TESOL VS. TEFL Certificate Program Secrets Revealed
After researching and exploring many different TESOL programs, coming across a TEFL certificate program can take a person aback at first. TEFL certificate program - isn't that the same as TESOL? This is often one of the first questions many have when seeing TEFL certificate program and TESOL certificate program within the same context or information source oriented in English language education training. TEFL and TESOL are related, but a TEFL certificate program holds less significance within educational training, especially within international recognition and standardization, than a TESOL certificate. TESOL is the primary certificate necessary to acquire English teaching positions overseas, where as a TEFL certificate program will not carry the same importance or credentials with it in a foreign language teaching arena.
TEFL is an acronym for Teaching English as a Foreign Language. While this is similar to TESOL, or Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, it is the value that is assigned to each of these that is really the difference. A TEFL certificate program is appropriate for something like teaching literacy to adults at a nearby literacy center as a volunteer. The TEFL certificate program requires a lot less time, commitment, and other personal investment into training for English teaching overseas. A TEFL certificate program would also be acceptable for someone who wants to take a long and casual vacation in a foreign country, and may use it to his or her advantage for making a little extra money by teaching English on much more informal basis. TESOL certification is required for teaching English as a formal career, to a variety of audiences, in many different possible settings. Tesol certificates also require much longer to obtain than a TEFL certificate program.
Because the demand for native English teachers for non-native English speakers is increasing rapidly around the world, there may be situations in which there is such a desperate need for English teaching that a proof of TEFL certificate program completion may be enough. However, no one who is actively pursuing an overseas career as a formal and stable means of income should rely on a TEFL certificate program getting them into a position like this. TEFL certification is good for those that are volunteering services for literacy advocacy, informal English language instruction, and other less formal arenas and audiences.
There are contradicting sources of information revolving around a TEFL certificate program and TESOL program, and it is not uncommon for these two terms to be used interchangeably. Many sites that actually provide and award TESOL certificates even use TEFL certificate program interchangeably with a TESOL program. This can be confusing for those seeking the correct certificate to pursue and complete, in order to accomplish their career goals. The fact remains, that no matter how many people or TESOL certificate sites use the terms synonymously, a TEFL certificate program is not the same as a TESOL one. A TEFL certificate program will not be held in the same high regard as a TESOL certificate program, whether here in the U.S. or overseas. Keep in mind, the next time you come across sites that use TEFL certificate program and TESOL certificate program as synonyms, that you have a little bit more knowledge about these programs than the providers of the certificates themselves. It might be wise, in this case, to obtain your TESOL or TEFL certificate program from another education provider who knows what they are talking about.
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