To TEFL Or Not To TEFL? Help!!!

Discussion about courses, qualifications etc

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To TEFL Or Not To TEFL? Help!!!

Unread postby chuck1975 » 22 Nov 2008, 16:42

Hi everyone . I need some advice. I have a BS degree and I have been in the workforce for many years. I have some limited experience training in a professional environment but I have never had any teaching experience. I would consider myself relatively intelligent and definitely familiar with proper English grammar and usage. I am 33, unmarried, and to be honest ready for something different. I have tutored on the side and always enjoyed it, but again, I have never had any formal teaching experience in an “educational” setting. My local university offers a TEFL certification program that takes about 12 – 16 months to complete. It is given through the School of Graduate Studies and I am required to take the GRE prior to being considered for the program. Now that the background is out of the way, to the question: Should I be adequately qualified to obtain employment abroad after I successfully complete the program? I know that without all the details and the curriculum, etc. I cannot get a definite answer. I am not asking really about the quality of the program. But, in theory, should having a BS, being a native speaker, and having a university TEFL certification allow me to find employment abroad? I don’t want to pursue the certificate, when in reality, I probably will not be able to travel or secure employment. My other option is to enter into the Social Work Master’s program, but I would love to teach abroad now while I am still relatively young and unmarried/no children. I can always go back to school to get my MSW. Any advice or guidance would be greatly appreciated. Much thanks.

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Re: To TEFL Or Not To TEFL? Help!!!

Unread postby SunShine » 24 Nov 2008, 14:31

I would think your chances of getting a position after a TEFL course would be good. Whatever you do, do not embark on a four week course, it might kill you. I survived by miracle and got my certificate but I wouldn't recommend it. Doing the course over 16 months sounds ok. It gives you enough time to digest all the difficult grammar and other projects. So, go for it.

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Re: To TEFL Or Not To TEFL? Help!!!

Unread postby danielodo » 28 Nov 2008, 16:27


It sounds like you're embarking a fairly heavy TEFL certification program. There are online programs, and programs that don't require a GRE before you take the TEFL cert course. Contrary to the other person who answered your post, I think the 4 week programs are among the best to prepare you for teaching in TEFL.

I am in charge of recruitment in a language school, and I can say the majority of successful candidates have been the ones that did a 4 week course.

Best of luck

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Re: To TEFL Or Not To TEFL? Help!!!

Unread postby ICAL_Pete » 04 Dec 2008, 13:00

Standard requirements for teaching positions at entry level are a degree and a TESL/TEFL Certificate. Experience is not always necessary whilst being a native English speaker is always a plus.

Online courses offer a great training opportunity at entry level. They can provide a thorough grounding in a new career and the right tools to approach a new profession within a manageable amount of time and finances. They are a good option particularly if you have a limited budget to further your studies or if you have other work and/or family commitments that restrict the amount of time you have available to study.

You certainly don’t need to go on an intensive course. Unless your intention is to remain within the ESL industry and build a career for yourself in this field then you can easily opt for a more flexible type of certification course that will allow you to get a taster of the ELT profession and see if it is really for you before committing your time, effort and finances to get to the next level.

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