Accredited TEFL Courses and i -to-i 's 120 Hour Online Course Review

There are many than a few accredited TEFL courses out there. Here is a basic run-down on i-to-i's quite popular 120 hour Ofqual accredited TEFL course and what you can expect. Firstly, this course is purely on line and therefore doesn't involve a practicum or hands on element to the course. (Although they do offer a practicum in their 140 hour course. It substantially increases the price of the course as it involves travel to the actual course location, lodging, food etc.)

With Whom in Mind is the Course Designed For?

Before we delve into what the course actually contains, we'll touch on who it is for and who it isn't.

Or more specifically who will get the biggest bang out of their buck with this online course. And for whom it would be more or less something you could do without. Meaning that this person has adequate teaching experience or education in teaching methodology etc.

Firstly, the Course is Suited For :

  • Those who have little or no teaching experience or knowledge of teaching methodology.
  • Those who are under the gun on time and don't have a lot of money to spend.
  • Those who don't feel comfortable or confident in getting up in front of a class of students for their first time.
  • Those struggling to break into the TEFL market and need a bit more of an edge.

How Long Will the Course Take to Complete? 

  • Of course it depends on how hard you grind at it but the idea that it is a 120 hours does not mean it takes actually 120  hours to complete it.

    Everyone learns at a different rate but your "average course enrollee should be able to knock it out in roughly one month. A handy bit of info. to keep in mind when timing  your course completion and visa application times etc.

    Those who are super busy are allowed access to their learning platform to complete the course for 10 weeks.

So What am I Going to Learn? Accredited TEFL Courses & i-to-i's Course Structure

The Course is Broken Down into 14 Units Which Comprise the 120 Hour Course Structure

  • They kick it all off, as most online courses do with a until on teaching the bare bones basics on teaching methodology.
  • What an effective lesson plan is comprised of. How to set it up. They will touch on basic structure of what makes lessons work.
  • This part of the course wraps up with tips and tricks for adapting the the prior section's plan composition to adjustment of that composition to the different age groups or age groups that your typical ESL teacher might face in a "typical" classroom setting. 

The Second Part of the Course: Content

In this section of the course content is more specifically addressed as it relates to vocabulary and grammar.

  • More specifically enrollees will be introduced  to the types vocabulary commonly used to explain fundamental grammar structures.
  • In the grammar module basic tenses are addressed.

The Third Part of the Course: Classroom Management

  • Enrolles are taught how to create a good teaching environment for students.
  • Use different approaches to help your students learn.
  •  How to deal  with some of the most common problems ESL teachers face as they arise.

Here is a review video on i-to-i's online course. Although she took the 140 hour course which has a practicum, she let's it all hang out in this 11 minute clip. No punches pulled style. No fluff or hype.

    Notable statements were:
  • "Some of the answers posed were easy to guess." 
  • "Some test questions were not covered in the module."
  • "For the money you definitely get a lot out of it." I had no idea I would come away from this training course feeling so much more confident."
  • "They make you create several different lesson plans that ingrain it into your head."
  • "The lesson plan I made before the course, actually, I am so embarrassed to look at it because it was so crappy."

The Third Part of the Course: Course Assessment

Enrollees are then asked to complete a review and consolidation session. This is graded by a tutor that is broken down into 3 parts.

  •  Course test – a multiple choice quiz to test what you’ve learnt. With 58 questions, you’ll need a score of 75% or above to pass. 
  • Lesson plan – you’ll create your own lesson plan based on a scenario we provide. Then you’ll submit your lesson plan to your tutor for marking. 
  •  Written work – you’ll produce a written document of 1,000-1,500 words, explaining the thoughts behind your lesson plan. Again, you’ll submit this to your tutor for marking.

After submitting the lesson plan and written work for marking, you’ll receive feedback and find out how you’ve done. You’ll have up to three attempts to pass each part, so don’t panic if you don’t hit the grade the first time around and if you fail any part, your tutor will contact you to chat through everything and shore up the weak points in your work and supplement that with help and strategies that are most commonly used in ESL classrooms around the world.

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A Bit More on Accredited TEFL Courses and Accrediting Bodies Plus the Wrap Up

Upon completion you will receive a certification of completion and assistance with finding a job or more specifically access to their jobs board. You will find that almost all accredited TEFL courses will provide their graduates with access to a  job board to help them break into the wild and wholly world of teaching ESL abroad.

Enrollees need to be aware that accreditation is not a universally held metric like other metrics. In other words accredited TEFL courses use different accrediting bodies. so  an Ofqual accreditation that i-to-i uses is not the same as other accrediting bodies like IATEFL or TQUK. 

Another thing to keep in mind is that hiring managers don't necessarily view a 160 hour course as being superior to a 120  hour course, even through there may be a practicum involved in the longer course

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