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Heritage Spanish Blog Q&A

Heritage Spanish Blog Q&A

Bilingual expertise can open many doors for native speakers, as the need for bilingual professionals is currently very high. In one week’s time, roughly 12,000 jobs posted on Indeed.com included the word “bilingual,” according to CNN.

Many positions that desire a bilingual skillset will test candidates to determine language proficiency. Don’t let a lack of training prevent you from success. Our new Heritage Spanish course was designed for native Spanish speakers in need of training on proper grammar as well as those who need it for their careers (like the Medical or Legal Interpreter professions we train for at KSU).

To gain further knowledge on our Heritage Spanish course, we decided to ask Carmen Carvajal, our course instructor, a few questions on her background and the course itself. Here is what she had to say:

Carmen Carvajal

Carmen Carvajal, Instructor

Who would benefit most from this course?
Someone who needs it for work or for the pleasure to learn a foreign language to better communicate with friends and family.

What should students expect in the Heritage Spanish course?
This course can accommodate students from a wide range of backgrounds, from those who are minimally functional (can comprehend Spanish but are not able to speak fluently, read or write) to those who are more proficient and/or partially literate in Spanish. By the end of the Heritage Spanish course, students should exhibit Intermediate-Mid level proficiency in all four domains (listening, speaking, reading and writing) and some students may attain Intermediate-High proficiency or above.

How beneficial do you think being bilingual is?
Research has shown that being bilingual improves cognitive skills that are not even related to language. It also helps to a better understanding and tolerance to different cultures.

Tell about your background in teaching and Spanish.
This was my 12th year teaching Spanish at Woodstock High School in Cherokee County. I was born and raised in Colombia, South America. In 2001, I moved to the USA with my family. I graduated in 1994 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Languages. Later, I attended Salamanca University and earned my Master’s Degree in Spanish Culture and Language. I also have been a Spanish Teacher Instructor at KSU Continuing Ed since July 2010. I am AP certified and have completed my Gifted Certification for the State of Georgia.

What is your teaching style?
I use the communicative approach, which is based on the idea that learning a language successfully comes through having to communicate real meaning. I emphasize on the four skills to learn a language: reading, writing, speaking, and listening.

Anything else you would like to add about this course or yourself?
The idea of the Heritage Spanish class is offering a series of classes to native Spanish speakers to help them improve their language skills.

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