Thinking of teaching English abroad? Not sure if you should do a TEFL course? Or maybe you are unsure which course you should do? Keep reading to my guide to choosing the right path for you.
Firstly ask yourself this question
Would you want to be taught by an unqualified teacher?
I hope the answer is no if it is then you have your answer. Teaching is a skill and it needs time and dedication to nurture that skill.
Maybe you fit into one of these categories:
I have excellent English, I got an A* at A-Level, I’m sure I’ll do fine
OK maybe your English is great BUT have you ever taught before? And do you have any idea HOW you would even begin to teach someone when you can’t speak the same language as them?
TEFL trains its teachers not just on the theoretical knowledge of grammar you will need but also how to teach a group of students without knowing a single word of their language.
I already have a teaching qualification, I’ve been teaching for years. I don’t need another qualification.
Sure I totally understand. I also hold a teaching qualification and I have been teaching for 10 years when I did my TEFL course. But how much do you really know about English grammar?
What I quickly discovered is as a native speaker I just did so many things ‘naturally’ but I didn’t necessarily know all of the rules. So without knowing ‘why’ I was doing something, how could I know how to teach someone else? Also, my generation was not taught these rules in our education. Nowadays in UK schools, they do teach children the rules thankfully, but that doesn;t help those like me who were never taught the why.
The TEFL course will go through EVERYTHING. In detail and even if you think you know it all, you will at best learn some new stuff and at worse have a good refresher and reaffirm your knowledge.
So now I hope I have convinced you that you need to do a TEFL course, your next decision is what course to do? How many hours? And should you do blended learning or just online?
How to choose a TEFL course
I decided to do a 150 hour blended learning course. This was mostly online with 3 days in a classroom with a group of 20 and an experienced TEFL teacher. If you can I really recommend doing a blended learning course as that classroom time learning with others really was invaluable. But I do understand this isn’t always practical.
The course I would recommend is Premier TEFL for the following reasons:
- Lots of options from 90 -200 hours
- Blended and Online only courses
- Jobs Board
They always have lots of offers so I would sign up for their newsletters so you can be the first to know when they have a sale on!
Online, Blended of 100% classroom
If you do a course that is just online and you are unable to do any classroom time then I would recommend trying to find a teaching assistant job or voluntary position on Workaway or Job Search so you can do some on the job training. This is the perfect way to get some experience without the pressure of diving completely in at the deep end!
If you have the time and the money, of course, the classroom course would be the best option.
Looking for a job abroad? Take a read of my guide here.