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Is English Teaching Certification Important?

Is having an English teaching certification becoming more and more important for getting good paying English teaching jobs abroad? Read about it here.

The whole realm of teaching English is becoming more and more sophisticated as more English teachers are entering the business. So those who have English teaching certfication (also known as TESL certification) sometimes have a better chance at getting the jobs they want.

Of course, experience and certification is the winning combination. Still ESL certification is not absolutely necessary and there are many schools all over the world that don't require it.

You'll find a lot of English teachers with good jobs who only have a bachelor's degree and some don't even have that!

But if I were looking at making teaching English teaching a career with the intention of teaching abroad or in a university setting if even for a few years, I would seriously look into getting certified.

A Choice of Certificates

There are several kinds of English teaching certification: TEFL/TESL (or TESOL) and CELTA. TEFL/TESL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages) Certification usually requires about 120 hours of instruction with a wide variety of costs.

You might spend several hundred to several thousand dollars and spend 3-4 weeks getting certified. There are schools in different parts of the world where you can get certified and it might be a good excuse to travel.

You can easily get certified online. I've checked many online ESL certification sites and ICAL I think is a good company and for a very reasonable price you can get certified.

Click Here to check out ICAL online English teaching Certification.

In most countries where you can get English teaching jobs there is normally a school where you can take a course and get your TESL certificate. If you don't want to travel right away there are some correspondence courses as well as some online courses that'll get you certified.

The better schools will offer job placement opportunities for you once you get your certificate. You get certified and away you go! Off to your first adventure.

However, one thing to look out for is that there are a lot of places that offer TEFL/TESL Certification and there are language schools that only care if you have some kind of English teaching certification and not necessarily where you got it from. So standards vary.

There really is no international accreditation for English teaching certification programs.

Even if an ESL certification website displays their membership in TESL or IATEFL (International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language) it's essentially meaningless since anyone can join.

So if you want to teach back home make sure beforehand that your own country and school recognizes that particular English teaching certification.

CELTA, which stands for Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults, is offered by Cambridge. CELTA training centers are in many countries and its English teaching certification is considered top-notch and is recognized all over the world.

For those who would like to teach children they also offer CELTYL certification.

Take It to the Next Level

If you want to take teaching English even further and actually turn it into a genuine, bonafide profession then you probably will want to get a masters degree in something like linguistics, TESL or education.

Of course with a master's degree you'll be able to teach at a university level and get a bigger salary.

(I got my first job an an American college in Spain. I had a master's degree with no teaching experience and was hired on the spot. My degree was in filmmaking, by the way.)

If you ever get tired of living overseas, with an education degree you could come back home and teach at a university.

If you are thinking of doing this here's a place you might look. You can get a master's degree in applied linguistics and TESL from The University of New England in Australia.

The course is completely online, you just email in all your work. Just think. You could be teaching English in some far flung corner of the world and at the same time getting your master's degree. Pretty cool, huh?

So, do you need English teaching certification...?

It depends on what you want to do and where you want to go. I would say that in many cases it's not necessary. In my view English teaching certification won't make you a better teacher and it doesn't necessarily mean you'll get more pay.

I'm not certified and I'm content with that. But what the heck, it certainly wouldn't hurt. And you never know what opportunity might come your way that you could take advantage of with the English teaching certification under your belt.

Anyway, it's worth looking into and you can decide for yourself if English teaching certification is something you think you ought to do.