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TESOL Certification

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Hey all,


I have the opportunity to take a massively discounted TESOL course that would, normally, be absolutely out of my price range. I'm looking into it, as, I figure, the more skills the better, but was wondering if having this would make any difference in the applications cycle.  Obviously I know it can't hurt me, but I was curious if it might have benefits above and beyond just "knowing more".


I realize this is sort of a dumb and maybe obvious question, but I just wanted to see if anyone here had thoughts.  I want to do it anyway, but it would be extra awesome if it might be of some use in the hell that is applications.



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Mine are along the same lines as yours (having more skills won't hurt), but the only thing I can imagine it "helping" with in a less vague way is if it's a teaching-heavy program.  You could market yourself as having the skill set to be more prepared for teaching ESL students and those who struggle with grammar.  But I think this is a rather weak helper, if that makes sense, and I doubt it would be a game-changer.


ETA: This is all just guessing, though, if that's not clear.

Edited by Lons
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Is it a TEFL course, or a TESOL course, for starters?


TESOL is for higher learning ESL, and that's typically always through an actual graduate program.  This is to say, a TESOL Master's completed at a university is an actual accredited certification and a course really isn't.


I have no idea how graduate programs in literature value ESL teaching.  Still, it is the act of teaching experience an in actual classroom that's more valued when you apply for ESL jobs, than say, a weekend/online/quick TEFL course.  If you completed a course and possess zero ESL teaching experience, then that's (sorry, to be quite honest) nothing much at all.


If you have some teaching experience, then I really wouldn't worry about the course itself.  Don't waste your time unless you've got some to spare.  I would never sacrifice my grad school app time just to complete a course that does not supplement (competitively nor enough) my actual classroom time.



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Well, it lists itself as a TEFL/TESOL course, and is, at least claiming to be, internationally recognized.  And it is by no means a quick course--there is a requirement of 150 hours of work, with input from tutors and teachers.


The comment about actual teaching time being more important is definitely valid, though.  The program does give simulated experience, but I know it isn't the same thing.  I do have a little over a year's worth experience teaching comp, and I know that will do me more good than this course.


But, considering the fact that I have 3 ESL students in my class right now, I may still do this anyway...  It would have been nice if it gave a leg-up in the apps, but it'll still be useful to me after graduate school.


(also, as it stands, I have so much time to spare. :) I teach one class two days a week...I'll be drowning in free-time until final papers come along).

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For admissions, I can't see how it would benefit you. For TAships, if there is a real practicum involved, it might help. Bear in mind, though, that TEFL/TESOL/etc. courses are a dime a dozen and are often no good. The industry standard is the Cambridge CELTA or Trinity TESOL, and to a lesser extent SIT. Those courses include observed teaching practice and take about a month (40 hours a week or so). One of those plus a bachelor's (or often just the bachelor's) lets you apply for entry-level EFL jobs. But since you already have teaching experience, I'd suggest saving your money and just reading a book like Ferris and Hedgcock's Teaching ESL Composition.

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