About CIEE

Heritage Meets Innovation

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Over 70 years of experience

That’s a long time. Since 1947 we’ve stayed true to our original mission of uniting the world through immersion and education. Though that goal will never change, the tools we use to get there constantly will. Our commitment to growth and innovation is nowhere more apparent than our home-grown TEFL certification.

CIEE’s online TEFL courses empower teachers of all experience levels with keen cultural awareness, and a deep-rooted knowledge of common theories and practices. This unmatched level of preparedness is what sets us apart, while ensuring you stand out. 


Since 1997, CIEE has been sending university graduates abroad to Teach English in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America. As a result, we have come to understand that true success teaching English only comes from a deep sense of readiness before you embark.

Decades of experiencing the unique challenges of teaching English abroad led us to believe that—simply put—there was a better way to TEFL. So we designed one.


Designed by Us, with You in Mind. 

In 2013 we collaborated with academic peers, intercultural experts, TEFL professionals, and education programmers to develop the highest academic quality TEFL certification courses. Our courses are designed to prepare trainees to meet the needs of hiring institutions, and international English learners like no other.

CIEE TEFL Certification Courses incorporate personalized instruction, collaborative peer environment, intercultural training, live tutors, and other features that set our courses apart and our students up for success. 

  • 150-hour TEFL Certification

    It’s impossible to plan for everything life will throw at you, especially when you choose a life of immersion. Getting certified with CIEE's 150 hour TEFL Certification Course ensures you’ll be equipped to take it all on.

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  • 180-hour TEFL Certification

    This course follows the same structure and outline at the flagship 150-Hour TEFL Certification course, followed by the 30-hour age-specialization course.

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  • 60-hour TEFL Certificate

    This course is self-paced and designed to allow you to complete coursework at any time during a six-month period

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What People are Saying

  • I have enjoyed the interactive nature of the course. It isn't just boring slides- but a mix of different teaching styles. You can tell that this course was well thought out and it makes me feel accomplished with all of the check points along the way.

    Laura W.
  • "The Off to Class segments have been particularly helpful in seeing how teachers either excel or make mistakes when teaching their classes. "

    R. McNeely, Dallas, Texas, preparing to teach in Thailand
  • The tutor and staff are very prompt, professional, and friendly!

    T. Carson, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, preparing to teach in South Korea
  • I find this class thoroughly informative and enjoyable. I was concerned that having a Master's Degree in Childhood Education & teaching abroad previously I would already know much of the course material, but I have learned so much and I am very happy.

    Madison L.

CIEE TEFL Tutoring Team

CIEE TEFL tutors monitor discussion boards, grade assignments, and lead weekly live tutorial sessions. Students can contact their tutors at any time with questions about the course content or graded assignments. Here are the members of the CIEE TEFL tutoring team:

Belén Rojas, Academic Coordinator

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CIEE’s TEFL Academic Coordinator is responsible for selecting, training, and supervising the tutoring team, giving technical support to the tutors. She closely monitors the tutoring experience that you, the student, has while taking the course, so that we constantly adapt to what works best. She is also responsible for monitoring and adjusting student marks on Canvas, and other tasks relating to the management of the online platform. (NEW PARAGRAPH) Belén was born in Melilla, a small city in the North of Africa, but has lived in Madrid, Spain since 2009.  In February 2014, Belén started in her current position, and she is thrilled to be working in the eLearning space because of the potential of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in all fields of education. Belén enjoys designing, testing, experiencing and making the most of these Learning Management Systems (LMS) - and Canvas is one of her favorites.

Adam Stein, MA in TESOL, Tutor

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Adam is an experienced language educator and teacher trainer with a master’s degree in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) from the University of Texas at Arlington, where he is also a doctoral student in Educational Leadership. Adam holds a bachelor’s degree in French and a bachelor’s degree in Advertising from the University of Texas at Austin. He has taught academic English to international students at the University of Texas at Arlington for more than eight years. He’s recently completed a 10-month assignment as part of the U.S. Department of State’s English Language Fellow program in Malaysia and has extensive experience working with foreign business executives on their language skills. In addition, Adam has traveled to 45 countries, taught English in Japan and China, and trained teachers in South Korea and Myanmar.

Annette Smith, TESOL Master (Distinction), Diploma (Distinction) in Teaching Business English, RSA Delta (Honors), Tutor

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Annette, a qualified Business Manager and consultant now living in France, was born in Leicestershire, England. She has panoptic business experience, gained in international blue chip companies and government service; her primary areas of expertise include Business Analysis and Project management. She is a native English speaker and speaks French. Having lived and worked in other countries including South Africa, India and France has given her valuable insight into the importance of culture when learning a language. Travel led to qualifying as a language professional, and she holds DELTA and TEFL qualifications including a Master's degree. Constant curiosity about outside influences led to specialization in tutoring, thus gaining valuable insight into human responses and motivation, which she has applied when working with others in the pursuit of success. An ardent traveler; her exposure to language and culture combined with her experience enables her to offer an empathetic and supportive approach to other language learners working towards a specific goal of English fluency.

Clark Erwin Billones, MA in TESL/TEFL, Tutor

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Clark was raised in California, but calls Colorado home when she’s living in the U.S. She has a teaching license from Colorado, a bachelor's in English literature, and a master's in TESL/TEFL. Clark has been teaching for the last 15 years at all levels including school age children to professional adults. She started teaching abroad in the U.S. Peace Corps as a teacher trainer in the Philippines in 2001 where she lived and worked there for four years and loved it. She’s worked at Colorado State University for 10 years and then returned to teaching abroad as an English Language Fellow in Belarus where she did teacher training at Minsk State Linguistic University.  Her last position was working in an international school in Budapest, Hungary where she taught 5th, 7th, and 8th grade. This fall she is going to Shenzhen, China to teach at another international school. She thinks teaching English is a great way to travel and learn about culture and language.

Colby Toussaint, MA in TESOL, Tutor

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Colby currently lives in Portland, Oregon and works as an online ESL instructor to students all over the world. She’s had the pleasure of working as an English teacher since 1998. Her first teaching job was in China when she was 22 years old. She taught English to employees of an oil company, University students, high school students, and children.  Although she  had planned on only staying a year, it stretched to three and she had caught the English teaching bug!  With this in mind, she returned to the States to get her MA TESOL. After that, she worked as a teaching adjunct for the Intensive English Language program at Portland State University. Later, she went on work as a visiting English Professor at a University in Japan. For the three years she lived in Japan, she also taught private lessons to students of all ages as well as corporate classes. She remembers how exciting it was to begin working in this field and she looks forward to assisting in your training!

Gena Rhoades, MS in TESOL, D. Ed in Educational Leadership, Tutor

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Gena was raised in Indiana, but currently lives and works in Melbourne, Australia.  She loves to travel and learn about different cultures and people.  After working in Japan and France, she decided to go back to school and received an assistantship to study and teach at the University of Southern California where she received her MS in TESOL and doctorate in Educational Leadership. Gena has worked on various projects with the U.S. State Department funded English Language Programs for the past ten years.  The most recent project was to write a strategic plan with the Ministry of Education in Djibouti.  When she’s not working, she enjoys exploring new places, learning new languages, reading, running, and cooking.

Heather Torrie, MA in TESOL, Tutor

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As a college student in 2002-2003, Heather spent two semesters in Russia, teaching English to kids. This experience of living and teaching abroad launched her thrilling 15-year career in TESOL. From the very beginning, she realized she loves being with people and guiding them as they learn the invaluable skills of communicating in another language. Once she returned home to the U.S., she went on to earn a master’s degree in TESOL from Brigham Young University in Utah, USA. Since then, she has been teaching in an intensive English program at Purdue University Northwest. For the past three years, she has been the Testing Coordinator, overseeing all assessment and data tracking for our program. Her favorite thing, though, is interacting with her students both in and out of class. Additionally, she enjoys networking and giving presentations at various TESOL conferences.

Jamie Cardwell, MA in TESOL, D. ED in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, Tutor

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Jamie has been teaching various classes in ESL/EFL, curriculum methods (instruction/assessment), and teacher education for the past 19 years. Her experience ranges from children to adults in multilingual, diverse contexts in the U.S. Uganda, Turkey and the UAE. She holds a B.S. in Education, an M.A. in English/TESL, and a Doctorate in Education: Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment. She regularly attends conferences and is active in TESOL. Jamie’s latest research focuses on supporting Arab teachers in U.S. curriculum schools through learner-centered approaches and methodologies. In her free time, she enjoys reading, cooking, and adding as many stamps to her passport as possible. She currently works as a Curriculum Coordinator with K-12 U.S. curriculum schools in Dubai, UAE.

Jessica Swan, PHD Applied Linguistics, Tutor

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Originally from Memphis, Tennessee, Jessica holds a Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics with an emphasis in TESOL. Along with her research interests in adult education, composition, and second language acquisition, she is also interested in nonprofit management and has used her Master’s in Public Administration degree to enhance her work in nonprofit and educational institutions. She has been selected as an English Language Fellow for the 2019-2020 academic year. In addition, she has served as an Instructor and Assistant Director of First-Year Writing at the University of Memphis and taught in K-12, university, and community-based settings in the United States and the Dominican Republic. When she’s not in the classroom, she is a certified yoga and mindfulness teacher and loves to explore the world.

Katie McClintic, MAT in Communications with TEFL emphasis, M. Ed in Educational Technology with Online Educator emphasis, Tutor

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Katie has taught English as a Second Language for more than 15 years in both the US and abroad. Her past work experience includes teaching composition, reading, and grammar to international university students at the University of Missouri and the University of Kansas. Her work abroad includes serving as an English Language Fellow in Indonesia (sponsored by the US Department of State) and teaching in Kanazawa, Japan as a part of the JET Program.  Katie has also taught online Communications courses and TESOL teacher certification courses in the US. She is currently an instructional designer for Mizzou Academy, an online institution offering K-12 education to students in the US and abroad. Katie has a MAT in Communications, TEFL emphasis and a MEd in Educational Technology, Online Educator emphasis. Her professional interests are focused on the intersection of online/eLearning with second language acquisition/TESOL, and she is particularly interested in developing online opportunities for English language learning and English teacher training in low-resource areas through the use of technology.  In her free time, she can be found planning her next trip, researching new restaurants, or trying to finish the stack of books on her nightstand.

Kim Perkins, MA in TEAP, Tutor

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Originally from the UK and South Africa, Kim is currently in Boston, Massachusetts, where she teaches EAP and Writing for Mass Communication at Boston University. Kim is also the department's Academic Materials Coordinator, which gives her the unique opportunity to preview the latest offerings from ESL publishers and to assist faculty in selecting the department’s textbooks. Kim began her TEFL life, as many do, while living abroad: in bella Italia to be precise. She has a MA in TEAP from Nottingham University as well as the Cambridge DELTA. Prior to joining Boston University, Kim was an ESL program manager and TEFL trainer for a language school in Boston. She is excited to return to the teacher training side of the TESL/TEFL equation!

Leann Keefe Holland, Coursework in MA in TESOL, Tutor

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Leann was born and raised in small towns in Wisconsin. When she was an undergraduate, she majored in French and Russian and participated in a CIEE study abroad program where she had a practicum teaching English to elementary school students in Rennes, France. Before attending graduate school, she taught English in a high school in Rostov Velikii, Russia. During her graduate education at the University of Kansas, she taught first- and second-year Russian language classes and Slavic folklore and completed her PhD dissertation on reading comprehension. She also served as Director for the KU summer program in St. Petersburg, Russia. Her research interests focused on second language acquisition and teaching foreign languages. (NEW PARAGRAPH) She worked for the Federal government in the Washington DC area after graduate school, but her heart kept pulling her back to the classroom and teaching, her true passion. She received a TESOL certificate and has taken MA TESOL courses at Anaheim University. She has taught English to adult immigrant students from Central America, Africa and Asia at Columbia College, Montgomery College and the Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School. While she lived in the Cayman Islands with her husband, she began working as an online instructor. She loves meeting new people and teaching English to students from all over the world.

Lynn Zimmerman, MA in TESOL and a PHD in Curriculum & Teaching, Tutor

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Lynn’s TEFL career began in 1992 when she served in Poland for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer and taught high school students in grades 10-12. She stayed in Poland after her Peace Corps experience and taught at English immersion summer camps for high school students, and two Polish universities - first teaching English to teaching majors at one university, then teaching Intercultural Communication to translation majors at another Polish university for several semesters. During the academic year 2014-2015, Lynn was an English Language Fellow in Albania teaching English teaching majors. In Fall 2015 she was a Fulbright Scholar Belarus where she taught university students studying to be English teachers. Then for the 2nd half of her Fulbright, she went to Chisinau, Moldova in Spring 2016 where she taught Intercultural Communication courses to translation majors.

Mina Gavell, MA in TESOL, Tutor

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With a bachelor’s degree in English Language and Literature, Mina took her first English teaching position in South Korea in 2009. Having found her calling, she returned to the United States and taught academic English at ELS Language Center as an English Teaching Specialist from 2010-2018. During this time, she also completed her MATESOL and published her master’s thesis research on pragmatic implications of the present perfect. In 2018, Mina became an English Language Fellow and was posted in Urgench, Uzbekistan where she taught reading and writing at the state university. In 2019, she renewed her Fellowship and joined Bukhara State university to teach methodology to pre-service English teachers. As of January, 2021, Mina returned to Urgench, Uzbekistan as a Coach with the English Speaking Nation project with the aim of providing high quality teaching and teacher training to local students and teachers.

Molly Fitzpatrick, MA in Applied Linguistics, Tutor

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Molly was born and raised in Maine. She’s been working in the TESOL field for several years now, teaching General English, Business English, and English for Academic Purposes to students of various backgrounds, ages, and with diverse goals. Her career began in Rome, Italy, and since then she’s also taught in Sydney, Australia and Ziguinchor, Senegal. In between periods abroad, she has worked in the US as an Educational Technician, Literacy Tutor, and Curriculum Coordinator. She’s designed and facilitated teacher training workshops in Senegal, Burkina Faso, and Guinea Bissau, as well as in the US. In 2008, she earned her TEFL certificate online, so she’s eager to participate in this course as she knows how useful this information will be when students get into their respective classrooms. She also holds an MA in Applied Linguistics from the University of Sydney. She just moved to Padua, Italy, and she will be teaching there in the fall. Her interests include traveling, cooking, reading, and learning about languages and linguistics. She’s really looking forward to getting to know all of her students and to working through the course together!

Terri Pleasant, BBA and DELTA, Tutor

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While English was her favorite subject in high school and she enjoyed learning foreign languages, she had no idea what she wanted to do with her life when she entered university.  In fact, it was more than a decade later that she found herself in the world of TESOL.  Her journey started in Indonesia when a friend convinced her that being a native speaker somehow qualified her to teach English.  She enjoyed teaching there for a year but her desire to provide a better quality of service to her students led her to take the CELTA course in Malaysia where she ended up staying and teaching for 8 years. There she developed her teaching style and confidence, working with multilingual groups of adults and local groups of young learners.  Finally, she went to teach in Saudi Arabia where she gained a great deal of experience working with beginners, completed her diploma and helped to train new teachers.

CIEE TEFL participants benefit from access to the CIEE Alumni Network, a community of more than 350,000 people. This group represents nearly every field of industry and country on Earth, making it easy to stay in touch with peers, connect with like-minded people, and discover professional opportunities.  

Mission Statement:

Our mission serves to create a more accessible world by empowering students with English language teaching expertise to confidently navigate the global classroom. 


CIEE TEFL celebrates diversity and does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, or religion.