Teaching English without a Degree in Eastern Europe

by Geetha

Question Hello. I came across your webpage after browsing for TEFL/TESOL courses. I'm from Asia working in China as Montessori Teacher.

I would like to take up TEFL/TESOL courses online. The reason is, I don't have time to travel elsewhere to do inclass training at the moment. I have about 4 years of teaching children (3 to 6 year olds) and I teach english in an enrichment class too.

My dream is to teach in Europe (Western/Eastern) someday how can I prepare myself? What are the courses I should consider? I don't have a degee and I only hear negative comments that as long as I don't have a degree I can never make it to Europe. As well I read usually employers basic requirments is to be a university graduate.

I'm lost what to do.Your advice would be much appreciated. Thanks

Answer I'm sorry to add to the negative comments, but to teach in Europe you will usually need a degree and a TEFL certificate, but not any certificate, you'll need the CELTA or CertTESOL. Online TEFL qualifications are usually not accepted because they lack any practical teaching component. I am aware that some teachers find jobs without these qualifications, but you would be depending on luck, and you would probably be working in some of the worst schools.

There's also the well known bias towards native speakers. Most school owners - and many students or parents of students - want native speakers. I'm sure you've seen this in China.

In Europe - or at least in the EU - you have the added problem of EU law requiring EU countries give preference to EU nationals, making it more difficult (although not impossible) for non-EU citizens to find work there.

So you would need to get a degree, preferably from an English speaking country. Then you would need to get the right type of TEFL certificate - certainly not an online certificate. After doing this you would need to deal with the preference for EU citizens and native speakers.

Perhaps you need to rethink your plans and your goals. A few 'lucky' ones do find work without a degree, but I think this 'luck,' may be bad luck, as the kind of language schools that hire unqualified teachers are not usually the types of schools you would want to work for.

For more information on various TEFL Certificate courses, check out this article.

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