Published 1st October 2019
If you have done your research into doing a TEFL course you’ll know that they come in various formats and different lengths. You can do a TEFL course 100% online or 100% face-to-face or a combination of both. Courses range from 20 hours to over 360 hours, which is quite a difference and can be quite confusing. You are probably asking how long does a 168-hour course take with a fulltime job? To be honest, you shouldn’t even look twice at a 20-hour course and you shouldn’t do less than 120 hours.
But while that may be the time the course may take, if you are doing an online course this doesn’t necessarily take into account your life outside the course. 10 hours is 10 hours but if you don’t have 10 hours to sit down and do the work for 10 hours, how long is that 10 hours really going to take you? In other words, how much wood can a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
How Long Does a 168-Hour Course Take with a Fulltime Job?
If you work fulltime you know what it’s like: you wake up, go to work, come home from work, make dinner and put on Netflix until you fall asleep on the couch. The last thing you want to do when you come home from work is to study, do more work, or engage your brain in any way.
If you’re lucky enough to work close to home or finish work early or not have to sit in traffic on the way home, then you may have the capacity for an hour or two’s work when you come home in the evening. If you only finish work at 6 o’clock and your commute takes an hour then probably not. Even if you feel you could it might not be the best idea because you might not be at your sharpest and you could find yourself rereading the same material the next day!
If this is the case then you would need to do your work on weekends. Depending on your social life and your weekend commitments you could do quite a few hours over the weekend if you’re dedicated. Bear in mind, though, that doing a TEFL course is not just sitting down and answering a few questions. It requires concentration, thought and a lot of reading.
This means that you need to be in the right frame of mind to do the coursework. You cannot be tired or hungry or hungover. It’s also not a great idea to sit down and try to tackle the course in one sitting. You’ll need to take breaks and refresh your mind. Even though this is a big investment of your time and money, you probably also don’t want to give up all your time just to get the course down in the shortest amount of time possible. It might be tricky but you need to work out how you can make the course not only doable for you but enjoyable too.
What would this mean for a 168-hour TEFL course?
Say you are able to do two hours of work in the evenings, three times a week. Then on weekends you can do four hours a day for both Saturday and Sunday. This would mean that in a week you could do 14 hours a week, and you could hypothetically complete the course in 12 weeks.
That might seem like a long time but it’ll give you time to tackle the course material without hurrying though the content. It will give you time to let the information sink in and for you to get to grips with what you are learning. It will allow the dust to settle, so to speak, before moving on to the next chapter.
Of course, if you have more time available or are keen to get it done sooner, then there’s nothing stopping you! You could do two hours a night for four evenings a week and eight hours each on Saturday and Sunday. If you managed to pull this punishing schedule off then you’ll say goodbye to the course in seven weeks.
As you can see, there are a few different factors which can affect how long a 168-hour course is actually going to take you. The bottom line is that you need to find balance in your life while you are doing the course so that you don’t find it overwhelming or unpleasant. Instead it should be an enjoyable start to what could be the most amazing career.