Should you get a TESOL teaching degree?
You might have figured out by now that you require a teaching degree to be an ESL teacher, in most counties in the world that is. Furthermore, you probably realized that there is a huge list of different degrees to choose from, e.g. TEFL, TESOL, CELTA or DELTA. To add to the confusion, most of these degrees come with different durations, requirements and even physical locations to choose from. So, let’s have a look at TESOLs
TEFL or TESOL, what do I need?
When you start looking for either a TEFL or TESOL degree, you will see that both terms are often used interchangeably. Both degrees are meant to educate you to be an English teacher. The acronyms mean the following:
· TEFL – Teach English as a Foreign Language
· TESOL – Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages
You can already see that both names have a lot of similarities and they primarily focus on the same thing, teaching English. So, you can logically assume that they are the same and you would be right for the majority of individuals who use either degree to get a teaching job overseas. There are small differences though, and depending or your expectations you might want to choose a TESOL over a TEFL degree.
What makes TESOL different?
The main difference between a TEFL and TESOL degree is that a TESOL is not only focused on teaching in non-native countries. A TEFL degree is strictly used for those that want to teach overseas, for instance in China or Japan. A TESOL degree can equally be used for this, however, it allows the graduate to teach in native countries too. Imagine that you want to work in the US, you’ll need a TESOL degree to get into teaching.
Getting the best TESOL course out there!
When looking for a TESOL course, you’ll need to consider the following:
· Do I want to do the entire course online? (Not recommended)
· Do I want to take a light course or an intensive one? (Minimum of 120 hours is recommended)
· Do I want an in-class experience? (Recommended for those without teaching experience)
· Where do I want to work? (the U.S. has much stricter requirements than most other countries)
For those that look for an easy degree to find a temporary teaching job overseas, it is recommended to take a 120-hour TEFL course. This will allow you to get a job in most Asian and African countries. For those that want to teach in an English-speaking country, we highly recommend investing more time, effort and money in their certification!
TESOL degree at your university
Nowadays many campuses in the U.S. offer TESOL or TEFL courses. These courses usually come with college credits. This is of course not an option for everyone, but if you are one of the lucky ones, don’t miss out. Get certified today!