How a TEFL certificate can help you in other careers and Professions
By Charlotte Leonetti
A TEFL certificate is a globally recognized certification to teach the English language as a foreign language. The major purpose of a TEFL Certification is to enable teachers to be capable to instruct non-English speakers in English. Some people believe that getting a TEFL certificate is just helpful for the classroom, but after the certificate or teaching abroad there are numerous skills that are adaptable to future workers regardless of industry.
Working as an English teacher abroad can be a really enriching life experience, full of new adventures and excitement. For many people, that alone is the reason is enough to take the plunge. But the experience you get after obtaining a TEFL certificate can also be useful in other major fields as well. To an employer, effective communication is essential no matter what field and obtaining a TEFL certificate is really strong evidence of that skill. Teaching abroad relies on the ability to communicate with people who not only don't speak the same language as you, but also don't share the same culture.
After a TEFL course, you’re prepared with improved communication skills and resourcefulness.
No matter where you teach, you'll probably have to contend with the same problem teachers everywhere face: lack of funding and materials. In many schools around the world, lack of resources – especially for language classes – is a huge barrier to learning, and it's up to you to make your class work with what you have. Teaching almost anywhere is a huge lesson in making do with what you've got, and potential employers in any field should be able to appreciate the resourcefulness that teaching abroad imparts.
After a TEFL course, you will be prepared to manage and to control classes with large numbers of students, and you are provided with specific techniques for managing student behavior in a variety of settings, settings with the most basic resources.
A TEFL course shows prospective employers you are capable of effective communication.
Almost anywhere you teach in the world, it's likely that you'll be interacting primarily with people who speak a different language and have a different culture than you. Even if you're teaching in a country where English is an official language, your students may have varied levels of written English, and it may be harder to communicate with them than you realize at the beginning. If you don't speak much of the local language, getting a lesson plan across to your students can be even more difficult.
That's where your communication skills come in, including the skills you learned to get your TEFL certificate. You don't necessarily have to have the right words or the same culture to teach abroad, but you do have to have the same human awareness. Your success as a teacher will depend on your ability to put your students at ease, and encourage them, and teach them something valuable in spite of your vast differences.
You will show a willingness to embrace and overcome challenges.
Teaching TEFL is hard work! By getting a TEFL certificate and getting some experience teaching speakers of a foreign language, you will get experience in overcoming a number of challenges. Teaching English to people who don’t speak English requires that you learn to be perceptive of others’ abilities and work to accommodate them. It requires that you be willing to think outside the box and potentially embarrass yourself in order to help your students succeed. It requires that you be comfortable with public speaking, but also be able to listen well. It requires that you be organized, thoughtful, and able to demonstrate attention to detail. It also shows that you are willing to learn new things even if they are challenging. Those are all skills that a potential employer might want!
You will have a solid edge over the other candidates who lack TEFL certification.
Although the TEFL class is known as a course that allows individuals to teach English, the skills and information you learn are beneficial to many different fields of work and will give you an advantage over competitors. You could well find that spending some time living in another culture is will help boost your career and also boost your confidence, independence and language skills.
You may find that whether or not you want to teach English in the long term, a TEFL certification is great way to build new skills and job experience that enhance your career, no matter what field you choose in the end.
Blogger Charlotte Leonetti has traveled abroad on service trips numerous times and has completed her TEFL certification so that she can better tutor English to students from around the world. Charlotte grew up speaking French & English and knows the importance of learning more than one language. She has spent the last four years learning Mandarin, so she is particularly attuned to the struggles of studying a new language and the value that a great language teacher can offer. Charlotte's website can be found here: www.charlotteleonettiwrites.com/