Advice needed!(TEFLintl London, teach in china, nonnative)

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Advice needed!(TEFLintl London, teach in china, nonnative)

Unread postby esseesse » 24 Jan 2010, 17:39

Hello, I am from Sweden so a non-native speaker but I consider my english level pretty high. I have no degree I have only studied some computer science in uni for one year and some spanish and chinese. I plan to go back to China again this summer to primarily learn more chinese but I want the possibility to stay and work as a teacher too (while keeping learning chinese somehow) and not just running out of money and having to come back to EU and get a boring job ;).

I have been looking on TEFL courses and might do one in Europe before I go to China, I would prefer to do it in the UK for extra english language practice. I looked through the CELTA/trinity courses from Cactus tefl and some other places, the application process seems tricky though and it seems like you might not get accepted with a resume like mine.

So I also looked at the TEFL International course in London and sent them an application and they immediately accepted me, which seems quite different from the CELTA courses.

I want to take the course if it can help me in some way and have the money for it, but it is of course not fun to waste your hard earned money when you don't need to. :)
My questions:

- Does anyone have any experience of the TEFL International course in London?
- Should I take the course at TEFL international, try to get on one of the CELTA courses or something else?
- Should I maybe even skip taking a course and try to get a teaching job anyway? I noticed during my last stay in China it was possible. I do have the money to take a course though, if there is a decent chance it will be useful.

Thanks in advance!
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Re: Advice needed!(TEFLintl London, teach in china, nonnative)

Unread postby systematic » 05 Feb 2010, 04:38

TEFL International has been the subject of some of the most heated discussion ever to take place on the INternet about TEFL course providers. For more information, you can start by using this board's search feature to find what has been said here, then check out Alex Case's blogs on this site, then finally, look the organisation up in Google to find other discussions (once you have made you way through their many websites). You will then be able to draw your own conclusions, and make your choice of course.
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: Advice needed!(TEFLintl London, teach in china, nonnative)

Unread postby ICAL_Pete » 05 Feb 2010, 12:37

China is one of those few places where there is a huge amount of jobs and not enough teachers to fill them. This being the case, although theoretically it's required to have a degree and a TEFL certificate to teach there, many teachers do not have these qualifications.

If you are actually in the country then I would be surprised if you didn't find work teaching by getting a list of local schools, knocking on doors on spec and presenting yourself to them as a teacher there and then. If you look presentable and fit the bill, sooner or later you'll get work.

One thing I would say, however, is that just because someone can speak English they cannot necessarily teach English. Another point here is that the students in the school have paid good money to learn and I always feel it is slightly disrespectful to them to try to teach them without knowing what you are doing.

So if you can, get some kind of training before you go. It will make your classes more enjoyable for both yourself and your students and also having a certificate may help tip the balance when it comes to getting a job.
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