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GYIK/FAQ

BUSINESS LANGUAGE COURSES

GENERAL ENGLISH COURSES

(60 lesson, 120 lesson,
English Practice Group, Exam Prep courses,
Matura Prep courses)

TEACHER TRAINING

Why choose the CELTA over other TEFL courses?

The CELTA is the most widely recognised initial qualification in ELT, particularly in (but not limited to) the private sector, i.e. private language schools. If you seek work as a EFL/ESL teacher in a private language school anywhere in the world, chances are that prospective employers will require or prefer the CELTA as an initial qualification, and will prefer it over other qualifications. One reason for this is that prospective employers not only value the practical skills that you develop on the CELTA, but they also know what to expect from a CELTA-trained teacher. Cambridge’s oversight of CELTA course helps maintains both quality and consistency, so regardless of where you do the course, you’re going to get solid initial training.

How do I get a job after the CELTA?

There are plenty of TEFL jobs available throughout the world for those who have completed a quality TEFL course such as the CELTA and who want to get out there and teach English. You should bear in mind a number of considerations when thinking about working in TEFL:

· the time of year at which they’ll graduate from their CELTA course (the start date of a lot of TEFL jobs coincide with academic and calendar years - although there is huge demand from employers for summer TEFL jobs too if one is CELTA qualified)

· the age groups you might be asked to teach—Many position require teachers to teach younger learners as well as adults

· the number of hours of teaching per week

· the importance of maintaining a flexible attitude towards where that first TEFL job just might be can also help in gaining employment in TEFL.

Regarding the specific steps of looking for a job, an online search will yield an overwhelming number of options. It’s fun to hunt around, particularly if you have the freedom to travel, but the range of teaching positions varies widely. We encourage our ‘graduating’ trainees to look for a position with a reputable organisation—like International House—which is likely to offer further training and support to enable you to further develop as a teacher. We also provide support for life; anyone who does a CELTA with us can turn to us at any time for advice, support and references.

I’m a non-native English speaking teacher of English (a ‘non-NEST’). Can I get work teaching English outside of my country?

First of all, we’ve had many former CELTA trainees who are non-NESTs and have found the job of their dreams in a country that was not their home country, including in the US and the UK. There are so many factors to consider which we can’t cover here in detail—your nationality and the need for a visa (or not), and perceptions of and prejudices towards non-NESTs, to name a couple.

Regarding the first point, you need to do your homework and find out what the requirements are in the country you would like to go to for someone with your nationality. If the visa process seems all but impossible, you might choose another country.

Regarding the second point, ‘native speakerism’, considerable work has been done in raising awareness among employers, and removing impediments to getting a job as a non-NEST. There’s an organisation set up by a former IH Budapest teacher which is worth exploring; their website is https://teflequityadvocates.com/. We also suggest joining the Facebook group „Budapest nNEST” (nNEST = non-native English speaking teacher); we set this up some years ago as a support group for non-NESTs.

What qualifications are required for teaching English in Hungary?

This is a complicated question (or answer rather) and it’s worth us giving a detailed answer, as it may help you become aware of the sorts of considerations that can exist in any country where you might seek work. Here’s a summary:

· First, one needs to understand that there are English language courses that are ’accredited’ and courses that are not. To teach on accredited courses (at a language school or wherever), one must meet certain requirements; to teach on unaccredited courses, the requirements are much less rigorous. Incidentally, a language school is likely to have a mix of accredited and non-accredited courses.

· If you are Hungarian, to teach on accredited courses you need a language or teaching degree from a Hungarian university.

· If you are a native English speaker, to teach on accredited courses you need to provide transcripts/other documentation proving that you attended at least 10 years of education in a native speaking context.

· If you are a non-native English speaker and non-Hungarian, you need to have a language degree from a university in your country (or somewhere), and have this officially recognised in Hungary. There’s a process for doing this, i.e. it’s doable.

· The Cambridge CELTA is a highly preferred qualification in Hungary (and the rest of the world), in the private language school sector. It’s actually a requirement at some schools (like International House). Some language schools accept a so-called ’equivalent’—another 4-week TEFL course. It’s worth reading up on what differentiates TEFL courses so you don’t find yourself with a qualification that is not recognised in places where you want to go and teach!

As is the case in most countries in the world, to teach (and get paid) legally in Hungary, you need to be able to provide invoices for your work, which means having some sort of legal status (e.g. legal freelance status, or a small company), an accountant, etc. Nearly all private sector positions teaching English are freelance. Needless to say, literally thousands of English teachers, both Hungarian and non-Hungarian, have set themselves up to teach and invoice, so there’s lots of help/support available.

Does online teaching practice transfer to face-to-face classroom teaching?

This is a question that will be discussed for years to come. Our trainers have monitored trainee performance from the point of view of how much it differed in the online format, with trainees who had already been observed in the classroom in the first week of their course. Their conclusion, broadly stated, is that the differences in the two contexts is overstated, and that all aspects of a trainee’s teaching are similar regardless, e.g. a trainee who gives good instructions or clarifies new language effectively in the classroom performs at a similar level online (and ditto for weaker trainees).

Is the CELTA certificate I receive if I do the course in the online format the same as the one I receive if I do the course face-to-face?

The certificate issued by Cambridge is exactly the same– no differentiation is made in terms of course format. Meanwhile it is a Cambridge requirement that the end-of-course report, which summarizes your performance on the CELTA, specifies the format in which the course was done..

Will employers looking for teachers for face-to-face teaching regard online-trained teachers differently?

When it comes to applying for a job, any such differentiation will depend on who is doing the hiring. We suspect that as it bears out that a strong teacher is strong in any context, the format won’t be a key consideration, but we can’t speak on behalf of those who do the hiring. There’s an irony though, which is that (a) the current situation where nearly all English language teaching is happening online may be around for longer than we like, and (b) once face-to-face language learning is possible once again, many language learners will continue to prefer the online format—many more than before—and therefore (here’s the irony) any experience and training in online teaching is likely to be an asset when it comes to securing employment.

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