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Cambridge CELTA and Trinity TESOL: What is the Difference

Cambridge CELTA and Trinity TESOL: What’s the Difference?

If you want to become an English language teacher either in the UK or abroad you generally need a qualification that proves you know what you are doing in the classroom. These qualifications are broadly known as TEFL qualifications (Teaching English as a Foreign Language). Specifically there are two types of qualifications that are accredited by credible organisations and are recognised all over the world. These are – the Cambridge CELTA and the Trinity TESOL. These two qualifications are extremely similar, and have just a few differences. If you want to find out what they are then read on.

What’s the difference between the Cambridge CELTA and Trinity TESOL?

Cambridge CELTA and Trinity TESOL are very similar but understand what are the differences between enrolling on a course.

What’s the Same?

Both are accredited by highly respected institutions: TESOL by Trinity College London and CELTA by University of Cambridge English Language Assessment. They both have the following entry criteria: must be over 18, have A Levels or equivalent; have a good level of spoken and written English. Both include 6 hours of teaching practice with real English language students. Both comprise of 5 units of learning. Non-native English language speakers with CAE PASS or IELTS 7.0 can apply to both. There is no final exam for either, and assessment is continuous throughout both courses, and both are a minimum 4 weeks long.

What’s Different?

The 5 units of learning for Trinity are:

1. Teaching skills
2. Language Awareness
3. The Learner Profile
4. Materials Assignment
5. Unknown Language

The 5 units of learning of CELTA are:
1. Learners and Teachers/Teaching and Learning
2. Language Analysis and Awareness
3. Language Skills
4. Planning and Resources for Different Contexts
5. Developing Teaching Skills and Professionalism

An external moderator will mark unit 4 for the TESOL and the whole course will be moderated by an external assessor for the CELTA. For TESOL the final grades are either pass or fail. For CELTA the final grades are Pass A, Pass B, Pass or Fail. The CELTA must last for a minimum of 120 hours, the TESOL for 130 hours.

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Which one should I take?

The similarities between the courses are evident, so how do you decide which on to take? There are three main factors involved when making this decision:

1. Price
The TESOL generally tends to be a little cheaper than the CELTA, although this is not always the case.

2. Location
When it comes to location, larger cities will have centres that offer both the TESOL and the CELTA, but smaller cities may only offer one of the courses. If location determines which you go for then your options may be limited if you chose to study in a smaller city.

3. Facilities & Reputation
All TESOL and CELTA centres are externally moderated and inspected, and must adhere to the standards and criteria set out by Trinity and Cambridge. However, not all centres are exactly the same in terms of facilities and reputation, and this is often reflected in the price. If you are looking for specific facilities such as air conditioning throughout, a good on-site café or a maximum group size of 12, then you need to look in detail at the specifics of what each centre offers and this may determine which course you choose to go for.

Next Steps to Take a TEFL Course

Are you interested in teaching English abroad? Have a look at the best TEFL Course. If you are interested in learning a foreign language before moving abroad we offer courses for over 25 languages. Classes take place online and in schools across the UK, including Cambridge, Leeds and London. We also offer private language classes and corporate language training. Start your free trial with Cactus!

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