The Spanish Institute

If you are hoping to use the Spanish language in a bilingual service, particularly in the mission field, The Spanish Language Institute is the ideal place to pursue your interests. Since 1942, The Spanish Language Institute has helped over 16,000 individuals achieve the language skills they needed to serve the Lord in the Spanish-speaking world.

Our Mission


Recognized as an institutional leader in linguistics  and culture, we equip individuals to fulfill the call of the Great Commission globally.

Our Vision

To equip and disciple our students linguistically, spiritually, and culturally with excellence. Effectively training them to reach the Spanish-speaking world with the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Testimonies from  students



Our Story

The Spanish Language Institute has supported the Church for more than 78 years.

The Institution was originally founded by the United Presbyterian Mission Board in Colombia in 1942, but in 1950, the school was moved to San José, Costa Rica where it continued to operate under the same board until 1972.

In that year, a non-profit Costa Rican organization (Asociación del Instituto de Lengua Española) was formed, which continues to govern the Institute through its annually elected Board of Directors.

Currently we support more than 120 missionary agencies by equipping their missionaries in language, culture and character.

We have graduated more than 16,000 missionaries.

However, the Institute is much more than a language school! It is the ideal place to help you and your family transition from your home country to your field of service. We offer help with housing, a school for the children, recreational facilities, pastoral counseling, and the opportunity to fellowship with other missionaries who are preparing for service in Spanish-speaking environments.

Our teachers are committed to helping you understand and speak the Spanish language, while our administrative staff will help you transition into a new cultural setting. Our current students and staff are ready and excited to show you around the beautiful country of Costa Rica, known for its complex ecosystems, conservation efforts, political neutrality and friendly people.

The Institute’s academic program is flexible and open to a wide range of proficiency levels, from beginning to advanced, as well as a variety of learning styles and preferences. In addition to the traditional classroom, we offer the FARO community language learning program, where you will have to opportunity to practice conversationally in the community, as well as individual tutoring.

The Institute is located in a suburb of the capital city of San José in the center of the country, approximately 2 hours away from the Atlantic or Pacific coast. The city has everything from concert halls and shopping malls, to typical restaurants and flea markets within minutes from our campus that extends over an entire city block.

If you find that you have questions that are not answered on our website, or if you would just like to make personal contact with us, please do not hesitate to call or write. We will be most happy to hear from you!