Which 120 hour TESL/ESL Cert course to take??

Discussion about courses, qualifications etc

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Which 120 hour TESL/ESL Cert course to take??

Unread postby ali.mccoy » 02 Nov 2007, 16:33

Hello All-

I already have a job lined up to teach English in Japan in March, 2008 but am looking to take a TESL/ESL certification course. My teaching job does not require a certificate, but I would like to get one for personal reasons. I am looking at a few programs that are the 120 hour 4 week programs in Prague. Some I have found are "The Language House", "Internations TEFL Certifications"..I guess I am at a loss, can anyone suggest a respectable program to take? I am hesitant to sign up blindly and would love advice from people who have taken these sorts of classes.



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Unread postby ms.baker » 04 Nov 2007, 23:26

I'm actually going for TEFL International's Prague program.

been wanting to travel around Europe and have employment at the same time. Other EU countries seem to be very tight with regards to work permits but the helpful people on TEFL International informs me that getting employment in Prague is very easy and that my employer would be the one handling the paperwork for my work permit. I'm thinking with that as a start I can travel across EU every year or two and change venues or something.

What I like about TEFL International too is that they'll help out as well after I've graduated from the course with job placement help -for life!
so yeah, a year or so in Prague, then maybe in Spain or Portugal and who knows?

Japan sounds nice too, as one of my friends is heading there after his course which he'll take next year. Also thinking of Japan and it'll be easier getting settled there with a friend to help me out.

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Unread postby timmy » 05 Nov 2007, 23:51

Sorry to hijack your thread but...
ms baker, do you have any acquaintances that can attest for TEFL International?
I see that you've placed faith in a company that, after a bit of research, has had quite a bit of bad things happening to them.
I'm thinking doing their train+teach thing in Thailand and with the bad stuff around I'm :/

ICAL_Pete says some things are happening with TEFL International, do you know anything about this?
Some call me Tim...

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Unread postby Kootvela » 06 Nov 2007, 19:23

First I am happy that a person decided to take a course even though it is not required. But as far as I can tell, it will be helpful and will provide guidelines for the future job ups and downs. I would, however, choose a Cambridge or Oxford certificate because they are quite reliable, I think.

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Unread postby ms.baker » 06 Nov 2007, 23:47

Yes, have a friend that took the course with them last year and was very pleased, to say the least, that she took the course with them.
took the course in Thailand, people were friendly and helpful there, got job she liked very much. after a year on that company she moved to another country for more experience. When I e-mailed about taking a course she immediately suggested TEFL International.

I'll message you a little later.


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CELTA's the way to go

Unread postby glenji » 21 Dec 2007, 08:06

Yeah, I agree with Kootvella, my girlfriend recruits teachers here in Vietnam and she says that people that have come off a CELTA course have far more of an idea about teaching than people with TEFL International certs or other courses. In fact she'd employ someone straight off a CELTA over people with other certificates and experience.

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Re: Which 120 hour TESL/ESL Cert course to take??

Unread postby chrisw » 12 Jan 2008, 17:58

Hi Ali,

I just saw this message here, so I thought I'd add something. I'm the creator and director of The Language House in Prague. CELTA and Trinity are both good courses. There is no doubt about that. However, they are not the only courses out there.

There are a lot of poor TEFL courses out there and there are a lot of good ones. If you do not know anything about the course you are interested in, it might be a wise idea to take either a CELTA or Trinity. However, our course is a bit different. When you compare the amount of training, cost, teaching practice, size, staff, housing, job assistance, extras that The Language House in Prague offers, you will see that we do a great deal more than either the CELTA or Trinity courses.

All of our graduates get far more grammar training as well as almost twice the amount of teaching practice than either the CELTA or Trinity. Our housing is great and there are few schools that offer more extras than we do. In fact, our training and job assistance is so thorough that most of our grads get hired with schools in the city and abroad before the course ends. In fact a lot of organizations worldwide send prospective students to our course because they have been so impressed with the way we do things.

When creating the course, I could have gone the CELTA or Trinity route. I decided not to because I wanted to offer more and I didn't want to be tied down by a parent organization. Also I think the idea of having a company have a monopoly on TEFL is wrong.

I think of my program as less of a course and more as a community. This means that it's not only about the training, but making sure students are happy and that they feel as if they are involved network of people that will support them. I created the program when I was 24 years old and I am probably the youngest person ever to do this. I actually created The Language House course because I had a horrible experience of my own on another TEFL course in the city when I first started teaching. My goal for the course was to make it intense, to offer more and to offer what most courses don't - a sense of community. Four years later, we are still doing great.

I can't speak for courses worldwide. But, when deciding on a course, just don't go for a brand name. Every CELTA and Trinity course is different. They are run differently, have different tutors and offer different things. Make sure to do your research and compare what's out there. For example, there's a great Trinity school in Prague that we like a lot, but there was also one two years ago that stole money from students and then closed shop. You have to your research.

Get pictures of the accommodation, school and location. Make sure to also get a list of past graduates. A lot of schools pay graduates a commission if they get others to sign up. WE DON"T. Make sure the school you are looking at doesn't either. Ask them specifically if they do. So saying.."take a CELTA" is not the way to go about it. You have to look at the Specific school in questions. Some are good others aren't.

If for some reason they are unable to give you all of this information, it's wise to go somewhere else.

Thanks for the time,

Chris Westergaard

The Language House Prague
Chris Westergaard
The Language House

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