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The North American Language and Culture Assistant Program in Spain is one of the most popular programs to teach English in Spain. The North American Language and Culture Assistant Program is also called the Auxiliares de Conversación Program in Spain. This isn’t meant to be confusing for you when you’re applying or looking for information; it’s just how the program is referred in both English and Spanish.

Auxiliares de Conversación Program Spain
Logroño, La Rioja, Spain

If you’re on this blog post, you are probably getting ready to apply to teach in Spain or at least seriously considering it. The North American Language and Culture Program is one of many programs to teach English in Spain, so be sure to check out other programs to find the best fit for you. 

Now, let’s start talking about How to Apply to the North American Language and Culture Assistant Program in Spain…

How to Apply Auxiliares de Conversación Program Spain
Granada, Andalucía, Spain


There are very few requirements to be an eligible candidate for the North American Language & Culture Assistant or Auxiliares de Conversación Program. If you meet all of the following, then you are eligible to apply to the program!

 1. American or Canadian

2. Have a Bachelors degree or be a junior or senior enrolled in college

3. Speak English as your first language

4. Be in good physical condition*

5. Pass a criminal background check *

6. Be born no earlier than October 1, 1960**

*You will need to complete a physical by your doctor saying you are in good health and complete a criminal background in order to get your visa. While these are requirements, they would not automatically disqualify you from teaching English in Spain.

**Also, there is no age limit. However, the program materials state that most auxiliares are between 21 and 35, and if an applicant is over 35, it is up to the schools as to whether they want that candidate or not.

How to Apply Auxiliares de Conversación Program Spain 1
Sevilla, Andalucía, Spain

There are a few documents you will need to provide as well:

1. Copy of the identification pages of your passport

2. Copy of either your official college transcript or diploma

3. Cover letter describing why you want to do the program (in English or Spanish)

4. Letter of recommendation on a letterhead that is signed from a professor or supervisor

How to Apply North American Language and Culture Assistant Program Spain
Bilbao, País Vasco, Spain

Profex Materials

You apply through the Spanish government via their website called Profex. It can be a confusing process, but these links to the materials will help you along the way. All the links are for the 2022-2023 application.

North American Language & Culture Assistant Website

Profex Manual

Application Guidelines for New Applicants

Frequently Asked Questions

Checklist for Applicants

Guidelines for Reference Letter


1 Week in Spain Itinerary
Segovia, Castilla y León, Spain


The North American Language and Culture Assistant application itself is broken down into 5 stages – inscrita, registrada, admitida, adjudicada/candidato seleccionado, and aceptada. As the application process moves forward, you will slowly, but surely see your status change.


The first, and arguably most important stage, is inscrita. Once you complete your application, your status will be inscrita, and you will receive your inscrita number. In a sense, everything depends on this number! 

The North American Language & Culture Assistant Program gives an inscrita (application) number to each applicant in the order in which they apply, and subsequently, gives away teaching placements in that same order. Therefore, you want to submit your application right away to get a low inscrita number and an earlier placement

All you need to do to get your inscrita number is fill out your basic information, CV/résumé, and your school/region placement, which is the fun part!

The school placement part allows you to select whether you’d prefer to work with kids or teens and in an urban or rural area. 



For the region placement, you will select 1 region from each group. Then, you will rank the groups from 1 to 3. Here are the groups:

Group A: Asturias, Ceuta y Melilla, Extremadura, La Rioja, Navarra, País Vasco

Group B: Aragón, Cantabria, Castilla-La Mancha, Cataluña, Galicia, Islas Canarias

Group C: Andalucía, Castilla y León, Islas Baleares, Madrid, Murcia, Valencia

*In years past, Cataluña, Ceuta y Melilla, and Islas Canarias didn’t participate in the program. However, this can change depending on the year.

If you are trying to decide on what region in Spain to live in, check out our Guide to the Regions in Spain that breaks down the major cities, average rent, Auxiliares Program, and thoughts on living in each region.

Once you’ve completed all of the following, you will submit your application and receive an email with your inscrita number!

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 7.34.01 AM
Your inscrita email

This is the point where you go back into the application and load the aforementioned documents into the documentos anexos section. This section can be found under curriculum > documents anexos. 

In the documents anexos section, you can upload your passport, cover letter, college transcripts or diploma, letter of recommendation, and your signed and dated checklist. You will have to print the checklist, sign it, and then upload it again. Do not forget to upload the checklist!

How your inscrita will look in Profex


Registrada will most likely be the shortest step in your processing of your application to the North American Language and Culture Assistant Program . 

You reach this status as the Spanish Ministry of Education goes through your application to be a Language Assistant in Spain. You will get an email updating you on your new registrada status. 

Most likely, this email will quickly be followed by another one saying you are now onto the next step, admitida. However, if there is a problem with your documents or application, they will email you with what you need to fix. You will then have to resubmit something and stay at registrada a little longer until they review it and give it the okay.

How to Apply North American Language and Culture Assistant Program Spain 2
San Juan de Gaztelugatxe, País Vasco, Spain


Once your entire application has been reviewed and everything is deemed correct, you will be “admitted.” 

Congratulations! You will be going to teach in Spain! However, your excitement may soon wear off because your patience will undoubtedly be tested before reaching the next stage.

Adjudicada/Candidato seleccionado

After a long wait – 3 months or so – you will receive your regional placement (autonomous community) via email. Then, you have to accept or decline your offer. You have 5 days to do this! 

If you do not respond – accepting or rejecting – your placement will be considered declined and will be given to someone else. The placements begin around May and start with second-year renewals and then move on to first-years in order of inscrita number.

How to Apply Auxiliares de Conversación Program Spain 3
Sevilla, Andalucía, Spain


If you accept the placement, you become aceptada!

Carta de nombramiento

This is where you find out which school you will be teaching in! It’s arguably the most exciting step in the entire process because you can start researching where you will be looking and living in Spain!

You should get the email 2-3 weeks after you’ve accepted your position. However, it is Spain, so be aware of the potential for delays.

Mike’s carta de nobramiento from when he was an North American Language and Culture Assistant

Now that you’ve successfully navigated profex and accepted your position, you are probably scouring the internet researching as much information as possible about the city you’re placed in. This is what you should be doing! 

Keep in mind, though, that the process of you getting to Spain is not over because you still have to get your visa before you can can live and work in Spain as a North American Language and Culture Assistant.

Make sure to read our other posts on the Auxiliares de Conversacíon Application Timeline and Is My Inscrita Number Too High to Receive a Placement?, What to Bring to Spain as an Auxiliar de Conversación, and see what a typical day in the life of an auxiliar de conversación in Madrid is like!

If you have any questions on applying for the North American Language and Culture Assistant Program feel free to ask in the comments, contact us, or check out our page on Teaching English in Spain.


  1. Scott Miller Reply

    So, to be clear, if you were born before 1960, you can still apply and it’s up to a school’s discretion whether to accept you? Or will you automatically be rejected for program? Gracias.

    • We believe so. It might be worth applying and seeing what they say if you are interested. However, don’t pull all your eggs in one basket in case they do reject you. You can also check out other programs to teach English in Spain to see if they have different age requirements.

      Unfortunately, the age requirement has more to do with obtaining the visa from the Spanish government than necessarily doing the job itself. Other countries have similar age restrictions of certain types of visas.

  2. So what happens if you are accepted but assigned a remote town and that is not what was requested. Is there an ability to be placed somewhere’s else? Also I applied with my sister because the program claimed them would place us together but she is still waiting to be accepted. Any recommendations are appreciated?

    • You can always try to ask them to change your placement, but most likely they won’t because there are so many applicants. You could always try to find someone through the Auxiliar Facebook page to switch with, but even this isn’t something they always accommodate.

      As for your sister, they generally put people in the same region if they both requested to be with each other on the application. However, that does not guarantee your schools will really be that close to each other. For example, you could both be in Sevilla but have schools one hour in different directions from the city.

      Hopefully, this helps, and good luck on your placements!

  3. Hi – great info! Is TEFL certification necessary for the program? If not required, is it helpful or advantageous to have it? Thanks!

    • A TEFL is not required for the program at all, but it might make your day-to-day lessons a bit easier as you have some experience. However, some schools might not actually make you teach any specific grammar-style lessons. If you’re thinking of staying in teaching, it might help you to get it, but you don’t need to get it before you start.

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