TEFL, which stands for ‘Teaching English as a Foreign Language’, is a career move that many experienced teachers dream of making.
Why? There are many reasons why teachers wish to take the plunge and teach English abroad. From living in a different country to adding a new dimension to your C.V. – the list is endless!
Often, the biggest hurdle to overcome is getting the relevant qualifications you need to prove you are able to teach English in another country. Let’s take a closer look at what exact TEFL training you need, even if you’re an experienced teacher.
TEFL Courses at International House Belfast
Any course aimed at training you for teaching English as a foreign language can be referred to as a TEFL course. The most internationally recognised qualification is the CELTA course, which is administered by the University of Cambridge.
TEFL/CELTA is not just for gap year students and travel enthusiasts. Many students of this course come from experienced teaching backgrounds, with some having taught for years and others either studying towards/recently graduated with degrees in education.
At International House Belfast, we offer a range of TEFL training courses for those with ranging experiences and schedules. Here’s what you can expect from the CELTA course specifically:
The Cambridge CELTA Course
CELTA stands for ‘Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults’. The Cambridge CELTA is the number one TEFL course in the world, with most employers pinning it as a preferred qualification for their teachers of English.
The course covers classroom techniques, language analysis and awareness, language skills, planning and resourcing, developing skills and professionalism, and teaching practice.
The CELTA course covers the following syllabus:
- Language analysis and awareness
- The learner, the teacher and the teaching/learning context
- Planning for effective teaching
- Classroom management skills
- Teaching procedures and techniques
- Resources and materials
- Professional development
- Classroom observation
- Teaching practice
At International House Belfast, we offer both intensive and part-time CELTA courses:
Intensive CELTA Course
Our intensive, four-week course runs from Monday-Friday between 9:00-18:00. International House’s four-week CELTA course comprises 120 hours of classroom-based learning, plus six hours of hands-on, observed teaching practice. This approach ensures that you are provided with all of the skills and knowledge you need to go from zero experience to leading a classroom in just one month.
Part-Time CELTA Course
Our part-time CELTA course runs on Fridays between 9:00-18:00 for 10 weeks, making this option perfect for those who have other commitments that they can’t compromise on. By the end of the 10 weeks, you will have everything you need to progress with your new career route, having completed your set 120 hours, including six hours of observed teaching practice.
Why 120 Hours?
According to TEFL.org, based on statistics from the TEFL Jobs Centre, the majority of employers ask for a 120-hour TEFL qualification, which is the industry standard. Taking a course with fewer hours will put you at a disadvantage and make it much more difficult than it needs to be to secure work.
We would recommend a 120-hour CELTA course if you fit most of the following criteria:
- You have a minimum of a BA degree in any discipline
- You have some previous teaching experience
- You’re a native English speaker with a passport from the UK, Ireland, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or South Africa
- You’re seeking work in a country with high demand for English teachers
The Benefits for Experienced Teachers
As a certified teacher with a TEFL qualification, you’re going to be in a very strong position when applying for jobs. Up against other applicants with little teaching experience, you’ll instantly have the competitive edge. As a result, you’ll find it easier than most to secure work, which means you can afford to be picky and be in a position to potentially negotiate better terms and pass on offers you don’t feel are up to scratch.
You may also be able to find work in countries with more competitive markets, like those in Western Europe and in international schools, which will often require teachers to hold education degrees.
Why International House Belfast?
If you choose to study CELTA at International House Belfast, you will gain experience of living in the vibrant, young city of Belfast, and have the chance to explore Northern Ireland’s rich history and culture more broadly.
International House Belfast is Northern Ireland‘s leading English language and teacher training organisation. If you wish to learn more about TEFL training for experienced teachers, simply get in touch with us today.
No matter where you are in the UK and Ireland, the International House family can also help facilitate your language learning process through its other partner organisations in Galway, Manchester, Portsmouth and Bristol.