TEFL, TESOL, ESP, EAL, CLT, CALL, L1, L2… gotta love acronyms…

I just signed up for an online course to get a 150 hour TEFL certificate (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) – found a great price on Groupon –  just to find out if I am even qualified to teach anyone anything.

Before I go on, just a brief comment about my experience with Groupon: as a small business owner, I have a hard time with Groupon. They ask you to cut your price in half and then they take another 50% of that amount for their services. So ultimately you earn 25% of your regular price. That works great when you are providing access to an already existing computer program – like a TEFL course – but it’s a horrible deal when you are in the service industry (i.e. giving paddleboard lessons). Here is my suggestion: Always call the business directly, tell them you found them on Groupon and ask if they would be willing to honor the Groupon price. So far, nobody has ever said no to me.

Now back to all those acronyms about learning and teaching English. Apparently, the gold standard is the “CELTA” (Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults), a 120-150 hour, in person course with at least 6 hours of teaching practice. And a nice price tag. It seems to be the required certification to get a job at a lot of the reputable language schools and to obtain work visas in quite a few countries. I’m not ready to sign up yet, but I am considering it.



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