With nearly 600 million speakers, Spanish is one of the most spoken languages in the world. Over 22 million students studied Spanish in 2020 and it’s estimated that in the year 2100, 6.3% of the world’s population will be able to communicate in Spanish. People study Spanish for a variety of reasons. Whether your motivation is personal or professional, there are a huge number of courses and programmes that will help you to learn the language and achieve your goals.
Reasons for Studying Spanish
It is impossible to talk about all the reasons a person might want to learn Spanish. However, here are a few of the most common ones.
For a holiday
Spain and Latin America are popular holiday destinations. Many people who go on vacation to these places – especially for longer stays – like to learn the basics before they go. Being able to order food, speak to the locals and get recommendations and so on makes your holiday more enjoyable. Especially since in some places in Latin America and even in parts of Spain, few people speak English.
It might be cliché, but many people meet and fall in love with a Spanish-speaking person either on holiday in Spain or perhaps somewhere else in the world. Oftentimes, long-distance relationships are not ideal, and these couples find themselves
deciding to live together. Even if you and your Spanish love chose not to live in Spain, eventually you will need to communicate with their Mama, Papa, Abuelita and their family and friends in general.
Although Spain is home to some of the world’s oldest universities, it has only recently gained popularity as a study destination for foreign students. Universities are increasingly offering courses in English however a knowledge of Spanish is still required for the majority of programmes and for navigating university life.
Employment and work
Companies sometimes send their employees to Spain for a period of time. Many other people have taken advantage of the skills shortage list published by the government and come to Spain to help ‘fill the gaps’ in key industries. Although, in many larger Spanish cities people often speak English, other languages are not so widely spoken. To be able to work competently and advance your career – as well as leading a happy life – knowing Spanish is crucial.
Living in Spain
Spain is also a very attractive destination for digital nomads, retirees, and expats in general. One of the biggest draws is the climate, especially for older people looking to spend their retirement near the sea and in the sun. People who don’t have Spanish language skills find themselves tied to expat communities. Even simple things like going to the grocery store or chatting to neighbours are so much easier when you can speak Spanish!
Choosing a Language Course
There are many different ways to learn Spanish including online and in-person. You can also choose when and how often you study, and/or if you want to focus on a specific skill like speaking or preparing for an exam. The perfect course for you
depends on your end goal and your prior experience. Do you already know some Spanish? How much opportunity outside of the classroom will you have to practice? Do you have a job in Spain? Will you study at university? What is your budget? These are all very important questions that you need to ask yourself before you look for a course. A conversation class might sound like fun, but if your goal is to get to C1 level to enter university, this course alone will not be enough.
The Advantages of In-person Courses
Learning online can be a wonderful thing, especially if you want to make a start or if your budget is smaller. In the pandemic it also allowed us all to continue studying the things we love (and some we had to) in the safety of our own homes. However, as life is starting to snap back into pre-pandemic normalcy, it is time for us to head back into the classroom!
Here are some of our favourite reasons for studying in-person:
- In-person learning provides you with greater opportunities to practise with other people, your classmates. This can help you to progress more quickly as you and your classmates will be at the same level, meaning there is less embarrassment or shyness around speaking in class. It also helps you to make friends which is important if you have just arrived from overseas!
- You have greater exposure to the subtleties of the language. You will be able to see and experience the small movements your teacher makes when saying specific things and learn the many cultural factors that impact how a language is spoken.
- Technology is great, but in the classroom, you will be able to improve your accent and listening comprehension at a greater speed and with more precision (without the dropouts, echoing and other annoying sounds that can occur online).
- Let’s assume your class is in Spain, Latin America or in another Spanish speaking environment. You will be fully surrounded by the language. You will hear it before and after class and you will be forced to use it in daily life. Immersion has been proven to speed up the learning process and even more so if you are motivated to get out into your new community and speak to everyone you can!
How Good will my Spanish be?
Something that many people want to know is what they should expect when they study Spanish. Of course, real outcomes vary from person to person depending on their personality, motivation, resources and so on. However, if you imagine that you are an average student attending a course at FreeDa, who pays attention in class, does their homework and practices when they can, then you could expect this kind of progress over time:
- If you are a beginner and study for six weeks, you would be able to achieve CEFR level A1.
This level is perfect if you are going on holiday! You could introduce yourself, ask for simple directions and buy necessities like food and bus tickets.
- From A1 level Spanish, it will take you eight more weeks of study to reach level A2
At A2 level you can have conversations about basic topics using past and future tenses. Your Spanish is slowly becoming more fluent and your understanding of lessons and the world around you will have improved greatly.
- From A2 it would take you an additional 12 Weeks to reach B1
At this point, your Spanish will be pretty good and you will be able to do many things yourself. However, it might still not be enough to work in a fully Spanish environment or handle complicated things like dealing with utility companies etc yourself.
- From B1 to B2 it takes a little bit longer – 18 weeks
B2 level is considered proficient enough to work, study and live in Spain or other Spanish speaking countries.
- And it takes a further 18 Weeks to reach C1
At this level, you could apply for jobs that require more sophisticated use of the language such as a lawyer or would allow you to get into courses taught entirely in Spanish at degree level.
This means that in theory, it would take you a little more than a year to go from beginner to fully proficient if you studied continuously and at the same intensity. In reality it takes most people a bit longer due to fluctuations in motivation and circumstances. We recommend that if you have a specific study or career goal to check out all the language requirements in advance, so that you can plan your study properly and not lose time.
If you would like more information on how to learn Spanish, check out our blog. [link to previous blog]
FreeDa has offered quality Spanish courses since 2017 and for a time before that as Matrioshka. Because we understand that every person has their own reasons and goals for learning Spanish, we offer seven different programmes, most offered at a variety of levels.
The super intensive course is one of the quickest ways to learn Spanish. It comprises 20 hours per week of lessons including conversation, grammar, interpretation workshops, Language exchanges, and activities – all designed to immerse you in the Spanish language and culture.
The intensive course is 10 hours of language instruction per week. It also includes language exchange, sports activities and excursions providing opportunities to practice what you have learnt in class.
This course is great for people wanting to work while they study or that are looking for a course to supplement their time in Barcelona.
With five short sessions a week (one hour each, Monday to Friday) this course gives you plenty of time to practice your Spanish skills, make friends and make the most of your time in Spain.
Private lessons can be taken one-on-one or one-teacher-to-two-students. Private tuition enables the tutor to adapt to your individual learning style and give you a personalised learning experience.
DELE Exam Preparation
This programme prepares students for the DELE exam – the official, internationally recognised Spanish language test.
The Business Spanish course is especially for learners with B2 level or above. It teaches the necessary vocabulary to communicate, negotiate and succeed in the Spanish-speaking business world.
Before students begin their course, they first take a placement test to make sure they are put in the most appropriate class for their needs. If you would like any more information about our courses, please contact us. [https://freedaspace.com/en/contact_us/]
Learning Spanish will open the door to an entirely new world! In less than a year you will be proficient enough to live, work and enjoy Spanish life. So, what are you waiting for? ¡Venga aprender con nosotros!
Vare, F. J., (2022, January 13). Why Is It Important to Learn Spanish? 14 Ways Spanish Will Improve Your Life.
Closeteachers., (unknown). Why Study Spanish: Top Ten Reasons to Study Spanish.
Global Scholarships., (unknown). 7 Best Universities in Spain for International Students.
Insituto Cervantes de Londres., (2022, October 15). Spanish, a language spoken by 585 million people, and 489 million of them native. https://blogs.cervantes.es/londres/2020/10/15/spanish-a-language-spoken-by-585-million-people-and-489-million-of-them-native/