A frequent question they have is whether their on-line certificate is compatible to the on-site certificate and whether schools will accept them with an on-line certificate.
To answer the first question, both certificates are of equal value and schools accept them. The difference doesn’t exist in the value of the certificate; it exists in the practical teaching training associated with an on-site program.
On-line training is great for different reasons:
1. It’s very inexpensive.
2. You can study anywhere you want, even at the beach.
3. You can study at any time you want. In case of a sleepless night, you can study.
What are considered negative factors that are associated with on-line training?
1. An on-line course relies on self-discipline and knowledge of your required effort to learn things. Some students overestimate their ability to quickly absorb knowledge.
2. An on-line course is very theoretical. Of course, I learn that I can use these correction techniques and know how to give instructions. You learn all these rules in isolation. But what about if you come into the real situation. Can you respond with the right move in an emergent situation in the classroom? Well, we all know that this is not always the case. People need to practice.
3. An on-line course lacks the personal touch attendance in a class has. Students may see and hear each other; however, the closeness that an on-site training creates is no longer there. And that is also true for the instructor and the relationship he/she develops to the individual trainee.
I have read a lot of articles about on-site vs. on-line training. Some of these claimed that on-line students don’t receive career support. This is incorrect because with our school they do. Our on-line students get the same career support as the on-site students do. It happens very often that people call an on-site program of $1,500 to $2,000 expensive. I do not think that this is expensive at all, considering that in Korea you can save up to $15,000 in the first year with a modest life style. And Korea doesn’t even offer the same benefits and compensation Middle Eastern schools give to their English teachers. Looking at what you can actually get for your job in Asia and the Middle East, $2,000 is no investment at all. While many schools will accept you with your on-line training, some may not. They want to see the teaching practice. This is true for schools in Saudi Arabia where teachers get an unbeatable compensation package. You can get so accustomed to your pay over there that you don’t want to leave the area anymore.
We had a student fly from Korea to the U.S. just to take the teaching practice. The school wanted to have written proof of teaching practice. Again, that was a school that offered a super compensation package which the teacher wanted to have. So she complied with the school’s request, found a rewarding place to teach English and makes good money. So when you decide to take up a teaching career, you have to consider what you want to do. If you wish to go to top schools that compensate you extremely well, they often want to see a certain level of training as a prerequisite—the teaching practice. Make sure you get it. If you are happy to work in other places (China or Vietnam, South America, Europe, Africa as examples), schools are not as demanding as long as you do well in the interview, and you have your answers available. In the end, you will be a teacher no matter where you are, whether it’s in China, in Russia, in Korea or the Middle East. You will be teaching English. And finally, you may be uncertain now of what to do. Well, if that is the case, take the blended (combined) course. You have both kinds of training combined. You study the theory on line. Once you have completed that, you go to a TEFL center for a seven-day teaching practice. And this type of training saves you some money but prepares you to face those top schools in the Middle East or in Asia you may wish to work for. If you are short of money, maybe your family can help you come up with the tuition. You pay them back once you work at a school. And I am positive that they will be glad to help you in this transition period. I know of a lot of parents and grandparents that paid the TEFL tuition. On top of it, our organization offers installment payments if that would be of help to any prospective trainee out there.
If your dream is to become an English teacher, it’s in your reach. Talk to us. Together we will find a way to make it happen for you.