CELTA recommendations for London?

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CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby raffi586 » 07 Dec 2008, 16:35

Hello!

I am planning to take the 4-week intensive course for the CELTA certificate in London, hopefully in January.

I have found several schools in London that offer the course, but I can't seem to find any clear recommendations on which are the good ones. International House seems to have a good reputation, but costs 50% more than most of the other schools! Some other possibilities are St. Giles, Oxford House College, and Stanton School of English.

So, can anyone say whether International House in London is worth the extra money? Also, can anyone recommend (or advise against!) a particular school in London?

Thanks!
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby systematic » 08 Dec 2008, 04:32

The CELTA course is one of the two most highly respected courses. The other is the Trinity Certificate. The CELTA course is operated by licenced course providers who undergo strict constant monitoring from the University of Cambridge. These conditions stipulate minimum qualifications and experience for the course facilitators. The quality of the course should therefore, theorretically, be near identical, whatever the price.
Check however, that all instructors on the course really are the ones authorised by Cambridge, and not unqualified substitutions.

International House generally enjoys a very good reputation. An idea would be to Google the names of the others you mention. The search will certainly lead to blogs and forums where alumni talk of their experiences.
I offer any information or advice 'as is' and hope that it has been of help. I am not an admin of this board, and my postings do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the board management.
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby raffi586 » 08 Dec 2008, 11:01

Thanks for your reply, Systematic.

I have already tried googling the names of those schools -- in this day and age, that's the first thing anyone would do! But google searches have turned up surprisingly little in the way of reviews/recommendations. I've found it quite strange -- almost suspicious, frankly. I'd like to hear from people who have actually received their CELTA certification from a school in London that they would highly recommend. I understand that International House has a good reputation, but what do I get for the extra money? The four-week intensive course costs £1300 there; most of the other schools do it for £900, give or take (St. Giles, which also has a good reputation, is actually only £850). So can anyone tell me if it's worth the 50% premium for International House, and why?
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby systematic » 08 Dec 2008, 11:49

raffi586 wrote:Thanks for your reply, Systematic.

I have already tried googling the names of those schools -- in this day and age, that's the first thing anyone would do!
If you check out the other forums on this board you would actually be surprised just how many posters don't bother :D

If you are in London, you could try sashaying in and out of the premises of the others and getting a general feel of the establishment, its fittings and furniture, the comfort of the classrooms and technical aids, the extent of the library and the the quality of the facilities and the helpfulness of the front-of-house staff.

A course in a rundown building in a backstreet, with threadbare carpets, a filthy coffee machine, non-native reception staff, and no interactive whiteboards would have lower overheads than International House. But the actual training might be excellent.

An accredited CELTA course in Thailand where the cost of living and instructor salaries are only a fraction of those of a western country, costs around £1,000. Some home-spun, non CELTA, non-accredited courses even more.
I offer any information or advice 'as is' and hope that it has been of help. I am not an admin of this board, and my postings do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the board management.
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby Alex Case » 23 Dec 2008, 03:06

The CELTA course is a decendant of a course that started in International House London, in the 70s I believe, so I guess they might be living off that fame a little. They have also had some huge names working for them (e.g. Scott Thornbury in IH Barcelona for a long time), are strict about letting people onto the course and so keep their pass levels high, and can offer you jobs in their huge and reasonably well respected international chain of schools. You can almost as easily get a job with IH with a CELTA from elsewhere, though, so unless you actually have Jeremy Harmer or someone as your main trainer I don't think it is worth that much extra money. St Giles is also a good school, and Oxford House has a good reputation for training (although a bad reputation for being a place to work as a teacher). If it was me, I'd go for St Giles.
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby bilim » 08 Mar 2009, 22:56

Hello,

I am from Uzbekistan. I am math teacher and my wife teaches English. We have our family business preparing students for math and english exams. My wife decided to take IELTS exams and succesfully received her certificate (8 points overall score) which means she would be able to take CELTA courses. I would like to send her to England and now I am looking for the best CELTA courses there. Saying true I checked many sites provided by Cambridge ESOL site, but cannot find which one is the best!
Look at the part of information I got from one site:

Do CELTA Centers And Courses Vary?

As was explained above, all CELTA courses have to meet certain minimum conditions set and monitored by Cambridge. However, they are free to design their own programs and they can exceed these minimum conditions if they want. As a result, there is quite a big difference between centers, just as there is a big difference between the BA/BS programs offered by different universities. (This is one reason why CELTA courses, like degree courses, vary so much in price.)

Some CELTA centers provide extensive pre-course work so that participants can prepare themselves well for their course, while others provide/require little in the way of pre-course assignments. Some centers provide participants with specially designed course manuals and post-course development materials while others do not. Also, some centers provide detailed job placement help while most provide little or no guidance in this area.

Another important point to bear in mind is that some centers have established CELTA programs and offer courses on a regular basis, while some other schools offer courses only occasionally, normally employing trainers who are imported on a temporary basis. The standard of courses is almost certain to be higher at established centers which offer the CELTA on a regular basis: the program will be better organized, the trainers will form a more cohesive team and the center will be better able to provide in-course and post-course job placement help
.

So I think it is very important to talk to many people like you before making any choice.
Please provide me some advise which school to choose and give me your reason why do you think your advised course is best for us.
Thanks in advance!
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby morethanuthink » 12 Mar 2009, 22:31

Hi all,
Actually I'm attending the CELTA Course at International House right now, and I really enjoy it, although it needs a hard work. A friend of mine took Celta at St Giles and she was happy with that. I don't know about it but I can absolutely advise you to take any course at IH if you have the chance.
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby systematic » 13 Mar 2009, 10:36

The official University of Cambridge CELTA site is here:
http://www.cambridgeesol.org/exams/teac ... celta.html

and some more background is here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cambridge_ ... reditation

And for those who are interested, the Cambridge DELTA offers significant credits to M Ed, MA, and MSc degrees in many leading British universities.
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby bilim » 14 Mar 2009, 23:33

Hello,
Do you have any thoughts about
http://www.britishstudy.org/
They have a branch in Oxford. What do you think about their reputation and quality of trainings?
Thanks,

I have checked IH London. Everything is fine with them, but one thing worries me it is a long way distance between the school and accomodation places. I think 40-50 minutes trips (just for one way!) in a crowded London streets won't make my wife happy.
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Re: CELTA recommendations for London?

Unread postby systematic » 15 Mar 2009, 04:02

bilim wrote:Hello,
Do you have any thoughts about
http://www.britishstudy.org/
They have a branch in Oxford. What do you think about their reputation and quality of trainings?

"British Study Centres Group is accredited by the British Council, BAC (British Accreditation Council) and is a member of English UK (Oxford and Brighton)." You'll find that you can also get a lot of information on schools and employers by checking in Google first. You can then visit the schools and form your own opinion before paying any money.
I offer any information or advice 'as is' and hope that it has been of help. I am not an admin of this board, and my postings do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the board management.
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