Can I Study Spanish Through an Online College?

Spanish is spoken around the world, and learning to speak it fluently will open a lot of doors that might otherwise be closed to you. Many jobs pay more for language skills, and being bilingual is key to working in some communities and countries. As a Spanish speaker, you may be able to find work as an interpreter or translator in many fields for both government and private sector work.

You’re not restricted to obtaining your Spanish degree in an on-campus setting. Many colleges offer foreign language programs as part of their online curriculum. You can take an online Spanish courses from a traditional university or pursue the degree through an online college. It’s important to check the course catalog of your chosen university before enrolling, though, to make sure that there is a Spanish program. Not all colleges will offer this major, and some schools may only offer a few Spanish courses rather than a full degree program.

You can also take some free courses online from certain providers. These programs are not accredited degrees, but they will help you learn the language and help build proficiency. You might not be able to find a very advanced Spanish program for free online, but you might be able to find some entry-level courses to bring you up to speed before paying for a more advanced class.

Do You Need a Degree?

Unlike many other job skills, it’s not strictly necessary to learn Spanish through an accredited degree program. Getting your degree is certainly a good way to learn the language and gain proficiency, but most employers will care more about your language proficiency than how you came to gain those skills.

Nevertheless, learning Spanish through a degree program will provide you with a more thorough grasp of the language than if you were self-taught or taught through immersion. It will be especially helpful for learning language skills needed for more formal settings, like interpreting for government or certain industries.

On the other hand, it might be difficult to learn all of your necessary language skills from an online program alone. Language classes often rely heavily on conversation and cultural immersion, and it can be difficult to teach yourself Spanish with only online curriculum. Be sure that the program you choose has as many interactive features as possible to help improve your abilities to learn the language. It’s also a good idea to find other Spanish speakers in your community or online to speak with and practice your skills.

Getting Hired After You Have a Spanish Degree

Once you’re received your accredited degree online, you will be able to list this on your resume and help attract the attention of particular employers. Be sure to highlight your proficiency and make note of any volunteer work, study abroad opportunities or anything else that allows you to showcase your abilities so that your prospectiver employer will get a clear picture of your language skills.

Whether or not you have a degree, your potential employer will want to assess your Spanish-speaking skills. Different employers will have different tests that they might require you to take, and you may need to re-take the test often to ensure that your skills remain sufficient for the job you have. The test will often include both a written and spoken portion and will reflect both your knowledge of the language and your ability to interpret industry-specific terminology into Spanish.

What Can I Do With a Spanish Degree?

Depending on your community, Spanish language proficiency might be an essential skill. Being bilingual will help you in a wide array of careers from customer service to government work. Here are a few of the careers that you might consider:

  • Interpreter for the government, private industries or an interpreter services phone line
  • Work in hospitals, schools or other places where bilingual assistance is necessary
  • Work at a call center, especially as a 911 operator, where bilingual workers are often paid more for their skills
  • International business person
  • Non-profit work in both local and international communities

There are many other careers you may consider pursuing after you’ve completed your education. Depending on your interests and skills, you may want to obtain a secondary degree in another specialization to get the most out of your career. Combining bilingual proficiency with other job skills can make you extremely attractive in the job market, and pursuing an online education can be the first step to obtaining that goal.

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