How to become an English as a foreign language (EFL) teacher
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- a college course
- applying directly
- professional development training
Some employers may expect you to have a degree or postgraduate course that gives you qualified teacher status (QTS). Useful subjects include:
- modern foreign languages
- education studies
You'll usually need:
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
- a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course
You can take Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) courses at colleges and private training providers all over the world. They vary widely in cost and length. You can do:
- a full-time course lasting 4 weeks or 120 hours
- a part-time course lasting 11, 16 weeks or 36 weeks
- a distance learning course where you may need to arrange your own teaching practice
The most common TEFL qualifications are:
- Certificate of English Language Teaching to Adults (Cambridge CELTA)
- Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (Trinity CertTESOL)
- Level 5 TEFL Diploma
You'll usually need:
- an excellent standard of English
- A levels or equivalent qualifications
You could get experience as a paid language assistant in schools abroad. You do not need Teaching English as a Foreign Language qualifications for this, but you'll need to have completed at least 2 years in higher education.
The British Council has information about working abroad as an English language assistant.
You may need foreign language skills for some jobs.
You can work as an EFL teacher in further education. You'll usually need a Level 5 Diploma in Education and Training, which you can do through professional development. After the Diploma, you can get qualified teacher learning and skills status (QTLS).
You can find out more about careers in further education from Teach in further education.
To work in schools in the UK, you'll usually need to be a qualified teacher.
You can get more details on TEFL qualifications from Trinity College London and Cambridge English.
You can find out more about how to become a teacher in further education from FE Advice or from Teach in further education.