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  • 6 things to check before accepting your TEFL job March 15, 2010
    It’s tempting to get carried away with the excitement of going to a new country and being accepted for a job is a great feeling, notes Bruce Haxton, but before you start packing your suitcase, make sure you check out the conditions – they’ll make or break your experience of teaching abroad! Here are 6 [...] […]
  • What type of English can I teach? March 1, 2010
    In this article Chris Soames looks into your options as a native speaker. If you’re a British TEFL teacher, you’ll be asked the question ‘do you teach American English?’ more often than you’ll hot dinners. Your response should always be a firm, but polite, ‘no’. This is nothing to do with snobbishness or a belief that British [...] […]
  • Being Certified in TESOL or TEFL has Benefits February 23, 2010
    By Frank Collins TEFL and TESOL are acronyms for teaching English as a foreign language and teaching English to speakers of other languages. If you plan to teach English overseas then getting a TEFL or TESOL Certificate is a prime requirement. Subscribe to The ELT Times by Email Nowadays there is huge demand for TEFL and TESOL certified [...] […]
  • How are TEFL courses structured? January 28, 2010
    What to expect from your four-week TEFL course by Bruce Haxton. So you’re interested in Teaching English as a Foreign Language [TEFL] but you don’t know which course might be for you? Or maybe you’d just like to know more about what to expect on day one on a course you’ve already booked? Well, there are [...] […]
  • How to Fact Check January 25, 2010
    How to write more accurately and improve your grade, by Celia Webb Fact checking is an important part of writing an accurate article. Meticulous authors do research prior to committing their thoughts to paper. Not all authors are so careful. Editors and readers serve society and themselves well when they read with a judicious eye. Just [...] […]
  • 5 Simple Tips for TEFL Job Success January 19, 2010
    Want to know how to succeed in the TEFL job market? Bruce Haxton tells you how. So, you’re thinking about doing a TEFL course, and it won’t be too long before you’ve got your crisp new TEFL certificate in hand – but what are you going to do with it?! Get a teaching job abroad and [...] […]
  • Why People TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) January 12, 2010
    Ever wondered why we do it? Find out now in this article by Bruce Haxton. TEFL, on paper, is perfect: an exciting career, a chance to see the world, a life full of fresh faces, opportunities and experiences. But, in reality, life at home holds people back: jobs, cars, family, friends, house, age, personal circumstances… so [...] […]
  • Classroom TEFL Courses – the Pros and the Cons January 7, 2010
    An online TEFL course or one done in the classroom? Honor Baldry offers advice on taking the latter option. Classroom learning – it’s what we’re all used to and the way we expect to study. Or is it? A classroom TEFL course is nothing like the lessons you took in school; expect it to be more [...] […]
  • How to Find a Good TEFL Employer January 7, 2010
    A new year and a new career? Check this advice by Bruce Haxton if you’re thinking about getting into TEFL. So you’re thinking about getting TEFL certified (or maybe you already are!), but once you’ve completed your TEFL course, what are you going to do with that crisp new certificate? Get a job and [...] […]
  • Tips about teaching English overseas December 22, 2009
    By Michiel Van Kets If you’re thinking about a career in teaching English you are choosing a great profession. Not only do you give your valuable expertise to others but it is also possible to teach English in other countries not just at home. You can do this as a long term option or just take [...] […]

TEFL International – What, How And Why…

By Altaf Sahibzada

Teaching English as a Foreign Language or TEFL refers to teaching English to the people of non-English speaking origin. Essentially it refers to English teaching to those people whose mother tongue is other than English and who have not learnt this language so far.

Anyone with sufficient proficiency in English language can teach English to those who do not know this language. TEFL is mostly spoken in the context of several Asian, African, European and South American countries. The notable ones where TEFL or TESL is popular are Korea, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Taiwan, Russia, Vietnam, France, Italy, Spain, Poland, Brazil, Germany, Costa Rica, Mexico etc.

Many people have made a nice profession out of it. Besides making more than average earnings, they can enjoy paid international travel, different experiences and make worldwide friends.

Two basic qualifications for becoming an international TEFL teacher are an intermediate degree in any subject and TEFL certificate.

There are no accredited institutions providing TEFL certification. However, numerous organizations are conducting TEFL courses both offline and online and awarding TEFL or TESL certificates.

International language schools in different countries have their own norms for selection of foreign trained English teachers to teach English in their countries. Usual factors which they see in this are the length and composition of courses., the nationality and origin of English tutors, reputation of institutions providing TEFL, previous references, quality of teaching etc.

Generally English teachers from UK, Australia and North America enjoy a higher reputation and recognition. TEFL certificates issued by native English institutions like those in UK carry a greater weight age.

One important condition for TEFL teachers being accepted is the length of their certificate. In this, the general norm is 120 hour course. That is what employers generally look for in a TEFL certificate. Persons who want to take up this profession should undergo 120 hour course for quick selection and higher salary. Teachers with extra teaching practice ad experience are more likely being selected much faster.

Of course there are institutions which provide 20 hour course, online and other refresher and short-term courses. One should always consider factors like the location of the courses, the fees, the timing, testimonials etc. One important guiding factor is to network with those who have already undergone such courses and their post certification experience.

There is no uniform policy regarding compensation to TEFL tutors. This varies from candidate to candidate and country to country. Specific factors that are highly relevant to the rate of pay are teacher’s qualifications, experience, training and level of expertise.

Other major factors affecting the amount of compensation are the level of development of a country, local conditions and the level of desirability of teaching in those areas. In most cases there will be a fair level of compensation.

One should also be aware that this is an unregulated industry. There is room for exploitation right from undertaking a TEFL course to actually landing at the place of teaching. One should be careful in selecting TEFL institutions, countries and employers. Pay attention to contracts and living conditions. One should know everything about an employer. All precautions should be taken against being scammed. Above all, don’t pay anything for getting selected.

About the author

The author has background in business, economics and finance. He is presently researching in finding ways to make money and working on the following website and blogs:

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