As a non EU resident, one of the things you need to consider before studying or working in Spain is which type of visa you will need. If you would like to stay in Spain/ the Schengen zone for longer than 90 days, you will need to obtain a short or long-term student visa. Unfortunately, there are course providers operating in Barcelona and all over Spain who are breaking the law by not providing you with the minimum number of hours of study time in order to obtain the visa.
The Spanish long-term student visa allows non EU citizens to be eligible to apply for a work authorization once here to work legally in Spain for up to 20 hours per week. This is only legal and possible if you also study for 20 hours per week. Inspections of companies/ schools do take place which can affect your ability to obtain your visa or stay in Spain to study or work legally if the course provider does not meet the requirements set out by the consulate.
Use this check list of tips to ensure that your course provider is meeting the requirements of the Spanish consulate, and avoid risking your visa, time and money.
1. Ask for a monthly timetable of study
2. Ask for confirmation that 20 hours of study time will be met
3. Ask for confirmation that any teaching practice hours will take place as promised
4. Ask to speak to any graduates who are able to vouch for the course and confirm that the 20 hours of weekly study time is being met
5. Look for reviews online from people who have completed the course and who recommend it
6. Check what is included in the course and be suspicious if something seems too cheap or if they claim to have a 100% success rate in obtaining visas
1. Be aware of how many hours you are studying and tell your course provider if you are not reaching 20 hours per week
2. Check that what you are receiving is exactly what you were sold
3. If classes have been cancelled with nothing to replace them, ask for support in an area you need help with or find out what can be done to ensure you receive your 20 hours of training
Would you like to study or live in Barcelona? Qualify to teach English in only 4-weeks with our Trinity CertTESOL course. Follow this with our Developing Teacher course with Spanish and obtain your long-term student visa. Take advantage of our visa support (non-EUs) and free lifelong careers service. For more information, get in touch or apply here.