The TEFL Insider
Trustworthy tips, tales, and advice from Bridge's experienced staff
I remember when I first got the idea to teach English abroad in Costa Rica. I knew next to nothing about the process back then, but it seemed like plenty of people were eager to give me their advice on the subject—and it was mostly negative. People told me that there were no teaching jobs in […]
How does a person become a good language teacher? The task is challenging. As teachers of English, we often work in settings – in schools and communities – that are unfamiliar. Like all teachers, we must consider the individual needs, goals, and interests of our students. Unlike some other teachers, we often work with people from traditions of education that differ from our previous experience.
This post was written by Susan Weymouth Are you looking for a new buzzword to impress the directors at your next job interview? We have talked before about how many acronyms there are in teaching English as a foreign language. Here is another one that you may have been reading or hearing about – ESP. […]
This post was written by Matthew Clark Classroom management is one of the most critical components of teaching, and an area that both new and experienced teachers are continually faced with. A teacher without control of a classroom is like a computer without a mouse–all of the learning potential is in place, but not much […]
This post was written by Susan Weymouth Language is social. My colleague Joshua Yardley (look for all his great blog posts) recently recommended a brief lecture to me on Ted Talks, called “The Linguistic Genius of Babies” by Patricia Kuhl. Her research quantifies how infants develop their language abilities through hearing and selecting the sounds […]
I am not ashamed to admit that I enjoy Star Trek. If you are like me, you may have noticed that our world today is beginning to resemble life on the Enterprise, Voyager or Deep Space 9. We are already able to search the Internet with pictures taken with our smart phones. It is only […]
Have you ever gone into a testing feeling like you knew nothing, only to leave feeling like you knew it all? It’s common for learners to benefit from tests. This effect is called positive washback, and it has a few possible implications.
Tests help us to learn because they are typically challenging and often stressful events. Motivated learners pour lots of cognitive energy into retrieving information from their brains. The more energy we put into retrieving memories, the stronger those memories become. This is why it is easier to remember something that we struggled to learn than something that seemed easy to grasp. Those concepts that at the time were clear from the onset will not be as salient to us over time as those that we broke a sweat trying to figure out.
If you are reading this, you are probably interested in teaching English as a foreign language, commonly known as TEFL. Perhaps you’ve been thinking about this for a while or maybe it’s just recently appeared on your radar. Either way, you undoubtedly have some questions. While this article won’t go in-depth on the details of TEFL, it will answer the single-most important question you should be asking yourself right now:
Who ARE these people that do TEFL, and are they glad they did it?!
We recently conducted a survey of Bridge graduates that completed their TEFL training (online or onsite) between 2009 and so far into 2011. Over 300 people responded (thanks, guys!), and below is a brief analysis of our results. But before you examine the data, please note our favorite question from the survey: