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TLR Oct 8th, 2006 10:50 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
I've never taken any TEFL course though I was considering it recently cos my work started saying certification was necessary - though they've changed their mind again luckily. The only one I was willing to consider was the CELTA because it is the most recognised TESL qualification worldwide. You can't take the CELTA on-line. BUT it still isn't enough to qualify me to work in a lot of places in Ontario. Only a TESLOntario certified course will allow me to teach here in the public system (I'm currently at a private training centre) and those courses are long and expensive!! Bloody annoying as I have 8 years of experience, including managerial work in ESL. It's a shame that there isn't an international standard where you can have your qualifications and experienced assessed and accepted. ontario is a terrible place for non-Canadians having their education/experienced accepted. That's why there are so many foreign trained doctors working as taxi drivers!!!............Sorry, went a bit off topic there!

Denis DNT Feb 12th, 2007 11:15 am

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
I think even after taking the 4weeks, 160hours etc of TEFL training the real training still takes place while you are teaching.
To me the TEFL training just gives you "car keys" which doesn't mean that you will drive the car.
When I had my training it was rich and exciting with all the coaching and guidance, but on the field it's been something else for these 9 years. No two lessons are ever the same. To me those lessons taught during the TEFL training with all the coaching, are just a dramatization of the theory which is however a good beginning step. But what saddens me is the fact that the simple possesssion of TEFL certificates lures employers into believing that they've got the best teachers. That's what has led to the birth of online TEFL. I really buy TLR's idea that "It's a shame that there isn't an international standard where you can have your qualifications and experienced assessed and accepted."
My recommendation to newcomers: If you really want to appreciate and make good use of what is taught during the TEFL training, spare a year or two first on the field and then find time for a TEFL course. You will make a difference.

g-cogle Feb 22nd, 2007 03:19 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
I did an online preliminary TEFL course, which wasn´t up to much. It was reading, doing "exams" and sending them off to get marked. It got me a job in teaching though, and I was obviously really scared on my first day, as I´d had nooooo experience. But after a few classes I felt a lot better! I think I´d definetely recommend a course with practical experience, not just reading!

jellybeanenglisch Mar 25th, 2007 02:00 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
hi. I just read your post on TEFL online courses. Your distance course sounded a bit like the one I took. Where did you take yours, was it by any chance the International TEFL Corporation

marthajack Mar 25th, 2007 07:19 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Quotefrom jellybeanenglisch hi. I just read your post on TEFL online courses. Your distance course sounded a bit like the one I took. Where did you take yours, was it by any chance the International TEFL Corporation

Hi jellybean,
The one I'm taking is called
International TEFL Teacher Training ITTT
It's actually gotten a little better than last time I posted. I've been assigned a new tutor and she writes back long answers to my questions which is nice. Also the material has gotten a little more "in-depth" and interesting.
But I still don't think it's a good idea to take an online course. Much better to learn in real life!!


kimyushin Apr 12th, 2007 06:19 am

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Thank you so much for this post. I have been dithering on whether I will take an online course or not. Your responses helped me make up my mind: I won't.

Also, there are four CELTA Training centers I know of in Asia:
Korea, Singapore and Vietnam. Unfortunately, we don't have it here in the Philippines. Which do you think is the best place to take this course?

I teach Koreans and my principal is Korean too, but I am Filipino. Our school might send me to take up this course, and echo back to our teachers what I will learn. The natural choice should be Korea, but I hope to hear what you can say about this.


sarahlouise May 5th, 2007 05:40 am

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Hi i already have a primary teaching degree so the online tefl course i am currently doing is great for me. I don't know if i would be confident enough to go into a class without already having the training, i think it would be a bit scary:eek:

Eric18 Sep 22nd, 2007 01:50 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
The huge expansion of online courses marks a significant shift in education. Of course, millions of students around the world will benefit from new opportunities. The connection between geography and destiny continues to weaken. Further, it's worth noting that many of America's elite universities are running to catch up with the University of Phoenix in creating online programs for both noble and financial reasons. For instance, my university now offers 32 separate online degrees in various engineering fields. Will students with a Masters in Civil Engineering, gained through online instruction, receive an equal education? Certainly not, but many international students will gain a far better education in civil engineering than previously available to them in their home countries.

Yet online degrees seem far more appropriate for some fields than other disciplines. I personally can't understand how a TEFL degree, gained online, will be of much practical assistance. You gain no teaching experience, you meet no real live students, and you have no personal interactions. Perhaps I'm holding onto a rather romantic notion of teaching as conveying information and building personal relationships , but an online course seems like a terrrible mismatch between form and function. Besides, what is the goal? Students should aspire to become caring teachers, and not just collect pieces of paper that pretend to confer some alleged expertise in a field. A real TEFL program must provide actual opportunities for conversation, reflection, and group discussions. Right?

Eric18 Sep 22nd, 2007 01:53 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Besides why pass up the opportunity to meet new people and study in beautiful surroundings? I just don't understand the alleged advantages or appeal of an online TEFL program.

daviddean Sep 22nd, 2007 02:23 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
I am looking into signing up for an online course as the school I am working for wants me to have the certificate. I have been teaching now for 3 years and have a hand full of private students who are doing so much better with 1 to 1 ( no distractions that go with school mates or girls ;) ) The problem is there are so many I don't know where to begin. The main opinion seems to be that they are not really very helpfull but for me to be able to continue teaching in the school I need to have the TEFL certificate then I can be officially monitored for a year in the school under the governments lab assistant scheme after which I can teach in any school here. Can anyone recommend a course that's not excessively priced for what you receive? Thanks.

FionaVB Mar 21st, 2008 03:09 am

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
I did an on-line TEFL certificate course and I found it fantastic. Of course you don't get the classroom experience, but you go into it knowing that that is the case, and that one day you will have to face that first class somehow somewhere. But the theory and grammar were taught pretty thoroughly. I have always had an interest in language and languages, so I found the grammar modules easy, but my husband is currently doing the same course, and is finding it fascinating, useful, and not too easy. The course I did provided a DVD/download of a good teacher/bad teacher class (same teacher in both.) This was my first and admittedly only view of classroom technique until I applied for my first teaching job. [Actually no, come to think of it: I was allowed to sit in on an ESL class before I left my country to come here - which I asked to do in order to see how a class works.] But it was pretty good anyway. Knowing that no matter how bad you are you can't be that bad is good for one's confidence. The first school I applied for took me on knowing I had had no classroom experience. They also provided a DVD of how they expect, or suggest, their classes be taught. And everyone gains in confidence and skills as they go on, anyway. Don't tell me the rest of you weren't nervous in front of your first real class.
An on-line course is a great opportunity for people who want to study while already working. As I say, we know their limitations, but there are ways to compensate for that. Provided schools are prepared to take us on with only a TEFL certificate (as plenty are!), then after 3 or 4 lessons you've had that classroom experience anyway. Yes, it may be a bit unfair on the kids who sit through your first lesson, but the first day on any job is like that, training or no.

jasonklass May 7th, 2008 02:26 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
I think the answer depends on what you plan to do with your certificate. If you're planning to be a career teacher, then an onsite course is definitely the way to go; however, if you just want to go abroad to teach for 6 months to one year and don't plan to make a career out of teaching, then maybe it's not worth the investment for a 4-week course and an online course is a better option. Many employers will give you additional training to supplement what you learned in an online course.

You'll definitely be better prepared with an onsite course that has practice teaching but not everyone can take 4 weeks out of their lives and if you just want to teach short term in a country that accepts them, online courses are a good option. :)

daviddean May 8th, 2008 04:13 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Thanks for the advice, I guess I have found one that appears to be what I am after.
I am in the process of checking if it will be accepted here before laying out any money.

Thanks again.

jasonklass May 8th, 2008 04:39 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Good luck David! Let us know how it works out for you!

CassieG Oct 11th, 2011 12:41 am

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Hi Fiona, I am interested in your post as you are (or were at the time) in Vietnam, I have no formal teaching experience and was wondering where you did yours? I am 61 and looking to teach in my retirement, I love languages and thought teaching would be a good thing. Can you give me any advice. Thanks

FionaVB Oct 11th, 2011 10:37 pm

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
To CassieG, I am still in Vietnam, still teaching at the same school four years after arriving. Re-reading this thread, I still believe that an on-line TEFL course is fine if you want to study while you are still working at another job. There are CELTA and other courses available over here too, if you are prepared to put all your eggs in one basket and come only with the hope of getting a job afterwards. Although, that is not difficult. There are plenty of good respectable schools here, and there are always teachers coming and going. One thing about Vietnam, though, is that they are now cracking down on work permits. In order to get a work permit, it is HUGELY useful to have a degree - of any kind. (It was possible to obtain a work permit without one in the past, but I believe that is more difficult now.) And then you need to make sure that all your paperwork is in order. USA paperwork in particular seems a real pain to get notarised etc.
Back to your situation, lack of experience is not necessarily a barrier (depending on the school), and I believe age isn't either. I know of several teachers in their 60's, and I'm pretty sure one is in his 70's already too.
Good luck with everything!

CassieG Oct 12th, 2011 05:59 am

Re: Online TEFL Courses???
Thanks Fiona for your quick response, I'll keep researching the situation as I feel this move would be a good fit for me. thanks again CassieG

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