As you are getting to know the wonderful world of TEFL we thought it would be a good idea to answer a few of your questions. The following will give you more information on the many acronyms we love to use in the industry and answers to general questions you may have about TEFL jobs, travelling abroad etc. If we haven't given the information you need please send your query to us and we will be in touch to fill you in.
A brief Glossary of essential TEFL/TESOL Terms and Acronyms
English is taught as a Foreign or Second Language all over the world under many different circumstances and the profession has spawned much specialised terminology. For those who wish to pursue a career in this field we provide the following brief introduction to some of the terminology in common use and the many acronyms that you need to be familiar with.
Traditionally, TEFL refers to teaching in non-English speaking countries, whereas TESL refers to teaching in English speaking countries, to non-native speakers living or working there. In practice, though, the two terms are often used interchangeably, and both are covered by the all-encompassing TESOL.
- EFL - English as a Foreign Language
- ESL - English as a Second Language
- ESOL - English to Speakers of Other Languages
- ELT - English Language Teaching/ English Language Training
- TEFL - Teaching English as a Foreign Language
- TESL - Teaching English as a Second Language
- TEFLA - Teaching English as a Foreign Language to Adults
- TESOL - Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
- CEFR - Common European Framework of Reference for Languages
"English" is a term that can refer to various dialects, including British English, North American English, and others. Students studying EFL in Hong Kong, for example, are more likely to learn British English, while students in the Philippines are more likely to learn American English.
- ESP - English for Specific Purposes
- EAP - English for Academic Purposes
- YLE - Young Learners English normally divided into three distinct categories based on the following age ranges 3 to 5, 6 to 8 and 9 to 11
- ELL - English Language Learner
- LMS - Learning Management System
- CALL - Computer Assisted Language Learning
- BL - Blended Learning
- AD - Academic Director
- DOS - Director of Studies
- ADOS - Assistant Director of Studies
- TTT - Teacher Talking Time
- STT - Student Talking Time
- L1 - 1st Language Student's first or native language
- L2 - 2nd.Language Students's second language, commonly English
Awarded by University of Cambridge ESOL
- CELTA - Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults
- DELTA - Diploma in English Language Teaching to Adults
- TKT - Teaching Knowledge Test
- CELTYL - Certificate In English Language Teaching to Young Learners Awarded by Trinity College London TESOL/TEFL
- Trinity CertTESOL - Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
- Trinity DipTESOL - Diploma in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
- Trinity CertIBET - Certificate in International Business English Training
- Trinity YLE - Young Learners Extension course
Both these organisations are highly regarded in the field of TESOL/TEFL, and their qualifications are widely recognised by employers and authorities around the world.
*** Our specialised certificate courses are accredited by both organisations
Awarded by London Chamber of Commerce International (LCCI)
- LCCI FTBE - Foundation Certificate for Teachers of Business English
LCCI CertTEB - Certificate in Teaching English for Business
- YLE Certificates - 3 tests, Starters, Movers and Flyers
- KET - Key English Test
- PET - Preliminary English Test
- FCE - First Certificate in English
- CAE - Certificate in Advanced English
- CPE - Certificate of Proficiency in English
- IELTS - International English Language Testing System
- TOEFL - Test of English as a Foreign Language
- BEC - Business English Certificates
- BULATS - Business Language Testing Service
- TOEIC - Test Of English for International Communication
- IATEFL - International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language
- TESOL Inc. - Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc.
- ARELS/English UK - Association of Recognised English Language Schools
- now replaced by English UK/li>
- BC - The British Council
- IDP IDP Australia - Placement service for students who wish to study in Australia
- The University of Cambridge ESOL and Trinity College London are recognised as the main International accrediting bodies in the field of TEFL and TESOL. Their awards are recognised by educational organisations, governments and employers all the world
Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL), is a term used to describe the teaching of English to non-native speakers in a country where English is not the first language. It is possible for TEFL to happen within English speaking countries, in language schools for example, but teaching tends to takes place in a student's native country. TEFL can be used within state school systems in private language schools or by freelance teachers. Teachers can be either native or non-native speakers.
The term TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) is a term used to describe the teaching of English to non-English language speakers who have moved to a country where English is the first language. The term is used in American English to include both TEFL and TESL.
In reality there is very little difference between TEFL and TESOL and they are now commonly used interchangeably.
The TEFL acronym is best known in the UK while TESOL is more common in the US, Canada and Australasia. TEFL is traditionally associated with teaching students within their own country where English is rarely the first language. TESOL, however, is more commonly associated with teaching students who have migrated to an English speaking country.
CELTA is an initial qualification in teaching English awarded by the University of Cambridge ESOL. The qualification is aimed at people with little or no previous teaching experience. The course teaches the principles of effective teaching and provides a range of practical skills for teaching English to adult learners it also gives you hands-on teaching practice. There are five main units of learning: Learners and teachers, and the teaching and learning context, Language analysis and awareness, Language skills: reading, listening, speaking and writing, Planning and resources for different contexts, Developing teaching skills and professionalism. An external assessor, appointed by Cambridge ESOL, moderates each course. There are two components of assessment: teaching practice and written assignments The course includes a total of 6 hours of practical, supervised teaching practice and four written assignments. one focuses on adult learning; one on the language system of English; one on language skills; and one on classroom teaching. You can take CELTA full time (typically four to five weeks), or part time (from a few months to over a year).
Because it is awarded by Cambridge ESOL,CELTA is accepted throughout the world by organisations which employ English Language teachers. The Cambridge CELTA has been accredited by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) at Level 5 on the National Qualifications Framework for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Each year around 900 CELTA courses are run by around 280 centres, in 54 countries. Each course is audited by an external assessor.Over 10,000 people successfully complete a CELTA course each year.
**** We are an accredited CELTA provider in four different countries
The Trinity College London Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
(CertTESOL) is designed for those with little or no experience of teaching English. It equips them with the basic skills and knowledge needed to take up a first post as an ESOL teacher and gives them a firm foundation for self-evaluation and further professional development. lt is emphasised that this is intended as an initial TESOL training qualification. Each course runs for a minimum of 130 timetabled hours. Every trainee has to attend a full course and complete all assignments, including teaching practice, to the required standard in order to qualify for the award. A minimum of 15 hours' private study is usually also required. The minimum length of a validated CertTESOL course is four weeks full-time. The longest part-time courses are normally nine months, except where they are integrated into a university BA programme and may run over two years. There are many courses of between four weeks and nine months.
Over one hundred organisations around the world, of which Language Link is one, offer Trinity validated Cert TESOL courses, in both the independent and state sectors, including universities. All course details must be approved by Trinity and a senior member of Trinity's professional staff inspects the organisation and the premises where courses are held. The validation or approval process for a first-time course provider normally takes some three months and is very detailed. The minimum length of a validated CertTESOL course is four weeks full-time. The longest part-time courses are normally nine months, except where they are integrated into a university BA programme and may run over two years. There are many courses of between four weeks and nine months.
'TEFL' or 'TESOL' are terms often used to describe qualifications for English Language teachers. CELTA, and Trinity TESOL are two of the most widely taken initial TESOL/TEFL qualifications of their kind in the world, and are recognised by organisations, schools and universities worldwide
The Teaching Knowledge Test (TKT) is a test from Cambridge ESOL which assesses knowledge of English language teaching methodology and practice. It aims to increase teachers' confidence and enhance job prospects by focusing on the core teaching knowledge needed by teachers of primary, secondary or adult learners, anywhere in the world. TKT gives teachers a strong foundation in the core areas of teaching knowledge needed in the English language teaching classroom.This flexible and accessible award will help you to understand: different methodologies for teaching, the 'language of teaching', the ways in which resources can be used, the key aspects of lesson planning and classroom management methods for different needs.
Who is TKT for?
It is ideal for all teachers, whatever their background and teaching experience, and is also suitable for people who would like to teach English but do not yet have a teaching position.
What does TKT involve?
The TKT Certificate examination has three core modules. These can be taken together in one exam session or separately, in any order, over three sessions. Each module consists of a test of 80 objective questions, lasting 80 minutes, which require you to select the correct answer and mark this on a computerised answer sheet.
TEFL Express is the highest quality internationally accredited on - demand modular teacher training programme available anywhere in the world today. It consists of a combination of on-line and classroom based teacher training modules, which can be taken individually or easily combined to incorporate all the elements required by Internationally accredited teaching qualifications.
There is a choice of practical and classroom based programmes including: an introductory certificate in TEFL, a practical teaching module, and a portfolio creation and assignment writing component combined with a comprehensive on-line choice of theory and methodology courses which, when combined, create a complete teacher training package.
The Practical Component
1. Inroductory Certificate in TEFL/TESOL.
This is an Introductory intensive weekend course in Teaching English as a Foreign Language or Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. The course incorporates all the essential elements of English language teaching and is designed for people who are short of time and need a fast and effective way of learning the basics of teaching English and of getting an initial qualification. Although it is capable of being used as a stand alone qualification it is also part of our modular teacher training programme and can easily be supplemented by additional on-line and practical teaching modules and written assignments leading to an internationally accredited teaching qualification.This course can be taken before or after completion of the on-line specialist methodology modules and is the most flexible, effective and comprehensive course of its kind on the market today.
2. Portfolio creation and written assignments
This involves the building of a teaching portfolio while engaged in your first semester of teaching and the completion of a two written assignments on differing aspects of teaching.The portfolio is created under the direction and supervision of a qualified teacher trainer who will also designate the assignment topics. The completed portfolio and assignments must be submitted by the end of the first semester and both are checked and assigned a grade. This will effectively mark the completion of your formal training.
The Online Components
Our online courses are broken into 4 components including a core module and 3 specialist modules.
The core module consists of 4 units; each dedicated to a particular teaching technique. This 20 hour module breaks down into the following units:
- Classroom management
- One-to-one teaching
- Teaching for a specific purpose
- Course book language including grammar and lexis
- Teaching section using a text
- Teaching section using a task
- Summary and review
The specialist modules include Professional, Young Learners or Survival Teaching.
The 20 hour Profession module will enable you to teach exam classes and business English.
The Survival Teaching module, also 20 hours, will give you valuable techniques in how to teach large classes, teaching with limited resources, assets for learner based teaching and a background in cultural awareness.
The Young Learners module includes teaching techniques specifically aimed at teaching young learners, including behaviour management, storytelling and classroom routines.
This is the best course of its kind on the market today. Why? Because, as we employ many of the people who train with us, our courses and our training have to be of the highest quality. We have been involved in English language teaching and training for over thirty five years. We have our own schools and affiliates in many countries in Europe and Asia. This modular programme has been designed to satisfy our own rigorous requirements for new teaching staff, and for this reason, and because we have a deep seated comittment to high standards in teaching, we have spared no effort to ensure that the course is comprehensive, flexible and failsafe.Moreover because of the variety of accreditation opportunities available for different aspects of the course, it provides almost unlimited career options for those who complete it.
Because it has been designed by experts in the field of teaching, training, recruitment and employment, it incorporates all the elements that we know to be important for new teachers. It incorporates a blend of practical and theoretical training modules that can be completed in a time of your choosing.
Our full time classroom based teacher training courses are accredited by the University of Cambridge ESOL and Trinity College London and our graduates are sought after by teaching and recruiting organisations worldwide.
The weekend course is an intensive Foundation Course which provides a comprehensive introduction to all essential aspects of English language teaching. It is the most complete course of its kind but is limited because of its duration. Our online TEFL courses contain all the theory and methodology required by language teachers and are designed for people who need the flexibility of being able to study from anywhere in the world or who prefer to cover the theoretical aspect of teacher training by reading through information and completing tasks on their own. The online courses cover a comprehensive range of theory and methodology and are supplemented by the availability of an online tutor from our Academic Department.
There is no practical teaching element on the online course. For those who choose not to do the practical teaching module we have a series of teaching videos that trainees can avail of.
The weekend TEFL course is more suited to people who prefer an interactive environment and fun teaching methods. The course is dynamic, intensive and memorable and covers the entire range of teaching essentials, including hands on practical teaching experience.
There are a range of career options available to you depending on the blend of courses you opt for. You can go directly into a paid teaching career when you have completed
People with our certificates are teaching and earning money all over the world. However, a teaching certificate isn't the only thing that your potential employers will be looking at. To get paid work abroad you'll need to make sure that your application letter and resumé are carefully organised and well put together and that you're prepared for any interviews that you may be asked to attend.
Upon application to our placement service you will be put in direct contact with an in-country agent to help you find a great job teaching English! We currently have partnerships in the following countries:
- China, Vietnam, Russia, Thailand, Uzbekistan, Colombia, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Italy and Spain
We also offer a selection of volunteer teaching options. This is a great way of making a contribution to some great causes and of getting much needed practical teaching experience in preparation for your teaching career.
Our organisation has been involved in teaching English for over thirty five years. We are a fully licenced and accredited education group with schools and affiliates in many different countries. Our teacher training courses are accredited by our partner school Language Link who have a strong record as teacher trainers accredited by the University of Cambridge and Trinity College. Our courses are designed by experts with over thirty five years of multinational teaching and teacher training experience.
If you choose a weekend course you'll have constant support from a helpful experienced and professional tutor for the duration of your course. The focus is on helping you to enjoy every element of the course and to fully absorb the range of information provided so that you can progress smoothly and successfully to a practical teaching environment or progress to other elements of the programme..
If you decide to choose an online course or you decide to complete some on line modules you will be assigned a personal tutor who will correct your modules and offer advice and guidance throughout the course as required. Whichever course you choose, we will ensure that you have the guidance, support and assistance you need to become a successful teacher.
Please contact our helpdesk if you require further support:
What happens when I'm finished my TEFL Course?
We will provide you with details of the career opportunities best suited to your stated objectives and will keep you updated on openings that are available to you as you proceed through the courses.We will advise you of job vacancies in your country of choice as they arise and will ensure that you get the placement you need as and when you are properly trained.
If you are taking our online course you can apply for your certificate through the 'Secretary' section of the Virtual Campus, your certificate will be approved and emailed to you within 48 hours. If you are taking one of our classroom courses you should receive your certificates by post within 4 weeks of completing your course. In the event of a requirement by an employer for confirmation of qualification in a shorter time we will make specific arrangements to supply the certificate on demand.
Online TEFL course certificates:
- Pass: 55%-64%
- Pass Plus: 65%- 74%
- Merit: 75%- 84%
- Distinction: 85%
Note that practical webinar or classroom based TEFL course are graded as either 'Pass' or 'Fail' and as such certificates for these courses will simply state 'Pass'.
With one of our teaching Certificates you will have no problem finding a teaching position overseas. Our Careers in Teaching Module of the online course has information and advice about finding work abroad. The weekend course devotes time at the end of the course to this topic and you can avail of advice from your tutors who have years of experience working abroad.
Where can I teach with the TEFL Express Certificate?
You can teach anywhere in the world when you have one of our qualifications but we will advise you on which locations are the most promising and which positions you should consider.
Will the certificate get me a paid job?
Yes %uFFFD people with our certificates are sought after by employers and schools worldwide. To get paid work abroad you'll need to make sure your resumé and letter of application are professionally written and well-presented and that you are properly prepared if you are called for interview.
You can book on-line or by calling any of our offices
- Level 1 = 20 hours of TEFL training
- Level 2 = 40 hours of TEFL training
- Level 3 = 60 hours of TEFL training
- Level 4 = 80 hours of TEFL training
- Level 5 = 100 hours of TEFL training
- Level 6 = 120 hours of TEFL training
All of our online courses are assigned a generous 75 day study time as standard. Your study time begins once you click on the activation link within the email you receive after registration. The majority of students have no trouble completing their course within the allotted 75 days, however if you do need more time there are a range of study extension options available for purchase in the Virtual Campus. If your course expires before you purchase a study extension you will not lose the work previously completed. Your course will simply freeze and when an extension is activated you will continue from where you left off. The length of time it takes to complete an online course varies from student to student and will depend on how much time you can dedicate to work through the training units and modules.
To complete a TEFL/TESOL qualification you need to have a high command of the English language. If you are not a native English speaker then you should be a fluent speaker, comfortable and confident in written and spoken English. While there are no pre-requisite qualifications for non-native English speakers to take a TEFL Express course, we recommend that you are at least at CAE (Cambridge Advanced English) level. If you're not sure, take this free test.
Yes, your account will always be accessible with your unique username and password. When the study time on your course material expires, this will be the only section that is not accessible unless you choose to purchase a 'Course Material Subscription'. These are available for 6 and 12 month periods. Having unlimited access to your account means that you will always have the option to upgrade your TEFL/TESOL training course, purchase downloadable TEFL resources and order additional or replacement copies of your certificate plus much more.
When applying for a TEFL job abroad you may be asked to have your TEFL / TESOL certificate Apostilled or notarised. Apostille stamping is a document verification process that is completed by eg the Dept. of Foreign Affairs or the Embassy of a particular country, to show that a document is genuine. Apostille stamps can be issued for Foreign Public Documents. The process is straightforward and details of how to organise an Apostille stamp will be found on the relevant Dept. of Foreign Affairs or Embassy website.
A notarised document is a copy of a document that is certified to be a true copy of the original and signed by a Notary Public. A Notary Public is usually a practicing solicitor who is registered as a public officer offering notarisation. You'll be able to locate your closest Notary Public by contacting some solicitor offices in your local area.
Having a document Apostilled or notarised is part and parcel of the process of gaining an English teaching job abroad. It's not something to be worried about and thousands of TEFL teachers have completed these steps before you. The key thing to remember is not to delay this process, give yourself plenty of time to complete the paperwork so that your job application process is as stress free as possible.
Yes, all hardcopy certificates will have the TEFL Express logo embossed in the bottom right hand corner. An embossed stamp on your certificate allows potential employers to be confident that your TEFL / TESOL certificate is authentic. You can order a hardcopy certificate that is embossed from your Virtual Campus account after successful completion of your course.