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Get CELTA or hold off? (Canada)

 
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jcarroll



Joined: 03 Aug 2010
Posts: 9

PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:18 am    Post subject: Get CELTA or hold off? (Canada) Reply with quote

Hey all!

I'm going to graduate this spring with a BA in Economics, but I've been thinking the past couple years that ESL might really be my calling. I'm not the kind that wants to travel the world while I'm teaching; ideally I'd like to stick around Canada, at least for now.

If I do end up liking ESL, I hope to get a graduate degree in it and teach at a university or something, but first I'd like to get a taste of it before I sink all that money into a degree.

So my question is: if I want to teach ESL in a private language school or something for the next year or so, should I try to find something that requires only a BA, or should I invest approx. $2000 in getting a CELTA in order to help me get a job? I want to go all or nothing on an ESL career, so the way I see it the certification would either get used for a year and then wasted once I decided I didn't like ESL, or else it would get used for a year and then wasted once it was "overwritten" by a graduate degree (is that how it works?) once I decided an ESL career is a good long-term choice. Is it going to be worth it to get certification just to help me through this first step?

Thank you!
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VikingElvis



Joined: 19 Nov 2009
Posts: 31
Location: China

PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Employability-wise I think you might run into problems if you have no cert. Just wandering around the Vancouver Craigslist, most of the positions require a TESL Canada-recognized certificate of some sort. (a CELTA's one of 'em)

That aside, I actually think a CELTA is a nice alternative if you don't necessarily want to invest the money into a graduate degree yet, but want to do some ESL teaching to see how the field agrees with you - or doesn't! Also, you talked about a CELTA being "overwritten" by getting an MA TESOL - I am not quite sure it works that way, but I have heard of people getting college credit for the DELTA, which is the next step up.
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jcarroll



Joined: 03 Aug 2010
Posts: 9

PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the input. Smile

Do you think the CELTA is my best bet, or is there something cheaper I should start with?
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VikingElvis



Joined: 19 Nov 2009
Posts: 31
Location: China

PostPosted: Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jcarroll wrote:
Thanks for the input. Smile

Do you think the CELTA is my best bet, or is there something cheaper I should start with?


I'd recommend going to the TESL Canada website and checking if there's anything you might be able to get that's a little cheaper... Here's a list of all the recognized programs:

http://www.tesl.ca/Secondary_Navigation/TESL_Canada_Recognized_Teacher_Training_Programs/Recognized_Teacher_Training_Programs.htm

I'm guessing "Professional Certificate Standard One" is equivalent to a CELTA, as the place I went to for my CELTA is listed on there as that level. You may want to keep in mind that if you *do* end up going abroad somewhere, what TESL Canada recognizes might not be what your foreign school will recognize - the CELTA or Trinity certificates are best if you want to ensure international recognition...
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9126
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do you think the CELTA is my best bet, or is there something cheaper I should start with?
I am 90% sure that Canada doesn't recognise any online certs that don't include actual teaching practice - a CELTA or equivalent is really the minimum to get a newbie level job. Worth the investment at home and abroad, though.
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ls650



Joined: 10 May 2003
Posts: 3484
Location: British Columbia

PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, get a certificate that meets TSL Canada requirements. Most schools in Canada will not talk to you if you do not have one that meets their 'approval'.
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santi84



Joined: 14 Mar 2008
Posts: 843
Location: under da sea

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 1:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Certificates in Canada must be recognized by TESL Canada as Level I or higher.

http://www.tesl.ca/Secondary_Navigation/TESL_Canada_Recognized_Teacher_Training_Programs/Recognized_Teacher_Training_Programs.htm

If a school hires you without this, then expect to be taken advantage of by a fly-by-night McSchool that pays less than, well, McDonalds.
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GambateBingBangBOOM



Joined: 04 Nov 2003
Posts: 1886
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2011 2:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just thought I'd point out that the TESL Canada list for Ontario does not include every program that is listed for TESL Ontario (which has far FAR more stringent requirements). At first glance I notice that neither Brock University nor Carleton University are listed. Oh, York isn't there either. All of these programs should be eligible for standard 2 because they are equivalent to UofT and other universities that ARE listed. But I guess they aren't paying TESL Canada to be on their list.

Tesl Ontario list

TESL Canada list

For the OP:

Since the TESL certificates at universities in Ontario are roughly equivalent to a masters degree in TESOL from the UK, Australia etc that you can do overseas, one option may be to go overseas to work and start a Post-grad certificate in TESOL after the first year or so (you may even begin it almost immediately, I guess) and then bump it up to a masters degree afterwards, or wait a couple of years and just start the masters. I know you say you don't really want to leave Canada (and that, honestly, was my situation when I started as well) but you usually need to have experience teaching overseas at least for a couple of years in order to get access to some of the better ESL jobs in Canada, because overseas experience is pretty much mandatory in this field. The JET program is where I got my start after doing a one-year Certificate, and the plan was to return to Canada after three years on JET, do my masters and teach at a university or college in Canada. Instead, I did my masters while overseas, and I plan on staying here for the longterm.
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santi84



Joined: 14 Mar 2008
Posts: 843
Location: under da sea

PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2011 3:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that GambateBingBangBOOM

I would have to agree that overseas experience is pretty much mandatory here in Canada. I don't have any and can't go overseas (I would have to leave my baby! No thanks!) and it makes it very difficult for me in many aspects (job hunting, experience, even MA entry requirements).

So unless you have very important reasons for staying, you NEED the outside experience. Even a few weeks at a Korean summer camp is better than nothing. With a BA in Economics, it is even more important, because that means nothing to employers in Canada. My degree is TESL/education with an additional one year TESL certificate and it's near impossible without overseas experience.

Here in Vancouver, it must be on TESL Canada's list although I highly doubt any employer would accept a one month CELTA yet reject a certificate from York, Brockton, etc.! And if they do... probably a sign you don't want to deal with that kind of management.
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