How do I get a teaching qualification in Italy?

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How do I get a teaching qualification in Italy?

Unread postby gmrissoricci » 12 Sep 2006, 23:54

Dear Lucy,

Thank you in advance for any advice you can give. I am a 22 year old italian Philosophy graduate, and am in need of employment to continue paying for my studies in Milan. I am a "native english speaker" (bilingual, actually, went to english schools) and have taught english to adults and children in Italy for years, but always at a private level. Only recently have I come to realise that not only is such experience not mentionable on my c.v. but it also pays much less than language schools do! I have been told that some institutes don't require certification, but the ones which pay best do.

My problem is the following: I can't afford the courses! (And they require too much time away from my studies) The only training schools in Milan I found online offer CELTA at around 1600 euro, which is 4 months rent for me! On the other hand I don't want to throw away the 200 euro some online TEFL centres want (for course material + online test) for what might then turn out to be an un-recognised certification.

Having worked in neighbouring France, do you know of any path to serious certification which doesn't cost a fortune (which to me is more than 500 euro!) or last more than a week, and is not shunned by employers in Language schools?
I realise I'm a desperate case! I greatly appreciate any tips you can spare.

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Teaching certification in Italy

Unread postby Lucy » 16 Sep 2006, 11:45


I can see what your problem is. You want a serious qualification that is recognised by employers; at the same time you want to do it quickly and at a low cost. The two criteria you mention are hard to fulfil. Anyway, here are my ideas:

Think about what your ultimate goal is. It seems to me that you teach English to fund your studies in Philosophy. This is different to making TEFL into your career. Decide what you want to do in the future. It’s easy to get absorbed by your current situation and problems; but it’s wise to keep your ultimate goal in mind when making a decision.

I suggest you find out more about schools in your area. For example: how much do they pay their teachers? Is it possible to teach at the university on a part-time basis? What qualifications do schools in the area ask for (consider state schools and private schools)? In Italy, a degree and being native speaker might be enough to get you a job. When you have this information, you will be better placed for making a decision.

Have you considered charging more for your private lessons? You could also try teaching a group of students privately. You might be able to get a group of 3 – 4 adults or children who want to study together. This would increase your income. One advantage of teaching privately, is that you have more autonomy and more choice over which hours you teach.

Some schools have their own in-house teaching method. These schools often take teachers who are not CELTA qualified and provide training in their methods. Because these posts are at entry level, they pay less. The advantage is that you get training, get experience teaching in a school structure and can mention the work on your CV.

You could also find out if schools in your area hire teachers who have done a weekend course. These are short, as the name suggests and in the UK cost around 200 pounds which is approximately 300 euros. There are many of these courses available. Before starting one of these courses, check whether they will help you gain entry into the sort of school you want to work in.

Finally, for a discussion of on-line courses, you can look at the Teacher Training forum on, there are some posts about the topic in May 2006.

Good luck,


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