What are you waiting for, register to join now (it's free): CLICK HERE

Author Topic: Credentials for Teaching English  (Read 2439 times)

Offline Samuelueluel

  • Posting Member
  • Posts: 2
  • PC Status: Applicant
Credentials for Teaching English
« on: December 29, 2014, 03:39:43 PM »
Hi all,

I was wondering what kind of credentials people had for teaching English, for those of you who did not get a related degree in English or teaching.

I'll have a political science degree, with experience working as an economics tutor at my college, as well as experience working with adult literacy students. I've tutored younger kids in English also.

After reading about the new system I'm now scared that I won't be competitive enough. At this exact moment I'm looking for opportunities to volunteer in ESL classrooms...

I've a bit less than a year before I want to leave. Thanks for any help.

Offline shanna

  • Leading Member
  • Posts: 24
    • This Alien Shore
  • PC Status: PCV
Re: Credentials for Teaching English
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2014, 08:24:04 PM »
Hey,

I'll be teaching English in Comoros this June. I have an undergraduate degree in History, a Master's in Public Admin, an internship working with sexually abused children, a TEFL cert (which is super easy to get) a year as an ESL teacher in Korea and 6 months as an English tutor in China.

Definitely play up an experience teaching and any experience working with people who don't speak English. You can probably find a cheap TEFL cert online. They look good on paper but in my experience don't actually help you in the classroom. Try to gain as much practical work experience before you leave as you can. Any time spend abroad will help also.

If you are worried about not being competitive try selecting "anywhere/anything" when asked about where you want to be placed. You tutored economics, but what about math? Being able to teach math/science and English could help you in some placements.

Good luck!

Offline Samuelueluel

  • Posting Member
  • Posts: 2
  • PC Status: Applicant
Re: Credentials for Teaching English
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2014, 10:46:10 PM »
Thanks so much for the reply.

You may have no clue about this, but is your resume considered above and beyond the usual? I sure hope so.

I am planning on selecting anywhere / anything when I apply, but I just can't imagine what else they would want me to do besides teach. My math is good for basic calculus and below, I'll be sure to mention that.

On your advice, I just signed up for a 120 hour online TEFL cert. Thanks!

Offline shanna

  • Leading Member
  • Posts: 24
    • This Alien Shore
  • PC Status: PCV
Re: Credentials for Teaching English
« Reply #3 on: December 30, 2014, 11:45:44 PM »
I can't be certain about general qualifications but my placement officer referred to me as "highly qualified". I think the TEFL cert is mostly useless but my placement officer seemed to like that I had it. I think it can bump you into a different category of qualification because you can be loosely considered a "certified" teacher.   

You will be placed under consideration before your interview but be sure to specify during the interview that you are flexible about where you go and what you do. And look through all of the placements that interest you and see what the qualifications are. If you could volunteer with an AIDS education or sexual health program I think that could help. And make sure you sick with your volunteer work. One time things aren't very helpful but if you have been doing it for more than 3 or 4 months it is more valuable.

Offline koji

  • Forum Hero
  • Posts: 113
    • Transitions in the East
  • PC Status: RPCV
Re: Credentials for Teaching English
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2014, 09:45:20 AM »
I wasn't a TEFL volunteer, but from the group I was in, the level of experience TEFLs had definitely varied. Many had teaching certificates, some did not. Some had TEFL certification but most did not. I think TEFL is definitely one of the more 'competitive' fields (I hate using that term in regards to pc placement) but there was extensive training for TEFLs when they arrived in country. I am not sure, but I believe they may have gotten a TEFL cert during their training. They definitely got plenty of hours of practice teaching and making lesson plans.

I would definitely say that any tutoring or teaching experience will help you in your service. Also, if you can somehow show that you are able to create lesson plans and work on your own.

A final thing to keep in mind: Even if you are not officially TEFL, almost every volunteer ends up teaching or tutoring english at some point. So, brushing up on those skills wont go to waste.

Offline jonstan

  • Posting Member
  • Posts: 4
  • PC Status: Applicant
Re: Credentials for Teaching English
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2015, 04:01:32 PM »
Shanna seems very far above and beyond qualified. To give you some perspective, I'm a Georgia  Invitee for TEFL and my relevant credentials were as follows:
1) 3 year tutor in college of German, Chemistry, and Calculus.
2) Studied abroad a semester in Germany.
3) Speak German
4) B.S. Majors of German and Chemistry
I applied under the old system, but if you're qualified and remain open and flexible then you're likely to get an invite
Maybe I'm on the lower end as far as qualifications goes, but your credentials seem ample. Anyway, It's always good to continue getting experience and updating your resume on the application portal. Best of luck!
Georgia '15