IN WHAT DIFFERENT WAYS CAN A TEFL QUALIFICATION BE USED?

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In what different ways can a TEFL qualification be used?

A TEFL qualification may be a teaching qualification, but it is a very flexible qualification to have. While traditional teaching qualifications allow you to teach in only a certain situation – high school Geography, for example – a TEFL qualification can be used in a number of different teaching environments.

Probably the most popular TEFL context is working in a school in a non-English-speaking country. In the school you could be the English teacher who teaches English as a subject, or you could be a subject teacher who teaches using English as the medium of instruction. You could even be a class teacher who teaches a range of subjects, all in English. If you are not the teacher, it is possible that you are the teaching assistant, who helps the teacher carry out the lessons and assists with planning, preparation and discipline.

If you would rather teach older learners, why not get a position at a university? The majority of universities in non-English-speaking countries have subjects which are taught in English or need teachers to help the students who are studying English. It may be necessary for students to take English as a requirement for their degree regardless of what they are studying, so as to prepare them for the world outside their country.

Universities in English-speaking countries also have EFL programmes to help foreign students who are studying at the university in English. Though these students need to have a certain level of English in order to be accepted onto the course, it is usually necessary for the students to maintain their English through lessons to keep up with their coursework. There are sometimes foundation courses for foreign students who do not have a high enough level of English but would like to improve their English to be able to study at the university later.

Another popular teaching option is to work for a language school. These vary from boutique-style smaller schools to huge international chains, but the general teaching environment is the same: small classes, prescribed curriculum, good support system and resources.

If, however, you’d prefer not to work for a school, online teaching is taking off in a big way at the moment. You can either work for a company who will find students for you, or you can try it on your own, using Skype or other online platforms to teach students all over the world from the comfort of your own home.

Teaching in-house in a company is another way to make use of your TEFL certificate. Depending where you are, it’s possible to find a company which needs to improve the English skills of its employees. As a result, this is usually Business English and your lessons will involve teaching language for meetings or writing reports.

Finally, another very popular scenario is teaching private students. Teaching privately is a great way to work for yourself and have the freedom to work as much or as little as you want. Teaching 1-to-1 is an opportunity to focus on the individual student’s needs and focus on exactly what the student wants.  

So whatever kind of teaching you are considering, you’ll be able to find a job to suit you and if your first job is not exactly what you were expecting, always remember that there are various other opportunities out there for you.

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