We previously shared 5 suggestions on where to teach with an online, rather than classroom-based TEFL certificate. This is a topic we get a lot of questions about here at Bridge. Understandably, people want to know if they will be limited in where they can get a teaching job if they choose a more affordable, convenient online TEFL course over a 4-week, intensive in-person TEFL course, such as the CELTA or IDELT.
The truth is, there are certain limits to where you can teach with online TEFL training, but those limits are few. Entire regions, such as Asia and Latin America, widely accept online certificates, so getting certified this way leads to many options when it comes to getting hired as a teacher.
Here are five more countries where online TEFL training is welcomed:
Most people think of China first when thinking about where they can teach with an online TEFL certificate. The reason for that is because China has prioritized English learning for its citizens, creating a boom in the need for qualified (preferably native English speaking) teachers. Yet, other countries in Asia, such as Japan, also accept online TEFL certificates and offer good salaries and benefits for teachers. Historically, in Japan, more emphasis is put on a teacher’s university degree than his or her TEFL certificate. Therefore, if you hold a bachelor’s degree or higher, especially in a field like English or education, you’ll stand out more than other applicants. While onsite TEFL certification is always considered a plus in the eyes of employers, having at least a 120-hour online TEFL certification + a degree will open plenty of doors to teaching jobs.
Though Guatemala is a country with many attractive teaching cities, it’s hard to imagine a place much more beautiful than La Antigua. This brightly-colored, ridiculously charming colonial city is a UNESCO World Heritage site and an often overlooked teaching destination in Latin America. You can get hired at a language school here with an online TEFL certificate, allowing you to live in Guatemala and immerse yourself in the culture as you explore the cobblestone streets, indigenous markets, and Spanish-Baroque architecture. Near Antigua, teachers can spend weekends visiting live volcanoes and Mayan ruins just outside the city. Interested? Check out this New York Times guide to Antigua, A Candy-Colored City Framed by Volcanoes.
If you prefer to venture further south, go all the way to South America, where online TEFL certificates are accepted in countries such as Argentina. Often referred to as the “Paris of South America,” capital city Buenos Aires is known its cosmopolitan culture, which can be observed from sites like the beautiful, lively Plaza de Mayo, which is surrounded by Spanish-European architecture. The country is also known for being the birthplace of Tango, which is evident in a neighborhood like La Boca, which is known as much for this famous style of dance as much as for its street arts and crafts.
Like China and the rest of Asia, schools in Vietnam will usually hire teachers who were TEFL certified online, though unlike China, where 40-hour certificates are the minimum, Vietnamese schools prefer to hire teachers who have taken TEFL courses of at least 120 hours. Keep in mind that like most of Asia, you’ll likely need a bachelor’s degree, in addition to TEFL certification, to get hired in Vietnam, but your degree can be in any subject. So whether you’re drawn to the chaotic energy of Ho Chi Minh City or Hanoi, or to a quieter location somewhere along Vietnam’s lengthy coast, an online TEFL certificate can make it happen.
Those who prefer a teaching destination that’s more off-the-beaten-path, and who aren’t put off by teaching in one of the coldest climates in the world, might consider Russia. Picturesque St. Petersburg and capital city Moscow are full of opportunities to teach children at language schools or to teach Business English to professionals at corporations. While some jobs may require classroom-based TEFL certification, many are also happy to accept online training, especially if you have a related degree and a bit of experience.