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5 Reasons To Take A TEFL Course Before You Volunteer Abroad

When I was growing up, my mother worked as a TEFL teacher at a primary school here in New Zealand, teaching English to immigrants from Asia and the Pacific Islands. While I didn't completely understand the impact she was having on her students' integration within an English-speaking society at the time, I can now appreciate the invaluable role she played in helping shape the future of these young learners. The overwhelming gratitude she received from her students' parents spoke volumes for her impact.

Arming yourself with the skills to teach English as a second language is a two-way gift - while personally gaining the confidence to succeed in teaching Engligh abroad, you can in turn build the confidence of your students in speaking one of the world's most widely-used languages.

While it isn't a requirement for volunteers to take a TEFL course before teaching abroad, International Volunteer HQ offers an optional online course which equips both experienced teachers and even those with no formal teaching experience to succeed in teaching English overseas.

To better prepare our volunteers to teach English abroad, IVHQ has partnered with the Center for Communication and English Language Teaching (CCELT) to provide a specialized online TEFL course for a discounted rate of US$399. The 100-hour online TEFL course is available to past and future IVHQ volunteers, or anyone wishing to upskill before teaching English abroad. 

Why should you consider taking the TEFL course before you volunteer abroad...?

1. Come With Confidence

Teaching English abroad can be a challenge, even the most experienced teachers, and IVHQ is focused on ensuring volunteers feel confident in their roles as teachers and offer valuable learning experiences for their students. While IVHQ volunteers do not need to be qualified or experienced teachers to teach abroad, taking the time to upskill beforehand will enable you to play a valuable role in developing the English skills of your students. Upon completing the TEFL course, volunteers will have experience in planning, designing, and adapting a wide variety of language activities and materials, which they can apply to their teaching experiences abroad.

TEFL Couse - Volunteer Abroad in Bali

2. Work On Your Own Schedule

The 100-hour TEFL course can be started at any time and is completed entirely online at your own pace. Never mind if you're locked into full-time employment or study - whether your want to complete the course over two months or two years, the choice is yours. You have the freedom to design your own schedule and complete the course from anywhere in the world. Plus, the course is compatible with desktop, tablet and mobile so you can access the course at home or on the go - all you need is an internet connection!

TEFL Couse - Volunteer Abroad in Tanzania

3. Less Stress

By working through the course material at your own pace and deciding when to sit the tests on your own terms, the stress is cut! You'll be assessed through homework assignments and performance tests and encouraged to do self-assessment by completing written “thinking points” and case studies, which you can compare with the explanations and demonstrations provided. At the end of each unit, you'll take a multiple choice test as well as a comprehensive final exam. But don't stress - if you fail a test on the first attempt, you are allowed to take the test again. If you fail on the second attempt, your test is locked until you have gone back to the unit and reviewed the material.

TEFL Couse - Volunteer Abroad in Zambia

4. All You Need Is A High School Diploma

To enroll in the online TEFL course which is offered at a discounted rate through IVHQ, you just need to have completed your high school diploma and be fluent in English. You don't even need to be registered on an IVHQ volunteer program to apply, the discounted course is also open to previous IVHQ volunteers, or anyone interested in maximizing their chances of securing teaching jobs abroad.

TEFL Couse - Volunteer Abroad in India

5. Future Job Prospects

This internationally-recognized TEFL course is focused on enhancing your effectiveness as a volunteer teacher and maximizing your chances of securing teaching positions abroad. (This kind of certification will boost your CV credentials nicely too!) After volunteering and teaching abroad, many IVHQ volunteers decide to utilize their new-found teaching skills further - some going as far as switching career paths. Conveniently, the TEFL course focuses on training teachers to build skill sets that will allow you to adapt to different environments - whether you're a volunteer teacher in Kenya or a paid teacher in Thailand. 

TEFL Couse - Volunteer Abroad in Thailand

Check out our volunteer abroad programs to discover the volunteer teaching opportunities available with IVHQ in over 30 different locations, or visit on Online TEFL Course page to learn more about the discounted TEFL course.

Enroll in the TEFL course

"CCELT prepared me for a wide variety of international ESL teaching experiences. I have taught in South Korea, Peru, Colombia, and here in my home country of Canada. I have taught in both volunteer and salaried positions, in the classroom, online, and on a one-on-one basis. Teaching definitely asks you to draw on many skills and a large knowledge base. Throughout my time abroad I was asked to teach the basic ABCs all the way through to advanced English conversation classes, science, phonics and more, to students aged 2 all the way through to 80 years of age. The highlight of my ESL teaching career was teaching English at the University level in Peru. CCELT not only opened these doors for me, but gave me the skills to ensure that my time teaching abroad was as useful and rewarding for my students as it was for me" - Renato Cavaliari

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