is the third most spoken language in Canada, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, New Zealand, Portugal and Italy. Spanish has the first foreign language (FL1) status, above all in English speaking countries where students generally study only one or no foreign language. It is the second foreign language (FL2) in France, Sweden and Brazil.

Learning Spanish as a foreign language is very important in the United States. It is also registering a dramatic increase in Europe, the former Eastern Europe and is now being introduced in Asia, Africa and Oceania.

Teaching Spanish as a foreign language is therefore becoming a field with extremely promising job opportunities. The Cervantes Institute, Official Language Schools, public and private schools abroad, assistantships and grants at foreign universities, private language centres and NGOs are just a few of the professional opportunities for Spanish teachers.

However, teaching Spanish, either in Spain or abroad, requires special training, which is the purpose of this course: overall training to teach Spanish as a second language (L2).

  • University graduates or students now completing their degree studies in Modern Languages, Philology, the Humanities, Pedagogy..
  • Teachers now employed or interested in working as Spanish teachers.



  • Reflect on what being a Spanish teacher means and what language teaching consists of. Know the basic aspects involved in foreign language teaching/learning and the different methodological approaches. 
  • Acquire the tools, techniques and abilities to teach different skills. Manage group dynamics and interaction in the classroom.
  • Become familiar with the reference material and studies on teaching Spanish. Critically analyse the different books available on today's market in order to select and use them effectively. 
  • Become familiar with pedagogic grammar and learn to apply it in the classroom.Reflect on grammatical aspects that are especially difficult for non-Spanish speakers.
  • Learn the fundamentals for assessment of language competences and apply evaluation instruments. Reflect on how to manage errors in Spanish/foreign language classes.
  • Obtain real teaching experience in the classroom with assistance from a tutor, participate in observations and classes.

Academic qualifications:

Level A (Less than 300 hours work experience. Less than 30 hours specialist training). 

Educational format

  • Language teaching and learning approaches.
  • Planning and evaluating teaching and learning.
  • Classroom resources and dynamics.