When prospective English teachers consider a TEFL certification, a common query is the adequacy of a 120-hour TEFL certificate for classroom or online teaching. While the duration might initially seem limited, it is important to note that a 120-hour TEFL certificate is the standard benchmark set by the majority of ESL employers worldwide. Alongside the core training, some institutions might emphasize classroom experience. Recognizing this need, several TEFL programs offer courses inclusive of classroom-based hours, catering to those job requirements and ensuring teachers are both qualified and experienced.
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A 120-hour TEFL course is comprehensive training designed for individuals aiming to teach English abroad or online. The 120 hours indicates that participants undergo a blend of academic coursework, typically exceeding 100 hours, combined with at least six hours of hands-on teaching practice. While the traditional format is an intensive four-week in-class setting, the rise of online TEFL courses has expanded accessibility. Both part-time options, suitable for those juggling work or studies, and intensive in-class variants ensure a range of choices for aspiring educators.
A 120-hour TEFL certification is widely accepted as the benchmark for securing a paid position teaching English, be it abroad or online, even for those new to the field. To ensure the TEFL certification carries weight:
- The course should incorporate at least 6 hours of hands-on teaching practice.
- It should be delivered by a qualified educator with extensive teaching and training experience, preferably holding a university degree in TESOL or linguistics.
- Accreditation from a recognized TEFL institution is a must, confirming the course meets international standards and offers comprehensive coverage of relevant topics.
In essence, while more extensive courses exist, a well-structured 120-hour TEFL course can indeed be your passport to a teaching career.
While many institutions may promote their offerings as 120-hour TEFL courses, they are not all created equal or universally recognized. To discern the credibility and quality of a 120-hour TEFL course, consider these key factors:
- Practical Experience: Genuine TEFL courses should offer hands-on teaching practice. Many employers might not even consider a TEFL certificate without this crucial component.
- Accreditation: Ensure the course has been vetted and approved by a reputable TEFL accrediting body. Courses without such accreditation might be viewed as substandard by potential employers.
- Qualified Instructors: A top-tier TEFL course should be facilitated by instructors holding university-level credentials and ample teaching experience. Surprisingly, not all online courses maintain this standard.
In essence, while the 120-hour label might be common, the course's content, structure, and recognition can vary significantly.
A legitimate 120-hour TEFL course typically comes at a price that reflects the quality of its curriculum, instruction, and support. While there are cheap or even free TEFL courses available, they often compromise on key aspects. A high-caliber TEFL course involves accredited curricula, seasoned instructors, comprehensive job support, and pre-enrollment guidance. At ITTT our high-quality 120-hour online TEFL course is priced around $249. Investing in such a course ensures not only top-notch training but also valuable assistance in areas like job placement. Always ensure transparency in what the cost covers, including any certification fees.
Completing a 120-hour TEFL certificate in-class typically spans around four weeks if pursued full-time, equating to approximately eight hours daily, inclusive of assignments and practice teaching sessions. Online options, however, provide flexibility, permitting learners to set their own pace. Although most students wrap up within a few months, the duration can extend up to six months based on individual schedules, especially if juggling work or other responsibilities. It is worth noting that claims of completing a 120-hour TEFL course in mere hours or days often signal a lack of authenticity in the course.
While a TEFL course exceeding 120 hours often covers more in-depth content and can be seen as advantageous, the course's duration isn't the sole indicator of its quality. Crucially, the course's accreditation status is paramount. Without proper accreditation, even an extended course might not lead to recognized certification, hindering job prospects. For those committed to a prolonged TEFL career or aiming for specialized sectors, like business English or teaching young learners, investing in a longer, accredited course can indeed offer a competitive edge.