Why You Must Take a TEFL Course to Teach English Abroad
A TEFL course generally provides a framework for teaching English as a foreign language. It provides core knowledge on the different teaching methodologies, techniques and tools required for teaching English. A TEFL course also acts as a pathway to teaching English and creates new opportunities for an individual to build a career in teaching. The course expands and exposes individuals to an advanced level of English language and also helps individuals to understand the qualities, criteria and traits needed to become a successful English teacher.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Jacinta A.
What is a TEFL course?
There are many TEFL course options but I decided to go with the most popular course format, the 120-hour TEFL course. Generally, a TEFL course can take up several months to complete and also depends on the pace and motivation of the individual.
The goal & content of a TEFL course
The course is important because it certifies individuals to teach English as a foreign language, which in return allows individuals to seek job opportunities all around the world. It also acts as a guideline for inexperienced teachers and provides individuals with the knowledge on the most effective teaching methodologies. The course also covers the popular ESA methodology, the Engage, Study, Activate methodology, which is an extremely effective teaching tool. Moreover, it helps the teacher to handle different levels of learners and discern what information is effective for that level. For instance, beginner learners require a different method of absorbing information than intermediate learners.
Individuals completing a TEFL course have access to useful materials needed as a teacher, such as lesson plans and self evaluation exercises. Course takers are taught to identify and avoid common mistakes made while preparing lesson plans and managing a class.
Why take a TEFL course?
The reasons for taking a TEFL course vary from personal to professional goals. Either way, the benefits that come with taking a course are career advancement, broadening your teaching skills & English language skills, travel opportunities and experiencing new cultures through teaching. Individuals enhance their English language skills through learning about these various topics, such as parts of speech, present tense, past tense, future tenses and many others.
I personally completed a TEFL course because the certification is required to start my foreign teaching career, through enjoyable and accessible learning. I have gained the knowledge required to competently and confidently teach English to students all around the world. Another advantage of a TEFL course is its flexibility, as it can be undertaken online remotely, in a classroom or as a combination of both learning options.
Also read: What it's Like to Teach English Online: An Online Teacher Reveals Her Secrets!
Challenges when taking a TEFL course.
The challenges encountered when completing a TEFL course depend on the course format selected. Individuals should be mindful that online and in-class TEFL courses with tutor support prove less challenging as opposed to TEFL courses without tutor support. The courses that have tutor support would allow for individuals to ask questions on specified TEFL topics they have difficulty grasping.
The best things I've learned from my TEFL course...
The best things I have learned from my TEFL course were the qualities of being a good teacher. The course offers step-by-step guidance and an understanding of the qualities required and how to identify them. Teachers are encouraged to examine their personality, qualities and skills and improve on their weakness to be a successful teacher. In addition the, course provides a perspective that excellent students don’t just happen - behind every great student is a great teacher mentoring, encouraging and motivating the student to be the best.
The second notable lesson I gained from my TEFL course was on how to manage a class. This involves the use of effective gestures, eye contact and tone of voice. For instance, gestures express the meaning of the language and also aid in organizing the students.
Are you ready to take a TEFL course?
In conclusion being a teacher is more than just a job. It’s changing the world through knowledge and adding value to a student’s life so they may one day add value to another. I encourage those that are ready to embark on their teaching journey to take a TEFL course. No teaching experience is required. The course has proven to produce successful teachers. The benefits are vast and long lasting. For individuals seeking new experiences abroad, this is the perfect opportunity for an adventure and to make a difference.
If you are looking for a career in teaching English as a foreign language, complete a TEFL course with ITTT.
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