Well, again, it's not the online method. If you could take the theoretical components of a Trinity course online and then the practicum on-site, there wouldn't be a difference in quality. This is what Ontesol offers through its 250-hour online course with practicum that's recognized by TESL Canada.
These are a few questions a prospective teacher should ask when choosing a TEFL/TESOL course:
Do I want to become the best teacher I can possibly be to help my students better? If you answer yes, then CELTA and Trinity are very good courses, but you don't have to spend over $2,000. As I wrote on another blog, where I compared Ontesol's 250-hour course with 20-hour practicum and Coventry House International's Trinity course, the extra $700 to $1000 you pay for a CELTA or Trinity go to the paper certificate. What matters the most on a TEFL course is Methodology and the practicum. CELTA only offers a 6-hour practicum, while the methodology module from Ontesol is actually an extended version of CHI's Trinity course.
I don't have much money for a TEFL course, which online course is recognized worldwide? Here you will be comparing 40 to 100-hour courses. These are less intensive courses that are good for an entry level job. If you are on your gap year and you're going to a country where you will not be making much money, then it's not feasible to spend over $1,000 on a TEFL course. The minimum international standard is a 100-hour certificate and these usually include everything (Grammar, Phonology, and Methodology).
The problem with online certificates is that there was a time when one could teach anywhere in the world with just a passport from an English-speaking country, so the few companies that started with this online method of instruction (These are the same schools that have to charge between $600 to $1,000 for 'hassle-free' job placement) bundled cheap courses to print certificates and send teachers abroad as quickly as possible. Most teachers would take a 40-hour online course or a weekend course and they are also to blame for giving online courses a bad rep.
The current reality is that there are online alternatives to CELTA and Trinity as well as you can take a reputable online course that meets the international standard without having to spend more than $300.
Lucas from Ontesolwww.ontesol.com