Enrolling in a quality TEFL course is one of the first steps to teaching English abroad. A TEFL course helps prepare you for the classroom by providing you with the necessary tools to connect with students and create a safe environment for them to learn and grow. But in order to become an effective and compassionate teacher, you must first become a student.
One vital component of any TEFL course is the role and qualifications of the TEFL trainer or tutor guiding you through the lesson material. The best TEFL trainers are there not only to teach the course but provide support and encouragement throughout the entire process. However, not every TEFL course has TEFL trainers, and not all TEFL trainers are highly qualified.
Let's dive deeper into why it's crucial to choose a TEFL course with highly qualified TEFL trainers.
What Do TEFL Trainers Do?
Not all online TEFL courses have dedicated TEFL tutors, and if they do, not all provide a high degree of support or live instruction. Many online TEFL courses are simply prepackaged digital courses that students are left to go through alone, without the help of an instructor.
When a TEFL course does have a TEFL trainer, instructors can have a wide range of responsibilities. In general, they are there to help students and ensure the course runs smoothly. But not all TEFL tutors across TEFL courses provide the same intensive support.
A high-quality course will employ TEFL instructors that actively provide one-on-one tutor time, share thoughtful and individualized feedback on assignments, and offer personal assistance as problems or questions arise.
Why Is It Important to Choose a Course with Qualified TEFL Trainers?
It's not only important to select a TEFL course with live trainers but to choose a course taught by qualified TEFL trainers. TEFL trainers play an active role in their student's learning and have the immense responsibility to teach their students all they need to become successful teachers themselves. Trainers also need to be able to deliver the curriculum in a way that resonates with their students, aka you!
When a TEFL trainer has extensive qualifications, that means they've studied effective teaching methodologies, know first hand the ins and outs of what they're teaching, and have learned how to better connect with students. To learn to be the best, it's essential to learn from the best.
How to Choose a TEFL Course with Qualified TEFL Trainers
TEFL trainers are an integral part of any successful online TEFL course. Here’s how to choose the right course with the best qualified tutors.
How to Evaluate the Quality of a TEFL Course’s Trainers
You can determine if a TEFL course includes instruction by qualified trainers by looking out for these telltale signs:
- The course description has clear and transparent information about the role of TEFL trainers and their qualifications.
- The TEFL instructors have at least a Master’s degree in TESOL or a related subject.
- The TEFL trainers have multiple years of EFL teaching experience.
- They speak English at a native level or C1 or higher.
- The course reviews from recent graduates are positive.
Meet the CIEE TEFL Course Tutors
Unlike other online TEFL providers, CIEE TEFL courses are led by TEFL tutors with exceptional qualifications. Additionally, CIEE refers to their TEFL course instructors as TEFL “tutors” because of the direct one-on-one assistance they provide to all students.
All CIEE TEFL tutors must hold these qualifications:
- Speak English as their native language or at least at a C2 level.
- Hold a DELTA or Masters in TEFL/TESOL, Applied Linguistics, or an equivalent field of study.
- Have previous experience leading a TEFL course as a TEFL teacher trainer.
- Have at least five years of experience teaching EFL in a range of different environments.
- Are technology pros that can run webinars, webcams, and the digital course platform smoothly.
The Main Roles of TEFL Tutors in CIEE’s TEFL Courses
As previously mentioned, TEFL tutors can hold a wide variety of responsibilities across different TEFL providers. The TEFL tutors at CIEE stand apart from the crowd because they are actively involved in the course and students' learning.
CIEE’s TEFL tutors go above and beyond to provide tutorial support by fulfilling four key roles that help students find success.
1. Lead Live and Insightful Online Tutorials
One of the most unique aspects of CIEE's online 150-hour TEFL course is that students can attend a live discussion hosted by the course's TEFL tutor once a week. These live tutorials are fun and helpful meetings that allow students to ask their tutor questions about the course material directly.
The live tutorials also allow students to interact with their classmates on educational TEFL tasks presented by the TEFL tutor. Throughout the tutorials, the tutor is there to provide insightful feedback. These live tutorials are incredibly unique and not a standard offering by other online TEFL courses.
2. Provide Personal Feedback and Individualized Progress Reports
CIEE TEFL tutors are also responsible for grading assignments and completed tasks. Unlike other online TEFL courses that rely on computer-generated right and wrong answers, CIEE’s dedicated course tutors provide nuanced and personalized feedback on every task, every week.
Additionally, each student receives a final individualized report at the end of the course that summarizes the hard work and progress they’ve made. This thoughtful report sends graduates off to their first job with a full understanding of what they learned and their strengths as a teacher. Having an expert provide personalized assessment every step of the way is an immensely valuable aspect of CIEE's online TEFL courses.
3. Support Students Via Personal Messages and Announcements
Not only do CIEE’s TEFL tutors provide personal feedback, but they’re there to support students too. Dedicated TEFL tutors are always available via personal message to answer any and all questions related to the course material or the digital learning platform.
CIEE TEFL tutors are also responsible for monitoring student progress and sending weekly announcements. This personalized attention means that students don’t need to worry about delayed communication and are always alerted to what’s coming next in the course.
4. Facilitate Engaging Online Discussion Forums
Last but not least, CIEE TEFL tutors are there to encourage a fun community amongst students and facilitate the course's educational discussion forum. Every week, the TEFL tutor presents engaging questions and discussion topics that connect the lesson material to real-life scenarios. They also prompt students to share their own thoughts related to the course material to promote an active and engaging learning environment.
The Highly Qualified TEFL Tutors in CIEE’s 150-Hour TEFL Course Stand Out Amongst Other Providers
Unlike other TEFL courses, with CIEE's 150-hour TEFL certification course, you get personal support from the same expert tutor for the entire class. This allows you to develop a friendly classroom relationship with your tutor. Not to mention, you can count on consistent feedback and grading from one dedicated tutor versus a different instructor every week that’s typical in other TEFL courses.
During the 150-hour CIEE TEFL course, you also enjoy personal one-on-one meetings with your TEFL tutor every week. This is valuable time with the teacher that guarantees you have direct, weekly support.
Another way that the TEFL tutors at CIEE stand out from the crowd is that they are required to attend professional development training every year. Additionally, they have dedicated support from an expert academic coordinator. This ensures that tutors continually utilize up-to-date teaching practices and have their own support to provide the best classroom environment possible.
Choosing a TEFL course with highly qualified TEFL tutors is vital to a conducive learning environment. When qualified tutors are leading a TEFL course, students can rest assured that they receive the best instruction possible and have access to a real person when questions or challenges arise.