English is quickly becoming a common international language, and English instructors are in high demand all over the world. There are many opportunities around the world to teach English and the first task is to narrow your options by asking yourself some questions.
- Why do I want to teach abroad? For money? Adventure?
- Do I enjoy teaching?
- What are my goals for this experience?
- Where would I like to go? What is the best match for my comfort level and experience?
- What are my qualifications and experience?
Qualifications and Experience
There are a variety of opportunities based on qualifications. How do you define your qualifications?
- Minimal: some language schools simply require that you are a native speaker in order to teach English.
- 4-year degree: a majority of employers require that you have completed a Bachelor’s degree, although not necessarily related to the field of education or English.
- Teaching Certification: more established and well-known institutions, like International School Services, only hire those who are certified teachers with experience.
- Specific Training: a great way to be more marketable as a teacher of English is through a certification program specifically for language teachers. Certifications vary in length and may be taken either online or at various institutes around the world. Several types of certification exist: TEFL, TESL or TESOL.
Note: Careful research is needed in deciding on a certification program. There are many institutions offering TEFL/TESOL certification programs, but “TEFL Certification” has no official recognition by a central body with oversight authority. Many training programs are externally validated by accredited institutions, such as well-known universities.
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