You can become an Italian teacher for high school or college students by becoming fluent in the Italian language and acquiring your teaching certificate. Even if you're a native speaker, to teach Italian in the United States, you need at least your bachelor's (4-year) college degree and most likely a master's degree in education, with specialized teaching courses, a student teaching internship and a passing grade on the national teacher's examination. Most high schools in the United States offer only Spanish and French as foreign language electives, with a few offering Italian. Italian teachers are most in demand in college and university settings or in private schools that teach business people and tourists language skills.
Attain fluency in Italian. If you're already a native speaker and fluent in written and spoken Italian, visit or speak with a college or university to see if you can take tests to prove fluency and attain credits toward a bachelor's degree. Even if you speak the language fluently, to teach the language, you must prove it through credentials obtained at reputable accredited universities. If you aren't already fluent, you must study the language.
Learn how to teach. Teaching techniques from crafting solid lesson plans to differentiating instruction for different types of learners can be learned in a good undergraduate or graduate degree program. Most programs include courses in theory, pedagogy and practice. Student teaching, where you are observed for one semester and teach under the watchful guidance of an experienced teacher, is usually part of the curriculum.
Take a licensing exam. The education department at the college or university can provide you with the application forms, testing dates and locations to take the test. Upon passing, you can teach. Most states in the United States require a master's degree but give teachers time to obtain it. You can begin teaching once you have a bachelor's degree and your certification, as long as you complete your master's degree within the time frame established by the state in which you are licensed to teach.
Teach Italian without obtaining a teaching certificate and degree. You might find opportunities among the many nonaccredited language schools or continuing education programs. You do not need to be certified to teach in either setting. Many adults seeking to learn a foreign language for business or pleasure enjoy taking continuing education courses.
Find continuing education courses through your local high school district, college or university outreach office or office of adult education. Prepare your credentials, resume and a cover letter, and submit them to the head of the program. You may be asked to interview with the program director and supply the director with a course outline and sample lesson plans.
Jeanne Grunert has been a writer since 1990. Covering business, marketing, gardening and health topics, her work has appeared in the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" books, "Horse Illustrated" and many national publications. Grunert earned her Master of Arts in writing from Queens College and a Master of Science in direct and interactive marketing from New York University.