TESOL - Frequently Asked Questions

TESOL Faq's about TESOL Certification for Teaching English Abroad

American TESOL Institute offers online or in-class TESOL certification courses, and provides graduates with optional job placement teaching English abroad.

American TESOL Certification and job placement

TESOL, or Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, is a certification process that requires sixty to two hundred hours of work. American TESOL Institute offers an online TESOL certification process that makes earning a TESOL certificate more enjoyable and simple than ever. .

TESOL certification, and a Bachelors or High School Degree, are the standard requirements for teaching English abroad, and with a certificate you can teach practically anywhere in the world. Some of the most interesting teaching opportunities currently include China, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Turkey, Vietnam, Thailand, Latin America, Eastern and Western Europe, and the Middle East.

With American TESOL certification you are provided with optional job placement support. Students access an interactive virtual learning center where you complete studies, and prepare your resume for teaching. You are also able to review assignments online, explore job offers, and upload your resume and picture.

Ongoing Job Placement Support

With your certification from American TESOL, you will also receive the benefit of a lifelong job placement support. We know all the various ins and outs of teaching English in a wide variety of countries, and we will work to get you placed in the country of your choice.

Do I need teaching experience to join?

No prior teaching experience is required to join. ATI online and in-class programs provide the tools and lesson plans for you to successfully be an English teacher. ATI also provides optional volunteer/observation ESL teaching for students in the USA. Potential teachers with no prior class room hours have the opportunity to gain classroom experience in the USA ,or online, before beginning a teaching job abroad.

How often do I speak with instructors while taking the online course?

Students and graduates chat online, by email, video, or telephone with American TESOL instructors. American TESOL Instructors are periodically online, giving ample opportunity for students to interact. Certification is granted based on an evaluation of quizzes, assignments, and creation of TESOL lesson plans.

How does Job placement work?

American TESOL provides job placement in non-native English speaking countries. For job placement American TESOL submits your resume via email to employers in the countries of your choice. ATI teachers choose the top five to ten countries they would be willing to teach post certification. American TESOL Institute provides job placement in a wide variety of TESOL fields. Teaching business English has a strong demand in Asia as well as The Middle East. Teaching children English always provides the most opportunities for TESOL teachers worldwide.

What are the requirements to join American TESOL?

The requirements to join ATI for United States Citizens and Citizens of The Commonwealth of Nations are:

1. High School Diploma or Equivalent
2. Fluent in the English Language
3. Able to obtain a passport for teacher job placement (optional)

International Students Non-native fluent English speakers are accepted into online and in-class programs. The requirements to join ATI for international students are:

1. High School Diploma or Equivalent
2. Fluent in the English Language

American TESOL recommends that non-native English speakers have a 550 TOEFL score (220 CBT) or an IELTS 6.0 to successfully complete an online or in-class TESOL certification course.

What is the difference between the TEFL and TESOL certificate?

In the world of teaching English abroad, there is a wide variety of terms and acronyms. For example, you can find references to CELTA, TESOL, TEFL, EFL, ESL, ELT, ESOL, EAL, TEAL, and TESL. The sheer number of terms and certifications can be overly and needlessly confusing to many considering a career in teaching English abroad. The simple truth is that many of these acronyms are virtually synonymous with one another. For example TESOL and TEFL are virtually interchangeable. TESOL stands for Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, and TEFL stands for Teaching English as a Foreign Language. Practically speaking, having either a TEFL or a TESOL certification essentially enables native English speakers to teach English in a variety of foreign countries. Each country may have its own specific certification requirements however, and oftentimes experience can be the final determining factor when it comes to job placement.

Can I teach English inside the USA with your certification?

Yes, however each State in the Union has different requirements regarding teaching ESL inside the public school system. Other qualifications such as Bachelors or Masters degrees, and specific employer requirements will be the final determining factor.

Do I have to pay for my own transportation?

Most overseas teaching jobs are done on a contract basis that may or may not include airfare. Typically, you pay for a plane ticket to your destination country, and are reimbursed with round trip airfare.

Do I sign a teaching contract?

Yes, usually a three month to two year contract, although there are many other options available such as free lance tutoring, translation services, and online instruction. It is always important to carefully study a teaching contract and make sure all the key points are outlined such as accommodations, airfare reimbursement, expected teaching hours per week, medical insurance, and holidays allotted.

What can I expect when I arrive at my teaching jobs?

If you have already signed a teaching contract before you arrive at your destination country, the school or University will usually pick you up from the airport for a visit to the school, and then bring you to your accommodations.

What do these acronyms mean?

TEFL Teaching English as a Foreign Language

This applies where English is learned and taught in an environment where English is not the official or unofficial first language. Examples: China, Spain, Laos

TESL Teaching English as a Second Language

This applies to situations where English is learned and taught in an environment where English is used on a daily basis as either an official or unofficial second language. Examples: India, Singapore, U.S. immigrants.

TESOL Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

This term is used for both the TEFL and TESL situations, where the mother tongue of learners is for students is other than English.

ESL English as Second Language

This term is now widely used in situations where English is taught to non native speakers in a native English speaking country. Examples: U.S.A., New Zealand

ELT English Language Teaching

A general term for the teaching of English in any of the mentioned learning situations.

ESP English for Special Purposes

The term is used for the particular English required for special situations. Examples English required in business situations, for academic purposes, or in the tourism industry. Some TESOL training courses contain ESP courses.

EYL English for Young Learners

CELTA Certificate in English Language Teaching for Adults

Some TESOL training courses also offer courses relating specifically to teaching English to children of seventeen years or under.

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