It’s been a year since I finished college and I’m really starting to freak out. I thought that I would be well settled by now, but I’m far from it. I began toying with the idea of teaching English abroad for a few years when I was in 4th year and it’s something that I kept coming back to. I finally decided a few weeks ago that it’s something I would really like to do. So, the first step for me was to do a TEFL course.
The internet is full of information about all the different options, a bit too full. I wasn’t sure which option to choose. I knew that one of my friends had done an online TEFL course a few months ago and she recommended TEFL 247 to me. A bit of investigating later and I found an offer to do a 140 hour course with them for €50.
I did my course in 12 days. You have 75 days to complete it but I really needed my certificate quickly. I also have a tenancy to procrastinate so I wanted to get it done before I got lazy. Overall it’s not very difficult, although a few areas like the grammar took a bit longer and the phonetic alphabet section was a mind bend. It was very interesting in parts and bit dull in others. There’s a lot of reading and I ended up taking a full A4 notepad worth of notes. The assessment is made up of a few computerised tests in each section and a bigger one that you have to pass at the end of each module to move on. The important thing though is to actually learn how to teach a class and not to just do it for the benefit of getting a certificate because if you do get a job and actually have to teach it might be an idea to know what to do. Although I did it fast I had to work 4-6 hours each day on it for the two weeks to complete the course. Now I do feel like I could teach a class if I build more on what I learned from the course. Doing a TEFL course is really like setting the foundation.
The final test was 58 questions made up of a,b,c.d true or false and similar. You have two attempts to pass after that you have to pay to repeat it each time, which is fair enough. The most difficult part was that a few of the questions were a bit ambiguous and it was a case of trying to decide what they were looking for because the answer could have been one thing or another. My certificate was available to download right away once I passed so everything was really straight forward.
For €50 I really feel like I got value for money. I had a lot of anxiety about teaching but doing the course calmed me and made me see that I have a lot of skills that will transfer to teaching. I also saw that a lot of it is common sense and I realised that I knew a lot already. It also made me think back on my own education and what worked and didn’t in class. It’s basic in some ways but worth it if you’re looking into teaching English. I don’t live near a city where I could have done a class based TEFL course so the online option really suited me. You would probably learn more hands-on but that would depend on how much time you have and how much you want to spend on it.
Honestly, it wasn’t too difficult and overall I found it really enjoyable. I would recommend it if you want to teach English especially as it’s now a criteria for teaching in most foreign countries.
More info: www.tefl247.com
Update: TEFL247 have been awesome and offered me a 60% discount code for readers of The Danielle Diaries. All you have to do is check out the courses here and use the discount code tefl24759 when prompted to avail of the discount. This brings the 140 Hour course that I did from €183 to €73. Thanks again to TEFL247 and please let me know how you get on, I’ve already had a few emails from readers which I love!