CELTA course FAQs
In our FAQs section:
After the course
Am I guaranteed a teaching position if I complete the course? We can never guarantee that a course participant will get a job. But you are much more likely to find a position if you have done the course...
Does your school help with job guidance and placement inside and outside Spain? We do our best to give you as much help as we can. The course includes a session about finding work, and we have bulletin boards with info about work, including those from IH schools around the world (over 130 of them).
However, perhaps the most useful source of information, both in Barcelona and further afield, is our trainee support group which posts jobs as they come in. Often members of the group give information and advice about specific schools or countries, and frequently themselves provide details of vacancies they know of, sometimes in the schools where they are now working.
There is, however, no rock-solid guarantee of finding work. It depends, ultimately, on you and how well you do on the course, and luck to a certain extent – networking and following whatever leads may be available. While not guaranteeing employment, we'll do as much as we can to help candidates with employment issues after the course.
What would be my chances of finding employment? This depends firstly on the local context where you have chosen to work.
Most schools run an "academic year" of three (or two) terms: in the northern hemisphere this is from September/October to June, (and in the southern hemisphere from March/April to December). Consequently, in Spain, schools are looking for their new teachers both around April/May to replace teachers that are leaving, and / or in the week or so before the first term of the academic year begins, ie. late September, when they are adjusting timetables due to fluctuations in student numbers (Spanish students tend to leave enrolling on a course to the last minute).
Many last-minute vacancies are filled in September and October. Some vacancies can occur in January, when new courses begin. At other times of the year work crops up regularly as new classes and in-company contracts can start, and most trainees who are persistent will find they have more than they can handle.
The second factor to take into account is how employable you are, both in terms of your previous experience – obviously previous teaching experience is valued, particularly where there is a large supply of teachers for schools to choose from – and in terms of how you did on the course, your future plans, your reasons for wanting to teach, your attitude, your personality... and a host of other factors.
During the course there is help on how to go about finding work. The course puts an emphasis on professional development and careers as well as competence in the classroom, ie: learning how to be a teacher as well as learning how to teach. Also, the schools in the area, knowing we run courses, advertise vacancies with us.
Does your school have contacts with or get requests from businesses needing English instruction to their employees? Not directly, but language schools in the area which give classes in-company tend to advertise their vacancies via our trainee support group and noticeboard as they know we train a lot of teachers.
From which countries do you receive inquiries from employers needing English teachers? Most employment tends to be done locally, although some non-Spain schools, in particular in Central and Eastern Europe, do let us know about their vacancies. We put them up on the notice board in the trainees' workspace. The IH World website has a worldwide recruitment section you can look at for current and upcoming vacancies.
Will I be able to find work in January? January is in fact a good time to pick up work. Some teachers leave in December, some new groups open, so directors are looking for extra teachers. You need to be looking during the week prior to Christmas. It's also a good idea to be around from 1st/2nd January as well, as directors are at work, realising the possible vacancies they may have, and contacting teachers. Classes don't start until after 6th January, which is a public holiday ('Kings Day').
Roughly how much can a CELTA qualified teacher in Barcelona expect to earn? Pay and conditions vary a great deal. In Barcelona you can expect between 800 and 1200 euros per month for 20 to 25 hours a week contact time. With very few exceptions, almost nowhere in the world do you go into ELT to get rich! But as a rule of thumb, English teachers' salaries are in line with the average wage and do allow a reasonable standard of living (depending on how much you have to pay for accommodation), though it's not easy to save.
How much do I need per month to allow if I do not find work immediately after the course? You probably need around a minimum of €500 a month to live on, plus your rent, which could be €350-425 a month. But of course, it all depends a lot on your personal lifestyle!
Is there any form of dress code in teaching in Spain? What we said regarding dress code in our "During the course" FAQs section applies in most English language teaching jobs in Spain. However, in some business English teaching contexts and in teaching in some universities, men may be expected to wear a jacket and tie.
Smart but casual is the general rule for most teaching jobs in Spain. In other cultures the dress code may be different and may be an even more important.
More CELTA FAQs
Further questions...? Still got questions about the CELTA course? Contact us and we'll be happy to answer them.