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Which course should I take?

Posted: 28 Mar 2016, 08:53
by Allophony
What course did you use and would you recommend it?

I am a UK citizen and I have a BA in English Language.

I know I want to teach abroad but if I wanted to teach in East Asia (let's just say China for now) what is the best course for me to take and what should I consider?

I know CELTA, DELTA, TrinityTESOL and I to I seem to the big ones.

I'd appreciate any advice and the benefit of your experience.

It doesn't really matter which country you went to or are from, it's all useful to me.

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 28 Mar 2016, 09:49
by Briona
Hi again,

As I've mentioned before, I started by taking an online TEFL course with i-to-i. I took it as a 'taster' to see if I liked TEFL. I have never used that qualification to look for work, although I believe you would have no problems finding a job with it in China.

I then took a CELTA, which gave me a better insight into the world of TEFL. I learned to plan lessons, use coursebooks and, of course, teach real students. I chose the CELTA over the Trinity CertTESOL because there were more providers offering it, suggesting that it was more widely-known than the CertTESOL. I have used my CELTA to find work at eight schools/companies in in five different countries (Vietnam, Portugal, Poland, Spain and the UK).

I have since taken the DELTA, which is a Master's-level qualification for experienced EFL teachers. Although it was challenging studying while working full-time, I really enjoyed the course. Taking the DELTA honed my skills and improved my teaching, and I would recommend it to any experienced teachers interested in professional development.

The bottom line is this: if you want to teach for a year or so, and you really don't care where, an online TEFL certificate is fine. If, however, you intend to make a career of this, or you want to teach in native English-speaking countries or you have your sights set on working in Europe, you are going to have to invest in a face-to-face intensive course, such as the CELTA or Trinity CertTESOL.

Hope that helps, and if you have any other questions, please ask.

Briona

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 28 Mar 2016, 13:53
by Allophony
Thanks again Brionna, it's fortunate you're on here. I just want to get as much information as I can on people's experiences but not many seem to want to come forward. I usually got a reply that boiled down to "it depends" so I've tried to be a bit more specific.

I do not want to teach English in an Anglophone place and I don't think I want it as a career. Just something to do for now partly for the experience and partly to get my foot on the employment ladder.

I guess I'm not too picky but I think I always imagined myself in East Asia.

Were your courses online or did they require showing up somewhere?

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 28 Mar 2016, 16:03
by Briona
Hi again,
Allophony wrote:I just want to get as much information as I can on people's experiences but not many seem to want to come forward.
I'm afraid that's commonplace. Every TEFL forum I use is full of pre-service teachers; once they get the information they need or get qualified, they rarely return, hence the lack of responses to posts.
Allophony wrote:Were your courses online or did they require showing up somewhere?
The course I took with i-to-i was predominantly online. The only in-person part was the 20hr weekend element. However, it's neither essential nor all that useful (at least to my mind), which is good news I guess if you want to take an entirely online course.

I did my CELTA and DELTA in-person. The CELTA is also available as a blended course (http://www.cambridgeenglish.org/teachin ... ake-celta/), which involves doing the input sessions and submitting assignments online, and travelling to a centre to do the teaching practice. Since you still have to attend a centre, and the cost is the same as a face-to-face course, I can't see that there are any benefits to taking the blended course.
Allophony wrote:I do not want to teach English in an Anglophone place and I don't think I want it as a career. Just something to do for now partly for the experience and partly to get my foot on the employment ladder.
Since you don't seem overly sold on TEFL other than as a means of gaining experience, my advice would be to take an online course. Aim for the industry standard (100-120hrs). If you don't enjoy it, you won't have invested much, and if you do, great - you can use the qualification to find work in Asia.

For more information on teaching in Asia, visit the appropriate forums on Dave's ESL Café (http://forums.eslcafe.com/job/). You could also visit some country-specific forums. I'll post the links in a separate post as this one apparently contains the maximum number of URLs allowed.

Hope that helps.

Briona

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 28 Mar 2016, 16:04
by Briona
As mentioned above, here are some links to country-specific forums:

Thailand - http://www.ajarn.com/
South Korea - http://www.waygook.org/
Japan - http://gaijinpot.com/

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 07 Apr 2016, 15:25
by Allophony
Thanks again, Briona.

I am planning to go abroad (China or near that) for a year maybe a few without it being a permanent thing. I mean, it could turn out to be the reason why I was put on this earth but I'm not counting on it.

With this in mind: would the I to I course be sufficient to find me something abroad? Even if not all employers recognize it will it be enough to feasibly get me some work?

To me the mixed course is a great advantage as my nearest celta centre is a 3 hour train ride away (in Cheltenham, I live in Cornwall) so it's just a weekend away rather than a move.

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 07 Apr 2016, 16:46
by Briona
Hi again,

I don't know where in Cornwall you are, but there are two CELTA providers in Devon (Exeter and Torbay), which might be closer than Cheltenham. ;) Exeter College offers a 21-week, part-time CELTA from November to May (http://www.exe-coll.ac.uk/Course?id=SSA ... df2357f599) and LAL Torbay offers a four-week intensive with start dates throughout the year, and a 20-week, part-time course that runs from October to March (http://www.lalschools.com/en//schools/l ... ay/courses - click on 'Teacher Training' and then 'Read more' under the relevant course).

That said, to work in China for a couple of years, the 100 or 120hr course from i-to-i, or any other online TEFL course provider, will be absolutely fine for landing a job.

Briona

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 26 Apr 2016, 17:49
by DanJJF
Or, if you want to work for EF in China, they'll provide the TESL program at no cost before you head over to China. It's only a 40 hour Basics course provided by Foundation TEFL (www.foundationtefl.co.uk) then the orientation when you get to China (they call it On-boarding) provides you with ~ 2 weeks of training and orientation, then another month or two of working in a school in Shanghai before shipping you off to a city in china for the next 10 months. Mostly teaching from a web-based ppt, but some of the lessons you'll have to plan yourself. Yeah, I know, I sound like a commercial, but it really is the perfect way to get your feet wet in the whole TESL thing. I wish I'd done this 20 years ago instead of going to s Korea, I may have stuck with doing TESL back then instead of quitting and then coming back later in life.

Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 01 May 2016, 17:46
by Lola212
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Re: Which course should I take?

Posted: 05 May 2016, 10:17
by JessieB
Hi, you may have already made your decision, but if you're just looking to get an online TESOL course and want it to be cost-effective, both my bf and I got ours through Groupon. I think mine was $69 and his was about $50. I've worked in China and Vietnam with mine no problem. Thought I'd let you know as they can get very expensive.