"best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

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"best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby embean » 12 Jan 2010, 17:34

hi,

I bet this has been asked many times before. perhaps someone can refer me to relevant posts.

which certifications are the most recognized? I know of CELTA and DELTA but I believe these are for teaching to adults and I'm looking for something more generalized.

Is my option then one of the trinity-endorsed courses?

also: cambridge is a test, and not a course, correct? for example you take the test and if you pass, you can claim some sort of designation...

thanks!
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby ICAL_Pete » 13 Jan 2010, 10:40

The most respected course is probably CELTA. It's a general course and not specifically for adults; it's also expensive and very intensive and, in my opinion, suitable only for teachers who have at least a couple of years experience in the business. Newcomers will find it too demanding.

CELTA is run by Cambridge. Like any other certificate course, you take the lessons and get the certificate at the end.
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby embean » 13 Jan 2010, 14:16

what is something good for absolute beginners, then? I have a university degree but no experience teaching. I want something that is appropriate but also recognized enough that I will be able to get that teaching experience, and then continue my education as necessary.
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby ICAL_Pete » 13 Jan 2010, 20:41

There are plenty of options and I'm sure others will post here with their suggestions (and courses).

You can take a basic entry-level TEFL certificate either in-house or online. Do you have a school offering a certificate close by? Do you have the budget to travel to another city or country to take the course?

You could decide to take a course online in which case I'd recommend looking at ours: http://icalweb.com which gets good reviews in the online world.

A course like this would be enough to help you get work in many different countries. We, for example, have graduates working in most countries around the world. Where do you fancy going?

Before deciding on which course is best for you, make sure you check out posts about the school online - do a simple search on Google and you'll get a feel for how well they're regarded. Since there is unfortunately no international, independent accreditation agency looking at courses they rely solely on their own reputation in the market place. There are some great schools out there offering basic TEFL certificates but also unfortunately some rubbish ones!
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby Alex Case » 13 Jan 2010, 23:21

"suitable only for teachers who have at least a couple of years experience in the business"

This is complete tosh,but perhaps ICAL Pete has a commercial reason for coming up with that line. The vast majority of people who take the CELTA have no teaching experience and the pass rate is in the high 90s. It is designed for and most useful for people with no teaching experience, and is the absolute minimum qualification (along with Trinity Cert TESOL) for many schools in the world. There are loads of those courses available all over the world at various prices, and there is even a 3 month part time CELTA in some places if it being intensive is a worry (unless you have mental health problems, it shouldn't be a worry at all). The next best option is another well respected 120 hour face to face course with 6 hours (= 360 minutes, no 6 "teaching hours") of teaching practice observed by your teacher trainers (not by lesser qualified people as in some courses), e.g. SIT.

Online courses are only for those who absolutely cannot take a month off work or cannot afford a decent course, but if you have no savings and can't get off work I don't really see how you can be thinking of moving abroad anyway. If you do go the online route, good luck trying to work out which courses really are better than others because no one has ever taken more than one course and compared them.
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby ICAL_Pete » 13 Jan 2010, 23:48

Actually there's a rather good site which compares different courses: http://teflcoursereview.com where reviews are written by former students who have taken different courses. It should help when deciding a course.
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby Alex Case » 14 Jan 2010, 00:06

Only 16 courses are reviewed, and none of them are compared in any way. I did notice, however, that a substantial proportion of the people taking online courses were non native speaking teachers living in places with no alternative TEFL training and who were unable to travel. This is obviously the main market for such courses, and as such they are invaluable. This does not make them something you should ever consider in place of the CELTA.
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby pokedmund » 14 Jan 2010, 01:38

To embean,

I've been informed that the CELTA and Trinity TESOL are essentially the same thing. It's just, CELTA has the "Cambridge" name, but the knowledge and experience you gain is practically identical.

I would definately recommend reading as many topics as you can on this forum. Just search CELTA or Online TEFL at the top and there is a wealth of information with regards to the "best" TEFL certification.

For example

http://www.tefl.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=3087

http://www.tefl.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=2249

to name just a few.

All I can say is that, I'm currently employed full time at the moment, but I've applied for a 12 week part time CELTA course to fit in with my schedule. Not only that, I know in my heart of hearts that I need someone in front of me physically teaching me to learn anything, therefore, choosing the CELTA. Fortunately, my finances have also meant that I can pay for the CELTA course (£999) with little worry. I won't know if this is the best choice for me until I've completed the course, but this was the conclusion that I came to after reading the many, many comments on this forum (and liaising with one of my work colleagues).

If you would like, I'll try to keep a Diary of my experiences of the course, and after completion will also offer my experience of looking for a job in another country too (IF I pass the CELTA).

Hope you're not in a hurry and can wait 12 weeks!

Edmund
Former Native English Teacher in Hong Kong for 3 years.
British Born Chinese.
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby Lucas » 14 Jan 2010, 01:52

CELTA and Trinity aren't hard. They train teachers, not rocket scientists. The only excuse not to take an advanced program is the cost, which is understandable if you are going to a country where wages are low.
It's very untrue that it's better to gain some experience before taking the CELTA or Trinity. Inexperienced trainees do very well on our Trinity and 250-hour online courses, unlike those who previously took a poor introductory course, went on to teach for a few years, and then struggle to unlearn all the rubbish they were fed. They actually find these courses harder than inexperienced teachers because they come in thinking that teaching is just about providing fun activities, so some go crazy when they have to prepare professional lesson plans to integrate these fun activities with the class objective.
If you are not just looking for a gap-year experience and you really want to become a teacher, then take an advanced course. You'll have a whole different perspective on teaching right from the beginning.
Lucas from Ontesol
http://www.ontesol.com
Ontesol - Online TESOL/TEFL courses. http://www.ontesol.com
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Re: "best" TEFL certification... trinity etc.

Unread postby Rescueman » 08 Feb 2010, 12:43

I had no idea there would be so much to research...just to take a course. That being said, I am ready to take a certification course to teach English. I have never taught before, but I believe I would do well. I realize that taking a course will cost money and that's fine, but I want to make sure it's a course that is recognized by potential future employers. Some schools tell me that there is no independent validation...and that all the schools "validate" themselves. Confusing. A little about me.... I plan on teaching in the Philippines and the USA. I am a native born English speaker. I have a little college, but not a Bachelor's Degree. I can take a course either here in the U.S. or in the Philippines. Either would be fine with me. How do I find the best school for me?
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