Auxiliar de Conversacion Program for Filipinos

In this post I will talk about my journey to become an Auxiliar de Conversacion in Spain.

The Language and Culture Assistants Program 
is an initiative of the Spanish Government’s Ministry of Education and Vocational Training.

I first heard that Filipinos can come to Spain to work as English teachers or assistants back in 2015. I was told that an acquaintance whom I’d met at a pub crawl was moving to Spain. It sounded like another story of a Filipina wishing to work abroad, but her story piqued my interest. She was a successful broadcaster in the country, but she gave up everything and moved to Spain to become an English teacher. Some friends who knew that I’d been wanting to try living abroad suggested that I speak with her. And so I did.

This acquaintance said she felt happy with her job but always felt like something was missing and she needed a change. So, after sometime searching Google, she found that Spain offers foreigners the opportunity to live, study, and work in the country as a language assistant. The language assistant (or the auxiliar de conversacion), will work 12-16 hours per week after taking a teaching certification course. I was tempted to take the same route but was not exactly encouraged by the price: a hefty €3000+, and this is excluding the visa application and the flights. In the meantime, I was desperately trying [and failing] to save up the money I would need to even get my visa application approved.

Dreaming of the land of tapas, flamenco, and Javier Bardem.
(Photo: The Quirky Pineapple)

Fast forward to 2018, when a friend mentioned that the Spanish government also offers the same program, but there was no need to pay any fees, besides the visa application and airfare. Of course, I got curious, and this curiosity led me to read blogs upon blogs of people’s experiences as auxiliares.

I also vowed to make 2019 the year that I will move to Spain as an auxiliar de conversación.

And here we are.

Basically, an auxiliar (or auxie for short) under the Ministerio will be assisting English teachers during fun activities in the classroom to help practice the students’ English skills. The Ministerio partners with public primary, secondary and language schools for this program. Auxies are expected to be in the classroom for 12-16 hours and are paid €700 or €1000, depending on the region they are placed.

Filipinos are allowed to become auxiliares in specific regions, whether inland or on the Spanish islands. Unlike the other countries, Filipinos are required to schedule an in-person interview with the Education Adviser first before uploading their application requirements in the Spanish portal called Profex. The application period usually runs from mid-January to mid-April, with regional placements sent out in May, and the final placements, which include the name of the school/s, are sent out in July. Classes begin in October and end in May or June (in Madrid).

I wish to take many siestas in the OG siestaland, España.
(Photo: World Atlas)

I wish for my website to become a resource page for Filipinos who want to live in Spain as an auxiliar. Most of the resources online are specific to North Americans, the largest group of auxiliares, which has been a partner of the Spanish Ministry since 2011. There aren’t that many blogs and Facebook groups that talk about the auxie life as a Filipino, so I wish to add to that small number of resources for Filipinos. Stay tuned for more posts about my Auxie Journey! CM

37 Comments

  1. rio zamora
    August 2, 2019

    i am graduating this march 2020 bsed major in english.. can you share please the interview process , like tips on how to get into thd program, ive only had volunteer teaching experience to less fortunate children here in manila, and i would really want to explore as esl teacher abroad. hope i get a response. t
    ive been searching around web and its very few for filipinos.thank you in advanced!

    Reply
    1. CM
      August 8, 2019

      Hi, Rio! Welcome to my blog!

      Okay, let me answer your questions:
      1. Yes, fresh graduates can apply.
      2. You need to schedule an interview with the Education Adviser based in the Philippines before you can register in their portal. Depending on where you are graduating from, you may schedule the interview through your school or on your own.
      3. Teaching experience, whether formal or volunteer work, is valuable. The EA will check your conversation skills. Be bubbly!
      4. Like my Facebook page (link somewhere here), and the Facebook group that I created for more tips. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/457829701657105/
      5. If you don’t have one yet, open a personal bank account. One of the requirements for the visa application is the proof of funds. The earlier you open one, the better.

      Reply
      1. rio zamora
        August 19, 2019

        thank you!!!!
        can you share on how much is the show money in the savings account? based from your application. more power in advanced! your blog really helps..i joined the fb group too!

        Reply
        1. CM
          August 22, 2019

          Let’s try to avoid the phrase “show money”, as you do need the money to survive in Spain. 🙂 You should have enough for at least 3 months since your first allowance won’t be available until November. Keep in mind that you have to pay for your own airfare and your accommodation. Most landlords require a fianza or a month’s deposit on top of your first payment. So be sure to have at least €1500 or ₱96000. But much better if you have more than ₱100000.

          Reply
  2. Athena
    August 17, 2019

    Hi, I have done the Skype Interview with the Staff and curious about the VISA application process. Can you help me understand the process if that is okay?

    Reply
    1. CM
      August 18, 2019

      Hey, Athena!

      When did you do your Skype interview? I assume this happened in January. Have you been instructed to do anything else since then?

      Also, is this for the auxiliares de conversación for the Ministry?

      Reply
      1. Athena
        August 18, 2019

        Hello, I did the interview just this Friday. I am just concerned about me being here in Thailand, not certain if the process will be different.

        Reply
        1. CM
          August 19, 2019

          Hi again. I’m a little confused because the program of the Ministry closed in April this year. Are you talking about another program? Is this with BEDA (Comillas)?

          Reply
  3. Gina
    September 27, 2019

    Hi, I graduated last 2017. Do they allow applicants that are not fresh graduates? What is the step by step application process? I would appreciate your response. Thank you!

    Reply
    1. CM
      October 27, 2019

      Hi! Yes— I graduated in 2012. 🙂
      They allow applicants up to age 60.
      Read the rest of my blog for the steps.

      Reply
  4. Diana Rose
    November 5, 2019

    Hi just wanna ask if their looking for ESL certificates or do they do background check on schools bcoz I’m a graduate of finance in a local college and I heard other schools have program such as ESL which is an advantage for them.

    Reply
    1. CM
      January 4, 2020

      Hola!

      No—they don’t really look at your ESL background or degree, though of course having ESL teaching experience is an advantage. The deciding factor whether you will be accepted or not is your demeanor during the interview with the education adviser. You have to be engaging, bubbly (but don’t overdo it) and straighforward. Remember that you will be a teacher, not a lawyer. 😉

      Bear in mind that this was my experience last year, but so far it hasn’t changed.

      Reply
  5. Es
    January 15, 2020

    Hi Chai! Is there a way for me to email you further about the auxiliar program? Instagram won’t allow me to message you for some reason. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. CM
      January 18, 2020

      Hi! Someone was able to send me a message on my IG, but in case you need further info, please join the FB group I made and you can PM me from there. 🙂

      The FB group is: https://www.facebook.com/groups/filipinoauxiliaresdeconversacion

      Make sure to answer the survey questions so I can add you!

      Reply
  6. Jenn
    January 21, 2020

    Hola!

    I have a question with the application. I didn’t graduate from top university. I came from a small state college in our province. Do you think they will still accept my application?

    Reply
    1. CM
      January 21, 2020

      Hola, Jenn!

      Priority is given to partner schools, but that does not mean your application won’t be accepted just because you didn’t graduate from those schools.

      The thing is, the availability for those from non-partner schools is now very limited, so the chances may be slim for that reason. I suggest looking for other language assistant programs if you are really interested to come to Spain to teach English as a language assistant. Make sure to constantly check the Ministry website for updates.

      Reply
  7. Bea
    February 19, 2020

    Would you mind sharing your interview experience? Like how long did it take and what were the questions asked? Thank you!

    Reply
    1. CM
      February 21, 2020

      Hi! The interview took more or less 15 minutes. The Education Adviser asked the following:

      – Tell me something about yourself
      – Do you have any teaching experience?
      – How did you know about the program?
      – Why do you want to join the program?
      – What are your plans after the program?

      That it, pretty much.

      Reply
      1. CM
        February 21, 2020

        *That’s it. LOL

        Reply
  8. kath
    April 24, 2020

    Hi Chai!!! As for the requirement that they need a “speakers of English as native language” for Filipinos, I just want to ask on how you prove this? Do they need to see some certification on the schools you went? I’m just confused about this hehe.

    Reply
    1. CM
      June 1, 2020

      Hi, Kath! They will assess through the in-person or Skype interview. When I applied in 2019 I was interviewed by the education adviser based in Manila. This year, I was told the applicants were interviewed by officers based in Australia. You may include a certification (such as IELTS or TOEFL), but that is not necessary.

      Reply
  9. Ferdie
    June 15, 2020

    Hi,
    I am currently here in Vietnam as an ESL Teacher. I had taken the Business Administration major in manageement before I fi nished my MBA degree. I have TESOL too. I would like to relocate in Spain. Could you please give me some advice on how to do it? please ….

    Reply
    1. CM
      June 16, 2020

      Hi! If you read through this blog, there’s plenty of information. The degree does not matter. What’s important is that you have a degree. The TESOL certification is not a requirement, either.

      First, visit the webpage of the Ministerio de Educación in the Philippines. https://bit.ly/3d4dJzu

      Reply
  10. Ferdz
    August 12, 2020

    Hi! I had taken a Business Administration major in management before I finished my MBA degree. I have TESOL which is accredited by ALAP in the UK. I am currently working as an ESL Teacher in Vietnam for more than 2 years. My questions are: What is the best time to submit my application (since I am here in Vietnam)? What am I going to do to proceed with the application? What is the first to last step that I need to do? Please advise…

    Reply
    1. CM
      August 12, 2020

      Hi. The Ministry’s priorities are 1) those from partner schools, and 2) those who may not be from partner schools but are residing in the Philippines. A couple years ago people from abroad could apply, but that may have changed.

      The best time, of course, is during the annual application period, which runs from January to April.

      You can keep reading this blog, or read the Ministry’s official website.
      https://www.educacionyfp.gob.es/filipinas/convocatorias-programas/ministerio.html

      You’re welcome.

      Reply
  11. Pete
    September 3, 2020

    Hi. Will they ask for your diploma or transcript of records? I graduated a long time ago, 1990. I may have misplaced them. Thanks.

    Reply
    1. chmntr1
      September 3, 2020

      Yes, it is required.

      Reply
  12. Julia
    September 6, 2020

    Hello! I’m planning to apply for the year 2021-2022. Do you think they will push through with the program next year especially because of what’s happening? I graduated from a partner school back in 2018 and I heard that even previous graduates are allowed to apply through their school but that’s in conflict with what you mentioned in your blog. Does it vary per school? Thank you so much!

    Reply
    1. CM
      September 7, 2020

      There were auxiliares even during the Spanish recession in 2008, so I likely they won’t cancel it.

      Reply
  13. Rinalyn Asper
    September 20, 2020

    Hi ! I’m a BSED English students, and I’m willing to apply as a English teacher in preschool , for more experiences. And to help students to their english learning This year 2020-2021. I would like to know how can I apply ? Thankyou.

    Reply
    1. CM
      September 24, 2020

      Hi! This program is in-person, so you cannot do online classes with it; you have to be physically in Spain.

      At this point my best advice is to focus on learning and teaching English, and reach at least a C1 level.

      Cheers and good luck!

      Reply
  14. […] and follow their application procedures. For the Philippines click here. There’s also a great blog that goes through the entire process for Filipino […]

    Reply
    1. CM
      September 24, 2020

      Thanks for the recommendation! 🙂

      Reply
  15. liz
    October 16, 2020

    Hi Ms. CM,

    I’ve heard that there will be an opening this January 2021. What I am worrying about right now is that how will I know if there’s a schedule already on January for the submission of application? Aside from the group pages that I joined on fb.

    Thank you!

    Reply
    1. CM
      October 17, 2020

      Hi, Liz.

      Where did you hear that? Last year, the January opening was still for partner schools. The one for the public was made available in April.

      The best website to check would be, of course, the Ministry’s official pages: http://www.educacionyfp.gob.es/filipinas/convocatorias-programas/auxiliares-en-espana.html

      Reply
  16. Justin
    October 21, 2020

    Hello, I’d like to apply for the LAP in Spain for 2021-2022 but my concern is that I’m a graduate of BSBA in Marketing Management and has no related teaching experience. Do you think I’m qualified for the program? Pls respond.

    Reply
    1. CM
      October 24, 2020

      Hi Justin,

      A lot (and I mean a LOOOOOOOTTTTT) of auxiliares, even those from the US, don’t have any teaching experience whatsoever. Some of them are fresh graduates of non-education-related degrees, while others were working in other fields and just applied to the LAP. The teaching experience may or may not give you an advantage, but at the moment, it’s not a strict requirement.

      If you are from a partner school, do check with the LAP coordinator, because each partner school has different selection criteria outside of the general requirements stipulated by the Ministry.

      Reply

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