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How important is certification?

 
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crazy_canuck



Joined: 09 Jan 2012
Posts: 3
Location: Pleszew, Poland

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:34 pm    Post subject: How important is certification? Reply with quote

Greetings from a total noob.

As a quick introduction to all of you regular posters - I am a Canadian already living in Poland. I have been living here for just over 1 1/2 years. My husband and I came here after I sold my company in Canada, he is a returning Polish citizen (25 years in Canada). We came because we had access to an apartment and we wanted to do some traveling around Europe. It was never our intention to settle down in Poland for the long-term but here we are and here we'll stay, at least for next 5-10 years.

I have no background in teaching English, just some teaching of software. I would never have thought about it if not for the dozens of locals telling me how easy it should be for us to find students. Of course I am taking that with a grain of salt, after all what do they know about trying to find a job teaching English. Ultimately we want to supplement our income by providing private lessons. We currently live in a small city in the Wielkopolska region but plan to move to Jelenia Gora later this year.

After all of that my question is this: how important is it for me to have some type of certification? I can do an online TESOL course but would that be a total waste of money? Doing the CELTA course in Krakow or Wroclaw would be logistically challenging and it's certainly not that cheap.

Do you think any school would hire someone like me, even at lower rates, just to give me some experience? Well, in fact I could get a job here in the town where we live but not until next September and we just don't want to stay here that long.

I totally get that we should have thought about this while we were in Canada but honestly, it never would have occurred to me that we'd stay! Confused

Any insight you can provide would be greatly appreciated.
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sharter



Joined: 25 Jun 2008
Posts: 878
Location: All over the place

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 7:23 pm    Post subject: Do the CELTA Reply with quote

Do the CELTA-it'll open loads of doors for you and doesn't take long. You need it for good schools and for the sake of your students.
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hrvatski



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 270

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 7:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would you want to be taught something by someone who has had no training in what they're doing? In fairness to the students, do a CELTA.
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crazy_canuck



Joined: 09 Jan 2012
Posts: 3
Location: Pleszew, Poland

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the input!

The reason I wanted to go to a school in the first place was to gain experience. I totally agree that I wouldn't want to learn from a someone with no training. I just thought that maybe some schools would hire people with no experience and do on the job training, kind of like Berlitz. As I said there is the option of working where we live but it's not a recognized school or anything, just a locally owned small business, run by a Polish woman. Although there is a Leader school here - are either of you familiar with them?

Anyway, if I go the CELTA route would you recommend the British Council or do you believe they're all relatively close in teaching quality?

And one more thing ...would you recommend taking the course at any particular time of year? Would it make sense, for example to take the course in August and then apply at schools in early September? Or is that not really important?

Thanks again, I really appreciate you taking the time to answer.
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PierogiMonster



Joined: 17 Jun 2010
Posts: 136

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been teaching English for eight years. With my BA English and PGCE, I've never had any trouble getting good work. However, for professional development reasons I did the CELTA here in Krakow last August at The British Council (it's my town, I had the money and the time).

I'm very glad I did the course: it has a lot to teach even experienced teachers (and helped kick out a few bad habits, too!) and my teaching has definitely improved.

As for someone new to the business, definitely go for the CELTA. You'll feel like a pro and work like one, too. And it's recognised the world over (more so than my higher-level PGCE, for example).

An August course? Sure, but why wait so long? The British Council? I can definitely recommend Krakow BC: exellent tutoring.
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crazy_canuck



Joined: 09 Jan 2012
Posts: 3
Location: Pleszew, Poland

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
An August course? Sure, but why wait so long?


Hi PierogiMonster!

I can take the course at any time, it's just a matter of working out where we can stay as we have a small dog. But that's not a big issue, I was just worried about taking the course too early. We have some things to do here (like find a new place to live!) and in Canada before I can settle in to a job. I don't know if a school would care when the course was taken.

Thanks for the note about the BC course - I'd love to stay in Krakow for a month, that's for sure. But honestly we have family in Wroclaw and I don't want to offend anyone. Wink
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dynow



Joined: 07 Nov 2006
Posts: 1031

PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pierogimonster wrote:

Quote:
As for someone new to the business, definitely go for the CELTA.


what's the difference in pay?
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