Site Search:
 
TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International
Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Students and Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Celta out-dated?
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 ... 21, 22, 23  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> General Discussion
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
LongShiKong



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 881
Location: China

PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vabeckele wrote:
The University of Toronto offers an online TEFL for just over a grand. Seems as if things are moving ahead in the world of ESL. Isn't Toronto uni within the top 20 of the world? Still, the CELTA crowd will moan, whinge and wail as it doesn't have the extra special 6 hours of (im) practical teaching component.


Excellent point, particularly given that this same U of T institution (OISE) that put together this TEFL course, largely determines the province's ed policy. But don't confuse TEFL with TESL. Ontario (prov'ly) accredited TESL cert courses require 250hrs + 20hr TP + 30hrs TO, and although CELTA fulfills TESL Canada's Standard One (entry qual), it's 6hrs of TP and 6hrs of TO fall short of what the standard calls for:
Quote:
Professional Standard One is for those who have taken a program with a minimum of 100 hours of methodology and coursework and at least a 20 hour practicum. Professional Standard Two is for those who have taken a program with a minimum of 250 hours of coursework and methodology and at least a 20 hour practicum. Standard Level Three is for those with a Masters Degree in Applied Linguistics or TESOL. The distinction between interim and permanent relates to hours of experience whereas the distinction between standards one, two or three relates to TESL training.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
fluffyhamster



Joined: 13 Mar 2005
Posts: 2560
Location: UK > China > Japan > UK again

PostPosted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Fluffy, why should a Celta trainer be expected to give an 'amazing..clinching explanation or analysis that stays with them for life'? All the course aims to do is give a basic grounding in the main principles of ELT. It is all quite basic. Essential. Nothing mind-shattering. Just really basic stuff. All made blindingly obvious to even the dullest mind.

Which is why I scratch my head when I encounter the entrenched hostility, and even prejudice, from various sorts in classrooms or boards like this. There really is no valid argument against courses like Celta. Well, nothing except rantings akin to denying that the world is round.


You mean you prefer drab mundane humdrum run-of-the-mill, Sasha? That's not aiming very high or that inspiring, is it? And not every trainee is so wet behind the ears (which is part of the reason for these sorts of threads). Or to simply negate your opening question there, why shouldn't they? They're being paid thousands after all.

But seriously, I know it must seem as if I'm quite an argumentative person, but on the CTEFLA I was anything but - mouth closed, ears and eyes open, more like. I actually wanted the argumentative guy to shut up and stop taking exception to any and every point the trainers were trying to introduce, if only so the formal day would be over that bit quicker.

I must however repeat that the more uneasy of my gut feelings during training were later proved founded (i.e. not entirely groundless) - again, that paper by Richards (which I only read several years after my cert) arguing for starting with the most dissimilar functions for arguably overlapping forms for a start. But what had my trainers done when presenting Present Perfect during their model demo? Plumped for its resultative rather than experiential aspect, and with plenty of contextualese (verbiage) that you just don't get in real usage, such that the learner will be unclear (in an English Only approach, at least) as to what constitutes mere explanation and what constitutes genuine example. They might even have slipped in a few Simple Past sentences by mistake or for "contrast". (I am not saying that things can't ever be explained, but if less "teaching-intensive", more "naturally-appealing" ways can be found, they should be tried instead). Then there was the whole Peter-and-Jane-like tone: This was a (Tom's, the, my?) house last week (shabby, in need of a paint). This is it now (immaculate). It's been painted (as if Present Perfect is the only form possible here...an inescapable product of the teacher's rhetoric). Little attempt was made to elicit an actual reaction from the "learners" (silent trainees), such as (in L1, possibly) "Imagine if you knew my house, and it used to look like this, then one day you visited and it looked like this, what would you say?", and no leeway given for alternate or competing forms (e.g. Oh, you['ve] had your house painted; Oh, you['ve] painted your house; Nice paint job! Who did it?; etc etc etc). The result was that I felt I'd learnt little or nothing that convincing or of real use from my tutors for teaching this "tricky" form. How many opportunities does one have to sense or see squandered before feeling justified in saying training doesn't always deliver or is at the least quite bad value considering?

Now you can argue that my trainers were just doing what they thought was best at the time, and that their approach even had merit (one will have to tackle PP's resultative aspect at some point), but it surely cannot be argued that this was the BEST way to introduce trainees much less genuine learners to this form, and if it seems I am grasping by having seized upon Richards, well, there is worse one could seize upon, and I'd prefer to take his reasoning over none at all! But their approach did make clear to me one thing: it was likely one of the prime reasons why many learners have problems with this form. Teaching-and-"explanation"-induced problems and confusion, in other words.

Considering that his book had been doing the rounds for a good decade before I entered training, had won a prestigious prize on its publication, and had a paper in it dedicated to dealing with an apparently particularly knotty problem, one might wonder why it should've been left to me to only come across it several years after my CTEFLA, and find that therein lay a better approach that answered why I'd had those misgivings previously. But it is doubtless easier for the training establishment to dismiss any reasoned criticisms (not that I have any reason to think they are aware of or care about mine...but Richards'?!) than to actually do anything to improve the training beyond recognition. My direct experiences may have been quite a while ago, but I have little reason to doubt that similar or related problems still persist nowadays.


Last edited by fluffyhamster on Fri Dec 27, 2013 1:51 pm; edited 11 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 8640
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 11:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LongShiKong wrote:


Excellent point, particularly given that this same U of T institution (OISE) that put together this TEFL course, largely determines the province's ed policy.


Can this point's excellence be explained to me? I fear that I have completely missed the relevance of any online course provider to this discussion.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 8640
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 11:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fluffyhamster wrote:


You mean you prefer drab mundane humdrum run-of-the-mill, Sasha? That's not aiming very high or that inspiring, is it?


Did I say drab or mundane? Or humdrum? I do not think so. I said basic. And essential - as referring to essence. You know? The important stuff only. The heart of the matter. And obvious, I said, too. Yet you want 'inspiring'?

Fluffy, if you had to train some teachers yourself, perhaps you'd quickly scale down your objectives on the inspiration front. Especially after having to sit through a truly frightening example of how disastrously off-the-rails lessons can sometimes go when in a classroom with an imbecile trainee who simply cannot get it through his skull that personalisation of lessons does not mean rambling on and on about himself for 50 to 60 mins, oblivious to the blank stares or huffing and puffing of the barely conscious learners. That is far from inspiring, for everybody in the classroom. Not that the clown of a trainee would know. That would require some awareness of what was happening around him. Yet, when it comes to feedback for a fiasco of a lesson like this, said trainee will probably refuse to take anything on board, and guff on about his 'teaching style', or some 'new research' he read on the 'net, in a vain attempt to defend the indefensible.

Celta is basic. This is no secret. Don't expect to be wowed or awed. But please, please, any potential trainees out there, please don't be shocked when you are told that your madcap ideas are too far from accepted norms to make for a decent TP. And don't be shocked, if you still persist in trying to implement them in an observed lesson, when you fail outright.

All a trainee has to do is plan a lesson so that the class will come away knowing or being able to do something, anything, which they didn't really know or couldn't do before, and deliver that lesson in a reasonably competent manner. That is nothing but basic. Yet even this is apparently too much for some people who do not even see the basic underlying logic justifying it - no matter how often they are led by the nose through it...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
fluffyhamster



Joined: 13 Mar 2005
Posts: 2560
Location: UK > China > Japan > UK again

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually I'm not that interested in training per se, as you probably well know by now Sash. What I'm more interested in is education, carts before horses, and to use your sort of parlance, "filling empty vessels". I won't say that training as currently practiced quite sets one up for unmitigated failure, but is it guaranteeing unqualified and longer-term success, and is it any wonder that trainees (and newbies) flounder - I mean flounder according to you and using your methods - when given just enough rope (but little more). And to hold up those who are clearly not fit for teaching at all as a means of tarring all trainees is no justification for relentless dumbing down. (I think the least training centers could do is refund the majority of the fee to those really hopeless cases that the selection process "somehow" didn't weed out, but it probably makes more economic sense to keep the money and fail them after several weeks of pain for all concerned). "Something, anything" indeed (but your corollary is always "Better than nothing", right? As if a different tack would have nothing to offer).

My training (or rather education) would look quite different. I wouldn't fob trainees off with cursory reading and preparatory tasks, supplemented with the bare minimum of input sessions. No, I'd try to make the theory and the practice meet much more surely, and one way to do it would be to compile a reader of thoughtful but ultimately eminently practical excerpts or papers (such as that by Richards). CUP owns the copyright to a mass of quality approach-level material, why isn't UCLES using it? (There'd be no better justification for the CELTA fees, and why leave the input to chance). I for one have always gotten more out of books than training, but I wouldn't object to the two meeting, and more obvious (i.e. actually printed and pore-overable) theory or rationales for activities being then put into practice somewhat (assuming the reading and discussion hadn't made things at least halfway clear already). The most important thing IMHO is that things are given more justification and thought, and thus seem not just good but some of the BEST ideas (plural, esp. when versus arguably worser case studies) first, before the rush to "teach" (muddle through more like) and that "something, anything" mindset takes hold. I'm talking about considered (and considering!) options, not rushing something off to meet some impatient trainer's quite unnecessary chivvy-chivvy deadline. ("But that'll help prepare them for the actual job!" I hear many repeatedly cry. But will it really, honestly? Make hay while the training or rather education lasts, is what I say!). I'd prefer trainees to gain a better understanding of what might constitute principled teaching, even if that meant a more "theoretical" education, than have them needing to second guess their tutors any more than was strictly necessary in so-called "practical" but premature TP.


Last edited by fluffyhamster on Fri Dec 27, 2013 1:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
LongShiKong



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 881
Location: China

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sashadroogie wrote:
Can this point's excellence be explained to me?


Vabeckele pointed the discrepancy between TESL & TEFL cert course req's. OISE (the U of T's Fac of Ed) most likely dictated the prov's TESL cert course req of 20hrs TP/30hrs TO, far above TESL Canada's entry level req of 10hrs TP/10hrs TO (not sure why CELTA meets this req with only 6/6). So for them to certify someone with 0/0 when job ads are starting to request in-class TEFL cert's with TPs may backfire despite the fact they do offer 'optional' TPs. The advent of online TEFL cert's may just bring about a much needed regulatory change, and not just in Asia. Note how it's a market-led trend.

What makes the discrepancy all the more striking is the recent concession by the prov's gov't that OISE and other Fac of Ed deans were right, public school pre-service teachers req more practical, in-class training. So, for OISE, does it not seem ironic to promote:
Quote:

The Benefits of TEFL Online

A TEFL certification is what international institutions are looking for because it delivers the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in a foreign language environment. TEFL Online distinguishes itself in the following ways:

Quality of Instruction: The University of Toronto is a world-class university, and TEFL Online delivers instruction that is internationally recognized for its quality.
TEFL Online Accessibility: TEFL Online is hosted in a 100% online environment...
Job Placement Through Teach Away: TEFL Online is ...


And as Vabeckele notes, OISE doesn't need external accreditation when it's among the top ranked uni's.

Does this same TESL vs TEFL cert req discrepancy exist elsewhere?

-------------
Sasha, in regards to your query about my use of the term 'discretely' in what I wrote:
In what we're told about Cambridge's close scrutiny of CELTA course delivery, I wonder to what extent they (discretely) monitor grads, comparing those taking the intensive with the blended online iCELT (=CELTA?) to see if there's a difference in how it affects teaching quality.


What I mean is that in public ed (and only just recently in post-sec as pointed out for Spiral), data drives teacher training, or at least to the extent where politics and economics don't interfere. But unlike the public sector where student outcomes provide a wealth of data used to affect teacher training, to what extent has Cambridge made use of discrete CELTA grad observations to do the same? My use of 'discrete' should be obvious given the 'Problems with the CELTA' thread--observed teachers are more likely to alter their teaching according to perceived expectations. If the claim is that (some) CELTA grads lose the benefit of the course on account of its intensity, would offering a prolonged equivalent version with more time for thoughtful reflection affect learner outcomes? And those learner outcomes I'm arguing aren't CELTA grades so much as they are overall teacher readiness. Would you not agree that when it comes to learning skills, the difference between learning is much greater between individuals than for learning knowledge? Does it not seem arrogant, therefore for OISE to claim its status as an educational leader ensures it can teach the essential TEFL knowledge and skills online?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9133
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
What I mean is that in public ed (and only just recently in post-sec as pointed out for Spiral), data drives teacher training, or at least to the extent where politics and economics don't interfere.



One of us has lost the plot. Zero idea what this is about and how it might be related to CELTA or other entry level EFL/ESL teacher training courses.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
LongShiKong



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 881
Location: China

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

spiral78 wrote:
Zero idea what this is about and how it might be related to CELTA or other entry level EFL/ESL teacher training courses.


And, suprisingly, neither did Sasha. But if you agree that TP (teaching practice) and TO (teacher observation) should be an integral part of any reputable teacher training course, regardless of whether it's B.Ed, TESL, or TEFL, then as Vabeckele and I point out, it's not just Joe Bloe's Online TEFL School that's undermining this notion with 0 hrs of practice teaching. How many other Fac's of Ed are doing this?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9133
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
it's not just Joe Bloe's Online TEFL School that's undermining this notion with 0 hrs of practice teaching. How many other Fac's of Ed are doing this?


None that I know of or am involved with. And I think the lack of TP and TO would be a killer on any CV that crosses my desk.

But that's the point with CELTA and equivalent courses - they DO involve at least a starter of both TP and TO. So, I still don't understand the relevance of this line of conversation.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 8640
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Too right, Spiral. Yet it must be that it is we who are lacking in understanding, eh? Very Happy
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
LongShiKong



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 881
Location: China

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

spiral78 wrote:
I still don't understand the relevance of this line of conversation.


Until recently, I thought it was only dubious operators and online degree providers who were promoting TEFL cert's online but you seemed to be aware of this given your response to my INTESOL post. Kudos to UBC for at least naming their courses appropriately:

Quote:
There are two types of TESL certificates: the TESL Coursework Certificate and the TESL Certificate with Practicum.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 8640
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 7:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LongShiKong, none of this is really relevant to the title of the thread.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
LongShiKong



Joined: 28 May 2007
Posts: 881
Location: China

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
LongShiKong, none of this is really relevant to the title of the thread.


Not relevant? That's a matter of opinion but did you not open this thread by asking what was meant by sentiments such as the following you subsequently quoted? My answer echoing in part what Nomad Soul quoted Sharper as saying concerns the delivery: the perception that in-class course delivery (as opposed to online) is outdated.

You quoted someone who wrote:
"The online courses are fake, too right? 'Cause whenever I look to register it always talks about taking courses online."

Doesn't this person seem more convinced the CELTA was out-dated than online cert's were fake?

and another who wrote:
"...the delivery of the CELTA course is outdated..."

What else could 'delivery imply other than face-to-face vs online?

and yet another who wrote:
"I'm biased in my view towards International TEFL Academy because our ....CELTA and Trinity are both good courses and good organizations, but they are bit outdated in my opinion. Most employers do not prefer them over other 4 week courses and many CELTA courses do not offer job or visa assistance. ..."


Although this comment is not about the delivery, this 'academy' has both online and in-class TEFL cert programs. As with the GoldStar/INTESOL and OISE (U of T)/TeachAway relationship, I'm guessing this promoter is depicting CELTA as outdated merely because it doesn't play the same TEFL cert/recruitment game which seems to be the trend.
--------------------------
Quote:
As for delivery, in what way can this be improved? Trainees practice with real classes, then they get developmental feedback. How is this old hat? It is precisely the key ingredient missing from all those waste-of-time online courses.


You, Spiral and others here have sold me! If after completing it, I think of something, I'll certainly post it so we can have another debate. Wink
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 8640
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, not a matter of opinion, but of stated thread titles. Whatever various universities in Canada may or may not have online courses is really besides the point. We aren't discussing them, but the Cambridge Celta.

As for debate, this isn't much of one. Nothing has been put forward to explain this idea, deeply mistaken idea, that the Celta is somehow past its sell-by date. BTW, comments about its delivery do not automatically relate to its being in-class. A debate? Only in so far as it is almost completely one-sided. One party has experience and amassed knowledge, the other doesn't and re-quotes others' opinions and introduces various irrelevancies.

So, please do come back to us when you've completed your Celta. Then perhaps there will be a true debate. However, please do bear in mind my warning about starting the course while labouring under the misapprehension that you are going to be speaking to trainers on an equal footing. You won't. I, and others here, may be indulgent re such presumption, but you'll get short shrift from your trainers.

Best of luck.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mk87



Joined: 01 Apr 2013
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Fri Nov 29, 2013 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Am I missing something here, I've read the whole thread (as much of it as I can bare - there's some pretty flowery posts) and I'm yet to actually see a reason the CELTA is outdated. The main point seems to be it doesn't give you 5 years of experience. I can't really see any proper issues with what is the basis of the 'standard' that the CELTA teaches to.

I came to the CELTA having studied educational theory and critical pedagogy up to Masters level. The reason I took it being that I knew that it would pretty much let me walk into a teaching job somewhere in the world, giving me real world experience of things I had studied and written about. I will work in ESL for one or two more years before returning to start a Phd.

During my course I was able to debate all of my research with very informed trainers who even pointed me towards some 'CELTA approved' stuff they thought I might like. Nothing I was ever provided with felt rigid or dogmatic. Equally the trainers were totally open towards having discussions about the logic of their own input sessions etc.

In short, most of the posts suggesting CELTA as outdated really don't correspond to my own experiences of taking the course. Maybe the problem is more the quality control?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> General Discussion All times are GMT
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 ... 21, 22, 23  Next
Page 5 of 23

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2011 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

Road2Spain - TEFL and Spanish with one year student visa
EBC