TEFL in COLOMBIA

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  • Unassigned
    Participant
    3 January, 2009 at 11:07
    • Total posts: 32

    I’m wanting to swiftly relocate myself outside London on a TEFL career. Columbia is my first choice of place to live/work, otherwise S. America in general would make me happy.

    I can’t find much info on Columbia – Can anyone give me some advice on:

    1)TEFL qualifications needed (Weekender vrs Cambridge Certified 4 week)

    2) institutions in Columbia who provide the training

    3) securing a job immediately after training

    4) what to expect if I just get a flight out next month and try start from there, considering mi espanol es no tan maravillosa…

    5) I’m off to Madrid for a 4 week spanish course this Friday; is the gateway to S. America within better reach from Spain and if so, anything I should do in Madrid to help myself?

    Any and all advice welcome!

    tamzin
    Participant
    5 January, 2009 at 12:35
    • Total posts: 10

    Reply To: TEFL in COLOMBIA

    In terms of TEFL qualifications, I wouldn’t bother with anything apart from Cambridge CELTA and Trinity Cert TESOL. These are internationally recognised and a basic requirement for many schools. A weekender course is probably not worth it, and is unlikely to give you enough grounding in language, methodology etc. to be ready for the classroom.

    I don’t know much about looking for work in Columbia, but the Guardian and the Times Educational Supplement are both good places to start, as is tefl.com.

    If there is a British Council or an International House in Columbia, they are a good place to look for training courses. However, there are literally hundreds of places in the UK that offer CELTA and Cert TESOL, often in 4-week intensive courses.

    It’s a good idea to learn some Spanish before you go, and you will pick it up quickly when you are there. I’ve been to countries without knowing a word of the language, and soon learnt enough to get by.

    Good luck with your studies and future career.

    andyrubiano
    Participant
    14 November, 2011 at 13:33
    • Total posts: 2

    Reply To: TEFL in COLOMBIA

    Although Peter’s question is a few years old I figure I will answer it in case someone else has the same questions.

    Colombia, and most of Latin America I hear, are very different EFL markets than say Asia. Although there is plenty of work most will not hire you if you are not already here. There are more informal jobs (without a work visa) than formal jobs available (work visa). The pay range in Bogota is usually between 5.000 – 30.000+ COP per hour.

    The types of teaching jobs available are as follows.

    1. Language institutes
    There are language institutes everywhere. The majority will give you informal work just because you are a native speaker. A few (International House & British Council) require a CELTA, but they will provide a work visa and better pay.
    Pay range 5.000 – 20.000 COP per hour.

    2. In-company or private classes in someone’s home
    There are many companies that send teachers to teach at companies or private lessons in people’s homes. The students are usually business people or upper middle class (or higher). You will learn how to get around the city because you go to your students. The pay is usually higher, but you will probably work less hours. Generally speaking, these companies have a few teachers with work visas, but the majority are informal. The pay range is usually 15.000-30.000 COP per hour, but I have heard of places that pay more. TEFL, CELTA, etc. are not always required, but they are helpful (most of the higher paying jobs require some form of Certification).

    3. Schools
    There is work available at bilingual schools. This is full time formal work with full benefits. You may need to be a licensed teacher in your country and/or have an internationally recognized teaching certificate (CELTA) and experience. From what I have heard these jobs are not plentiful and usually pay between 1.500.000 – 2.500.000 COP per month.

    4. University teaching
    I don’t know much here, but I do know these positions usually require a masters.

    5. Privates
    Many people teach privates. You set your pay rate and find your own students. Most people charge between 5.000-25.000 COP per hour. The work is not steady and I recommend always getting paid up front. Many teachers do this on the side to earn extra money and some people actually make it their primary source of income.

    The above information is for pay in Bogota. Smaller cities, towns, and rural areas will pay less, but the cost of living is also much lower.

    I hope this information helps. Good luck!

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