CCELT / TEFL HQ
CCELT review, submitted by Amy.
I applied for the CCELT online TEFL course through International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ) and received a course discount for doing so. I thought that $399 was a very good price for an international TEFL certification course as when I was doing my research I found that many similar courses were in excess of $1,000. Sign up, course study and completion were without hiccup and although there wasn’t much study support on offer, I really didn’t require any as the course was well-structured and child’s play to follow. If this is how easy all TEFL courses are then no wonder there are so many teaching English abroad. The 100 hour course took about 30 hours to finish – I don’t know if I was unusually quick but I’d imagine this is the norm. The TEFL course certificate does look like it was printed from a low-tech printer but I was already half expecting this from what others have written about in forums about their TEFL course certificates. I imagine this lowers the overall cost of the course so I didn’t mind the lack of design. I’d recommend the CCELT online TEFL program with some minor reservations about the depth of course structure and the occasional typo I discovered in the course materials. My beef is something completely out of the hands of CCELT and concerns more the teaching job experience I had. I accepted a volunteer teaching English program in Cambodia (Takeo Province). I don’t want to mention here the name of the orphanage where I taught because I don’t want to affect any of the children and other volunteers still there. I went with the rather naive assumption that I’d be teaching local children who really needed my help. Instead, over time I realized that many of the children were sent to the orphanage by their parents because it simply looks good to have as many children as possible in the project. There was barely any organization and no running water. Our water we used for washing, drinking and cooking was held in a tank and my best guess was that it must have been rain water. The tank was in a designated side building but who knows what insects and animals got in there. The food was very unappealing and the classroom was little more than an open air corner with literally NO teaching materials. Throughout my time there I was often left wondering how my money could possibly have been spent here? Where did the sign up money from other volunteers go? The answer is probably to the volunteer agency and the owner of the orphanage. I’d recommend going to Cambodia but caution to think twice about volunteering there. I think even though I went with the best intentions at heart, I was inadvertently contributing to a volunteer industry that does more damage than good. This is how I felt and how many other volunteers which I met felt too.
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