CELTA- Initial qualification

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
I can't argue with your experience, Hunia, but I knew plenty of fantastic teachers in Madrid who had a CELTA but no degree (in anything, let alone a language-related subject area). The thing with teaching English as a foreign/second language is that it is a great opportunity for older people looking for a career change or simply an opportunity to live abroad for a while. Those people might have finished their education at least a couple of decades ago, without getting a degree. I think it's unreasonable to expect people to take three years out of their life to do a degree as an adult learner, then a CELTA, in order to perhaps only spend a couple of years teaching English.
I, for one, was very grateful for the fact that when I taught in Madrid, there were academies that didn't require a degree in order to work for them.
 

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
I am highly skeptical of CELTA for various reasons. As a former President of an international college network, I would never employ and never have employed any native ESl teacher with a CELTA but without a relevant degree in a language-related subject area. I have seen many native CELTA graduates making errors/mistakes in their written English like confusing "its" and "it's". They are simply lacking essential grammar knowledge of their native language.

That may well be true and I too have seen it. However, in many parts of the world, there is not the labour pool to set standards so high. I would favour candidates with such degrees, but I also live in the developing world, where it can be difficult to make such demands.
 

slevlife

Member
Joined
Jul 14, 2021
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
Serbia
I wonder what are the most crucial issues to bear in mind while choosing the 'right' CELTA centre.
After days of google search, I'd appreciate any additional information like personal experience, tips or whatever.
The UK is the country I am particularly interested in, yet it's not final.

I know this question is old, but figured I could still offer advice for new readers.

It used to be that you had to do the course in person. Covid changed that. Now you can shop around internationally and attend online, choosing the center that fits your budget, ideal start date, course duration, and time zone. CELTA is highly standardized and teaching centers get close scrutiny from Cambridge, so I’m guessing that tutors in most centers are at least decent. And no matter where you take the course, your tutors and students will all be speaking English.

I went with International House Mexico. In addition to being one of the best priced centers in the world, their time zone is friendly for US students, and most of their instructors turned out to be excellent.

Note that many companies teach the CELTA course, which was confusing to me at first when trying to choose where to take it. The biggest players are International House and Teaching House, both of which have many locations around the world. But there are many other training centers and universities that also teach CELTA. Cambridge’s official site can help you sort through them all by country and city, but its UX is not great. StudyCELTA has an easier to use search that lets you find places based on CELTA course type (online intensive, online part time, online blended, full time face to face, or part time face to face) and course starting date, but they only show testing centers that they partner with. I used a mix of both websites to narrow down my choices.
 

emsr2d2

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2009
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
UK
Thanks for the info, slevlife, and welcome to the forum. :hi:

What does "UX" mean?
 

probus

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 7, 2011
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
I'm guessing user experience.
 
Last edited:

slevlife

Member
Joined
Jul 14, 2021
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
Serbia
I'm guessing user experience.

Exactly. In other words their site is not particularly well designed or easy to use.
 

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
I'd still question whether all employers, even during a pandemic, would consider a 100% online CELTA course to be equal to the others.
 

slevlife

Member
Joined
Jul 14, 2021
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
Serbia
I'd still question whether all employers, even during a pandemic, would consider a 100% online CELTA course to be equal to the others.
That's of course possible, but I'm not sure it would be warranted. What do you think?

Note that CELTA avoids making any distinction (on certificates or elsewhere) regarding whether your course was taken online or not. Hopefully it's already clear that the online version of the course involves just as many hours teaching real students. Some classroom management techniques are certainly different online vs in a physical classroom, but many issues are similar (though it's appropriate to be skeptical of my view on this since I've only taught online). Online CELTA trainees make creative use of things like Zoom breakout rooms (dividing learners into subgroups), Google Jamboards, etc. to reproduce a fair amount of what would happen in a classroom.

Edit: In case it's helpful for future readers who are planning to take the CELTA, I previously posted a collection of tips and example documents for the course on my blog: CELTA Pass A Examples.
 
Last edited:
Top