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How to start teaching English as a second language

How to start teaching English as a second language

Ever thought about teaching English? We’ll fill you in on our TESOL-certified courses.

What is TESOL?
The acronym stands for Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. It’s also commonly referred to as TEFL or ELT. A TESOL Certificate or Diploma will equip you with the knowledge and skills to teach learners of all ages and all levels.

A wise career move
Did you know English is, by far, the most commonly studied foreign language in the world? With 1.5 billion English language learners worldwide, teachers aren’t left wanting for job opportunities. It’s the most widely-spoken second language in the world. With increasing demand for native English-speaking teachers in countries like South Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Taiwan and China, it could be the perfect setting for a gap year, career break or simply a new adventure.

Don’t start packing just yet, though
There are also loads of chances to teach ESL locally, like language schools or private tutoring. Teaching English is ripe for remote working – hello, digital nomad – making it the perfect work from home (or anywhere) job in 2021 and beyond! The growth in online language schools has been phenomenal and there are many companies online you can teach with, including to children. Different time zones are ideal for a second job, or to fit in around existing commitments.

Make conversation, make a difference
You’ve already mastered the language. Obviously. Generally teaching English as a second language, whether online or overseas, involves a lot of conversation – yes, you could make a living chatting with people. You’re also helping your students gain a valuable skill as they learn English, especially for improving their job prospects in a global market.

What should I look for in a course?
Not all TESOL courses are created equal, so for the best chances of finding work (and learning the skills to teach effectively) look for a reputable provider that offers industry connections (like practical, face-to-face experience and job support after graduation), a thorough curriculum – think classroom management, lesson planning, communication for a start – and any course you consider should be at least 140 hours.

What’s the difference between the certificate and the diploma?
The International TESOL Diploma, delivered by TESOL Australia, is completed within 16–24 weeks on average (600 nominal study hours, and 10 hours of work experience with an online ESL school). The diploma exclusively includes seven online one-on-one, face-to-face hour sessions with an IELTS examiner. IELTS is the international standardised test of English language proficiency for non-native speakers.


The International TESOL Certificate also includes ten hours of work experience with an online school, and with 200 nominal study hours, the average course completion is 8–12 weeks. Both courses are fully online.
Not only is the career itself flexible and portable, the courses are conveniently workable, too – go at your own pace. Yes, you could be qualified to teach English as a second language in a few short months!


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