Meets the requirements for a student visa

After teaching English for three years in China and picking up the Trinity CertTESOL along the way, I decided to make the move to Barcelona. As an American, I knew that it would be difficult to qualify for a work visa, so I started looking into different programs of study.

Once I had researched various courses online, I eventually decided on the Developing Teacher Course with Spanish (DTS) here at Oxford House in Barcelona. As the name suggests, the course combines teaching workshops, observations, and assignments with Spanish courses. It’s aimed at teachers who are newly qualified as well as those who have up to three years of experience.

Many teachers start the DTS course immediately after completing the CertTESOL, but even though I had been teaching for three years when I started the program, I still found it quite useful. Each month, the workshops have an overarching theme, such as lesson planning, technology in the classroom, or learner motivation/engagement. The Spanish classes are interactive, and they place a strong emphasis on speaking, something that I thought was lacking from my Spanish courses in high school.

The DTS course meets the requirements for a student visa, and after applying for a work authorization, I have been able to work 20 hours/week (20-25 teaching hours is considered full-time for a teacher). Personally, my 20 hours are split: I was able to pick up 10 hours/week at Oxford House, and for the remaining 10 hours, I teach in-company classes. I find that 20 hours/week gives me the work/life balance I’m looking for, but if you want extra hours on top of that, there are always opportunities to get private students.

If you’re newly qualified or have up to three years of experience, the DTS course is a solid way to improve as a teacher, learn (or relearn) Spanish, and work up to 20 hours/week to support yourself.