Certificate Course Details

The Trinity Certificate in TESOL is for people who want an internationally recognised qualification and practical course of teacher training.

A really good course. The teachers are professional and approachable and the attendance of the moderator from Trinity gives the whole thing validity. A tough but rewarding few weeks. A credible course needs an element of stress; we have all survived and all feel as if we’ve achieved something big.
– Philip Tucker

Click here to read more testimonials from our trainees

Below is an outline of the main features of our TESOL course. If you have any other questions please contact us or check our Frequently Asked Questions.

Choosing a course

At Active Language, we run an intensive, five-week CertTESOL course as well as an eleven-week, fully online or blended course. You can find information about dates and prices for all three options here.

Before the TESOL Course Starts

When you enrol for one of our TESOL courses (following a successful face-to-face or telephone interview), we will send you a substantial pre-course task, designed to raise your awareness of teaching methodology and the grammar and phonology of English. Depending on your prior knowledge, this can take anything up to 20 hours to complete. You will be asked to buy CertTESOL Companion by Jason Anderson (DELTA Publishing), an excellent introduction to the course, and complete some tasks which will be handed in (but not assessed) at the start of each TESOL course.

Teaching Practice

The practical nature of the TESOL course is emphasised from the very beginning. On the full-time TESOL course, trainees are divided into teaching practice groups on the first day and begin their teaching practice on the second day. Each group is assigned a practice class of real Spanish students and a teaching practice tutor. Teaching practice includes teaching preparation session and a feedback session where the teaching practice tutor discusses the lesson with you and gives you guidance on the teaching points for the following lesson. Halfway through the TESOL course the teaching practice groups change class. In this way, trainees have an opportunity to teach students whose English is at a different level.

During the online and blended courses, you will still teach two levels of students during the course and your teaching practice will be assessed in the same way as during our five-week intensive course.

Observations of both peers and tutors of the Active Language teaching staff provide further insights into lesson planning, staging and classroom management.

Input Sessions

We believe in learning through involvement, and trainees are expected to participate in many different ways during the input sessions. Each input session of the TESOL course addresses specific language areas and ELT techniques. These are commonly presented via a workshop approach, where your tutor acts as a facilitator rather than a lecturer.

During these sessions of the TESOL course you will see in practice a wide range of teaching skills found in mainstream current English Language Teaching. A large number of activities and areas are covered in detail and these are all of immediate practical value for planning your teaching practice lessons.

Whilst the input on the online and blended course involves more autonomous study, there will still be moments to interact with your peers and tutors to clarify any doubts and discuss what you are learning.

Language Awareness

These input sessions cover areas of grammar and phonology and are designed to provide TESOL course trainees with a basic working knowledge of these TEFL subjects and how to teach them effectively. Some trainees find these sessions of the TESOL Course particularly rewarding (and challenging!), particularly as most native speakers of English have had very little previous opportunity of studying the nuts and bolts of their own language.

Language Awareness Exam

You will sit a 45-minute written exam towards the end of the TESOL course, which will test your knowledge of grammar and phonology.

Written Assignments

During the TESOL course three assignments are given. These include a record of your experience learning the unknown language, a case study of one of your students with a diagnosis of their language difficulties and a project where you create original material to be used with your learners.

Learning an Unknown Language

You will participate in four language lessons in a language you have no prior experience of, taught completely in the language itself without recourse to English. This helps you put yourself in the position of a basic level learner of English and to experience communicative language teaching at first hand.


Your teaching practice, your three written assignments and your language awareness exam will all be graded. These can be pass, pass with merit and pass with distinction. If the quality of work does not reach a pass level, it will be referred. You must achieve at least a pass grade in all five assessed components of the TESOL course to be awarded a Trinity TESOL certificate. If an assignment or your language exam is refereed, you will be given an opportunity to resubmit the assignment before the TESOL course ends, with advice on what you need to do to achieve a pass grade.

Assessment on teaching practice is continuous and is based on both your classroom teaching and your ability to reflect effectively on your own and others’ teaching.

You will receive your grades on the Monday after the course has finished.

TESOL Certificates

You will receive 2 certificates. Trinity College awards a certificate to all successful candidates on completion of the TESOL course. In addition, we will award you a certificate with details of your grades, which employers sometimes ask for.

Careers Service

The Careers Service team will be on-hand during your course to help you get the best start in your ELT career. y