From mainstream education to ELT

Many people get into the ELT world by first doing a CertTESOL course, which is aimed at teaching adults. However, many mainstream teachers around the world later decide to go into ELT , perhaps as a way of moving to another country or for a changing of teaching environment.
Active Language Infantil, Primary and Secondary students

Do I need a CertTESOL?

Having teaching experience of working in a mainstream school will definitely set you up well for teaching English as a second language. If you have a teaching qualification for teaching foreign languages, you’ll already have a lot of the skills you need for the foreign-language classroom.

However, many centres prefer teachers who have a recognised ELT teaching qualification in addition to their other qualifications and experience. This is because the CertTESOL focuses solely on teaching English as a second language and many centres also deliver the course following the Communicative Approach.

What’s the Communicative Approach?

It’s a teaching methodology in which students are put into situations where meaningful communication can take place. Other teaching methodologies might see students repeating chunks of uncontextualised language or memorising lists of vocabulary; the Communicative Approach has students talking to one another and personalising the language as much as possible.

How will having a CertTESOL help?

Teaching English as a foreign language may require different teaching skills to those you’ve been using in your current role. Taking a CertTESOL can give you the confidence to step into a classroom anywhere in the world, armed with those skills to communicate your objectives to the learners.

Simon, who took the course a few years ago after teaching in mainstream education in the UK, said this:

Although I was used to a classroom environment, the process of planning a lesson in an ELT class was new to me.The course opened my eyes to a variety of different ways to encourage and enable students to speak and enjoy learning English.

teacher and teenage students
Simon in action with a group of adolescents
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