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 

Certification...before or after?
Goto page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> General Discussion
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
illegalme



Joined: 19 Sep 2007
Posts: 13
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 10:03 am    Post subject: Certification...before or after? Reply with quote

Hey I figure there might be a few certified teachers on here so I was looking for some advice. I've posted here before so forgive me if I'm starting to get annoying with questions, hehe.

In your opinion, would you recommend getting teacher certification (master of teaching/education) before or after having a stint of teaching English overseas? I've read some related threads and some people imply that its better to get it after because teaching in some countries like Korea, Thailand etc will drive a certified teacher crazy. Also I figure if I took a break after certification, I might lose valuable contacts and stuff back home.

Anyways, looking for advice from people who certified teachers, or anyone with experience in this matter, regardless of whether you've found yourself in my situation or not, all advice is greatly appreciated.

Thanks for your time Smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
denise



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

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 10:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you've never taught before but are considering getting a Master's in education, I'd recommend getting some classroom experience first, for a few reasons. First, and possibly most importantly, you will be able to see if you actually like teaching enough to pursue it as a profession. Second, you may find that your courses are more relevant and meaningful to you if you can tie the theories to your own experiences. And your grad school application will likely be enhanced by teaching experience.

I did it this way: TEFL certificate, two years of teaching, MA, and then more teaching (better jobs).

d
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
spiral78



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

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 10:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Denise. The more real experience you have under your belt to tie theory you study to, the better.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
markle



Joined: 17 Jan 2003
Posts: 1316
Location: Out of Japan

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 2:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Certification...before or after? Reply with quote

illegalme wrote:
Hey I figure there might be a few certified teachers on here so I was looking for some advice. I've posted here before so forgive me if I'm starting to get annoying with questions, hehe.

In your opinion, would you recommend getting teacher certification (master of teaching/education) before or after having a stint of teaching English overseas? I've read some related threads and some people imply that its better to get it after because teaching in some countries like Korea, Thailand etc will drive a certified teacher crazy. Also I figure if I took a break after certification, I might lose valuable contacts and stuff back home.


What do you have now? I mean you are asking about Masters Teaching/Ed. which is more than just an ordinary certification.

Anyhow just from the perspective of being able to use what you learn in a Masters it would be a bit of a waste of time. I'm coming to the end of my time teaching English overseas and I'm heading back home (Melbourne as it happens) to get certification and take things from there.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rusmeister



Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 867
Location: Russia

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Certification AFTER AFTER AFTER experience!!!

Certification is useless for the most part as far as really learning anything goes anyway, and if you have experience you'll see that and won't be led by the nose by ed professors telling you what you "need". It makes a world of difference.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
illegalme



Joined: 19 Sep 2007
Posts: 13
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a BA (English and Sociology). The University I currently attend The University of Melbourne, like Uni's in NSW and QLD, offers certification at Masters level instead of the Dip Ed. It's like a two year long dip ed with a thesis component. It's called a Master of Teaching, its not that same as a Master of Education in Australia because the thesis is only 15,000 words instead of 20,000-30,000, I was just using it as an example because the Americans on here would know what it was.

If you have time I was wondering if you could share your 'story' with me, like, what you did overseas, how you found it, did you always plan on being a certified teacher back home? etc. Only if you have time though, hehe, I'm just really curious about other people's experiences that's all. Also, where are you planning on undertaking certification, and what course?

Thanks again Smile.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
The_Hanged_Man



Joined: 10 Oct 2004
Posts: 221
Location: Shekou, China

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't see any point teaching English after you get certified. Once you are certified you qualify for international school jobs which are generally significantly better in terms of pay and benefits.

Also, you don't have to get another degree, or even have a bachelors in education, to become certified (although I don't know the situation in Australia). For example, I was an economics and statistics major in school before I decided to try teaching overseas in the Peace Corps and ESL in Japan. While in Japan I decided that my career in McEnglish schools was exactly taking off, so I went back to the States to earn my certification.

I enrolled in an alternative certification program in Texas and started my first job teaching high school math at the same time. Basically, for the alt cert program you take courses during the summer and attend workshops during your first year of teaching. You are also assigned a mentor who does observations and provides advice. After one year you are certified, and you also draw a full salary and benefits for that year which is a major plus.

Now I am teaching at an international school in Kuwait and am happy with how my career is progressing. In January I'll be heading to a recruiting fair in Bangkok in hopes of continuing my scholastic adventures in the far east.

So...I say get certified now and then land a job on the international school circuit.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2007 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If your goal is long-term teaching EFL/ESL, then get the proper degree, and get certification before and after finding a job. A one-time certificate from CELTA is not a be-all, end-all to one's professional development. Never stop trying to improve yourself.

If this really doesn't answer your question, then I would suggest that you need to consider the exact market you are going to enter first. What country(ies) did you have in mind, and what are their requirements for newbies? Take things from there.

Also consider whether you can get certification that is not online after you have started working. Online certification is available, but a practicum really ought to accompany certification.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
illegalme



Joined: 19 Sep 2007
Posts: 13
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 5:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks everyone for your replies.

Just to give some more general background information. I've taught ESL here at home for over two years (in a voluntary capacity once a week) working with primary, high school, and post-high school students, mostly doing 'normal' coursework in an ESL setting. So for example you have a group of 5 year 1 students who need to do a maths lesson, but they also have ESL needs, so you deliver the Maths lesson with ESL methodology. I did a course for that at the time, it was 6 weeks long, 3 and a half hours a week, unfortunately I didn't do the assessment component because at the time I was doing it to get the job, rather than to get a qualification. It was a certificate in english instruction to small groups or something - anyway, I don't have the certificate, hehe, just the knowledge. I've also had to do PD for the job in things like child safety, intervention, discipline etc. Again none of it certified or anything.

I'm interested in teaching english overseas because I enjoy doing it here, and I enjoy working with young people, and I think it would be a good way to experience full time teaching before I actually go and get certified to teach back at home (which I have full intentions of doing). I wouldn't particularly want to work in an international school because I don't feel I have enough experience or commitment (I'd only be looking at 1-2 years) to be in a formal school environment. I mean who knows I could end up loving ESL overseas and turning it into a career, but as it stands now I am aiming to do it just in the short term, and building my career in Western schooling systems.

Denise, (sorry, I got told off for addressing people in a post before so I hope this isn't against the guidelines) you mentioned doing a TESOL certificate, what sort of one did you do? What did you gain from it? I have been looking into a few of those (I won't mention specific ones here), because the CELTA does not seem worth it to me, mostly because it is comparatively long and pricey for the content contained therein, and also, it is aimed at teaching adults, something I actually don't enjoy doing at all.

Markle, what course are you looking at doing here in Melbourne? What uni? Just curious thats all Smile

/oh gosh I just read how long this is, sorry!!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
tedkarma



Joined: 17 May 2004
Posts: 1595
Location: The World is my Oyster

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 7:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

illegalme wrote:
I'm interested in teaching english overseas because I enjoy doing it here, and I enjoy working with young people, and I think it would be a good way to experience full time teaching before I actually go and get certified to teach back at home (which I have full intentions of doing).


Once you teach overseas - many people never go back. I didn't. I love it out here.

It's probably worth doing your stint overseas just to know what it is like and what it is all about. I would never want to teach the spoiled students in my native country - but that's just me.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
rusmeister



Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 867
Location: Russia

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tedkarma wrote:
illegalme wrote:
I'm interested in teaching english overseas because I enjoy doing it here, and I enjoy working with young people, and I think it would be a good way to experience full time teaching before I actually go and get certified to teach back at home (which I have full intentions of doing).


Once you teach overseas - many people never go back. I didn't. I love it out here.

It's probably worth doing your stint overseas just to know what it is like and what it is all about. I would never want to teach the spoiled students in my native country - but that's just me.


Me neither (and me too!).
When you're your own boss; when you know that their results are nearly 100% a result of working with you (instead of from going out into the streets and having them be forced to use English with everybody); when the people around figure out that you really are professional and not just a ship passing through in the night, you don't want to go and be just a warm body filling a spot to make money for somebody else.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 1:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Please realize that teaching ESL in your home country and teaching EFL abroad are not the same thing. The immersion environment in your home country is a world of difference from what your students face in their own country. Many of the teaching techniques are the same or very similar, but immersion is a powerful advantage to work off.

Uni = university
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
rusmeister



Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 867
Location: Russia

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glenski wrote:
Please realize that teaching ESL in your home country and teaching EFL abroad are not the same thing. The immersion environment in your home country is a world of difference from what your students face in their own country. Many of the teaching techniques are the same or very similar, but immersion is a powerful advantage to work off.

Uni = university


Exactly. But in the home country, the teachers actually tend to take the credit for the students' learning, even though immersion is heavily responsible for both motivation and practice. When you're abroad, it is much clearer what your part of the students' learning is.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
tedkarma



Joined: 17 May 2004
Posts: 1595
Location: The World is my Oyster

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rusmeister wrote:
When you're abroad, it is much clearer what your part of the students' learning is.


I agree.

EFL teachers often get confused - and not very scientific - about the role they play.

I was recently involved in the development of an online TOEFL program where they asked me - basically - for TOEFL scores resultant from training I had provided. They seemed put off when I said that I could look like a genius if I only took really skilled students and gave them those scores . . . which is what the mega earners in the TOEFL business do.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
rusmeister



Joined: 15 Jun 2006
Posts: 867
Location: Russia

PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2007 2:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tedkarma wrote:
rusmeister wrote:
When you're abroad, it is much clearer what your part of the students' learning is.


I agree.

EFL teachers often get confused - and not very scientific - about the role they play.

I was recently involved in the development of an online TOEFL program where they asked me - basically - for TOEFL scores resultant from training I had provided. They seemed put off when I said that I could look like a genius if I only took really skilled students and gave them those scores . . . which is what the mega earners in the TOEFL business do.

In my own position, my kids (pupils) attend public schools and have these 'Olympiads' in English. You'd think my kids, who go through both the public program and me would do better than other kids. Imagine my chagrin when I discovered that the competitions are exclusively in grammar and translation (judged by the Russian teachers using the Russian textbook by Vereshagina). I've realized that I am in no way particular desireable to the public school system here - they just need warm bodies to fill the (woefully underpaid) teacher positions. (I do teach grammar and translation, but those are what even Russian teachers can teach with a reasonable degree of competency.) The PS system, here as well as in the US, is not truly interested in producing excellence - they maintain their own standards, meet them and everybody's happy.

Where I do shine is in performance testing. The parents return from a trip with their kids abroad, say to Turkey or Cyprus or wherever, and thank me profusely, telling me how their kids chatted with all the German or whatever kids in English. Communication skills are the one thing where even the most competent rural teachers are at a severe disadvantage. They are not confident and even fearful of their own ability to communicate, and they teach this fear to the kids. Then they come to me as adults complaining about their inability to communicate.

But again, it is sooo cool to see kids actually communicating, and to know that it's (nearly all) thanks to me. Cool That's something that teachers back 'home' can't really share.
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 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 
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