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lilian



Joined: 09 Oct 2004
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Fri Nov 26, 2004 7:17 am    Post subject: I DON'T KNOW THE ANSWER... Reply with quote

Could someone please tell me how one judges or verifies the validity of claims about the 'international recognition' of EFL/etc. courses offered by various English language schools in the Czech Republic?

All of the schools in Prague and elsewhere in the CZ claim that their courses are recongnised internationally. How can one find out if these claims are valid? I refer to courses other than CELTA/DELTA, and I do not have in mind factors such as the qualifications and experience of the trainers or the school facilities.

I would appreciate any comments/opinions you might have.

lilian
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Aramas



Joined: 13 Feb 2004
Posts: 874
Location: Slightly left of Centre

PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 2:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A search on the 'General Discussion' forum should locate the many threads on the subject. However, opinions are free so here's mine - based on my research, including reading this board Smile

If it's a 120 + hour course with a substantial practical teaching component then it should fulfil the requirements for most potential employers, international or otherwise.

If the certificate is awarded by a prolific international chain such as International House, Global, English First etc., then it will be 'internationally recognised' at schools belonging to that chain regardless of how crappy it may or may not be.

Where a school offers a 'home brand' generic certificate but has no international branches, the claim of being 'internationally recognised' is really just sophistry, particularly if the school vanishes off the face of the earth as they sometimes do. However, if your intention is to travel and teach EFL for a year or two before getting a real job, or retiring to the suburbs to breed and buy things, then a generic certificate should be adequate. A CELTA is more or less necessary if you intend to make a career of it, since you can continue with a DELTA. The Trinity TESOL certificate seems to be held in equally high regard, but unless you teach music or dance then there's nowhere to go from there.

There are two schools in the Czech Republic that offer a CELTA. Masaryk University in Brno runs the course twice a year, part time over three months for 35000 Kc (currently $1500USD). Incidentally, applications for the spring semester (commencing in February) close on the 10th of December, and their application process is...um...'quirky'. Akcent IH runs a 4 week course each month in Prague for 41000 Kc (currently $1760USD). They also offer the course over five weeks or part time over three months, but at a much higher price - strange. There are also a number of schools in Poland that offer quite competitively priced CELTA courses.

There are countless generic TEFL certificates on offer in the Czech Republic. If you can find one for around $1200USD or less and you absolutely will not be pursuing TEFL as a profession, then the few hundred dollars you save will make up for the lesser qualification and the absence of availability of higher qualifications. In that case any 4 week generic TEFL certification with a practical teaching component will be as 'internationally recognised' as you need. If, however, you happen to fall in love with the place (or anywhere else 'foreign') then you may change your mind, in which case you will still need a CELTA at some stage and your money was wasted.
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9299
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I went from a generic 120 hour in house course in Prague to an MA, with four years of teaching abroad inbetween. In my case, lack of a CELTA has had no effect on my long term career.
That generic certificate was accepted by my employers in four different countries.......
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lilian



Joined: 09 Oct 2004
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you very much Aramas for your detailed reply. You answered my question, but I am still not sure...I checked the Trinity site and it lists the schools that are not 'internationally recognised'...interesting.

So, you are saying that if I did not want to make a career of it, a generic certificate would be ok.

By the way, why is teaching english not a 'real job'? I thought teaching is a very demanding work, both physically and mentally..Perhaps you were refering to all those campers and backpackers and babysitters...

And I left the suburbs and the corporate world years ago...I am working my way down, and I owe it only to myself.

I don't know. I can't make up my mind. Thanks a lot.

cheers
lilian
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Aramas



Joined: 13 Feb 2004
Posts: 874
Location: Slightly left of Centre

PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2004 1:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spiral - Did you do your MA in TESOL? Have you ever considered doing a DELTA? Personally I wouldn't 'waste' a whole MA on something that I wasn't absolutely fascinated by, and TESOL isn't at the top of my list. Consequently, should I decide to persue TEFL indefinitely, a DELTA would be inevitible - in which case a CELTA would be necessary.

Lilian - The 'real job' comment is just the result of my hopelessly sarcastic nature. A burden, to be sure, but since pop-culture references eclipsed sarcasm as the lowest form of wit, I don't feel at all bad about it. I'm sarcastic and I'm proud! One day we'll band together and march in the streets!
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denise



Joined: 23 Apr 2003
Posts: 3419
Location: finally home-ish

PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2004 4:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I, too, went from a non-CELTA certificate to an MA in TESOL, am now in my fourth year of full-time teaching (two pre-MA, two post), and plan on making this a career. Not having a "name brand" has not hurt me in any way. (The only effect that it has had is to make me wary of applying to schools that only recognize "name brands," because it makes me question whether they can really recognize qualifications and experience or whether they just look at the name on your certificate and judge you solely by that name.)

Regarding those non-CELTA/Trinity courses--I went through ITC five years ago. It was a great program, but now their branch in Barcelona is going through all kinds of problems. I don't know if/how much the Prague location has been affected, but if that's one of the ones that you are looking into, I'd recommend doing some extra research. Based on the quality of the program, I can highly recommend it (and I have in the past on several occasions on this forum), but things may have taken a turn for the worse.

Good luck.

d
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 9299
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sun Nov 28, 2004 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MA TESL/TEFL. And, it fascinates me.....I never considered DELTA. I've held university positions for the past four years (and expect to continue!) so I needed the MA to be really competitive.
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lilian



Joined: 09 Oct 2004
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2004 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aramas

May I send you a PM?

lilian
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Aramas



Joined: 13 Feb 2004
Posts: 874
Location: Slightly left of Centre

PostPosted: Mon Nov 29, 2004 11:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of course - you don't need permission to send a PM Smile You wouldn't believe some of the weird messages I've received on this board. Unfortunately, the ones professing undying lust have invariably been from men Shocked
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