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Online TEFL Courses vs. In-Class Study

Online TEFL Courses vs. In-Class Study | ITTT | TEFL Blog

Online TEFL courses versus Onsite TEFL courses? Which is the best choice? In this essay, I will define what is an online course and onsite course, listing the advantages and disadvantages of both, and at the end giving my opinion on which I feel from my experience is the best choice.

First, let's look at what is an online TEFL course. An online course is defined as a course that uses information and communications technology (internet) for learning TEFL. Online courses are very popular these days because they allow for a greater degree of flexibility for students. Some people will not agree but let us look at some of the advantages and disadvantages.

This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Timothy H. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.

Online TEFL Advantages

  • Self Pace - Studying at your own pace and deciding how much time you devote each day to completing the course.
  • Cost - Course cost is usually much cheaper than attending an onsite course. This also includes no commuting because there would be none since you are completing the course at home on your home computer.
  • Flexibility - Study when you want during the day. If you have a full-time job, you pick your study hours.
  • Better concentration - Fewer distractions than in a classroom environment.
  • Variety - You pick the course you want to complete.

students at the table

Also Read: Can I learn a foreign language while teaching English abroad?

Online TEFL Disadvantages

  • People Interaction - Not being able to ask questions to a teacher or classmates. Most online courses will have a hotline you can call with questions but it probably will cost for this service.
  • Self-Discipline - A student has been to self-motivating to complete the course in the allotted time.

Next, let's look at what is an onsite TEFL course. An onsite course is defined as a course physically attended at a specified TEFL location. This is a classroom environment with a teacher and other TEFL classmates. Let's look at a few of the advantages and disadvantages.

Onsite TEFL Advantages

  • People Interaction - Able to ask questions to a teacher or classmates.
  • No Distractions - Since you are onsite for a specified time frame, there will be few distractions which will allow for full concentration on the course.
  • Team Building - Working with classmates for a better understanding of the course material.

three students having a lesson

Also Read: Are there any age limits for TEFL teaching?

Onsite TEFL Disadvantages

  • Time - Being away from home.
  • Cost - Much higher than an online course.

Personally, in my opinion, onsite TEFL learning is the best option for me and something I will pursue once completing this online course. During this course, I have had and still have a problem in completely understanding ESA. My unit test scores also show this problem. The online option does not allow me to ask a teacher or others for help. In my experience, I am retired from the United States Air Force and during my 20-year career, I have attended many onsite courses. Not only did I gain a full understanding of the course in general but the experiences and friends I made will be with me forever. In my opinion, you cannot get this from an online course. I understand there are many factors to consider going onsite and it can be a hardship for some to be away from their family but what you gain from onsite you will never get from online.

Do you want to teach English abroad? Take a TEFL course!

In conclusion, both online and onsite courses have their place in society and both depend on an individual's preferences. Time constraints, cost, family commitments, people interaction, flexibility, and work schedule are key factors which influence an individual decision on which option is their best choice.

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