courses – all the usual signs of dodginess

If you want to know how dodgy a TEFL course is, all you usually need to do is look at the accreditation page and look for these typical signs:

– Mention of membership of IATEFL (which is available to literally anyone, including your postman and paper boy, and so proves absolutely nothing)

– Inclusion of the IATEFL logo (which not only doesn’t prove what they want it to, but is specifically banned by IATEFL, and so proves the exact opposite)

– Meaningless weasel words like “leading” (and no answer when I asked them what that actually means)

– Not only having a link to an accreditation agency that only accredits other dodgy-sounding TEFL courses, but only being an “affiliated course” on their tiny list of accredited courses and so presumably not even directly accredited

– Stats that sound as impressive as they are supposed to for about ten seconds until a quick calculation shows how ridiculous they are (in this case “over 40 years of combined experience teaching”, which could be for example a whole course with just five trainers with eight years of teaching experience each, a calculation that would give Cambridge “thousands of years of combined teaching experience”)

All that from just the one page. And from other parts of their site:

– Limited time discount offers (not generally a good sign in any industry)

– Names of courses that make the low standards instantly clear like “Advanced” for an 80 hour online course and the hilarious “Master TEFL Expert Teacher” for the real length of a basic TEFL course like Trinity CertTESOL but of course in this case all online with no observed and graded teaching practice, the most important bit…

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6 Responses to courses – all the usual signs of dodginess

  1. Monica says:

    Many excellent points! We can´t stress enough how important it is to do your research before buying!

  2. Pingback: The slavery of teaching English? | Matt's TEFL Blog

  3. alexcase says:

    Have messaged the guy on LinkedIn with a link to this piece, but no reply.

  4. jane says:

    I’m confused. Now, MyTEFL is listed at the end of the OTTSA as accredited. Hole in your story?

  5. alexcase says:

    Well, that’s hardly the most important thing in the post is it? The fact that it is now officially accredited by an organisation that only accredits other dodgy TEFL courses wouldn’t exactly change my mind about them…

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