Spain: Teacher Assisting

OURENSE, SPAIN - This program offers an opportunity for students in the College of Education to explore the educational system and cultures of the Galicia region in Northern Spain. Students will also be teaching in the local schools, either in English or Spanish based on student needs. Students will be placed depending on two considerations: 1) Their certification needs dictating placement at the secondary or elementary level 2) Their major/minor needs if secondary. There is no language prerequisite for this program. Students will participate in a dual placement program that facilitates half a semester placement stateside and half a semester placement abroad during the teacher assisting semester.

Students will be housed with host families, thereby immersing them in Spain’s culture. Students will explore Ourense by taking a tour of the city and trips to The Plaza Mayor, the Cathedral, the Capilla del Cristo, the Ponte Vella (Old Bridge), and the Spa and Thermal area. Additional cultural experiences include weekend trips to Santiago de Compostela, a leading Catholic pilgrimage route originated in the 9th century and home to Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. Students will also spend a weekend in Albergue “Os Biocos” where they will go hiking, make astronomical observations, visit medieval castle "Castillo de Castro Caldelas", explore Roman mines, and see century old chestnut and oak trees. 

This experience could greatly impact a student’s ability to teach in a multi-cultural setting. It will also offer students the opportunity to experience another culture and assist in the creation of culturally competent students and educators.

Spain Teaching Flickr

Cultural Info

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GPA Requirement
2.0 Undergraduate
3.0 Graduate
English Language Requirement

Program Dates and Application Deadline

Fall 2023

Estimated Program Dates: October 2023 - December 2023
Application Deadline: July 30, 2023

(6 weeks)



Students will register for a total of 11 credits

EDI 330/331: Methods and Strategies of Teaching (5 credits)

EDF 310: Organizing and Managing Classroom Environments (3 credits)

EDR 320/321: Content Area Literacy (3 credits)

EDT 370: Technology in Education (if needed)

*Special education majors contact faculty director for course sequence

Fulfills General Education Global Perspectives requirement.

Fulfills (1) General Education Issues course requirement. Reflection required

For more information on General Education Requirements, click here

Language of Instruction : English 


Program participants will stay with host families.

Cost and Scholarships



Program Fee: $4,695


  • Round-trip transportation from Grand Rapids
  • Accommodations
  • Most meals
  • Some field trips
  • All ground transportation

Other Expenses

  • GVSU Tuition is included in your Fall Tuition
  • Additional meals ($200)
  • Passport ($200)
  • OPTIONAL Excursion to Madrid and Portugal ($1,600)

Total Projected Cost (Program Fee + Other Expenses): $6,695


Students may fund study abroad by using financial aid, scholarships, grants and personal funds. A study abroad adviser can help you create a funding plan.

FACULTY-LED PROGRAM GRANT (Up to $500): All degree-seeking students who apply to their faculty-led program by the priority deadline are automatically considered for a grant of up to $500 from the Padnos International Center. Students must have a current FAFSA on file to be eligible. No application required.

Global Programs Scholarship (Varies): The purpose of this scholarship is to reduce the financial pressure on students and their families and make a Grand Valley education accessible to students from all backgrounds. This need-based scholarship will ensure that financial need does not become a barrier to intellectual and personal growth for students planning to study abroad or complete an internship abroad.

James F. and Virginia L. Goode Global Programs Scholarship:  The purpose of the scholarship is to reduce the financial pressure on students and their families and make a Grand Valley education accessible to students from all backgrounds. This need-based scholarship will ensure that financial need does not become a barrier to intellectual and personal growth for students planning to study abroad.

To apply for scholarships, visit the Study Abroad Scholarshipspage or  GVSU MyScholarships.


To contact the Financial Aid office, email [email protected] with “Study Abroad” in the Subject line. Include your G Number and Total Projected Cost of the program in the e-mail. 

Non-GVSU Students: Non-GVSU students admitted for study abroad are not eligible for Financial Aid from GVSU. Check with your home school’s study abroad and financial aid offices for details on applying for financial aid from your home school toward study abroad program costs. 

Financial Aid FAQ


This program is intended for Education majors and/or minors admitted into the GVSU College of Education. There is no language prerequisite for this program.

GPA requirement: 2.0 GPA (Undergraduate) 3.0 GPA (Graduate)

Students must be registered for Teacher Assisting EDI 330/331, EDF 310, and EDR 320/321 as co-requisites.

Non-GVSU students are not eligible for this program.

Proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 is required for participation in this program

Already Applied

CDC Report

CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.

Checkout CDC Report For Spain

US State Department Information

The first step to an international trip is to read our Traveler’s Checklist to find out things to consider before you go. Pay special attention to our safety and security information and assess for yourself the risk of traveling to a particular country or region.  Some U.S. citizens with special considerations – such as students, women, and LGBTI travelers – may face additional challenges when abroad.  If you do decide to travel, make a plan for what to do if something goes wrong overseas. 

Checkout US State Department Information For Spain

Contact Information

Padnos International Center
130 Lake Ontario Hall
[email protected]

"I had high expectations for my trip, but this experience in Ourense exceeded all of those expectations. I had an amazing host family, who I still keep in contact with. I was able to experience teaching in another culture. I also was able to travel, and create some lasting friendships along the way. Ourense and Spain will always hold a special place in my heart, and I am hoping to return there again someday." -Courtney Boetsma

Courtney Boetsma standing in a classroom with a group of children

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