So, you’ve decided to teach English in Asia. Great! Asia is famous for offering some of the best perks in the industry, as well as the chance to save money during your time abroad. Now that you’ve decided on a teaching location, the next step in the process is deciding on which TEFL course to take.
Taking a High Quality Course is Key!
If you want to gain the skills you need to successfully manage a classroom & become an effective teacher in addition to gaining a recognized qualification that will actually enable you to get hired, you need to take an accredited TEFL course that meets international standards:
- 100 hours of academic coursework and training (equal to a full-time, intensive 4-week in-person course, or the equivalent part-time or online);
- 6-20 Hours of live practice teaching (practicum) to actual ESL students (not role-playing with other teachers-in-training;
- Employs a curriculum accredited by a recognized, independent body within the field;
- Instruction is provided by a highly qualified, university-level instructor.
There are many different routes and scenarios a teacher has to consider when deciding on a TEFL course to teach in Asia. It’s important to note, that whether you take International TEFL Academy’s online course, or you take one of our 25 worldwide in-person courses, you’re receiving the same internationally recognized and accredited Level 5 TEFL certification.
Heads Up! Not all TEFL classes that you come across on the Internet meet all of these standards. Taking a cheaper course or a shorter course for the sake of cost or convenience can cause headaches as many schools across Asia are becoming more strict when it comes to recognizing only those certifications that meet international standards. To learn more, check out 7 Key Tips for Evaluating TEFL Training School & 5 Tips to Help You Pick the Right TEFL Certification Course (& Not Get Ripped Off!)
Consider TEFL Classes that Include Free Comprehensive Job Search Guidance
While there are more jobs available than can be filled in East Asia, the process of actually getting a good job, can be daunting and if you don't have access to proper guidance and resources, you may not get the job you actually want.
Visas; interviews; recruiters (some of which are more reputable than others; getting the right criminal background check; contracts (which ones are legit?) - these are all matters that you will need to learn about and navigate.
At International TEFL Academy, we provide all students with lifetime Job Search Guidance that includes personal guidance provided by expert advisors; access to hundreds of pages of information, resume templates, job boards, reputable recruiters, & contact information for tens of thousands of schools & employers worldwide. Read more about Job Search Guidance at International TEFL Academy.
Online or Onsite?
Whether you are considering online TEFL classes or onsite classes, the first key is that they meet the standards described above. At International TEFL Academy, all of our classes - online & onsite - meet or exceed international standards, and so you don't lose out on quality or the level of accreditation by taking an online class or anything like that. Finances, convenience, location, your calendar, your personal learning preferences - these factors can all play a role in determining which TEFL class you select.
That said, as an Admissions Advisor at International TEFL Academy, I almost always recommend the 170 Hour Online TEFL Class to those looking to teach English Asia.
Here are some important reasons why...
1. Saving Money & Flexibility
For 85% of our student population, deciding on a TEFL course usually boils down to one thing: Finances.
If you’re part of that majority, then we highly recommend considering International TEFL Academy’s 170-Hour Online Certification & below are some reasons why.
Money is one of the biggest reasons people choose to get TEFL Certified online. International TEFL Academy's 170 Hour Online TEFL Course is part-time over 11 weeks and gives you the flexibility to get certified while you work, plan, and save money for the adventure ahead.
Though there are live elements like webcasts and online lectures, there is no required live time in this course, so you’re able to create your own schedule and work on the coursework whenever it’s convenient for you. The Online course tuition is the most affordable course option, as well. This allows you to save on your initial tuition cost and use that money instead when you get to your new home in Asia.
2. Visa Process
In countries like China, South Korea, Taiwan, and Japan, once you are hired by a school, you will need to be in your home country for that school to process your work visa.
This visa process typically requires a visit to the nearest embassy or consulate to get paperwork processed. For many teachers who are weighing their options of taking the course online or in-person, the visa factor can tip the scale, as getting your visa processed in advance in your home country provides a certain measure of security & convenience. Also, you can prepare for the visa process while you are taking your TEFL class online.
3. Interview From Home
Many schools in Asia will conduct Skype interviews with prospective teachers in advance, so you line up your job before you even get on a plane to head overseas. Another great perk of getting certified TEFL online is that you have the option to interview while you’re enrolled in the course. International TEFL Academy will write you a letter of good standing that states that you’re currently enrolled in the course, along with the date that you will be completing your certification.
You can present this letter in place of your certification to schools, and this tells them that you’re serious about the training and about the job ahead. Some schools may be required by local visa laws to wait until you have completed the TEFL course in order to hire you, but at the very least, you can have a job waiting for you by the time you graduate from ITA. Check out Tips for Job Interviews on Skype & Over the Phone
4. Give Yourself Time to Choose a Country
Deciding where you want to teach English abroad takes time and lots of research. The Online TEFL Class is a great way to get your TEFL Certification underway while continuing your research on where you want to teach. In addition you have the flexibility to apply and interview for positions in multiple countries and locations at the same time from the comfort of home.
Get the class rolling and during the 3-months continue working with our Student Affairs Department on your job search and read all of our alumni stories to learn about different teaching markets around the world.
You have options, but if Asia is where you are set on teaching, then the 11-week Online TEFL class is typically the most affordable and realistic way of getting TEFL Certified before teaching English abroad in Asia.