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Frequently asked questions

Browse our FAQs to make sure TEFL is the right choice for you.

Is a TEFL course right for me?

If you’re considering doing a TEFL course, but are on the fence about whether or not it’s the right decision for you, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Do you enjoy helping people and seeing them progress in a new skill?
  2. Are you passionate about languages and teaching people to communicate effectively?
  3. Are you looking for a new career that allows you to travel and earn money at the same time?
  4. Are you interested in immersing yourself in a new culture and learning a new language?
  5. Does the idea of a flexible work schedule appeal to you?

A TEFL certificate will help you achieve all of these goals. So, if you answered YES to any of these questions, a TEFL course is definitely right for you!

Where can I teach with a TEFL qualification?

You can teach in language schools (not public schools) in South Africa or abroad. In South Africa, Cape Town is the EFL hub with more language schools than anywhere else in the country.

If you’d rather go abroad, China, South Korea and Spain tend to be the most popular choices. Qualified school teachers will easily find jobs in the Middle East, which is also where the highest paying jobs are. However, salaries in many Asian countries are well above the national averages, while jobs in South America offer unbeatable experiences. We work with reputable recruiters for popular countries to ensure you find a legitimate jobs that won’t see you being deported in your destination.

How much will I earn?

Although the salaries are often enticing, you’re not going to get rich as an EFL teacher. However, many positions pay well and allow for a decent standard of living while abroad and the opportunity to save money and travel.

How much you earn depends on your qualifications, experience and where you teach. To give you an idea, these are average starting salaries (in USD) from highest to lowest:

  • Middle East and Japan USD2000 – USD4 000 p/m
  • South Korea, China, Europe USD1 500 – USD3 000 p/m
  • South America USD800 – USD 2000 p/m

Keep in mind that the cost of living is cheaper in countries that pay lower salaries. Many jobs also offer package deals that include flights and accommodation, but this is not a requirement.

In South Africa, you can earn from R175 p/h to around R18 000 p/m. In most countries, university positions pay better and offer more job security, but they demand higher qualifications and more experience.

Does TEFL have a career path?

The TEFL industry continues to grow at a rapid pace worldwide with demand for teachers exceeding supply. While most positions are for teaching General English (day-to-day), there are also specialisations, such as teaching children, business English, academic, specialised fields and exam classes. As you gain more experience, you may start to teach different specialisations. We offer add-on courses in teaching young learners and business English to help you with this transition.

If you’re looking to make TEFL your career, there is a diverse range of opportunities available. As you gain experience and develop professional, there’s the possibility of becoming a teacher trainer, academic manager and international examiner. Very experienced EFL teachers also move into curriculum development and are involved in updating, adapting and writing coursebooks that are widely used in the industry

Is there an age limit to do a TEFL course?

There is no upper age limit to do the TEFL course. However, be aware that many schools abroad prefer teachers under the age of 55 years due to the retirement age/immigration requirements in their countries. If you are a citizen of the country in which you plan to teach, though, the age limit does not apply.

Is your TEFL course accredited?

Wits Language School courses are registered as short courses with the Academic Planning Office of Wits University. Wits University is an accredited tertiary institution. The TEFL course also meets the international requirements of 120 hours with 6 hours of observed teaching practice.

Be sure to evaluate course accreditations thoroughly. Just because a course is accredited by a foreign organisation doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s good. There is no one regulating body for TEFL. As a result, organisations have different standards and requirements. With a university-accredited TEFL, you’re guaranteed that the course has gone through the same rigorous approval process as credit-bearing courses in degree programmes.

Listen to an interview on Radio 786 on TEFL accreditation.

Is there any funding available for the TEFL course?

Unfortunately, no funding is available through Wits University. The TEFL is a short course; only credit-bearing courses are eligible for bursaries.

Students registered for degrees or diplomas with Wits University who have existing bursaries or funding may apply to their bursars / sponsors for approval to use some of that funding for the TEFL course.