You can be forgiven if you think the heading “TESOL Vs TEFL” refers to some complex scientific formula, but to put your mind at ease, it simply relates to the differences between teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL) and Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL). As both categories are qualified and professional certifications for teaching the English language, being aware of the differences between TEFL and TESOL could be considered significant. This is emphasised by a popular and demanding trend today for English to be taught in countries where it is not the native language.
Like any educational process, teaching English is a highly regarded profession worldwide and offers an immensely satisfying and financially rewarding career. This can be achieved by those with proficiency in English and who are capable of passing recognised international tests designed to assess this proficiency.
“TEFL” or Teaching English as a Foreign Language refers to a test designed to assess the capability of candidates to teach English. Passing the test qualifies you to teach students who are learning English as a second language. Learning English can enable studentsto achieve their personal ambitions and development goals, including overseas opportunities or within multinational organisations.
TESOL refers to all students whose primary language is not English, including minorities residing in the United States. In effect, those students who have settled in countries where English is not the home language! Comparatively, TESOL is generally associated with teaching students who have settled in countries where English is the native language.
We must now consider the other part of TESOL Vs TEFL which is Teaching English to Speakers of other languages. This medium of language teaching does not differentiate between a foreign language or second language. It is, therefore, regarded as the preferred test for teaching students whose native language is not English. TESOL is the more common test in the USA, whilst TEFL the more popular in the UK.
In the actual workplace and regarding the awarding of jobs founded on the basis of TESOL Vs TEFL it has been found there are no preferences between the two tests. Jobs decision makers requiring TESOL as a qualification have readily accepted TEFL certification without reservations. In effect, both certifications serve the same purpose, and realistically could be described as different identities being applied to the same field of endeavour.
There are various reasons why many ambitious, adventurous people, who are seeking new and broader horizons, elect to enlist in a course that will enable them to expand their natural abilities by teaching English in another country. The following are examples of what you can experience and gain by embarking on this self-development journey:
You travel, gain knowledge and experience new cultures.
Enjoyment and personal development from the broader perspective of living in another country.
Viewing and experiencing a country and its people from within.
You receive personalised assistance.
A specifically designed motivating career oriented training schedule.
On concluding your training, a lucrative job is waiting for you.
Added options for your career and future development.
Teaching English as a foreign language under the auspices of a “TEFL” certification means that you are accredited and able to present it as a qualification in other countries. This gives you the power of travelling to various countries with the assurance of being able to support yourself financially. You are given career and travel opportunities that are not usually provided in many other professions. When compared to traditional teaching methods, choosing to take the opportunity of teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL) enables you to make a significant difference in the lives of others. You are not just teaching a language, but establishing bridges of communication across the world!
TESOL and TEFL have similar values and there is no doubt that these certification courses prepare future educators. This not only applies to a unique teaching experience but in providing the valuable and ongoing learning adventure gained by travel! You are offered an open door of opportunity to new cultures, languages and the chance of influencing the futures of many people, in a variety of countries, worldwide!