How to choose the right TEFL course & certificate to accomplish your goals
TEFL, TESOL & CELTA
The Cambridge CELTA is the Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from the University of Cambridge. It has some similarities to and some differences from other TESOL/TEFL certificates which are worth exploring.
First, let's have a look at the terms TESOL and TEFL. TESOL is an acronym for "Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages" and TEFL is an acronym for "Teaching English as a Foreign Language". You could say TESOL/TEFL is a type of certificate (for English language teachers) and the Cambridge CELTA is a brand of TESOL/TEFL certificate. There are a number of different programs for teaching English, and while the topic of different courses is the same, the content and quality can vary.
The CELTA course is the TESOL/TEFL certificate from the University of Cambridge in England, which takes its role moderating CELTA courses around the world very seriously. They have strict requirements for each center allowed to run CELTA courses, and they send an approved assessor to every CELTA course that is run around the world. So, if CCI English runs three CELTA courses in a year, we get inspected three times that year. This type of quality assurance is not standard across the TESOL/TEFL certificates and helps ensure the quality of the Cambridge CELTA course.
There are two guarantees that CELTA programs provide. First any teacher trainee that signs up for the CELTA course is guaranteed a high-quality, professional training course with qualified, trained tutors who help them get the most out of their CELTA course. The second guarantee is made to future employers. Because the University of Cambridge maintains high standards for every CELTA in every country, employers are happy to hire CELTA-qualified teachers, as they know the University of Cambridge seal on each CELTA certificate stands for the highest quality.
An indicator of quality and recognition of a TEFL/TESOL certificate is the awarding body. Some certificates are issued directly by the school at which you take your course, while other are awarded by outside bodies or institutions.
The Cambridge CELTA is accredited and awarded by Cambridge English, a division of Cambridge University in Cambridge, England. This means that CCI English's centers, teacher trainers and courses are inspected by Cambridge University multiple times per year to ensure quality.
With the Cambridge CELTA certificate you have the credibility of one of the world's most prestigious universities to prove your high value as a teacher.
Another important indicator of quality for a TEFL/TESOL course is how course assessment is done.
When you take the CELTA, you are assessed objectively on the merit of your coursework and teaching on the course. Cambridge English provides a range of criteria that each CELTA candidate should meet by the end of the course. The list of criteria is available to centers, teacher trainers and all course participants from the first day of the course.
There is also a clear Cambridge grading policy for its teaching qualification courses. At each stage of the course, we will tell you where you stand and whether your work up to that point has been to standard, below standard or above standard. No matter where you fall at the time of a tutorial, you will be given clear, actionable goals to help you improve or maintain your grade on the course.
Another quality indicator of a TEFL/TESOL program is based on the center and the standards it holds itself to.
On the Cambridge CELTA course, you are guaranteed access to a minimum of two expert trainers on your course. You are also guaranteed that the maximum trainer to trainee ratio on the course will be six to one, which means that there will be at least one trainer for every six trainees on the course.
You are also guaranteed that you will be on the course with other high-level English speakers who are capable of teaching English and doing university-level coursework in English.