Blacklisted Online TEFL Programs The TEFL Academy X Fake TEFL Accreditations X Online TEFL Course Scams

The TEFL Academy certification review

The TEFL Academy certification review.

The 5 Best Online TEFL & TESOL certification courses in 2023 & 2024 -

This ‘The TEFL Academy certification review’ article uncovers the extremes that this program will go to, to present and maintain a positive public image. Fake Reviews | Affiliate Links | Ambassador Program | False Accreditation Claims.

The TEFL Academy certification review. This article was last updated on December 8, 2023.

The TEFL Academy (TTA) is not a legitimate online TEFL/TESOL certification company.

The TEFL Academy (TTA) is not a fully accredited online TEFL/TESOL certification course program.

Despite its website claims, TTA The TEFL Academy is Unaccredited. This is a TEFL scam.

Trusted TEFL Reviews recommends avoiding The TEFL Academy (TTA).

Think about it. Would you employ someone who presents a TEFL certificate at a job interview that isn’t accredited?

After reading this article, we recommend reading:

Trusted TEFL Reviews’ advice is to invest in a Fully Accredited TEFL/TESOL certificate that will be recognized for all online and abroad teaching English jobs.

Essential Tip!

You must choose a Fully Accredited TEFL TESOL online international certification course program.

Such courses will open more employment doors for you, ensure your certificate is work-visa-friendly, and provide you with better teaching salaries – for both online and in-person English teaching jobs.

If in doubt, choose from one of the Top 5 Online TEFL TESOL certification course programs in 2023/2024:

The 5 Best Online TEFL TESOL Courses in 2023/2024

Is The TEFL Academy (TTA) Legit and Accredited? No. Verified customer reviews complain about not being able to use this TEFL/TESOL certification internationally and write that because of this, they lost money and strongly felt they had been scammed by The TEFL Academy – TTA. Yikes!

8th June 2022 UPDATE:

TTA The TEFL Academy – Fake TEFL Accreditation | Fake TEFL Awards | Fake TEFL Reviews | False TEFL Advertising:

The main reasons for this Buyer Beware Warning:

  1. This program has attempted, on several occasions, to get reviews written by their staff employees published on Trusted TEFL Reviews. Trusted TEFL Reviews only publishes verified Online TEFL/TESOL customer reviews – we don’t publish fictitious reviews, self-written by Online TEFL/TESOL programs.
  2. The TEFL Academy (TTA) claims to be accredited by a bunch of “external bodies” but these are only regulatory bodies – AQC | DEAC | OfQual | QUALIFI. The TEFL Academy (TTA) is only regulated by the bodies that it claims accredit them.

The TEFL Academy (TTA) provides unaccredited Online TEFL/TESOL certification courses, that are only recognized within the United Kingdom and Ireland. This is further backed up by the poor The TEFL Academy (TTA) verified student reviews:

Instead, we recommend choosing to take your international TEFL/TESOL certification course with a program offering a fully accredited course that is far more recognized internationally than The TEFL Academy’s.

The four highest-rated TEFL Academy TTA fully accredited alternative course options, listed in order of customer review ratings:

  1. TEFL Online Pro
  2. OISE Toronto TEFL
  4. Maximo Nivel TEFL

CIEE TEFL, Maximo Nivel, OISE Toronto TEFL, and TEFL Online Pro are Level 5 and CELTA-equivalent Online TEFL/TESOL certification programs.

TEFL Online Pro verified customer reviews:

OISE Toronto TEFL verified customer reviews:

CIEE TEFL verified customer reviews:

Maximo Nivel verified customer reviews:

CIEE TEFL, Maximo Nivel, OISE Toronto TEFL, and TEFL Online Pro certificates are Fully Accredited and internationally recognized. The TEFL Academy TTA certificates are not fully accredited and are not internationally recognized.

TEFL Online Pro has won the Teachers’ Choice Award in 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023:

All 56 Online TEFL/TESOL certification course programs are currently listed on Trusted TEFL Reviews, ranked in order of customer satisfaction:

More on The TEFL Academy scam:

The TEFL Academy certification review.

19th May 2021 UPDATE:

The TEFL Academy has been exposed by The TEFL Watchdog, for falsely claiming to telephone inquiries from prospective students that The TEFL Academy is accredited by Ofqual. When further questioned on this false claim of Ofqual accreditation – in two separate telephone calls – both TEFL Academy sales reps put the phone down on The TEFL Watchdog.

It does need to be clarified that the TEFL Academy sales reps assumed that they were having a conversation with real prospective students, and had no idea that they were speaking with members of The TEFL Watchdog.

Further details can be read in the ‘X TEFL Watchdog’ section of Trusted TEFL Reviews:

Trusted TEFL Reviews would like to repeat that The TEFL Academy ( is not a fully accredited and internationally recognized TEFL certification program.

If you telephone The TEFL Academy and ask who accredits them, they will reply that they are accredited by Ofqual. This is a lie. Ofqual is a regulatory body and not an accreditation body.

If you press The TEFL Academy further on this bogus accreditation claim, they will likely put the phone down on you.

The TEFL Academy Level 5 TEFL certificates are only recognized within Ireland and the United Kingdom. Try using the certificate anywhere else, and you will likely be met with puzzled looks by school employers and government work visa officers.

25th April 2022 UPDATE:

A distraught customer sent Trusted TEFL Reviews a carbon copy of an email from The TEFL Academy, which explicitly states that TEFL Academy certificates are not recognized in Ireland. They also state that its certificates are not recognized in Malta.

Given that the TEFL Academy’s main office is in Dublin, Ireland, it puzzles us as to why its certificates are not recognized in the country in which it is headquartered.

Go figure! 🙂

The TEFL Academy Certification review.

This is a long, informative article that we recommend reading through from start to finish before purchasing a TEFL Academy/TTA ‘Level 5’ Online TEFL/TESOL course.

We will be looking at this program’s “accreditation” claims, how this program floods the internet with fake reviews, this program’s ‘Brand Ambassador’ program, and the dirty tricks that The TEFL Academy employs to inflict damage on its competitors.

The TEFL Academy certification review.

The TEFL Academy Certification Review Part I: Fake Reviews and the Spreading of Misinformation.

  1. The TEFL Academy (TTA) brought in a new Marketing Director, Thomas Gibbons, in 2020.
  2. Not long afterward, Trusted TEFL Reviews (TTR) began receiving a lot of unverified TTA reviews, supposedly written by students of TTA. None of the reviewers could prove course participation. TTR took the correct decision not to publish the reviews because there was no way of knowing if TTA graduates had written the review, or whether employees of TTA had.
  3. These reviews have since been published on other TEFL review websites, where there exists little or no verification process. Such websites include TrustPilot and
  4. Thomas Gibbons contacted TTR to ask if we could delete a (verified) TTA negative student review on TTR. When we said that we wouldn’t, Thomas began pressuring TTR for a face-to-face video call. TTR politely declined the request.
  5. In March of this year, an individual left a review for TTA on TTR. The review was flagged for containing commercial content, and we soon discovered that the individual works for The TEFL Academy as one of their ‘Brand Ambassadors’ – earning 20% of all TTA courses purchased through their website. When we took a look at their website, we saw a website set up to sell TTA courses and a website full of exaggerated promises and misleading facts – such as the claim that teachers can earn $100 per hour teaching English online, and the claim that teachers don’t need a college degree to teach in South Korea. This Brand Ambassador has since branched out – reviewing TEFL programs that they have zero first-hand knowledge or experience of and earning a 20% affiliate’s fee on each referral in the process.
  6. In response to our refusal to publish the aforementioned reviews, TTA decided to attack TTR. They have done this in two different ways:
  1. Through Black Hat SEO. As a direct result of our refusal to publish the aforementioned reviews, TTR has been receiving a large number of spam emails from x-rated websites. We know that this is because of TTA because we began receiving these emails exactly from the time just after we exposed their Brand Ambassador for submitting commercial content to TTR.
  2. TTA has begun spreading the lie, via one of their Brand Ambassador’s websites – the Brand Ambassador whose review was flagged for commercial content – that TTR is run by TEFL Online Pro. This is a blatant lie and is one more inaccuracy on their commercial website. With regards to this second point:

Ian Leahy from ESLinsider was the person who first started spreading the lie that TTR is run by TEFL Online Pro. ESLinsider has also claimed that TTR is run by OISE University of Toronto.

Ian is notorious within the TEFL world for spamming the internet with his conspiracy theories. Pick any Online TEFL program – Ian will have written some trash about it in the past.

This is likely the reason why Ian Leahy and his ESLinsider TEFL program have been banned from Facebook.

Ian Leahy from ESLinsider is also famous in the TEFL world for his scams and deception. Just Google ‘ESLinsider Scams Asia’ and you will discover a treasure trove of complaints and warnings.

This, btw, is the same (Ian Leahy) ESLinsider that has been exposed for making illegal purchases with the credit card details of some of his clients and being indirectly responsible for the imprisonment of Western teachers in China.

You can read all about Ian Leahy’s ESLinsider well-documented scam here:

It just makes us feel so frustrated when TEFL programs behave this way – spreading false rumors about TTR online – because we originally established TTR to be a genuine source of trusted TEFL reviews. Some TEFL programs are so used to being able to manipulate the review websites, where they have affiliate marketing agreements, that they don’t seem to know how to behave when they are faced with an authentic review website.

TTR has noticed a pattern in behavior: A TEFL program asks for a (verified) negative review to be deleted from TTR, TTR refuses to delete the review, and the TEFL program responds with attempts at reducing the credibility of TRR – thereby, hoping to reduce the credibility of the negative review.

A few TEFL programs have chosen this path: ESLinsider, Henry Harvin Education, ITTT TEFL, MyTEFL, TEFL Fullcircle, The TEFL Academy, World TESOL Academy.

TEFL Online Pro seems to be the favored target of these attacks, given that TEFL Online Pro is an award-winning program on TTR. OISE University of Toronto TEFL, CIEE TEFL, and Maximo Nivel TEFL have also been the targets of similar claims. What do all these programs have in common? They are the highest-rated Online TEFL TESOL programs on TTR.

It is rather coincidental that when some Online TEFL programs receive negative reviews on TTR, they claim that the site is biased against them. And it is rather coincidental that the top-rated Online TEFL programs are the ones that are claimed to be the owners of TTR.

TTR is an independently run Online TEFL/TESOL reviews website. We are not affiliated, in any way, with any of the Online TEFL/TESOL certification programs listed on this site.

If an Online TEFL/TESOL certification program has a high rating on TTR, it means that they are doing something right when it comes to the product it offers and how it treats its customers.

If an Online TEFL/TESOL certification program has a low rating on TTR, it means that they are doing something wrong when it comes to the product it offers and how it treats its customers.

The TEFL Academy Certification Review Part II: False Claims Regarding Accreditation and the Recognition of The TEFL Academy Courses.

TTA TEFL boldly claims that their Level 5 TEFL courses are Ofqual and TQUK accredited. They also claim that they are ‘Accreditation Partners’ with QUALIFI, DEAC, and AQC.

QUALIFI, DEAC, and AQC are organizations that simply confirm that a course meets certain criteria, whereby the student can be assured that they are receiving the education that is advertised by the course provider, i.e. they check if what TTA claims they are teaching in their courses is what TTA is providing to their customers. So whilst TTA claims that they are accredited by these organizations, they are not. At most, they should state that they are loosely regulated by them.

TTA also claims, on the TTA school website, that TTA is accredited by Ofqual and TQUK, and that a ‘Level 5’ TEFL certificate is the same as taking the 4-week, in-class CELTA certification course.

Ofqual and TQUK are often (incorrectly) claimed to accredit Online TEFL programs offering a ‘Level 5’ certificate. Some Level 5 programs even go as far as to claim that the Level 5 TEFL certificate is the same as the CELTA certificate. ‘Level 5’ refers to one of the levels on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. In other words, it’s a United Kingdom qualification that means very little to anyone outside of the UK. Furthermore, a qualification assessed at Level 5 doesn’t mean that it is “equivalent to the CELTA qualification”. Instead, it means that the level of education, knowledge, and skills required to complete the course is the same as that required to complete the CELTA, i.e., to be over 18, and to have a level of English and education that is equivalent to the average UK high school graduate.

Ofqual and TQUK are regulatory bodies, not accreditation bodies.

A TEFL program can be regulated by Ofqual and be accredited or fully accredited by an external accreditation body, but this is not always the case.

Several Ofqual-regulated TEFL programs blatantly lie to their customers by claiming that they are Ofqual accredited, or lie and claim that they are Ofqual regulated and fully accredited by another body that only regulates courses.

The TEFL Academy is a good example of this.

The TEFL Academy – – claims to be accredited by Ofqual, QUALIFI, and DEAC.

All three of these bodies are regulatory, not accreditation bodies. The TEFL Academy is neither accredited nor fully accredited. They are Unaccredited.

Ofqual and TQUK-regulated courses should provide you with a high level of TEFL training (although this is by no means guaranteed) but Ofqual and TQUK are by no means of the stretch of the imagination accreditation bodies.

The TEFL Academy, though, carries out its business practices in such a shady manner that we can see that they fail to follow the most basic of the strict guidelines that you would expect an Ofqual-regulated course should follow.

More information on Online TEFL/TESOL accreditation can be found in The Accreditation Guide:

Since the arrival of Thomas Gibbons, TTA has aggressively adopted the affiliate’s marketing model.

Like some other Online TEFL programs, such as MyTEFL, TTA also uses ShareASale to gain an advantage in the market.

If you Google search ‘The TEFL Academy reviews’ you will find unverified reviews on the reviews websites that we have already mentioned at the beginning of this article, and you will also find websites that have been created solely to sell TEFL courses through affiliate marketing.

There are two types of TTA affiliate marketing websites:

  1. A travel blogger writes articles about many different TEFL course providers and agrees to also write an article about TTA. This person has never been a TTA customer and, therefore, knows nothing about the TTA customer experience. This person writes an article about TTA, and included in the article is a promo code – where the reader can get a TTA course discount when they use the promo code at checkout. The blog owner receives a commission on each sale when their promo code is used.
  2. A TTA Brand Ambassador – a sales rep for TTA – creates a website in the guise of someone wanting to help people with useful teaching tips and other TEFL/Teaching-related information. They begin reviewing other TEFL programs and also some online teaching platforms. The sole purpose of the website is to get people to click on a link, where the ‘Brand Ambassador’ receives a “small commission” for recommending TTA courses. This small commission is 20% of the sale. This means that if you pay €448 for your TEFL Academy course, you are paying The TEFL Academy €358 and you are paying the Brand Ambassador a finder’s fee of €90.

The big problem with people writing about a product that they may or may not have taken when they are motivated by the money that they could be receiving from what they have written is that they tend to exaggerate what the product or service can do for you. We have witnessed this with posts and websites created for TTA courses – unrealistic claims, and outright lies, about the results of taking a TTA certification course.

TTA’s Brand Ambassadors have two roles:

  1. Sell TTA courses through affiliate links and receive a 20% commission on every sale.
  2. Write negative things about the TTA competition, and in doing so strengthen the brand awareness of TTA courses and earn a 20% commission if someone believes what has been written and decides to buy a TTA course through the Brand Ambassador’s website. The Brand Ambassador knows that by writing a critical post about a TTA competitor, it will show up in search results for that competitor. And TTA helps the post climb to the top of the search results by asking all of their affiliate partners to link to that particular post in their travel blogs. This is what is known as ‘link farming’. And this last point now leads us to the final part of this article – the part where we dish out some karmic justice.

Trusted TEFL Reviews recently published a TEFL Affiliate Marketing Scam article:

Part IV: The TEFL Academy vs. TEFL Online Pro.

Since The TEFL Academy insists on carrying out a prolonged attack on Trusted TEFL Reviews – claiming that we are owned by TEFL Online Pro – we thought it only fair to dish out a bit of karmic justice and briefly compare TTA with the TEFL program competitor whom they are currently spreading false information about online.

Having extensively looked through both The TEFL Academy and TEFL Online Pro school websites, we can conclude that:

  1. Both programs offer identical courses in terms of what is included in each course syllabus. This means that the information taught in TTA’s ‘Level 5’ 168-hour course is equal to the information taught in TEFL Online Pro’s 120-hour TEFL/TESOL course.
  2. Both programs appear to offer identical support services.
  3. The TEFL Academy is ‘Unaccredited/Regulated’ and TEFL Online Pro is ‘Fully Accredited, and internationally recognized’.
  4. TEFL Online Pro has won the Teachers’ Choice Award five years in a row – 2019 | 2020 | 2021 | 2022 | 2023.
  5. The TEFL Academy relies on affiliate marketing to win new customers. TEFL Online Pro doesn’t use affiliate marketing.
  6. TEFL Online Pro is a more affordable option than The TEFL Academy.

If we had to choose between The TEFL Academy and TEFL Online Pro, we would choose to take our international TEFL/TESOL certification course with

Visit the TEFL Online Pro school website

TEFL Online Pro reviews on Facebook

Read TEFL Online Pro verified trusted TEFL reviews

This ‘The TEFL Academy Certification Review’ article was brought to you by Mia Williams at Trusted TEFL Reviews.

Related article:

Read more The TEFL Academy reviews

New! Click here for the online TEFL/TESOL international certification course Teachers’ Choice Award winner. International Online TEFL/TESOL course certification at its best.

Verified Online TEFL/TESOL certification course program reviews, ranked in order of customer satisfaction: TEFL Course Directory

TEFL Accreditation Guide | 6 TEFL Red Flags | TTR Home | TEFL Course Special Offers

The 5 Best Online TEFL & TESOL certification courses in 2023 & 2024 -


  1. Thomas Gibbons, Marketing Director at The TEFL Academy.

    This message is in response to the third time today of you insisting on a telephone chat, despite me making it crystal clear from your first request that we prefer all communication with Online TEFL/TESOL certification course programs to be in written form. I do not wish you to encroach on my privacy. Besides, to maintain transparency and mutual professional relationships, we always prefer written communication.
    Trusted TEFL Reviews ( is an unbiased Online TEFL/TESOL certification course reviews website, and we welcome real customer reviews of all the (currently-active) 46 Online TEFL/TESOL certification course programs listed on Trusted TEFL Reviews.
    However, we reserve the right not to publish one-liner reviews, and we reserve the right not to publish spammy content. One example of “spammy content” is when we receive a bunch of 5-star reviews of one program, within a very short period of time – as we did with The TEFL Academy, last November.
    This may work for other review websites, but it doesn’t work with Trusted TEFL Reviews.
    Graduates of The TEFL Academy are welcome to leave a review of their Online TEFL/TESOL course experiences, and once verified they will be published.
    As you can see, a number of your graduates have already taken this path:

    Mia Williams
    Trusted TEFL Reviews

    1. The TEFL academy is a total rip off scam! I’m totally pissed! The course is setup in a way to set you up for failure. All they care about is getting your money! This BS fake course needs to be shut down!

      1. Leah.

        Thanks for adding your comment.

        One of the main issues with The TEFL Academy (TTA) is that it flat out lies about its accreditation status.
        It claims to be accredited. It isn’t.

        The other main issue with The TEFL Academy (TTA) is that it has lots of affiliate marketers selling its courses online and earning sizable sales commissions. Most of them hype up the benefits of taking a TEFL Academy course. A few of them take aim at business competitors of The TEFL Academy in the process.

        The narrative conveyed by The TEFL Academy and its affiliate marketers is completely out of sync with reality.

        I’m sorry to read that you had a very negative experience with The TEFL Academy.

        Hopefully, you can find some solace in the fact that a lot of traffic comes to this article and its comments and that your experience will make others think twice before purchasing a TTA TEFL course.

        The vast majority of people reading this article and subsequent comments will need to take a 120-Hour TEFL/TESOL course in order to teach English online or overseas.

        Take a look at the TEFL Directory for guidance:

        The top-rated schools in the directory are top-rated for a legitimate reason.

        Mia Williams | Trusted TEFL Reviews

  2. I recently purchased a Level 5 TEFL Course with TEFL Academy and I am most definitely NOT happy with what I have received so far from this company. I chose them because of their customer reviews, most of which I am 99.9% certain are written by the company. It’s the only reason I can think of why TEFL Academy have so many positive reviews when the course is overpriced and not what was promised. I will continue with the course but I am not learning a whole lot so far. Customer service is non-existent too.

    1. Totally agree! The course is confusing and I consider myself pretty smart but they set this course up in a way that confuses. It’s funny because they teach you to teach your students in a certain way not to overwhelm etc.. and they teach this course the total opposite. They contradict all the way through. The Assignments are crazy! They don’t give enough time. It’s all setup just so they get money!

  3. Hello Trusted TEFL Reviews,

    I’m a recruiter of foreign English teachers for Shanghai-based language schools, here in China.
    We employ approx. 3,000 teachers every new semester to teach in the Shanghai area and because we pay some of the highest annual salaries we are one of the more popular agencies for teachers wanting to teach in China.

    I can honestly write that after reading this article that our company will no longer be accepting applications from teachers with a TEFL Academy teaching certificate.
    I’m also not going to include the name of the agency whom I work for because I wouldn’t want a critical article to be written about us either.
    My advice for anyone thinking about taking a TEFL Academy course would be to avoid and choose another program.
    I have spread the word and I know of at least five other big agencies that have followed my lead.
    I can also confirm that we do accept job applications from teachers who have graduated from the TEFL Online Pro TEFL TESOL program.


  4. In the email exchange with the Tefl Academy, before I enrolled and paid, I was told that I wouldn’t be required to have a college degree to teach in South Korea. Now that I have completed the course and begun my job search, I have discovered that it is impossible to teach in South Korea without a college degree. TEFL academy lied to me just so I would take their course.

  5. I’m afraid I also had an expensive lesson on scamming 101 with my TEFL Academy Ireland course certificate.

    The course was billed as being the cream of Online TEFL courses and I totally bought into it. I was partly convinced by The TEFL Academy office staff and partly convinced by all the wonderful 5-star reviews I read about the program online. Reviews which I now can only assume are written by an energetic TEFL Academy member of staff.

    When I began applying for teaching online jobs I never got past the initial interview process because my TEFL academy certificate wasn’t recognized as an accredited document.

    The schools were actually quite nice about it and warned me that they have to give the same bad news to between 10 – 20 other TEFL academy graduates each week.

    I’m going to contact my bank to request a chargeback.

    I was expecting to receive a TEFL certificate from an accredited school. Instead, all I received was a fancy-looking piece of paper with the word “Level 5 TEFL” on it. It means absolutely nothing if you can’t actually use the qualification.

    I’m so embarrassed that I fell for a scam like this because I did my due diligence and I consider myself tech-savvy and generally a highly knowledgeable person.

    What this company is doing is borderline criminal.

    I’m taking the advice of Trusted TEFL Reviews and I’m going to enroll in the certification course instead. I asked some of the schools that turned me down with my TEFL Academy certificate if they would accept one from TEFL Online Pro, which is accredited by, and they confirmed that they would.

    The irony is that the TEFL Online Pro course is cheaper than the TEFL Academy one, and you can actually use the TEFL Online Pro certificate to teach online and internationally.

    The TEFL Academy certificate, on the other hand, is only recognized in Ireland and Great Britain.

  6. Signed up in Tefl Academy’s Level 5 TESOL certification course online based entirely on the promises of work for when I completed the course. Tefl Academy gave me their word I would not find it difficult getting a job with the certification. Took the course, got my certificate. Got no help from Tefl Academy with finding a job, despite their promise they would help. Have found a job teaching online. Have also had my job application rejected a lot. Can’t recommend this TESOL program. Would recommend other programs.

  7. I took the Tefl academy online Tesol course in 2020. The course is not bad but the customer service is awful. The charges are not clear, they don’t tell you that after the course is expired the fees go up. Contacted the manager and she said “We don’t have to make you aware of the charges” They are doing this for the money only. They hide costs and don’t take responsibility for it, disgusting.

  8. Carolina,

    I’m sorry to read that you had a negative experience with The TEFL Academy’s customer service.
    I can’t write that I’m all that surprised though.

    Trusted TEFL Reviews has received a significant amount of poor reviews of The TEFL Academy since the company brought in a new director last year.
    Also, their claims that only their Level 5 TEFL certificate is good enough for TEFL employment is just flat-out ridiculous. If it were true, none of the other TEFL schools would be in business.

    The TEFL Academy attempts to increase its market share by trashing other TEFL schools, but I think the karma is finally catching up with them – I can see that The TEFL Academy is now offering 60% discounts off their courses. That is not a good sign, and likely signals significantly lower interest in their courses.

    All the best!

    Mia Williams

  9. Sounds like the TEFL Academy is the Fyre Festival of 2021.
    So thankful i didn’t go ahead and pay for one of their courses.
    Dodged a bullet there!

  10. Jade,

    Thank you for your comment.

    One thing I just noticed on the website is they are running a 10-year anniversary discount – the 60% courses discount which I previously referred to. It just doesn’t make sense that the current The TEFL Academy management team has been around for 10 years, given that they only took over from the former management team in early 2020.

    Again, we need to stress that The TEFL Academy courses – – are only recognized within the UK. Despite their claims, they are NOT ACCREDITED. If you plan on teaching online or abroad, outside of Great Britain and N. Ireland, a The TEFL Academy certificate just won’t be fully accepted in all schools.

    More info about this here:

    The more we peel back the onion layers of this company, the more deceit we discover. Yikes!

    Mia Williams

  11. I also noticed that 10-year Birthday 60% Off courses discount.
    It’s still showing on the TTA website, only now they are calling it an ‘Olympics Discount’ LOL.
    I recently interviewed a teaching applicant who took their Level 5 course.
    The worried look on his face when I told him his TTA certificate wouldn’t be valid for the work visa here in China still keeps me up at night. The poor guy had to start over with a different TEFL company after that and $350 out of pocket.
    I’ve also noticed how TTA employs people to write fandom blogposts about their courses.
    Hopefully, more and more people are now getting wise to the TTA TEFL scam.
    All the best to you Mia and Trusted TEFL Reviews. Keep up the excellent work!

  12. The TEFL Academy is one big scam.
    After reading this warning, I contacted the school in China I was planning on teaching for.
    I just wanted to know if the certificate from this company would be accepted by them.
    They got back to me a few days later and warned me not to take the course because they couldn’t guarantee that the certificate would be accepted for the Chinese working visa.
    I wrote to TEFL Academy to ask for a refund, but nobody returned my email.
    Tried calling their office too, with the same result.
    My last attempt to contact them was via the messaging box on their website, but it just doesn’t work. They make you wait for ever and you just give up waiting for someone to answer or you just manually send them a message (which never gets answered.)
    After a bit of a panic and a call to my bank, I managed to win a chargeback and get back my TEFL Academy course fee money which I’d paid. In full. I told the bank that I’d been scammed and that I paid for a service that I never received. False marketing basically.
    The bank looked through my documents and agreed with me.
    Don’t ever do any business with this company!
    They are scammers.

  13. I studied on TTA’s TEFL course earlier in the year.
    Here are a few points worth noting of my experience with this company.


    1. I liked how the course was presented. It’s easy to follow and understandable.
    2. The course is in British English. I appreciated this.
    3. The TEFL certificate was delivered swiftly and it looks great.


    1. All TTA feedback consisted of generic replies. When you ask for something they create a ticket for you, but it feels like a bot is responding each time.
    2. The course is expensive for what you get.
    3. I now see that TTA doesn’t issue accredited certificates. the TEFL certificate is just backed up by regulatory bodies.

    I wouldn’t recommend this company to take your TEFL course through simply because of the negative points that counter any positives of this course.

    1. Ryan,

      Thank you for your comment.

      Yes, you are correct in writing that The TEFL Academy (TTA) is not accredited.
      This is despite the fact that they purposefully deceive people by claiming that the opposite is true.

      Trusted TEFL Reviews has been receiving a lot of emails of late, written by worried TTA students and teachers.

      Some teachers with TEFL Academy certificates have complained that they were turned down in job interviews because they hadn’t an accredited TEFL certificate.

      This is one of the reasons why Trusted TEFL Reviews warns against taking a TEFL course with The TEFL Academy.

      Mia Williams

  14. Hi Mia, I first became suspicious of this company when I was in the seventh module of the course. The video in that module was just such poor quality. When I then found out the TEFL Academy isn’t fully accredited and that I had made a poor choice of TEFL course I contacted my bank and requested a chargeback. I needed some solid evidence that the product or service was faulty so I actually contacted QUALIFI UK; the company The TEFL Academy claims accredits them. Simply put, I just asked them what their professional relationship with The TEFL Academy is. They responded really quickly, which I wasn’t expecting, and stated in the email that they regulate TEFL Academy’s courses. Because they didn’t confirm that they accredit TEFL Academy’s courses I was able to forward the contents of the email to my bank and a full chargeback refund now looks very promising. I just can’t believe I fell for it because I’m usually so good when it comes to avoiding scams. I’m also really relieved because it means I won’t have wasted my money on a worthless course. I just regret spending so much time on it though. Thanks for doing what you do!

  15. The TEFL Academy was on my avoid list too once I’d read that they are not accredited. If they can lie about their accreditation, what else are they capable of lying about was my thinking.

  16. My issue with this company is that it wasn’t possible to use the certificate outside of teaching online.
    For teaching online, I was able to use the certificate.
    When I was applying for jobs abroad, about 50%of the time the person interviewing me hadn’t heard of The TEFL Academy and said they would consider me for the job if I took an accredited TEFL course.
    I put two and two together and realised The TEFL Academy isn’t accredited.
    If you ask me, I think this company writes a lot of the 5 star reviews themselves that I’ve seen on, etc. Very dodgy.
    I will continue teaching online for the immediate future, but will then need to take another TEFL course when I want to teach abroad.
    Would recommend avoiding The TEFL Academy for these reasons.
    I am a TEFL teacher, so I have nothing to benefit from writing this review, other than to warn others not to fall for the same trap.

  17. Cristin.

    Thanks for adding your comment.

    Yes, despite all the claims made by The TEFL Academy (TTA) and all the affiliate link shills that promote their courses online, The TEFL Academy is not accredited. They claim to be accredited by QUALIFI, but they are only regulated by them. The TEFL Academy is not accredited.

    In addition to this, The TEFL Academy boldly claims that their Level 5 TEFL course is “the same level as the following qualifications: a diploma of higher education (DipHE), a foundation degree and the CELTA and Trinity CertTESOL qualifications.”. This is an outright lie.

    We also see through the fake reviews posted on behalf of The TEFL Academy – on, Trust Pilot, Hello Peter, and other websites that have little to no reviews verification process.

    It has also been suggested that The TEFL Academy lies about its charity contributions.
    This really wouldn’t surprise me because they lie about so many other aspects of their company.

    I was recently asked why The TEFL Academy (TTA) has mostly positive reviews on websites like but has a lot of negative reviews on Trusted TEFL Reviews. The answer is simple: Trusted TEFL Reviews has a verification process – meaning that we only publish reviews that have been written by people that have taken the course. is an online reviews website that has no verification process and is often a dumping ground for fake reviews. I just checked the TEFL Academy’s listing on and saw that they had published three 5-star reviews in one hour, and all three reviews look like they were written by the same person. Very suspect indeed.

    Good luck with your online teaching, and I hope that you find a reputable TEFL course for your in-person TEFL teaching career plans.

    Mia Williams

  18. And what you are saying is an outright lie. The Cambridge level 5 certificate is regulated ( and accredited) by OFQUAL and recognized internationally. Their level 5 certificate is ALSO regulated by OFQUAL and recognized internationally. The only difference is that the Celta is more prestigious because it is from CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY.

  19. Have a look at the Celta certificate and the TEFL Academy certificate . They both have the OFQUAL logo on them. It is the same with Premier TEFL and London Teacher Training College certificates.

  20. Neau.

    Thanks for all of your comments.

    I responded to your other (similar) comment here:

    Yes, The TEFL Academy’s TEFL courses are regulated by Ofqual.

    Yes, CELTA and DELTA courses are regulated by Ofqual.

    The TEFL Academy isn’t accredited by Ofqual.

    CELTA and DELTA courses are not accredited by Ofqual.

    The TEFL Academy’s courses are accredited by no one.

    CELTA and DELTA courses are fully accredited by the University of Cambridge – Cambridge Assessment English.

    Being recognized by Ofqual only means that the level of study that you do on the course has been registered at level 5. Ofqual level 5 is a sign that the course provider has had the content of the course checked by an Ofqual regulated examination board to make sure that it is at the right level.

    Again, sorry to be the bearer of this bad news for you.

    I do detect a lot of emotion in your comments.

    Perhaps you work as an affiliate marketer for The TEFL Academy and this news has hit your bottom line?
    If so, you need to read this post:

    Or, it may be that you are a TEFL Academy graduate and you are now worried that you have wasted a lot of your hard-earned money on an unaccredited TEFL certification course.

    If the latter is the case, I sympathize with you.

    In this case, I would recommend accepting your loss and striving forward by taking a TEFL course that is fully accredited and will be recognized worldwide.

    If so, you need to read this post:

    The TEFL Academy can employ as many affiliate marketers as it wants to, to promote and sell its courses for them online. And it can claim what it wants to on its school website.

    At the end of the day, though, the facts are facts and the king has no clothes with regards to TEFL Academy’s accreditation claims.

    Mia Williams.

  21. You said : however , and bearing in mind that there is no single accreditation body for online TEFL or TESOL certification courses , Trusted TEFL reviews considers courses regulated by OFQUAL and TQUK as accredited.
    On the Trinity College website , it is mentioned that their Tesol diploma is regulated by OFQUAL. What is the point of being regulated and accredited ( as you said) by OFQUAL if OFQUAL is worthless ????

  22. Please read my previous comment, Philippe Neau.

    The TEFL Academy is regulated by Ofqual, but is not accredited by any organization.

    Trinity College’s TESOL certificate is regulated by Ofqual, and accredited by the University of Cambridge – Cambridge Assessment English.

    That is the fundamental, clear difference.

    If you are a TEFL affiliate marketer for The TEFL Academy, i.e., if you directly or indirectly work for and/or with The TEFL Academy, you should read this:

    If you are a worried TEFL Academy (TTA) customer, you should learn more about which accreditation organizations are credible:

    The TEFL Academy will tell you otherwise, but they will be lying – as they do on their school website about their accreditation, etc.

    Mia Williams.

  23. I would just like to add here, for anyone interested, that The TEFL Academy (TTA) is fully aware of the existence of this article.

    Instead of coming on here and setting the record straight, with hard facts, they have, instead, chosen to attack Trusted TEFL Reviews, via their affiliate marketing network.

    If The TEFL Academy had nothing to hide then surely they would jump at the chance of answering to the allegations raised in this article and subsequent comments.

    They haven’t.

    Mia Williams | Trusted TEFL Reviews

  24. No. You said yourself that you consider courses regulated by OFQUAL as ACCREDITED.
    So , their courses are ACCREDITED
    You cannot say their courses are regulated by Ofqual but not accredited. It does not make any sense.

    1. This comment makes me angry because it looks like it was written by one of TTA’s online shills.
      I fell for the BS I read online about TTA by another one of these shills.
      If the certificate is accredited, why is it that I was turned down in a job interview because the person interviewing me hadn’t heard of TTA and didn’t recognise them as an accredited TEFL program? Eh?
      Avoid TTA.
      The program doesn’t live up to any of the promises made.

  25. Philippe Neau.

    Courses are either Unaccredited, Accredited, or Fully Accredited.

    The TEFL Academy’s courses are Unaccredited because they are only regulated.

    They are not accredited or fully accredited by any external accreditation body.

    Some Ofqual courses are accredited or fully accredited.

    The TEFL Academy’s courses are neither.

    It used to be assumed that Ofqual or TQUK regulated courses were thoroughly regulated – upholding high standards – and so it was, therefore, assumed that an Ofqual or TQUK regulated course, with no credible body accrediting it (as is the case with The TEFL Academy) could technically be considered Accredited.

    This opinion has changed because some Ofqual or TQUK regulated course programs, such as The TEFL Academy, have demonstrated time and again that they fail to follow better business practices.

    You should have no issue using the TEFL Academy’s certificate if you are wanting to teach in the UK or Ireland. You will also likely, in some cases, be able to use it for teaching English online and overseas.

    When applying to international schools and when applying for similarly high-paying teaching jobs, though, we very much doubt that those employers will fall for the false accreditation claims pushed by The TEFL Academy and their affiliate marketing minions.

    If you are an affiliate marketer, Phillipe Neau, working for or with The TEFL Academy:

    If you are a TEFL student that is worried about their TEFL Academy course purchase, we advise looking at the TEFL Directory for alternative TEFL/TESOL course options:

    Mia Williams.

  26. Trusted TEFL Reviews would like to repeat that The TEFL Academy (TTA) is fully aware of the existence of this article.

    Thomas Gibbons, the Managing Director at The TEFL Academy, has written to Trusted TEFL Reviews to ask that the article and comments be deleted. Twice.

    TTA has been desperately trying to either get it deleted or reduce its credibility.

    Instead of transparently responding to the credible accusations, they have chosen, instead, to attack Trusted TEFL Reviews – via their TEFL affiliate marketing network.

    If The TEFL Academy has nothing to hide, and if the accusations presented in this article and subsequent comments are partially or fully untrue, it would be understandable that TTA would want to respond and set the record straight.

    So far, almost two years after the publication of this article, they haven’t.

    Mia Williams | Trusted TEFL Reviews

  27. Dear Trusted TEFL Reviews,

    We thought it was time that we too would add our two cents to this article.

    The TEFL Academy (TTA) used to be one of the more reputable Online TEFL companies.
    That was until they decided to change their upper management and brought in a new Marketing Director: Thomas Gibbons.

    Thomas assumed his new role at The TEFL Academy in early 2020.

    Within a few weeks of Thomas at the helm, The TEFL Academy began an aggressive affiliate marketing program – offering TTA graduates and random bloggers the chance to earn 20% referral commission sales, promoting the TEFL Academy’s courses online.

    Of course, the 20% is added to the original cost of the course – meaning that students enrolling via an affiliate marketer indirectly pay the affiliate marketer the 20% course referral.

    We were approached by one of these affiliate marketers, but we politely pointed out that reputable (Fully accredited) TEFL programs don’t run affiliate link advertising.

    Their response was to attack our program so that their website would rank high when searching for keywords for our company.

    We have issued a rebuttal statement on our school’s website blog:

    We can confirm what has been stated about The TEFL Academy being regulated, but not accredited by AQC, DEAC, QUALIFI, Ofqual.

    The TEFL Academy isn’t accredited by any organization.

    The TEFL Academy has since claimed that ACTEFLC is also fake, a scam, etc.

    Frankly, this is hardly surprising behavior by the current management of The TEFL Academy.

    The TEFL Academy, with Thomas Gibbons at its helm, and with aggressive affiliate marketers hyping up their TEFL courses and trashing reputable TEFL programs such as TEFL Online Pro, is now widely regarded as being a TEFL program for TEFL students to stay well away from.

    TEFL Online Pro has received a number of TEFL course applications from TEFL students who were enrolled in a TEFL Academy course, but who then canceled their TTA course because of the marketing hype (perpetuated by TTA’s affiliate marketers and misrepresented on TTA’s school website) didn’t represent the reality of the course and its benefits.

    Content published online by The TEFL Academy (or by one of their affiliate marketers) about their TEFL program competitors and/or about TEFL accreditation organizations is not a reliable source of information.

    The TEFL Academy frankly gives the Online TEFL/TESOL training industry a bad name.

    Our hope, at TEFL Online Pro, is that Thomas Gibbons leaves his post at The TEFL Academy and that a more professional manager takes the helm at what was once a reputable Online TEFL program.

    Thank you for reading this comment.

    Kind regards,

    Paul Murphy | Operations Manager | TEFL Online Pro

    Teachers’ Choice Award winner, 2019 | 2020 | 2021 Fully Accredited TEFL Course Provider

  28. Horrible experience, all the critical reviews are 100% true. This organization is a joke. The courses are useless and provide zero benefit for how real teaching is done in the classroom. I have 5 years of experience teaching students of all levels in various countries around the world so know what I am taking about.
    DO NOT give this scam company any of your time or money!! There are plenty of good organizations out there, just not this one…

  29. Have to agree with RobertMorris’ comment.
    TEFL Academy is a scam company.
    It charges too much for its courses and the courses are not accredited.
    The result of taking one of its courses is fighting for the leftover job offerings when the better ones go to teachers with fully accredited TEFL certificates.
    TEFL Academy is good at one thing only: online marketing.

    Avoid this company like you would an oncoming bus.

  30. Freya.

    Thanks for your comment.

    Last year, a TTA TEFL student canceled her course because of the exact concerns that you mention in your comment.

    She was advised to contact QUALIFI – an organization that TTA TEFL claims to be accredited by – and QUALIFI responded by confirming that they only regulate (they don’t accredit) the courses offered by TTA TEFL.

    The student successfully won a chargeback for the full tuition paid to TTA TEFL.

    I was privy to the content of the email sent to the student from QUALIFI, and privy to the content of an email sent to the student from TTA TEFL.

    In the email, TTA TEFL made the false claim that it is accredited by QUALIFI and it also added that its courses are recognized in Europe but not in Ireland or Malta.

    This seems really strange because The TEFL Academy (TTA) is based and registered in Dublin, Ireland.

    Mia Williams – Trusted TEFL Reviews

  31. I wasn’t impressed at all with my TTA course.
    The customer service was slow and elusive.
    Now I am learning more and more thanks to that TTA certificates are not even fully accredited and I will be contacting my bank to apply for a chargeback refund.
    I can’t use the certificate for the teaching jobs I want, so it’s pointless applying for jobs with it.
    Sure, I could find a low-paid crappy job with the certificate but I don’t want a low-paid crappy job.
    I also agree with the comments about TTA faking its own customer reviews.
    Google “The TEFL Academy reviews” and you see all the obviously faked reviews.
    They are easy to tell because they review the course as if it were a miracle cure for cancer.
    TTA Fake reviews that convinced me to take the course + a TTA TEFL certificate that isn’t fully accredited = €450. It isn’t even worth it when it’s 60% off.
    TTA also charge extra for the fake certificate they send you.
    I was charged €120 for my certificate.
    If I can at least convince one person not to take the course then that will be a blessing in itself.
    I can see, though, that I’m not an isolated case here.

  32. There was a flyer for this company in the Student Union hallway. It looked legit so I went ahead and purchased their Level 5 course. As soon as I opened up the course, I realised I’d made a massive mistake choosing this program. The content looked very basic and there was a grammar error on the first page! According to the terms and conditions, I was eligible for a refund. I contacted TTA and after a week they got back to me, replying that they had decided not to give me a refund. When I wrote back asking why not, I never got a reply back. Two months later, I did get a full refund. This was only because I complained to my bank and they managed to get my money returned to me. The reviews for TTA on Facebook, Go Abroad, Google, Go Overseas, and Trustpilot MUST mostly be fake. Or, those people were paid for writing their reviews. One word describes my TTA experience: Yikes!

  33. Definitely agree that the program has many fake reviews.
    I looked today on and it has about 10 5 star reviews in the past 24 hours.
    Something very fishy is going on there.

    I thought the course was ok.
    It was a bit boring because there are no videos and only text to read. It also had too many exterior links.
    I paid for a course so why do I need to look at other websites for information?

    Overall, I can say I learned some useful things from the course.
    It wasn’t excellent and it wasn’t terrible.
    My rating of the course is somewhere in the middle. 2.5 out of 5.

  34. Wow, they have such terrible reviews. I was thinking about buying the course but it doesn’t seem worth it now. I was a bit skeptical at first, but then had a look for myself and it all fits. Why do they allow this company to continue operating when it is a clear scam? Is there a better business bureau in Ireland? Shouldn’t someone report them?

  35. Trusted TEFL Reviews recently had an extremely bizarre conversation exchange with TTA The TEFL Academy.

    It had its Prague lawyer contact us, threatening to take us to court if we wouldn’t delete all mention of TTA The TEFL Academy from

    It appeared obvious to us that TTA The TEFL Academy has a history of this type of bullying to have bad reviews about its program deleted.

    We will not be deleting any reviews.
    All reviews are verified reviews, written by real people.

    We will consider taking TTA The TEFL Academy off the Scams section when it stops lying about its accreditation status.

    It is not accredited and it has been caught in the act of writing its own 5-Star customer reviews.

    Mia Williams – Trusted TEFL Reviews

  36. Over-priced, aggressively marketed, lacking accreditation, mediocre TEFL program that claims it does more than its competitors’ courses. The TEFL Academy’s courses are average and are not backed up by any credible accreditation company. The fact The TEFL Academy accepts it as OK to lie about being DEAC accredited should be enough detail to instinctively swipe left.

  37. I just had a nasty surprise when I was applying for a teaching English job through one of the main recruiters in Japan.
    They told me that my TEFL Academy certificate isn’t recognized in Japan.
    When I asked why, they replied that it isn’t a fully accredited program.
    It’s only regulated in the UK and not really accredited.
    Of course, I got crickets when I complained to the TEFL Academy and I haven’t received any response from them since.
    Looks like I wasted a lot of money on a piece of paper.
    I’m absolutely pissed!

  38. TheTeflAcademyGraduate2023.

    Thanks for adding your comment.

    That’s terrible news and I’m so sorry for your situation.

    Yes, TTA The TEFL Academy is not a Fully Accredited program.

    Our advice is to contact your bank and ask for a return of your money.

    Related content:

    TTA The TEFL Academy:

    Fake Accreditation Warning:

    Mia Williams – Trusted TEFL Reviews

  39. Was almost convinced to purchase the course because of all the glowing reviews. But then a friend of mine pointed out that TEFL Academy has many reviews written on the same day and only on specific websites. On their Google listing the last review was like from a year ago. I became even more suspicious when I read the FAQs – specifically the ‘is the course accredited?’ answer: ‘The Level 3 and Level 5 versions of our TEFL course are regulated by Ofqual (UK government department) and awarded by Qualifi, a UK government-recognised awarding body. The Level 3 and Level 5 versions of our TEFL course are DEAC-approved as meeting the criteria for Approved Quality Curriculum (AQC) status. The DEAC is a U.S. Department of Education National Accreditor.’ So, yeah, it’s not accredited. It is true that TEFL Academy’s certificates are only regulated. Needless to say, I didn’t sign up for the program’s TEFL course.

Leave a Reply