Published 30th August 2017

We have already explained a few of the most common abbreviations that you will come across at some point in your TEFL career, but there are loads more. We wouldn’t want to send you out into the TEFL world unprepared, so here is a list of some that you may come across during your time as a TEFL teacher.

ELT – English Language Teaching

The term given to the entire field of what we do as TEFL teachers. It is often used to refer to teaching resources e.g. ELT materials.

DELTA – Diploma in English Language Teaching to Adults

The TEFL and the CELTA certificates are well, certificates. In other words they are entry-level qualifications in the EFL field. The DELTA is the diploma, which means it is the next step on the qualification ladder. In order to do the DELTA you need to have at least two years’ full-time experience teaching adults and go through an interview process. The course itself is intensive and divided into three parts. Once you have all three modules of the DELTA you are theoretically qualified to be a TEFL/CELTA trainer or Director of Studies.

PGCE – Postgraduate Certificate in Education

This is a qualification which will qualify you to teach in mainstream education, even in English-medium schools. It is usually a one-year course with a practical component and is internationally recognised.

IELTS – The International English Language Testing System

A test conducted by the British Council to test a learner’s level of English. It is recognised all over the world by institutions assessing potential students’ language levels and immigration authorities assessing applicants.

TOEFL – Test of English as a Foreign Language

Similar to the IELTS in purpose (but not format) this is the test for people who want to apply to study at a U.S. university.

TOEIC – Test of English for International Communication

Similar to the IELTS and TOEFL, this test is utilised not to assess suitability not only for studying but also for working in a business setting.

EPIK – English Program in Korea

The South Korean government programme which places foreign teachers in public schools.

JET – The Japan Exchange and Teaching Program

A programme which places EFL teachers in elementary, middle and high schools in Japan for two-year contracts.

ALT – Assistant Language Teachers

A teaching position which involves assisting a local teacher. The extent of your duties and responsibilities will vary according to your school and the country.

NETS – Native English Teacher Scheme

A programme in Hong Kong which places native English-speakers in public schools.

Are there any other abbreviations or acronyms that you’re confused by? Let us know so we can help you improve your general EFL knowledge.