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Quality certification near Philly

 
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keith.colella



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:35 am    Post subject: Quality certification near Philly Reply with quote

Hello,

I am looking for ways to obtain a quality CELTA-level TEFL certification without spending an extended period away from my home in Philadelphia.

A bit about me:

I hope to teach in an Arabic-speaking country for a couple years for language learning and cultural experience before I start my master's. I currently teach ESL at a private school that preps international students for study at American universities (I guess it's considered tertiary). Our students are mostly Saudi. My qualifications at the time I hope to head overseas will be:

-BS Writing/Print Journalism
-BA Political Science
-1 year teaching ESL to Saudis in America
-9 months teaching ESL with Americorps (concurrently with other jobs)
-two years assistant teaching at a middle school I'm not a certified teacher)
-High intermediate speaking/reading/writing skills in formal and colloquial Arabic

I feel like my resume is solid enough to land a gig in Morocco, Egypt or Jordan but just shy of landing me a more lucrative job in KSA or Oman. I think a solid TEFL cert and some post-cert experience would put me right where I need to be for those two countries. So I'd like to get a good cert ASAP and head abroad next summer.

I cannot, however, afford to move to another city for an entire month to complete a CELTA. So, what should I do?

I've heard of distance CELTA courses, but I'm having trouble finding details. Might I complete portions online and then travel to DC or NYC for face-time? Are there reputable online certs that would let me organize a practicum in Philadelphia? Is Oxford Seminars as weak as everyone says?

Please help! Thanks!
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tttompatz



Joined: 06 Mar 2010
Posts: 1951
Location: Talibon, Bohol, Philippines

PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.cambridgeesol.org/exams/celta-online/index.html

.
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keith.colella



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 2:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've actually looked hear, but had difficulty getting replies with details about distance programs from any actual schools. Also, I was wondering if there might be any non-CELTA courses that would offer similar recognition in my area. I've so far been unable to find any, but personal experiences often provide new insight!
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 4824
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 8:03 am    Post subject: Re: Quality certification near Philly Reply with quote

keith.colella wrote:
I've heard of distance CELTA courses, but I'm having trouble finding details. Might I complete portions online and then travel to DC or NYC for face-time? Are there reputable online certs that would let me organize a practicum in Philadelphia? Is Oxford Seminars as weak as everyone says?

Depending on what you need in order to get a legit, decent-paying job in your target region (the Mid East), there's no such thing as a quality, online TEFL cert program unless there's a supervised practical component (with real students) included. That is, employers in the Middle East don't accept online TEFL certs. And yes, Oxford Seminars is a waste of your money.

Contact your local TESOL affiliate (http://www.penntesoleast.org) for information and advice about TESOL programs in your city (best if you're already a member). You might also consider doing the CELTA in the country you plan to teach in. However, be aware that visa regulations could make it diffcult or impossible to enter certain countries unless you're sponsored and/or you have an employment contract already secured.

Lastly, we're starting to see a trend in the region in which either the BA or the MA has to be related to TESOL, applied linguistics, education, or English. The better employers in the Mid East prefer applicants with a relevant MA and experience gained after that degree; however, there are some okay jobs where a BA + CELTA/equivalent TEFL cert + several years of experience will suffice. When you're ready to look at jobs abroad, review ads carefully for requirements. But also apply anyway; employers don't always get everything on their wish list when it comes to applicant qualifications.
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1837

PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you'll find that both CELTA and Trinity College's TESOL have distance options, where you only spend a limited time on-site. Avoid online only options; any self-respecting employer discards applications with these.

So check out the Cambridge and Trinity College websites and find a city where you can spend some time on-site, staying at home for the distance components if necessary. Or see if somebody kind will put you up for the whole four weeks in NY City or wherever.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 4824
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 2:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coledavis wrote:
I think you'll find that both CELTA and Trinity College's TESOL have distance options, where you only spend a limited time on-site. Avoid online only options; any self-respecting employer discards applications with these.

So check out the Cambridge and Trinity College websites and find a city where you can spend some time on-site, staying at home for the distance components if necessary.

FYI: Both the CELTA online and Trinity cert programs currently aren't offered in the US.
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1837

PostPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2012 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Nomad Soul.

Well, as you've already got some ESL experience under your belt, then I guess another qualification would be ok, if you really can't do CELTA/Trinity. But do avoid the online ones, as they really are not considered by employers. How about this SIT course I've heard people talking about?
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keith.colella



Joined: 27 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2012 1:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I looked into the SIT program, and it seems great, but the closest location is Boston. Have you heard something different?

I'm beginning to think I may have to bite the bullet and get a CELTA in whatever country I decide to live, but I'll keep searching.

What other reputable programs are there besides CELTA/Trinity?
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1837

PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2012 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As far as worldwide employer recognition is concerned, the CELTA and Trinity are the only ones. SIT is recognised as equivalent in some countries I believe, but unknown in others. If you want the greatest choice and you are not sure of the country you want, then the CELTA or Trinity are best, but your experience does give you some leeway if you choose otherwise.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 4824
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2012 4:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

keith.colella wrote:
I hope to teach in an Arabic-speaking country for a couple years for language learning and cultural experience before I start my master's.

I feel like my resume is solid enough to land a gig in Morocco, Egypt or Jordan but just shy of landing me a more lucrative job in KSA or Oman. I think a solid TEFL cert and some post-cert experience would put me right where I need to be for those two countries. So I'd like to get a good cert ASAP and head abroad next summer.

I know the Mid East is your target region, but the reality is that you may have to get your overseas start in one of the countries in Asia where a TEFL cert isn't required. Build your teaching experience while saving money to attend CELTA training there or in a neighboring country. Once you get more solid qualifications under your belt, then apply for jobs in the Mid East. You'll be in a better position to compete for the more desirable TEFL jobs.
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Xie Lin



Joined: 21 Oct 2011
Posts: 515

PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, Keith,

If you don't find a local or suitable distance option, the PCELT (Professional Certificate in English Language Teaching) may be of interest to you. It is a CELTA equivalent training program jointly developed by Amideast and SIT that addresses the particular needs and challenges of Arabic speakers. It was rolled out this year in Egypt, Palestine, and a couple of other locations that don't immediately come to mind. Amideast wants eventually to offer the cert in all their country offices (Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Tunisia, UAE, and Yemen) with a gradual roll-out.

I don't know if their schedule would work for you, and there is an obvious downside to such a newly developed program. Both partners are very well respected, however; and it's a program I would seriously consider if I were looking at initial cert programs with the goal of working in an Arabic-speaking country. Employment assistance is part of the program, but it's hard to know how useful that might--or might not--be.

.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 4824
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Xie Lin:

Thanks for providing this important information; it's good to hear AMIDEAST is partnering with SIT to deliver a teacher-training program. I'll post their link regarding the PCELT on the General Mid East forum. AMIDEAST's website can be checked from time to time for news and updates on the program.
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Allthechildrenareinsane



Joined: 09 Jan 2012
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 6:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Quality certification near Philly Reply with quote

keith.colella wrote:
Hello,

I am looking for ways to obtain a quality CELTA-level TEFL certification without spending an extended period away from my home in Philadelphia.

A bit about me:

I hope to teach in an Arabic-speaking country for a couple years for language learning and cultural experience before I start my master's. I currently teach ESL at a private school that preps international students for study at American universities (I guess it's considered tertiary). Our students are mostly Saudi. My qualifications at the time I hope to head overseas will be:

-BS Writing/Print Journalism
-BA Political Science
-1 year teaching ESL to Saudis in America
-9 months teaching ESL with Americorps (concurrently with other jobs)
-two years assistant teaching at a middle school I'm not a certified teacher)
-High intermediate speaking/reading/writing skills in formal and colloquial Arabic

I feel like my resume is solid enough to land a gig in Morocco, Egypt or Jordan but just shy of landing me a more lucrative job in KSA or Oman. I think a solid TEFL cert and some post-cert experience would put me right where I need to be for those two countries. So I'd like to get a good cert ASAP and head abroad next summer.

I cannot, however, afford to move to another city for an entire month to complete a CELTA. So, what should I do?

I've heard of distance CELTA courses, but I'm having trouble finding details. Might I complete portions online and then travel to DC or NYC for face-time? Are there reputable online certs that would let me organize a practicum in Philadelphia? Is Oxford Seminars as weak as everyone says?

Please help! Thanks!


The CELTA is now offered in Philly through Teaching House: http://thphiladelphia.com/.
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ms01



Joined: 14 Oct 2012
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Quality certification near Philly Reply with quote

Allthechildrenareinsane wrote:

The CELTA is now offered in Philly through Teaching House: http://thphiladelphia.com/.


Great news! Thanks for sharing! Very Happy
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