Teaching english as a second language. Yay or nay?
I guess I'll be the first one to point you in the direction of the "search" function here on BnA. There are dozens if not hundreds of threads where people talk about this in one way or another, and I'd bet that you can find a whole bunch of good information there.
You don't need TEFL to get into Peace Corps. They do their own training, regardless of your former experience. Lots of threads about Peace Corps in the archives too.
I don't know what the "TEFL Institute" is, but it sounds like a gimmick.
quote:Originally posted by EMH:
Here's a thread on the TEFL Institute from Dave's ESL Cafe:
Thanks. I've read a lot about dave's esl and it seems to be the place to go for people who are thinking about living abroad teaching english. I appreciate the help.
EFL/ESL is a fab way to travel and earn. I've been doing it for 7 years and have been lucky enough to live in 6 different countries. Make sure you do a decent course - the Cambridge or Trinity - as in many countries you are not emplyable without it (and in places like Kore, it will get you a higher salary). Avoid on line courses like the plague - not worth the paper they're written on, as they say. Many employers worldwide don't recognise them and if there is no teqaching practice, they are no use to you anyway.
Let me know if you want any specifics.
SoloTraveller wrote:I have read time after time that those online courses are a complete waste of time and money.
Well, now you have a second opinion. But again, it depends what you're looking for. If you plan to go to any country in Europe to teach, it won't help you get a job at all. If you want to come to Korea it will - at most companies your experience and certifications give you bumps up on the pay scale. I make 100,000 Won per month more than I otherwise would have because I have the piece of paper sent to me by my $350 class upon completion. Not much to argue with there - even with the crappy exchange rate right now it's been a solid investment for me.
Another bonus of those courses, especially for people who have no English teaching experience, is that they give you a chance to brush up on your grammar and language knowledge without a lot of commitment or cost. You might be surprised what you forgot (or never learned) about English in school. And when you arrive in a country to teach, everybody there has probably been taught more English grammar rules by the time they're in 3rd grade than you will ever know, and it's nice to be able to understand what they're asking. And it makes you look a little less like an inexperienced teacher. So that part of the course helped me out a lot.
So in summary, in most situations the online courses are certainly no substitute for a genuine CELTA or the like, but in the right circumstances they can be a valuable thing to do to improve your ESL job situation.
FREE online TEFL training (all self study and no certificate though) is offer at www.TEFLBootCamp.com - written by a retired teacher-trainer with over 20 years living and working overseas.
Wenhua Xiang, Kunming, Yunnan, China
A good reference is: http://www.teflprogram.com/TEFL-Cert-vs-CELTA.htm
written by an experienced teacher trainer.
I certainly agree with the previous poster that it is definitely to your advantage to get your training in the country where you intend to teach. You will meet other people who teach or have taught there - your teacher trainers will have taught there, your training school will have connections for local jobs, AND - just as important - your school will know which employers are the best - and which ones should be avoided.
Zzark wrote: and not have to put up with prima donna instructors who give you last minute assignments that will keep you up all night.
I like how this is directly from
"You can expect CELTA people to say anything else is a waste of money, and TEFL Cert people to say CELTA smacks of elitism and prima donna instructors will make your life hell with last minute busy work that keeps you up all night"
Before we arrived, our employer told us we'd have a couple days of training.
When we got here, they told us to observe the other foreign teacher...for one class.
From what I understand this is fairly typical for Korea. Most other countries do expect some kind of training or certificate (TEFL, CELTA).
To answer the question posed in the thread title, I'd give it a resounding YAY!
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A certificate is really not required, but it does help with confidence. As another benefit I did get paid slightly more thanks to having a certificate (about 3000 yen extra per month - about £30 at the time).
Training was given by the school I worked for.
That said, it may be different if you work in a High School rather than a language school. But I wouldn't recommend paying huge amounts for a CELTA certificate course, unless you need to learn all the finer details of teaching. A cheaper course would do just as well IMO, and a lot of the skills you'll need come from experience and a bit of common sense.
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