More than 200 students are being taught how to become language assistants this year in the Faculty of Education

12/09/16
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The Faculty of Education recently welcomed a group of new students to receive training here as language assistants for schools. This training has been offered at our university for the past four years. This year the students came from nine different foreign universities (more than half from the United States), and received training as part of one of the language courses the faculty offers. After the training they work in different schools in various parts of Spain for one academic year. 

52% of the students this year came from various universities in the US; 26% from England; 14% from Ireland; 4% from Canada; and the rest from Austria, Germany, Hong Kong, the Czech Republic and China.  All of them attended the welcome session along with various lecturers and professors, experts in language teaching, and Meddeas specialists. Through practical talks and workshops, students are provided with resources and the participants’ questions are answered, with the aim of facilitating their incorporation into the various programmes offered throughout the academic year to the maximum extent possible.

This training is carried out in conjunction with the Spanish organisation called Meddeas, which coordinates these students and holds an agreement with UIC Barcelona.  Sebastián Cerro, Executive Partner at Meddeas, states that “the main objective of this training day is to facilitate the incorporation of these foreign language teaching assistants into the foreign language teaching programmes provided by the Faculty of Education at UIC Barcelona, since they will subsequently undertake teaching work placements in schools throughout all the autonomous communities”.

Therefore, from this week onwards, this year’s students will be sent to various schools in Spain and throughout the academic year will take one of the courses offered to them by the Faculty of Education:  Bilingual Education Expertise, Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) or Advanced Methodologies for English Teachers (AMET).

Through this programme, the participants, apart from completing their academic education, acquire experience to access the labour market, and help local students to improve their oral communication in foreign languages. They also have the opportunity to learn in depth about the culture and language of the place where they are undertaking their teaching practice.

Meddeas offers schools support services for learning foreign languages.  The company mission includes selecting the graduates who will work as language assistants, facilitating exchanges with American centres, evaluating the level achieved by the students in the centre, and facilitating teacher training in the areas of didactics and language learning.