5 Key Tips to Help You Pick the Best TEFL Certification Course (and Not Get Ripped Off)

Teaching English abroad offers hundreds of thousands of opportunities for English speakers to live, work and travel overseas, but if you’ve ever typed “TEFL certification course” or “teaching English abroad” into a search engine, you know how daunting it can be figuring out what type of TEFL certification and job search guidance you need to make your dream of living abroad a reality.  

What's the Difference Between TEFL, TESOL & CELTA?

What Type of Certification Do You Need for Teaching English Abroad?

By Paige Lee

So you’ve decided it’s time to research more about the best way to live overseas. Teaching English in a foreign country seems like it could fit the bill, but when you get on Google to look up anything to do with teaching English abroad you quickly find yourself immersed in a complicated new world of different courses, programs, forums, recruiters, job boards and most of all, acronyms:  TEFL, TESOL, CELTA, ESL, EFL, and so forth. So what's the deal with this never-ending list that seems only to raise more confusing questions?

  • What are the differences between TEFL, TESOL, and CELTA?
  • Do I need to take a CELTA course rather than a TEFL course to qualify for jobs?
  • Which certification do I need to teach English abroad?

What are the basic requirements to teach English in Korea?

All English teachers in Korea must apply and interview for positions – this can be done through a variety of recruiters and government programs, as well as directly through language schools and institutes. To legally teach English in Korea you  must meet certain standards and be able to provide certain documentation.  In many cases, documents must receive an international notarization known as an Apostille.

What is TEFL and What is TEFL Certification?

“TEFL” is the acronym for Teaching English as a Foreign Language, or simply, English language instruction for non-native speakers. Also known as Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), English Language Teaching (ELT), and teaching ESL (English as a Second Language). The field of TEFL/TESOL represents one of the fastest growing educational fields in the world. The field presents thousands of excellent professional opportunities for teaching English abroad in all corners of the globe to native and fluent English speakers who earn their TEFL/TESOL certification.

How quickly can I get TEFL certified and begin teaching English abroad?

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on October 24, 2012. It has been updated for accuracy and freshness on October 4, 2018.

If you can jump into an In-Person TEFL Course immediately and you plan on working in the location where you take the course, you can be certified and teaching English professionally in a little more than a month.  However, this scenario is not typical or realistic for most people and we recommend that you allow yourself 4-6 months to get your TEFL certification, make your arrangements, and conduct your job search prior to beginning your job as an English teacher abroad. 

What Type of Visa Can I Use to Teach English in Poland?

June 15, 2018

Interested in teaching English in Poland? You're in the right place! Visas are an important part of planning your adventure overseas, so you want to make sure you're familiar with the process before you head abroad. The following is the most common type of visa that can be obtained for teaching English in Poland.

The type of visa you'll need in Poland (and how you get that visa) will depend on your nationality, teaching job and perhaps other factors like whether you get your job in advance of your arrival, or if you get hired locally in Poland. Be sure to speak to an International TEFL Academy Advisor by calling 773-634-9900 to discuss your specific questions and concerns about your visa for teaching English in Poland.

What Type of Visa Can I Use to Teach English in Ecuador?


July 18, 2018

Interested in teaching English in Ecuador? You're in the right place! Visas are an important part of planning your adventure overseas, so you want to make sure you're familiar with the process before you head abroad. The following is the most common type of visa that can be obtained for teaching English in Ecuador.

The type of visa you'll need in Ecuador (and how you get that visa) will depend on your nationality, teaching job and perhaps other factors like whether you get your job in advance of your arrival, or if you get hired locally in Ecuador. Be sure to speak to an International TEFL Academy Advisor by calling 773-634-9900 to discuss your specific questions and concerns about your visa for teaching English in Ecuador.

What Type of Visa Can I Use to Teach English in Taiwan?

July 9, 2018

Interested in teaching English in Taiwan? You're in the right place! Visas are an important part of planning your adventure overseas, so you want to make sure you're familiar with the process before you head abroad. The following is the most common type of visa that can be obtained for teaching English in Taiwan.

The type of visa you'll need in Taiwan (and how you get that visa) will depend on your nationality, teaching job and perhaps other factors like whether you get your job in advance of your arrival, or if you get hired locally in Taiwan. Be sure to speak to an International TEFL Academy Advisor by calling 773-634-9900 to discuss your specific questions and concerns about teaching English in Taiwan, including the critical matter of visas.

What Type of Visa Can I Use to Teach English in Argentina?

June 22, 2018

Interested in teaching English in Argentina? You're in the right place! Visas are an important part of planning your adventure overseas, so you want to make sure you're familiar with the process before you head abroad. The following is the most common type of visa that can be obtained for teaching English in Argentina.

The type of visa you'll need in Argentina (and how you get that visa) will depend on your nationality, teaching job and perhaps other factors like whether you get your job in advance of your arrival, or if you get hired locally in Argentina. Be sure to speak to an International TEFL Academy Advisor by calling 773-634-9900 to discuss your specific questions and concerns about your visa for teaching English in Argentina.