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Gathering information

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  • amjurgena
    Participant
    22 March, 2008 at 22:28
    • Total posts: 1

    I am interested in teaching english in La Paz, Bolivia. I have my bachelor’s degree, but it is in business. I am looking into obtaining my TEFL by taking online courses. I am not fluent in spanish, but I know enough to get around. A lot of the schools that I have looked at online require a teaching degree and at least one year of experience. I have close friends there and would be able to go to the area ahead of time and possibly look for a position in person, which I have heard can really help. Are there positions in LaPaz that I would be qualified for, or are all the school’s requirements similar to what I have researched online?

    ICAL_Pete
    Participant
    26 March, 2008 at 12:18
    • Total posts: 149

    Reply To: Gathering information

    In South America the standard minimum requirements are a degree plus a TESL/TEFL Cert. and/or experience.

    You’ll find that the subject of your degree is pretty much irrelevant. What matters is that you have a degree.

    To make up for your lack of experience, you should definitely aim at getting TESL/TEFL certified. Being certified will make you more marketable and it will also prepare you for the job.

    Online courses are a good option particularly if you have a limited budget to further your studies or if you have other work and/or family commitments that restrict the amount of time you have available to study.

    As for finding work, your plan to get there and do the school rounds is a good one. Walking in on a school on spec is often more effective than applying from abroad.


    ICAL Quality Online TEFL Training since 1998

    ITTP
    Participant
    27 March, 2008 at 6:54
    • Total posts: 13

    Reply To: Gathering information

    Hi amjurgena!

    Having traveled exensively in S.America and also having visited La Paz on a number of occassions I can write that schools will try and find the most qualified teacher which they can find.
    La Paz has a shortage of English teachers and although they aim high (experience, etc.), they will almost always be willing to employ based on an applicant having gone through TEFL/TESOL training.
    An online Int.CertTEFL/TESOL is fine BUT it MUST include teaching practice otherwise it might not be worth the paper it is written on.
    Think about it; you wouldn’t expect to learn how to drive after reading a book would you?

    All the best and watch yourself in La Paz! (can be a bit dicey in parts).
    FYI, Lake Titicaca and Santa Cruz are my 2 fav places in Bolivia but La Paz is where it is all happening.

    ICAL_Pete
    Participant
    14 April, 2008 at 16:16
    • Total posts: 149

    Reply To: Gathering information

    ITTP implies a course without TP will take you nowhere. Our experience is entirely different. We place our certified ESL teachers in English schools around the world and know for a fact that a teaching practicum is not an essential requirement for many positions.

    More and more schools around the world recognize the value of online certificates issued by professional organizations and employers no longer discriminate between Certificates obtained through traditional institutes and those online.

    Online courses at entry level can provide a thorough grounding in a new career and the right tools to approach a new profession. A quality course like ours offers a good base which you can build on, if required.


    ICAL Quality Online TEFL Training since 1998

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