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Exploring TESOL and TEFL Certificates

Exploring TESOL and TEFL Certificates

Making the Right Choice for Your

English Teaching Journey

TESOL and TEFL Certificates

A million different things could have led you to this article. Have you had any interactions with people who speak English as a second language that piqued your interest in learning more about the profession of teaching English to non-native speakers? Perhaps you want to live and work in another country, and teaching English seems like the best option for where you are right now.

Whatever brought you here, we are delighted you did! Teaching English to non-native speakers is a rewarding vocation that allows you to share your knowledge with others and grow professionally and emotionally as you acquire compassion and empathy for people learning a new language. You may be considering enrolling in English-speaking classes or even an English-speaking course for beginners as you investigate entering the field of English language teaching.

It is advised that you finish a teaching certification programme to demonstrate to others–and yourself–that you are qualified to teach English as a second language. The Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) certificate and the Teaching English to Speakers of a Second Language (TESOL) certificate are two common qualifications.

The debate remains, Which is superior: TEFL or TESOL? We entirely understand if you’re wondering how two acronyms that appear so similar can be so different. Satisfy your curiosity, and then keep reading to discover more about the differences between TEFL and TESOL, so you can pick which qualification is best for your goals as an English teacher overseas.


First and foremost, what is the distinction between TEFL and TESOL certification? Before obtaining either teaching certification, You must determine where to teach English. Do you want to stay in your home country and teach? Then you should definitely check a TESOL certification. Are you considering teaching English as a temporary arrangement in another country? Then it would be a better idea to pursue a TEFL certificate.

However, choosing a location on a map to assist you in deciding your future as an English language instructor is not as simple. To help you, we’ve summarised what you may expect from these two teaching credentials below.

TEFL or TESOL, which is better?

One is not superior to the other in obtaining certification and applying for jobs; they are merely two terms often used to describe the same certification. Even though most TEFL providers, language schools, and online teaching organisations use the phrases interchangeably, there are subtle variations between the two. So, what’s the distinction between TEFL and TESOL? Let’s look at these acronyms to see what they mean. 

TEFL Teaching Jobs

After earning your TEFL certificate, you will have your pick of fantastic locations to teach English overseas. You will have a broad and exciting range of destinations for English language teaching, from Cambodia to the Czech Republic and everything in between. With a TEFL degree, you can expect to work in one of three basic areas: formal education, private tutoring, or teaching at a private organisation or corporation. Getting certified through an organisation like the International TEFL Academy is especially advantageous because alumni receive lifetime job placement aid.

Take some time to imagine your life over the next year(s) while you explore where you want to work while teaching English abroad. What do you see, hear, taste, and smell when you close your eyes (but not yet, you must finish reading this article first!)? Do you get chills just thinking about toddlers rushing around you, babbling away? Is the prospect of significant corporate executives yelling commands making you nervous? Are you intrigued by the prospect of living in a remote village with few amenities? Are you curious about what it’s like to live in a big, urban city centre abroad?

As a TEFL teacher, you will most likely begin to specialise in teaching a specific age range. Whether you teach English in the Middle East or South America, you may prefer to work with children, older students, or business people. If you’re unsure who you’d like to work with, you can consider private tutoring to acquire a feel for various age groups without jeopardising your full (or nearly full) )-time TEFL teaching career.

TESOL Teaching Jobs

If you want to teach English as a second language, a TESOL online course/certification may make you more versatile and allow you to teach at home and abroad. With a TESOL certification, you can expect to teach in organisations like the ones listed above and locally-based NGOs in your native country. Do you want to help immigrants and refugees in your own city/country?

 A TESOL certificate will enable you to maximise your teaching sessions or build relevant content. Your passion and skills as an English language instructor are in high demand in Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States!

From teaching English to immigrants to working in a school system with ESL students, licenced TESOL instructors may be astonished at the variety of job choices accessible. Ask around your neighbourhood or online to better understand what others are doing with their TESOL degree and how you can best use yours.

In conclusion

Still wondering which is better: TEFL or TESOL? Take a deep breath and remember that you are on the correct track as long as you focus on where to earn your teaching certification and what you want to do with it. TEFL and TESOL credentials will provide you with teaching opportunities that are not available to everyone.

After you’ve narrowed your options down to these two certification alternatives, read reviews and talk to alumni to get the inside scoop on the best teacher certification programmes, and you’ll be on your way to teaching English overseas in no time.

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