Frequently Asked Questions
What's the difference between the CELTA and other TEFL certificate programs?
There are many TEFL certificate programs available. However, CELTA is the most widely recognized English teaching qualification in the world. It’s also the qualification most often requested by employers as it is standardized and closely monitored by Cambridge University.
The CELTA also includes supervised teaching practice with real ESL students as part of the course. This valuable practical experience is not provided with all TEFL certificate programs, leaving trainees to find suitable practice teaching situations on their own.
How easy is it to get a job abroad?
Demand for English language education remains strong worldwide and opportunities for teachers continue to grow. Many schools and language institutes have moved classes online during the coronavirus pandemic and are still looking to hire CELTA certified teachers. Facilities are re-opening in some countries and schools will need English teachers to work in physical in-person classes. You may have to be tested for coronavirus and observe a quarantine period before being allowed to interact directly with students. The exact situation will vary country to country and region to region and is subject to change.
Can I take the CELTA online?
Due to COVID-19, our Spring 2021 courses will be held virtually, so you may study with us from the comfort and safety of your home. The training input sessions and teaching practice will all take place in our online classroom. Your CELTA qualification will involve the same detailed study and have the same recognition as our traditional face-to-face course.
We also offer a 12-week online hybrid course for people that want to pursue a CELTA but need a more flexible schedule than the 4-week intensive course offers. This course consists of ten weeks of online training modules that can be completed on your own schedule and a two week in-person supervised teaching practicum in Austin.
Do I need to take the CELTA if I already have a master's degree or a teaching degree?
Having the CELTA in addition to a MA gives you an advantage over job candidates who have a master’s alone. Because CELTA training is standardized, closely monitored by Cambridge, and highly regarded internationally, employers will know exactly what standard of teaching to expect from a job candidate holding a CELTA qualification.
Can I teach in public schools in the U.S. with the CELTA?
Having a CELTA itself does not qualify you to teach in public schools in the U.S. However, private language institutions, organizations providing services to immigrants, and other community programs hire teachers with the CELTA qualification.
I am a public school teacher. Can I get credit for Continuing Professional Education (CPE)?
Yes, CELTA training counts as professional development credit for current public school teachers and the UT English Language Center is approved by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) as a Continuing Professional Education provider. Teachers just need to let us know that they wish to apply their training hours towards CPE so that we can properly document their attendance for the TEA.
What if I have no previous teaching experience, or am unsure I'll like teaching?
Teaching experience is not required to take the CELTA course. Some candidates are unsure if they will be good teachers, particularly if their concept of teaching is lecturing in front of a class. Language teaching is different from other types of teaching to adults. While some lecturing is required to explain new terms and concepts, language teaching largely involves working in pairs or small groups utilizing activities in which the teacher is not the center of attention.
I already have teaching experience. Do I need the CELTA certification?
Having a CELTA certificate could enhance your job prospects, even if you have prior teaching experience. In addition, experienced teachers can benefit from taking the CELTA, as it provides an opportunity to fine tune their teaching skills with feedback from our Cambridge certified tutors during the course.
Can I fail the CELTA? What happens if I do?
The CELTA has a worldwide pass rate of over 95%, so failing the course is quite rare. We look carefully at application materials and conduct interviews with each candidate to ensure that they will do well on the course. If we don't think they have the ability to pass the course, we do not accept them. The low trainer to trainee ratio (1:6 maximum) also provides a supportive learning environment.
However, candidates may get sick or have other emergency situations that could negatively affect their performance on the course. In these situations, we recommend that students notify the tutors immediately and withdraw from the course to avoid being given a failing grade. They may retake the course at a later date if there is space available.
Do you have to know a lot about grammar?
Knowledge of grammar is definitely beneficial when studying to become an English teacher, but it is not necessary to know everything about grammar to take the CELTA course. We provide successful applicants with pre-course tasks, including a grammar booster, to help you understand key concepts in preparation for the course. Keep in mind that most English teachers do not know everything about English grammar.
- Does UT CELTA accept AmeriCorps Education Awards?
What about transportation and housing?
CELTA trainees are responsible for arranging their own accommodations. There are hotels, hostels, Airbnb homes, and other short-term accommodations available near the UT campus. Consult our housing guide for options. You will be able to ride the Capital Metro bus and rail system for free with your valid UT ID card, so keep that in mind when choosing where to stay.