Next month I will be embarking on my CELTA journey. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the abbreviation, it’s a Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. It’s pretty intensive as far as courses go; it runs for a whole month and candidates are expected to attend Monday to Friday, 8:30 am – 4:30 pm.
I’ve wanted to take a TESOL/TEFL certification for a while now and after a lot of online research and talks with some of my friends who have had experiences with TESOL/TEFL courses and its equivalents, I’ve decided on the CELTA.
Ok, so if you type TESOL/TEFL course into Google’s search bar, you get a lot of different websites advertising that they offer the best; some even try to pull you in with promises of a job teaching abroad guaranteed as soon as you complete their course. The amount of information available on the different institutions offering different courses is so vast that I was completely overwhelmed by it all. How on earth am I supposed to choose the right course for me when they all claim to be ‘the best’?
I had previously heard about the CELTA and decided to look into it further. Basically, CELTA is a TESOL/TEFL course designed and administered by Cambridge English for aspiring teachers of English as a second language. The course consists of small tutorial classes as well as hands on teaching practices. There are a few reasons why I’ve chosen the CELTA over other (usually cheaper) TESOL/TEFL courses:
- CELTA is the most internationally recognised TESOL training program in the world. Because it’s administered by Cambridge English Language Assessment in partnership with Cambridge University Press, you can be sure that the standard of a CELTA course is the same regardless of where you’re taking it, i.e. it’s the same in any country. Representatives from Cambridge English regularly monitor and check that each centre is up to their high standard. This also means that a CELTA certificate is trusted by employers worldwide, which will surely make it easier for you to land a job abroad if you so wish.
- Unlike most TESOL/TEFL certificates, where you pay a certain amount of money to attend classes and be guaranteed a certificate at the end of it, the CELTA is a pass/fail course. This means that if you don’t put in the work, or if the assessor thinks that you are not up to their standard, it is very much possible for you to fail the course. For this reason, the admittance process involves interviews and written tasks to make sure that a candidate that is accepted into the course will have a high chance of passing the course instead of just letting anybody into the course (failing the course after paying US$ 1850 for it is no joke… unless you’re super rich). Again, this shows that they take quality very seriously.
- Only institutions that have been approved by Cambridge English can administer and hold CELTA courses. There is actually only one centre that offers the CELTA course in Indonesia: TBI (The British Institute, they have two branches – TBI Bali and TBI Jakarta), and the latter is where I’ll be spending my next month.
I’ve read a lot of online articles on other people’s experiences with the CELTA around the world, and most have titles like “How to survive the CELTA” or something along the lines of “How to pass the CELTA without losing your mind”. The articles themselves include sentences like “say goodbye to your social life for a month” and “welcome to four weeks of hell”. Those might not exactly be encouraging words, but I’m hoping that the (time, money, and mental) investment will be worth it. Wish me luck guys, and I’ll see you on the other side!
a/n: I apologize for not having updated my blog in a while; for some reason October has been a very busy month for me, and next month will undoubtedly be even more so and I might not be able to post anything new. Please forgive the semi-hiatus and I promise I’ll be back soon with more comics and musings. Much love to all my readers and followers for being patient.