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What Are The Basic Requirements To Teach English Online in Spain?

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Basic Requirements To Teach English Online in Spain

If you’ve ever been to Spain, you’ll know that it’s a country steeped in history – remember the Spanish Armada? –  culture, and art, with buildings designed by Antoni Gaudi and museums dedicated to Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dali. 

What Are The Basic Requirements To Teach English Online in Spain?

This friendly and hospitable country is also a foodie paradise. With a different cuisine for each region of the country, there’s plenty to tantalize your tastebuds. Its varied landscape, from the beautiful sandy beaches of the southern part of the country to the spectacular mountain ranges of the Sierra Nevada and the Pyrenees, marking the border between Spain and France, attracts a wide range of tourists all year around. This is not surprising, as Spain boasts an average of 300 days of sunshine a year!

What Are The Basic Requirements To Teach English Online in Spain?

Living in Spain

If your intention is to start a new life in Spain, you can’t judge this country by a short carefree holiday. So, if the beauty and mild climate of this country makes people want to move to Spain, what is it that keeps them there? 

One of the biggest advantages of living in Spain is the low cost of living. For perspective, rents in London are higher than in Barcelona by around 120%. Other perks of living in Spain are its superb healthcare system and efficient public transport network. For example, a single bus ride in Madrid costs between 1.5 to 2 euros ($1.45 to $1.94) or 12.2 euros (around $11.8) for a 10-ride ticket, making traveling by bus very convenient.

Perhaps, what really makes Spain the ideal home away from home is its relaxed lifestyle and child-friendly environment, suitable for those who are planning on bringing up their children there. Since 2002, many Spanish cities have been involved in a unique initiative to improve children’s wellbeing, defend their rights, and promote their participation in cultural and social age-appropriate activities.

Spain is one of the most popular countries among expats from all over the world, creating an alluring teach English in Spain environment. Of course, some parts of the country are less visited than others, but this country has a lot to offer, even outside of the major cities, especially for teachers of English as a foreign language (TEFL).

Teaching English in Spain

Being able to speak English fluently and confidently is a desirable requirement in any employment sector. People in Spain are fully aware of this and are investing money, time, and effort in developing their English language skills in order to secure a job, in a country where unemployment rates are high. For this reason, teachers of English as a foreign language are in high demand throughout the country.

Teaching English in Spain

If you decide to move to Spain to teach English, you have several options to choose from:

Private academies

These are after-school/work language schools that offer a range of language courses, from General to Business English, to learners of different age groups and abilities, from beginner to advanced. It is perhaps the most obvious and straightforward way to secure an English teaching job. With hundreds of academies dotted around Spain, it is pretty easy to get hired. While this kind of school might not offer a full timetable, you can always work for two or three different academies to bulk up your salary.

Public schools

They offer placements as language and cultural assistants to international teachers, allowing you to fully experience the Spanish lifestyle. These schools offer consistent work, but the pay is not as high as that in private academies. For this role, you are not required to hold a teaching qualification, but some knowledge of the Spanish language can make your life a lot easier. 

Private schools

offer teaching roles mainly in primary schools, with competitive salaries and perks. You will be required to hold a teaching qualification to work in a private school and basic Spanish knowledge is preferred. 

University roles

These are highly sought-after and the sector is very competitive. To secure a teaching job at a university in Spain, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree as a minimum and prior teaching experience. As an increasing number of Spanish universities offer programs in English, the demand for qualified English teachers has grown. 

Teaching English Online

Leaving your home country and settling abroad can be very challenging and might not be everyone’s cup of tea. However, there’s no need to miss out on the excitement of helping others develop their English language skills and on the opportunity of meeting interesting people from Spain. You can still teach English to Spanish learners from the comfort of your own home and learn about their culture through your online lessons. 

On the other hand, you might want to teach online while traveling around Spain (or Europe). Whatever your plan for your online teaching career, there are a few points that you might want to keep into consideration.

Equipment and accommodation

These are key factors in your online teaching role. When it comes to equipment, you don’t need to spend a fortune, but you need to choose the laptop that is right for you. Additionally, you will need a pen drive to keep your plan B lesson materials, in case you need to say adiós to your laptop and to your plan A.

Using a set of good-quality headphones is crucial, especially depending on where you are going to deliver your lessons. It is important to find yourself a quiet and well-lit space, where you can fully concentrate on your students without distractions – headphones can help. Wherever you are, check that your internet connection is stable and fast.

Choose the teaching platform

That best suits your needs. Preply, Italki, Cambly, and Verbalplanet are some of the many established online language schools that allow you to teach English to Spanish learners via the internet. 

While these online platforms have the same online teaching goal, their requirements are very different. Some might need you to be a native speaker of English, while others are happy to hire you as long as you are proficient in the English language; some require that you hold a bachelor’s degree, and others aren’t too bothered about university qualifications. 

The pay rate is also something that changes depending on the platform you choose: some will let you set your own rate, and others will set those for you, often providing you with ready-made lesson plans and materials. Compare all the platforms and see what they offer – make your choice based on what best matches your lifestyle.


Every school, whether it be online or brick and mortar, has different requirements regarding its teachers. Having a degree is often an advantage, but you shouldn’t give up your dream of teaching English as a foreign language if you don’t have one. In most cases, and in many countries – such as Spain – having a TEFL certificate is far more important than an unrelated degree, considerably increasing your chances of getting hired.

One of the key characteristics of teachers is that they never stop learning. With this in mind, remember that once you have obtained your initial TEFL qualification, you can expand your knowledge further by taking additional courses to delve deeper into any specific area of interest, like teaching young learners, exam classes, business English, etc.

One last note

Spain is a great country to live in, with its rich culture and fascinating past, traditional and regional food full of flavor, and its varied – but always breathtaking – landscape. There are plenty of opportunities to teach English as a foreign language in one of Spain’s local schools or online, depending on what fits your lifestyle.