Understanding TEFL accreditation is an essential part of choosing a TEFL certification. It’s one of the best ways to determine if a TEFL course is reputable, trustworthy, and of high quality. But making sense of a TEFL’s accreditation can be a little confusing. What is it exactly, and how do you know which TEFL accreditation body is best?
This guide helps demystify what it means for a TEFL course to be accredited and why it matters when choosing the best TEFL certification for you.
What is TEFL accreditation?
You can think of TEFL accreditation as a stamp of approval from a third party in charge of regulating TEFL programs. These accrediting third parties have created a list of academic standards that they believe TEFL programs need to provide consistent and high-quality training.
In order for a TEFL provider to receive accreditation, it must formally apply to an accreditation body and undergo a thorough and rigorous review. The accreditation process typically includes a formal examination of the course’s teaching content, instruction methods, responsible business practices, and the success rates of its graduates.
A quality TEFL accreditation body does not only certify a TEFL provider once. They should also continue to monitor and provide feedback for how a TEFL program can continuously improve while striving for the highest standards of education at all times.
In conclusion, a TEFL accreditation lets aspiring teachers know that someone other than the TEFL provider has verified that the course meets internationally accepted professional and academic standards.
Is TEFL Accreditation Important?
Choosing an accredited TEFL course is immensely important. As an education-focused industry, it may be surprising to discover that the world of TEFL is wholly unregulated. There are hundreds of scammy TEFL courses out there attempting to lure in those who may not know the difference between a reputable and non-reputable course. Choosing a TEFL course with accreditation can offer peace of mind that you’re receiving a quality certificate from a trustworthy provider.
A TEFL accreditation also helps separate good courses from the bad in terms of a program’s quality of content. To receive TEFL accreditation, programs must have their curriculum and teaching materials formally reviewed. Accreditation can signal that a course provides effective training that’ll help you find success as an EFL teacher.
Lastly, a TEFL accredited certificate is an essential factor in your application process. Many hiring schools require teachers to hold valid and reputable certificates to uphold their own high education standards. If you apply to jobs with an unregulated or non-accredited TEFL certificate, it may decrease your chances of landing a good job.
How to Choose a TEFL Accredited Course
Now that we’ve established just how important holding an accredited TEFL certificate is, here is how to choose the best course.
How to Evaluate the Quality of TEFL Accreditation
Not all TEFL accreditation bodies are created equally. Some TEFL programs that claim to be accredited actually receive little professional oversight and have not gone through the same rigorous review as others. That means that choosing an accredited TEFL course isn’t enough. It’s also essential to confirm the trustworthiness of the accrediting body too.
One way to evaluate a TEFL’s accreditation is to check how long the accrediting body has been operating. Accrediting companies that are relatively new or that are only as old as the TEFL provider itself can be a red flag. This is because many cheaper TEFL courses are guilty of creating a TEFL accreditation body to certify themselves without the standard rigorous and formal review by an unbiased third party. Additionally, if the accreditation body has certified only a handful of educational programs, it may not be authentic either.
A reputable TEFL accreditation body will usually meet these criteria:
- It’s backed by a governmental agency like the U.S. Department of Education or the U.K.’s Ofqual (Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation).
- It has decades of experience providing formal reviews of educational programs.
- It details a clear and transparent description of the accreditation process.
- It has TEFL providers undergo a rigorous review process that involves in-person evaluations conducted after the initial screening.
- It has a professional website and positive reviews.
Well-Known TEFL Accreditation Bodies
If the thought of conducting your own review of a TEFL course’s accreditation sounds overwhelming, don’t fret. There are several TEFL accreditation bodies that are considered reputable. Some of the most well-respected names include ACCET, backed by the U.S. Department of Education, and TQUK, recognized by the U.K’s Ofqual.
Any TEFL course from a respected university is also considered trustworthy. The most popular university-backed EFL programs include the CELTA, a certification by Cambridge University, and the Trinity Certificate by Trinity College.
CIEE TEFL Course Accreditation: Is ACCET Accreditation Good?
CIEE TEFL offers four internationally-recognized programs that include 30-hour, 60-hour, 150-hour, and 180-hour course options. CIEE TEFL trainees enjoy small class sizes, dedicated tutors, and a comprehensive curriculum that provides a well-rounded educational experience that exceeds international standards. Not only that but all of CIEE’s TEFL courses are accredited by ACCET, one of the most reputable accrediting bodies in the field.
ACCET is an external review board that has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Education since 1978 as “a reliable authority as to the quality of education or training provided by institutions of higher education and the programs they accredit.” ACCET’s name stands for “Accrediting Council for Continuing Education & Training,” and that’s precisely what they do. ACCET’s mission is to promote quality-oriented continuing education and training through the establishment of standards and the assurance of an accreditation process focused on integrity.
In order to earn accreditation from ACCET, all of CIEE’s TEFL courses have undergone a comprehensive and multi-step evaluation process:
- Administrative inquiry to determine eligibility
- Formal application period and initial review
- Accreditation workshop for full briefing on ACCET standards
- Analytical Self-Evaluation Report
- On-Site and in-person visit resulting in a comprehensive report compiled by experts in the field
- Commission review to determine accreditation status
The team of experts at ACCET recognizes that all aspects of CIEE’s TEFL courses, from the thoughtfully prepared lesson content to the professional tutors on staff, have met their strict academic standards. CIEE TEFL students can rest assured that they’re receiving quality TEFL training from a trusted provider.
Read More: CIEE TEFL Earns ACCET Accreditation
Earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) with CIEE TEFL
A TEFL certificate from CIEE not only helps you jumpstart a career teaching English abroad, but it can help you further it if you wish to make teaching a lifelong career. Thanks to CIEE’s ACCET accreditation, trainees who complete a CIEE course can earn verified CEUs, or Continuing Education Units for their completed TEFL hours.
CEUs are a vital part of advancing your professional career as a teacher and can even help you meet the requirements for earning your teaching license. Graduates earn one CEU for every ten contact hours in a continuing education program like CIEE TEFL. That means that trainees who complete the 150-hour TEFL course can earn 15 CEUs, and those who complete the 60-hour course can earn six, etc.