Why Would Someone Want to Complete a TEFL Course?
There are many reasons why a person might be interested in becoming TEFL certified. Initially, I only really had one reason, is that itâd be an interesting way to start my career as a teacher and would determine if this was something I wanted to do with a big portion of my life. One of my major life goals is revamping the American education system and making it more efficient, especially on the public-school level. Iâve learned a decent amount about how education is handled in several countries outside of America and while no system is perfect, there are things we could be doing better. By finding a TEFL job in another country Iâd be able to gain experience as a teacher as well as study teaching methods outside of the American education system, effectively killing two birds with one stone. However, as I completed each unit of the course, I began thinking more and more about the possibilities that would be opened to me. Iâd considered TEFL akin to a stepping-stone, but the more I think about it the more it seems like it could make a fine full-time career depending on what a person is looking for. With that being said, my summative task will answer the question âWhy would someone want to complete a TEFL course?â
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This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Keanon N. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
To begin with, I think it's important to talk about how powerful an English instructor can be. English is a global language that many countries consider their main language or as a secondary or tertiary language. And many people from all walks of life can benefit from learning English. Specializing in business English, for example, will place you near potentially powerful foreign businesspeople, which in turn allows you to network and find more and more students. This means that people who understand and can teach English are in a rare position of power in that they can find work almost anywhere. Of course, there are several obstacles they may have to face from place to place, but the certification plus experience is usually enough to get into an entry-level position at the very least. And even if those are scarce in the area, it isnât hard to start an unofficial, private tutoring group in whichever locale a teacher may find themselves in as a means of supplementing their income.
Which in turn leads into the job security provided by a TEFL certification. As I previously stated, many people in the world have various reasons to learn English. This means a person who is certified to teach English will have a nearly inexhaustible supply of patrons. This level of job security makes it so that someone could teach English as a hobby, as a short-term job, or even as a long-term career. The certification process isnât incredibly difficult either, meaning its good for people who are only just starting off in figuring out what they want out of life, as well as people who are looking for a change in career.
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Another solid reason someone might want to consider becoming TEFL certified is how easy the process can be. In terms of the process, there arenât very many hurdles one has to hop through depending on the level that you signed up for. For the course I chose, there were 20 units and I had 180 days to complete all of them. Each unit was approximately 20 pages of notes with some optional tasks to help consolidate the knowledge, and a multiple-choice test and a short answer summarization to make sure Iâd understood the unit. I feel like the course was structured so that I had a sense of urgency, but I was also able to ease the work into my schedule. I like that I have a time limit that isnât overly strict because it allowed me to decide if I was in the right mindset to work that day and I wasnât viciously penalized if I wasnât. In terms of the actual units, that was probably where most of the difficulty of this process is. Iâm not saying that the units are hard or unfair, itâs just that English as a tricky and challenging language, often stated the hardest to learn for non-native speakers. But this, in turn, made going through the units more interesting and fun. My friends and I joked about how âEnglish seems more like 3 different languages in a trench coat masquerading as one,â and with each passing unit that became more clear. I definitely take my mastery of the language for granted, and it was both intriguing and humbling to learn about nuances that I used but didnât realize I didnât fully understand.
Also Read: Are online TEFL courses valid?
Which leads me to my final point and probably my most important reason for teaching English; itâs a means of helping people, especially children. Teaching is one of the most criminally underrated careers in the United States. It's challenging, the hours can belong, and belong with policies can be stressful and frustrating. But itâs equally rewarding in that you can directly see the influence you have over your students. Iâve been tutoring and unofficially teaching for a large part of my life and I donât think Iâll ever get tired of that indescribable thrill I get from seeing someone understand something they simply couldnât twenty minutes ago. Teaching allows you to see your hard work quite literally manifest itself in the form of a more well-off person, and any amount of learning is cause for celebration.
In summation, there are many reasons why you should complete a TEFL course, be it resume building, job security, or just to feel the joy of teaching. But perhaps the best reason is that if youâre only aiming for one of these reasons, you get the benefits of all the other ones I mentioned more I may not have even thought of. Iâm glad I decided to complete this course, and Iâm more confidant than ever that teaching is the path for the present me.
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