When choosing among the many TESOL certification programs available, it’s important to first decide whether an on-site TESOL certification or an online TESOL certification is right for you. These two programs each offer their advantages and disadvantages for the aspiring TESOL teacher.
ON-SITE TESOL CERTIFICATION (IN CLASS)
One of the major benefits of choosing an on-site TESOL certification is that you can gain practical experience in a classroom setting. On-site training will give you the opportunity to learn and communicate in person, and practice teaching in front of an actual class. This personal approach will help build your confidence, as well as help you smoothly transition into teaching.
On-site TESOL certification programs typically last about one month. During this time, you will have exposure to a classroom, and develop essential teaching skills such as classroom management, improvisation, and adaptability. You will feel far more confident on your first day of your teaching job.
Another advantage of on-site TESOL certification training is that you can often complete the training in another country. For example, if you want to teach English in China, you could complete a TESOL certification program in China, which will, in turn, make it easier for you find a job teaching English. Complete your certification in-country can provide a chance to better familiarise yourself with the culture and language before you begin teaching, as well as offer an opportunity for networking.
On-site TESOL certification programs often assist with job placements, sometimes a job is even guaranteed. Some programs place you in a job after completing certification. While this can be helpful, you may not necessarily like where they place you.
ONLINE TESOL CERTIFICATION
Probably the most significant appeal of an online TESOL certification programs is the convenience. By getting TESOL certified online, you can complete the training on your own time, from anywhere you want. Online programs allow you to complete the necessary hours as you have time. Online TESOL certifications are great if you don’t have the time to complete full-time training in a month. Getting your TESOL certification online is the ideal option if your schedule is too busy, or you can’t drop everything for four weeks.
Some of the online certification programs are hybrid in structure. They offer a chance to interact with mentors or teachers online throughout the program. In certain cities, supplemental classroom practice is sometimes offered to provide you with a chance to practice teaching a class. An online program also usually gives you an opportunity to learn about teaching English before actually committing to anything.
Depending on the program, it may be difficult to find a job teaching English abroad after you become certified online. Most online TESOL certification programs offer online listings of English teaching jobs and other useful resources, but they typically don’t guarantee jobs. If you want to teach in a particular region or country, an on-site TESOL certification program may be best.
COST OF TESOL CERTIFICATION
It makes sense that online TESOL certification programs are significantly cheaper than on-site programs. Online programs will typically cost you a few hundred dollars. Whereas on-site certifications can cost you up to a couple thousand. With there being such a wide variance in the cost of different TESOL certification programs, it’s important to do your research. With an online program, there won’t be any additional expenses. You may have travel and food expenses if you choose an on-site program. Saving money first can significantly help with this. Once you’re TESOL certified and start teaching, however, you’ll be able to make the money back.
It can’t really be said whether an on-site or online TESOL certification program is better. Many training programs provide the same material in either format, so the quality of training will probably be the same. It all comes down to what works best for you. One such program to consider is EF English First. In addition to sponsoring your TESOL certification, they will help you through the entire process, from training to arrival support.
TAKE THE NEXT STEP
Teach, travel and work abroad with EF English First