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Introductory question-General Outlook
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jwilliam2013



Joined: 23 Nov 2013
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:43 am    Post subject: Introductory question-General Outlook Reply with quote

To anyone who will answer,
All one has to do is skim the ESL websites etc to see an abundance of information and misinformation. It addresses all sorts of scenarios at length, but like many I may have a more unique case. Please, if anyone can take a minute, feel free to respond.

I have a BA in English and a MEd in Secondary English. I am a department chair. I have taught hs for 11 years. Is a university job a reasonable expectation for that background? I would also look at high school, but I really wish to know the outlook I may expect. Would my prospects be more favorable in any particular area or venue? I am sure this forum is bombarded with queries such as this, so I do appreciate any help.

Thank you,
John
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 199
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Depends on what you want to teach really. In the ME a CELTA or equivalent is normally required, teaching EFL is different than teaching English to native speakers. As far as Uni posts go, it depends on the uni!
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jwilliam2013



Joined: 23 Nov 2013
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:58 am    Post subject: THanks Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply,
Perhaps this is misinformation, but I have read that a US Teaching cert will substitute often for the EFL certs. Do you find that not to be the case?
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 2983
Location: Mesopotamia

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:10 am    Post subject: Re: Introductory question-General Outlook Reply with quote

jwilliam2013 wrote:
I have a BA in English and a MEd in Secondary English. I am a department chair. I have taught hs for 11 years. Is a university job a reasonable expectation for that background? I would also look at high school, but I really wish to know the outlook I may expect.

Which country or region do you want to teach in?
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jwilliam2013



Joined: 23 Nov 2013
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am not terribly picky. I have studied Buddhism for years, so Asia, but outside of England, I haven't been to either.
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 199
Location: Oman

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:31 am    Post subject: Re: THanks Reply with quote

[quote="jwilliam2013"]Thanks for the reply,
Perhaps this is misinformation, but I have read that a US Teaching cert will substitute often for the EFL certs. Do you find that not to be the case?[/quote

Not always, depends on the employer. The main point is whether the qualification is for teaching English as a FOREIGN language rather than to native speakers.
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1818

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Re suitability of a general teaching qualification:
I think this might be ok for university, but language schools - which have to deal with beginners and elementary students, etc - will usually want specialist TEFL training (CELTA and Trinity are the most marketable from the employees' point of view).
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santi84



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

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MEd in Secondary English/11 years experience HS and they still want a CELTA? That sounds crazy to me, but hey, I don't operate a language school. I don't know many HS English teachers who don't deal with ESL issues in a regular English classroom on a daily basis. It's usually a focus on an education degree with English as a teachable subject.

Jwilliam, pick a country and then post in that particular forum. I think I would strongly consider Taiwan in your position for the food, weather, availability of decent TEFL work, and of course, the Buddhism Smile
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1818

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do not agree. Teaching English as a foreign language - particularly students at a lower level - requires rather specific skills which are not apparent in teaching native speakers, even at primary level. Remember, even 3 year old native speakers have a starting vocabulary and have effortlessly acquired most syntax.

TEFL teachers need to explain structural aspects of grammar. This aspect of teaching is almost never necessary in English teaching for native speakers.
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santi84



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

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, a BA in Philosophy with a four week CELTA course is more qualified to teach TEFL? I find it very hard to believe that an English teacher with an MEd and 11 years experience doesn't have at least some experience and background in methodology with ESL learners.

I'm teaching in North America (with a TESL-related degree) and part of the English education degree curriculum for most teacher programs includes several courses in bilingual/ESL education, as well as the practical components of dealing with regular ESL students. I have had a regular English classroom with a student who didn't even know the alphabet, poor girl had come from Russia less than a week before, "Luba", I still remember her well. These poor students are often shoved into it and boy, do you have to learn quick!

I dunno. My mind is just boggled that these four week TEFL certificates are so important that it gets a little absurd at times when you consider the practical realities of what English teachers in North America actually are trained for (and deal with on a daily basis).
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1818

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The idea of quantification is rather irrelevant in this context. The person with a two month engineering course is likely to be better qualified at mending a car than a person with a three year degree in economic history, in spite of the latter's knowledge of the industrial revolution.

Competence in English and the ability to teach in general are of course necessary and desirable respectively, but for teaching people without a background in English they are insufficient in terms of skills. What you are referring to is the ability and raw need of a youngster in a native speaker setting. This is also of dubious relevance. There is a need to teach part-timers, who are not immersed in an English-speaking environment. The students are not going to absorb as they would in America or wherever.
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santi84



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

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah well, I'm just going to have to agree to disagree then. I just don't think someone with an MEd in English and 11 years experience needs to spend another $2000 with a bunch of recent college graduates to learn how to be a teacher. Obviously the two are different jobs in general, but I just don't see how it's a far enough leap to warrant more full-time coursework and the subsequent expenses.

I get the impression on occasion that people don't realize how much TESL/TEFL study is actually required in an English education degree (a lot is required - and that's TEFL too, not just TESL). It's not as if the degree(s) exist solely to teach Orson Wells to 9th graders. It requires extensive study in similar topics that are covered in your basic four week course.

I'm not against TESL-training (I have a TESL certificate that goes way beyond CELTA myself) but I just don't personally see the necessity for this particular OP. That's just me though, and I'm not hiring the OP, so I guess it just matters what the hiring managers in XYZ location thinks Wink
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9130
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2013 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to agree with coledavis here. Teaching language is a different animal, applying different types of approaches and methods, to teaching core subjects.

It's certainly possible that a candidate such as the OP has in fact worked with ESL students - and perhaps extensively. There are also in-service courses that focus on how to do this effectively. As a university-level (occasional) hiring committee member, I'd be very interested in what kinds of directly-related experience and PD such a candidate has, but without any, this is a CV that would go to the bottom of our pile (again, for a university language/academic support position).

Here's a relevant comparison for you; I've got grad (and half a post-grad) degrees in teaching related to working with non-native speakers and in specific fields. Plus 15 years of experience. Nevertheless, I would NOT feel confident to apply for a university or high school English teaching job to native speakers. It's simply an entirely different job.
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teenoso



Joined: 18 Sep 2013
Posts: 217
Location: east china

PostPosted: Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
so Asia, but outside of England, I haven't been to either.


Don't quite understand what you want, but someone mentioned Taiwan , so I will also suggest Unis in China . They will love your qualifications and experience (no further EFL qualifications needed).

Of course , you will not be 'faculty' , just a foreign expert , with a meagre but comfortable salary, and light teaching load of mainly oral English / culture / and writing in some unis. If you get lucky , you could find a position in 'teacher education' .
Check out the China forums .

Mainland Chinese Bhuddism I think is different , hollowed out perhaps and sometimes commercialized , so may not be as interesting as in places like Taiwan and Thailand.
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Lack



Joined: 10 Aug 2011
Posts: 91

PostPosted: Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here in China I've met several people teaching at universities with far fewer qualifications than that.
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