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Poll: Your TEFL Training Experience
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Your TEFL Training Experience

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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Jan 16th, 2005, 01:17 am
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Default Online TEFL Courses???

It seems like there are many online TEFL courses out there. My TEFL course was a very hands-on experience with 5 real, in-class experiences. I can't imagine not having those experiences before actually stepping into a real classroom.

Has anyone taken one of these online courses, and if so what did you think? Did it prepare you for the teaching world?

Don't forget to answer the poll!

just curious,
i2i
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  #2 (permalink)  
Unread Jan 16th, 2005, 01:45 am
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I got mine in San Francisco with a school that has up and vanished. I wonder if that's the nature of the beast...
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  #3 (permalink)  
Unread Jan 16th, 2005, 07:14 am
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Default TEFL course

The TEFL course I took was 120 hours over 4 weeks. Since it was in Thailand, I really wish it had been longer. I took it after I had been teaching in Korea for 3 years because I wanted to know how to teach grammar and I wanted to feel more confident in the classroom. I did wonder if it would be worth it or if it was mainly meant for brand new teachers.

Overall, it was a great experience because of the observed teaching practice. I had never had professionals analyse my lessons before and the help was immeasurable. I really don't know what benefit there would be to an online course. I mean, you can read books on teaching anytime, but the most helpful part of the TEFL course, in my opinion, is the feedback about how you deliver your lessons.

If anyone has had a good experience with one of the online courses, I'd like to hear about it so that maybe I can broaden my opinion. Thanks!
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  #4 (permalink)  
Unread Jan 16th, 2005, 07:52 am
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I agree with you, little sage. Teaching English is so much about interaction. You can't really learn how to effectively interact with a class of 15 students by submitting your weekly homework lesson online. You can learn a lot of theory based stuff online but teaching is not all theory. I read this quote somewhere... "In theory, practice and theory are the same but in practice, they are not". Same applies here. You just can't read enough to really know what goes on in the classroom.

Anyway, just my 2 pesos
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  #5 (permalink)  
Unread Jan 28th, 2005, 04:59 pm
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Quote:
Quote Happy Camper
I got mine in San Francisco with a school that has up and vanished. I wonder if that's the nature of the beast...

Gosh, that sounds awfully familiar. My San Fran school vanished, too. And the "house" where I lived with 13 other people has been turned into a hostel. I wonder if that homeless drug addict is still haunting the alley?

TEFL certificates are offered all over the world and most of them teach you just enough to get by - barely. AND most of them are not accepted as legitimate certificates if you plan on getting your MA in the States.
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Unread Feb 14th, 2005, 11:38 am
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Quote:
Quote sighisoara
AND most of them are not accepted as legitimate certificates if you plan on getting your MA in the States.
Which ones are considered legitimate?
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  #7 (permalink)  
Unread Feb 16th, 2005, 10:37 am
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Quote:
Quote Oreamnos
Which ones are considered legitimate?
I think this is still a grey area. I've read some things about an effort being made to standardize TEFL certification in N.America, but I think this is still a long way off. Certain schools may have a list of TEFL certifiers that THEY consider legitimate, but I have a feeling this varies.
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  #8 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 16th, 2005, 09:49 am
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I completed 3 courses in TEFL through distance study, from a place called English Language Centre in London. You had to complete Modules and write assignments on each, they varied slightly.Each course took between 8-12 weeks and that depended on you-you could finish earlier.I enjoyed the courses and the professors were very helpful.If you do need more classroom observation, I wouldn't recommend this course.For me, it was perfect.
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Unread Mar 17th, 2005, 08:55 am
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Why did you take 3 courses in TEFL? What did this course get you, a degree or a certificate?
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  #10 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 17th, 2005, 12:04 pm
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Hi Oreamus

Well,at first I just did the TEFL/TESL Certificate course, which was 4 modules.Then, to got the Diploma in TEFL/TESL, I completed 2 more modules.I was having so much fun receiving diplomas that I went ahead and did the Advanced Diploma(ESP) in TEFL/TESL. ESP means English for Specific Purposes,ie..tourism,business,secretarial.
I learned so much and paid so much..but it was worth every cent(pound).
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  #11 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 20th, 2005, 08:00 am
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What did that cost you??
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  #12 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 22nd, 2005, 09:57 am
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Quote:
Quote asiaexpat
What did that cost you??
I cost around 340 UK Pounds..can't remember the exact amount.Each course I took was a different amount.This was a few years ago. Why not have a look at their website to find the current prices.
www.englishlanguagecentre.com
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  #13 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 23rd, 2005, 07:31 pm
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Quote:
Quote songsengnim
Well,at first I just did the TEFL/TESL Certificate course, which was 4 modules.Then, to got the Diploma in TEFL/TESL, I completed 2 more modules.I was having so much fun receiving diplomas that I went ahead and did the Advanced Diploma(ESP) in TEFL/TESL. ESP means English for Specific Purposes,ie..tourism,business,secretarial.
I learned so much and paid so much..but it was worth every cent(pound).
Any tips for the tourism part of it? I am teaching tourism students now.
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  #14 (permalink)  
Unread Apr 20th, 2006, 07:05 am
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Default Re: Online TEFL Courses???

I did one from i-to-i (www.i-to-i.com) which was both online and in the classroom. I am nearly finished their TEFL diploma and it has made me realise that I should be doing more study in my field of work. I am lazy these days 'cas I teach children and don't prepare as much as I used to when I was teaching adults. Having said that I will end up back teaching adults again eventually

Also I get a pay rise if I do a Tefl course But the money is not the main reason for doing it.
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  #15 (permalink)  
Unread Jul 9th, 2006, 07:24 pm
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Default Re: Online TEFL Courses???

A mate of mine is going over to Vietam to do a CELTA course. It will take a month. Has anybody done this? I am just wondering that is the main difference between the CELTA and TEFL or are they basically the same?

-livinginkorea
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  #16 (permalink)  
Unread Jul 14th, 2006, 05:53 am
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Default Re: Online TEFL Courses???

I did a 5 day course. Wed, Thurs, Fri 6-10pm and 9-5 on the weekend.
We had to do a lesson in a language other than English (I did Russian). It was good.
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  #17 (permalink)  
Unread Jul 20th, 2006, 12:55 pm
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Default Re: Online TEFL Courses???

I really don't think online learning can be effective for TEFL Training. Teaching is like riding a bicycle - not something you can learn by reading about it. You need to get on, wobble around a bit, fall off a few times. Online courses can't give you this.
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  #18 (permalink)  
Unread Sep 10th, 2006, 05:17 pm
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Default Re: Online TEFL Courses???

I'm taking an online TEFL course right now and I most definitely DO NOT recommend it. I decided to get a certificate this way because I didn't think I could find the time to go to a course that required classroom hours. WHAT A MISTAKE. The online course consists of very simple articles to read and then an "exam" to fill out and send in. Supposedly the person who reads our exams is our special online tutor and will give lots of feedback and advice, but I haven't found that to be particularly true. I've asked him a couple of questions and gotten very short, unhelpful answers back.
I am half way through the course and so far have gotten practically nothing of value from it.
Actual real-live classroom experience, observation of an actual teacher teaching and / or videos of real teaching are essential.
This course does provide one CD-Rom of an example of a teacher, which is better than nothing but not by much.

I am really disappointed in the online course, and a bit embarrassed that I was gullible enough to sign up for it.
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  #19 (permalink)  
Unread Sep 11th, 2006, 07:43 am
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Default Re: Online TEFL Courses???

[quote=JeremyinFrance Teaching is like riding a bicycle - not something you can learn by reading about it. You need to get on, wobble around a bit, fall off a few times. Online courses can't give you this.
Jeremy[/QUOTE]

You're right, Jeremy. Experience makes you learn. And you learn by yourself!
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  #20 (permalink)  
Unread Sep 12th, 2006, 09:23 am
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Default Re: Online TEFL Courses???

I did the CELTA course - Certificate of English Language Teaching to Adults and yes, it's simply a tefl course. It was 160 hours (if I remember correctly) over 4 weeks and was both the most terrifying and exhilerating course I've ever done. I guess we can all remember the first day, thinking how in the hell you could prepare enough material to last an hour and how it could be possible to teach 30 hours a week if a twenty minute lesson takes half the night to prepare!

The course was with 3 tutors and 8 trainee teachers. The tutors were fantastic, giving us enough help to point us in the right direction but also enough freedom not to stifle our creativity :-) The feedback was thorough and they were skilled in getting the most out of each individual's strengths. The classroom experience was invaluable - seeing the whites of the eyes and smelling the fear - mine that is, not theirs! You need to get a feel for when you're losing their interest, pacing the lesson, changing the activities, getting them to interact with each other, sharing a joke, acting, miming and yes, even losing your patience sometimes.

The first lessons were tough and not pretty but thankfully the tutors and peers were there to put Humpty together again after the fall. This input \ feedback was what really helped to improve.

I don't see how an online course can give you any of that. Any further training I take will be face to face.
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