How to Become a Spanish Teacher in Wisconsin

Spanish teachers work at various grade levels. To obtain Spanish teacher certification in Wisconsin, a candidate must complete certain education and testing requirements. When these are satisfied, candidates can apply for an initial teaching license and the Spanish teaching endorsement.

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Spanish teachers must be proficient in reading and speaking Spanish and be able to plan lessons and activities that encourage Spanish language acquisition. Spanish teachers must also be organized, patient and have a passion for helping others learn. To become a Spanish teacher in Wisconsin, it is necessary to obtain licensure and Spanish teaching endorsement. Here, the steps that need to be followed to qualify for Spanish teaching certification are described.

Spanish Teaching Certification Requirements in Wisconsin

Average Salary for Teachers in Wisconsin (2017)* $56,940 (Elementary), $58,560 (Middle), $57,320 (Secondary)
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field Spanish
Testing Requirements Check with educator preparation program provider as to what assessment they employ (ACTFL World Language Test, GPA, or content portfolio). Candidates must also complete the edTPA

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Let's take a look at the steps that need to be followed to become a Spanish teacher in Wisconsin.

Step 1: Earn a Degree

To acquire a teacher license in Wisconsin, candidates must obtain a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university. Additionally, while completing a degree, candidates should undertake an educator preparation program approved by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI).

Candidates who ultimately wish to obtain Spanish as a teaching endorsement should pursue a Spanish educator preparation program which essentially takes the form of a major in Spanish and a minor in education. These programs typically include classes in subjects such as Spanish grammar, conversation and literature.

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Step 2: Pass All Required Testing

All Spanish teacher candidates in Wisconsin are required to demonstrate proficiency in the content area of Spanish to qualify for licensure. The type of testing and proficiency demonstration required depends on the Wisconsin educator preparation program that a candidate is enrolled on. There are a number of options that educator preparation programs are permitted to use to verify potential Spanish teachers' competency:

  • The ACTFL World Language Tests may be used for all world language teacher candidates. With this option, candidates are required to complete both the Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI-OPIc) and Writing Proficiency Test (WPT). The qualifying score for state licensure on both tests is 'Intermediate High'.
  • A GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale in the content area of Spanish or position of the licensure program.
  • A content portfolio as defined by the candidate's educator preparation program.

As an example, the University of Wisconsin - Madison's Spanish educator preparation program requires candidates to reach the 'Intermediate-High' level on the ACTFL OPI test in semester one, prior to starting student teaching.

In addition, all candidates who complete their educator preparation programs in a Wisconsin college/university are required to demonstrate competency in teaching practices to qualify for initial licensure. This competency is tested by completing the edTPA. Candidates should consult with their educator program for assistance in registering for the edTPA.

Step 3: Apply for an Initial Teaching License with Endorsement

Once the education and testing requirements have been completed, candidates can apply for initial teaching licensure using the Educator Licensing Online (ELO) system. ELO allows candidates to provide the information, supporting materials and payment needed for DPI to process their license applications. The system allows applicants to manage their own licensing information, including printing a copy of their license certificate, renewing their licenses when required and submitting fingerprints electronically if asked to do so.

Spanish Teacher Certification Resources

Please follow the links below to access our resources for helping Spanish teacher candidates study for their certification exams in Wisconsin:

Wisconsin Teacher Certification Examinations Courses

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