What is the CELTA Certificate?

CELTA – that’s Certificate of English Language Teaching to Adults – is the most highly recognised and regarded initial English teaching certification worldwide. It’s awarded by the University of Cambridge’s English Language Assessment, meaning you can rely on the CELTA's quality and accreditation. Every year, more than 10,000 people the world over complete a CELTA course.

Is the CELTA a ‘TEFL’?

You'll find a lot of information out there alluding to a 'TEFL' certificate or qualification, which can often be confusing and misleading. TEFL is not the name of any one specific course; in fact, it's a concept. It stands for 'Teaching English as a Foreign Language', and is often found written in many other variations: TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages), ESL (English as a Second Language) and TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language) among them.

Many other so-called ‘TEFL certificates’, whether achievable online or face-to-face, are often not monitored or unaccredited by large, independent organisations. Then, once you get out into the workforce, you’ll find that it’s not a globally recognised course.

The CELTA, however, is the TEFL qualification, and it’s what most employers are looking for when they request it on their job advertisements.

ESL, TEFL and TESOL: It's all the same thing

What is the CELTA Certificate

Top 5 reasons to do the CELTA course:

✔ CELTA is the most frequently sought after qualification for TEFL jobs worldwide.

✔ It is moderated by the University of Cambridge every time a course runs, not just on an occasional basis.

✔ Tutors are highly qualified, experienced trainers in well-established CELTA teacher education centres

✔ It is recognised as a Level 5 Qualification by the British Curriculum Authority, so it follows an authorised syllabus

✔ The CELTA includes real-life teaching practice with actual English learners, in an authentic classroom environment

CELTA Course Content

There are five main units of learning:

  1. Learners and teachers, and the teaching and learning context
  2. Language analysis and awareness
  3. Language skills: reading, listening, speaking and writing
  4. Planning and resources for different contexts
  5. Developing teaching skills and professionalism.

What does the CELTA teach?

  • CELTA teaches an awareness of language and a knowledge of the description of English, and how to apply these in professional practice
  • An initial understanding of the contexts within which people learn English, their motivations and the roles of the teacher and the learner
  • Familiarity with the principles and practice of effective teaching to learners of English
  • Basic skills for teaching students in the language classroom
  • Familiarity with appropriate resources and materials for use with learners of English for teaching, testing and referencing
  • Opportunities for your own future development in the field (for example, job searches, professional development etc.)

Will I get a job with a CELTA certificate?

The CELTA is the most sought-after TEFL certificate by employers worldwide. According to a survey conducted by Cambridge English in 2015, 70% of job advertisements specifically request the CELTA. They analysed 500 ads from 23 international job search websites, across 56 countries, and found 350 references to CELTA. In the UK alone, 91 per cent of employers wanted their teachers to have the CELTA!

Furthermore, a part of the course is solely dedicated to professional development and finding work once you graduate. The schools often have jobs boards and contacts with other institutions looking to hire CELTA-qualified teachers. Plus, you'll also be eligible to sign up for TEFLwork, an online jobs portal for qualified English teachers.

How is CELTA taught?

The CELTA is offered in the following formats:

Full Time CELTA

The full time CELTA is our most popular course format, and is usually a four-week, weekday, nine-to-five intensive course.

Part Time CELTA

The most common format is 12 weeks in duration, with two afternoons a week and half a day on Saturday morning.

Online Blended CELTA

This option allows you to complete the majority of the course online, you have to visit the centre to complete training practice.

100% Online CELTA

This option allows you to complete the course online from anywhere in the world, provided you have a stable internet connection.

How the CELTA Course is Assessed

You are continuously assessed on your teaching practice and written assignments.

But, that’s not all. CELTA tutors also take into consideration amongst other things:

  • Responsible and professional attitude to learning
  • Planning and teaching of your lessons
  • Punctuality and organisation (you must attend 100% of the course)
  • Your response to feedback
  • Overall progress and professionalism in the field

You can get a:

  • Pass A
  • Pass B
  • Pass
  • Fail

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