Site Search:
 
TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International
Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Students and Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Does speaking Spanish help to get a job?

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> Colombia
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
dejavu1066



Joined: 10 Feb 2009
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 4:14 pm    Post subject: Does speaking Spanish help to get a job? Reply with quote

Hi All,

Can you tell me how much speaking decent Spanish helps to get a job in Colombia? I've been to Medellin (last year) and few people seem to speak English. My Spanish is decent, not perfect, but I can definitely speak a lot. I learned most of it in total-immersion schools in Mexico and Costa Rica (I went three times, total) and a few classes in College. I am a Caucasian North America male, by the way.

Assuming that I have a B.A. from a good university and a CELTA certification (which I don't have yet but will get), how much does speaking Spanish help to get a job in Colombia? I assume that it would be valued by employers but I'm curious how much of a boost it would give me.

One of the reasons that I would like to teach in Latin America versus Asia, even though the pay isn't great is that I would have an opportunity to really boost my Spanish language skills.

Thanks, I appreciate the feedback.

Deja
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
tinydizzy



Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 21

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does speaking Spanish help? Um... it certainly can't HURT your chances. That said, I'm not sure how much of an advantage it is. If you are working in an english insitute i think it would be pretty much a wash. To get a job in a secondary school or university setting it can be a bit of a help just because much of the interview process is often in Spanish. I certainly got used to hearing the same dumb question in spanish, and taking exceedingly long psychological/personality tests in Spanish. so you would definitely need enough to survive that process (mine is ok, advanced level, but by no means fluent). Other than that, i can't see it as a big advantage.

Learning spanish and experiencing the culture is definitely the big draw down here, as the pay is pretty crappy. In Medellin the overall level of English is quite low, so on the streets and with friends you'll be picking up quite a bit of spanish.

good luck.

dt
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
windowlicker



Joined: 05 Jun 2008
Posts: 183
Location: Bogotá, Colombia

PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think I've done five interviews with schools in Bogota (all language institutes) and not once was I ever even asked if I spoke Spanish. Other than that, tinydizzy sums it up pretty well. If you have a celta cert and are a native speaker, most schools couldn't care less what other languages you speak. Some schools might see speaking Spanish as helpful for explaining complex grammar points to beginning students, others might see it as a drawback if they think you'll use Spanish in the classroom too much, or they might not even want you to use Spanish in the classroom at all...depends mostly on the philosophy of the school. Other than that, I think the only reason a school would care about your command of Spanish is that speaking Spanish would make your life in Colombia more comfortable, and you'd be more likely to stay longer rather than quitting after 2 months and going home...and it might help you avoid getting yourself into bad situations when you're trying to catch the bus to class at 5am.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
dejavu1066



Joined: 10 Feb 2009
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2009 3:30 am    Post subject: Thanks Reply with quote

Thanks to both of you for the reply. Speaking Spanish doesn't seem to help in getting a job, per se but it does help for living down there. That's what I was looking for. Thanks very much for taking the time to give me that feedback.

Deja
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> Colombia All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2011 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

Road2Spain - TEFL and Spanish with one year student visa
EBC