3 Key Tips to Choosing a TEFL Course
Teaching English is not as easy as it sounds. You are very often teaching people who don’t understand you and vice versa. That said, it is a richly rewarding profession. You ultimately play a role in your student’s future. So, it is your responsibility to invest in a course that offers you high quality instruction, helps you assess your teaching qualities, enriches your skills and helps you gain experience.
Here are the 3 most important things to consider when looking for a TEFL course:
1 – Research: TEFL Certification, Degree or Both?
- If you want to teach abroad, you must find out if a TEFL certificate alone is sufficient to teach or if you need a first degree as well.
- Asia and the Middle East offer the best paying TEFL positions but a university degree is essential.
- Eastern Europe and Russia are the latest upcoming TEFL teaching destinations and many schools only require a good, quality TEFL certification.
- South America, Africa and South-East Asia (Vietnam/Cambodia/Malaysia/Thailand) offer the lowest paying TEFL teaching jobs but an abundance of them.
- Regulations with regards to qualifications necessary are not cast in stone!
- It is recommended that you contact placement agencies that deal with the country you would like to teach in and ask them what is required.
2 – Research: School and TEFL Trainer
- In South Africa, there is no independent accreditor for TEFL courses. The schools that offer the courses may be accredited but not the actual courses. This doesn’t mean the courses are bad. It is just a bureaucratic issue. It means you must do research on the TEFL trainer.
- TEFL trainers must possess one of these teaching qualifications DELTA/DipTesol/MATesol. Ask the school you are researching to send you a copy of the trainers’ qualification.
- Request past student testimonials.
3 – Research: Course Type and Content
There are full time 60/100/120/140 hour courses available as well as Online/Correspondence courses. Whichever you decide to take make sure it includes the following:
- Teaching Language skills – reading, writing, speaking & listening.
- Teach English Grammar and Vocabulary – including Language and Lexical Analysis.
- Lesson Planning and Methodology.
- Teach and develop Pronunciation and Phonology.
- Assessing Learning Styles and Learner Needs.
- Introduction to Teaching Resources.
- Classroom Management, Correction/Feedback Techniques and Teacher Language
- Assessing Learner Skills and developing Learner Autonomy.
- Using Technology in TEFL.
- Assessed teaching practice
- Offer volunteer teaching opportunities to ramp up teaching hours.
Take a moment to watch this video, and decide if the course you have chosen will prepare you for what these teachers talk about.