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philipk Feb 15th, 2012 11:35 am

Technical Person Should I get a TESL?
Hello all,

I'm a 2011 graduate of a Multi-Media program(College Diploma) in Canada. After graduating I worked a summer position at my school doing website maintenance.

In January of 2012 I obtained a position with a Government Agricultural organization. My job here is to develop a series of online training modules, which teach farmers new production methods.

The position ends in July.I've really been enjoying managing and creating interactive tutorials. I'd like to use what I've learned so far to help teach children. Also I find the idea of traveling to exotic places very exciting.

My question is do you think TESL certificate would be worth while for someone in my position? I'd like to get a teaching position or a support position as a sort of 'e-learning specialist'. However I'm worried I will be treated as someone who just has a Highschool Diploma and a TESL since I have not completed a BA at a university.

arielhud Feb 17th, 2012 03:50 am

Re: Technical Person Should I get a TESL?
It depends where you want to teach... unfortunately, it is very hard to get a visa in Japan if you don't have a B.A. (or 3 years relevant experience in the field). If you don't have the B.A., you have to come in on a cultural visa or student visa, both of which limit the amount of hours you are allowed to work.

Since you don't have a B.A., a TESL course would be good for you. Oxford seminars have automatic placement, but you can't choose your location- you might end up in Africa or Romania or Chile! If it doesn't matter to you where you are, then they might be a good route.

Another thing I would really suggest you do is start making a portfolio of work in something related to what you want to do. This will help employers see how valuable you will be to their company :o)

philipk Feb 17th, 2012 11:06 am

Re: Technical Person Should I get a TESL?
Thanks Ariel :),

I was actually looking at Oxford seminars because they're coming to the campus in my city in a few months.

I have been thinking about this a bit more since I posted. It does make sense that they would want BA grads as a someone with technical diploma like myself hasn't really proven themselves to be at a University level of writing.

I looked around at some of the other countries which do accept non-BA grads and the pay seemed ridiculously low. $500 a month before deducting living costs... not to mention the monthly payment I have to make towards student debt.

So I'm looking into transferring my credits into a part-time BA program. It seems the only way to make any money while teaching abroad is to go to a select few places.. Japan, Korea, Dubai, all of which would require a BA.

The only other route would be to make a really good portfolio and get hired by a private company, in some foreign country. Which sounds like it would be very difficult to do from Canada.

mesmark Feb 20th, 2012 08:40 pm

Re: Technical Person Should I get a TESL?
The biggest problem is getting the visa. It's not that you aren't useful nor under qualified, but simply that employers must justify the need to hire a foreign worker. So, the requirements for a work visa application can limit your options.

I believe there is a Canada-Japan 1 year working holiday visa that you can apply for. That doesn't require the approval process of a standard work visa and might be worth looking into.

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