TEFL certification (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) simply means teaching English language basics and giving learning to those aspiring students who are not native to the language through most suitable instructions. It is a method of certification of training for teaching and instructing English language skills and fluency to hopeful learners, mainly in foreign countries. There are other similar teaching certifications applicable for training,
- Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
- English Language Teaching (ELT)
- ESL (English as a Second Language)
- CELTA (certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages)
All these are certifications for teaching English as a Second or foreign language. In many countries like Spain, Argentina and Japan, professionals do not need a college degree or prior experience but a TEFL experience, other kinds of certification being similar in nature.
TESOL has application of the term to those people who earn degrees but work domestically in the field of teaching English in countries like the UK, Canada, Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, and South Africa and the USA where English is generally a native language. However, in those countries if anyone wants to serve as a Teacher of English, the certification required should be TEFL.
There are certain standards/requirements recognized by international bodies which are met under the training for TEFL certification,
Minimum requirement of 100 hours of coursework;
- Certain sessions of live practice teaching and observation with learners
- Role-playing with fellows;
- Accredited curriculum from a recognized, independent organization from the sector of English teaching;
- Instructions which must be provided by qualified instructors
- Youth and teenagers oriented literature and magazines
- Communicative way of teaching
- Easy to read and understand literature and materials
- Blended learning which means a mix of online practices and face to face orientation and learning
- Virtual or online classrooms
- Pre-designed structures and tools
- Method of online interaction
- course-managed learning platforms
There are significant variations in certification and qualification requirements from country to country and many times within different employers in a country as far as teaching of English language is concerned. Some institutions in countries require proof of English proficiency, a University degree and a basic teaching qualification as sufficient for teaching English.
So to say, each country requiring English teachers has different criteria and depending upon requirements. Assessment criteria are also different in different countries. TEFL Certification works in almost all countries depending upon needs and requirements of certifying institutions. Salary & wages depends mainly on education, experience, qualification, training, seniority, and expertise apart from fluency and certification.
The demand for TEFL certified teachers of English Language is the most mainly in following countries in that order
- European countries for teaching to migrated people
- Asia-Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Laos, Mongolia, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand
- Argentina, Brazil, Chile, CostaRica, Colombia,Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Paraguay, Uruguayand
Whereas in Africa, many countries employ bilingual experts from within local population, however they have been unable to attract foreign teachers.