TEFL Testimonials 2
Don't take our word. Listen to what Vantage alumni have to say.
Teaching English and Chinese
In my previous position, I was a teacher of both English and Mandarin. The teaching techniques I learned here—although taught within an English context—will be great when I teach Chinese as well.
I actually was not the first English/Chinese teacher trained by Vantage. They showed me how the techniques I was learned could be applied to teaching any language.
Vantage TEFL Thailand was a fantastic course. I become 100% confident and I’m ready for any classroom…and any language.
Building a Better Teacher
I hold a degree in child development and about 10 years teaching experience—mostly in the USA. So I was pretty skeptical that this course would have much use for me.
Given my pessimistic view, I was surprised at how challenging Vantage’s course would be. For starters, the instructor was well-versed in what he was teaching and his insight and ideas that were a great guide to developing better techniques for good teaching.
Our observed teacher practices at the college were really what made this program shine. The instructor was there to observe, offering excellent feedback. He was great at giving valuable contributions, using constructive criticisms in a way so as to inspire and not offend. He also always left us with a challenge for our net teaching practice.
I would highly recommend this TESOL certification school. You will certainly get your money’s worth. Vantage receives my top marks.
A Great Training Team
Our class size was relatively small so we received a high level of personal instruction all along the way.
The main instructor, Chris, has an extensive background in teaching English and in developing teaching materials and even course curriculums. He is an accomplished language teacher focused on your learning to do what he does.
He really goes out of his way to see how you’re developing into a professional teacher. In addition, he has a great sense of humor which makes the class engaging, interesting, and most of all—fun.
The Value of Practice Teaching
I certainly had many rewarding experiences during the practicum sessions. Without the 6 hours of observed teaching we were required to do, I would have found it far more difficult to becoming a confident teacher.
While I was more than nervous at my first session, by the sixth lesson. I felt far more confident, relaxed and knew what to expect from the class and from myself. The feedback from Vantage and my fellow trainees were, productive, and invaluable. The Thai students were fantastic, very polite and a joy to teach.
An MD Learns to Teach English
What I found both theory and methodologies of teaching languages were much more evidence-based than I originally thought. But during the observed practice teaching sessions of my training, I got to try all my newly learned techniques out on non-English speaking students.
This is where art met science. I got a ton of great feedback which I incorporated into my next teaching session. I surprisingly found this to be the part I liked best.
I found this course to be a very satisfying experience. The trainers are incredibly friendly and eager to help you succeed. They are quite knowledgeable, but have a levity which facilitates your learning.
Practice Made Perfect
This course taught me a lot about theory and, but it’s the observed teaching practices—where theory meets the reality of the classroom—that’s the heart and soul of the course. It was here that I really learned to teach. After each observed teaching practice, I was given extensive feedback from the trainers that really helped me realize where I was strong and challenged me in other areas which still needed more development.
Finding the Right TEFL Program
I began researching a TEFL course to take.As a non-native English speaker and with no previous teaching experience, I was worried and felt overwhelmed.
However, based on online reviews, I found that Vantage TEFL was the right place to take the course...
The Lead trainer, Chris, is a “teacher extraordinaire.” He is funny, considerate, engaging while being thorough and serious. He motivated us through each stage of our training. He made the curriculum easy to understand…probably because he teaches from two decades of teaching experience.
When I contacted Vantage, I got an immediate response, and all the information I needed and everything was done in a professional way.
I chose Vantage in the end because it was accredited by two universities.
A Superb Plan B
My first option was full though and other institutes took a while to get back to me, so on a whim I decided to study at Vantage... lucky me.
This place deserves the glowing reviews. Instructors are not only very knowledgeable, they are walking models of what it means to be a great teacher.
Developing Teaching Skills
The observed teaching practice was extremely helpful and this is where I really developed the skills I needed to learn how to teach.
I found myself improving every lesson—both through my self-evaluations and the excellent feedback provided from the course instructors.
Observed Teaching Practices
I had to do six observed teaching practices—each one on a different language topic—so I had to develop six separate lesson plans. I got a lot of guidance on the plan and I typically would go through a couple of iterations until the trainers were satisfied. At least at the beginning. At the end I got really good a formulating a new plan and in a lot less time.
Teaching French and English
While I initially took my TEFL to become certified to teach English, I was pleasantly surprised that the key ESA methodology (Engage-Study-Activate) they taught could also used to teach French.
This was what we used in all our practice teaching methods and this method stresses flexibility and the use of elicitation and stress student engagement in the first part of the class.
A Teaching Pro Takes TEFL
As a veteran teacher—I have worked in the US education system for two decades—I have work with many different models of teaching methods.
The ESA (Engage, Study, and Activate) approach which Vantage implements is very student friendly. Lesson plans were easy to create and could be adapted to the specific needs of my class.
A Corporate Lawyer turns to Teaching
I wanted to bring my background in risk management and legal qualifications into corporate English training.
I realized there was a real need for non-native speakers who needed a better understanding and grasp of legal issues that arose when their company was working internationally.
This was my key motivation to go back and learn how the methodologies and techniques to present language topics. My future students will need to address legal issues in English as they market products and operate in a global market.
Sceptical at First…
I worked for a large diversified financial services company for the past decade, but in my heart, I wanted to teach. I was scared to leave my good and secure job and move to Thailand to complete my TEFL course with Bangkok-based Vantage.
My first day on course I was relieved and they had an excellent Lead Trainer and the best fellow trainees that I could have ever asked for. The course was very well structured with teaching theories, methodologies, and teaching approaches
Then we actually had to teach in front of real students. The feedback I got really helped me. I’m now super confident. I can now design a lesson plan, worksheets, flashcards, games, and presentations.
Vantage has launched my teaching career and developed me to be a professional English teacher. I’m truly grateful for the opportunity to have worked with amazing people and build lifelong relationships with this programme.
Learning about my Advantages
Vantage made me realize that, as a non-native speaker, I had advantages. They told me that the process of learning a second language—something native English speakers rarely do—was very helpful in motivating students in second language acquisition.
I actually found I become a role model for my Thai students. Many times after class and they came up and told me that they didn’t really believe they could ever speak English like their American teachers. The fact that I’ve mastered English gave them hope and they were encouraged to keep trying.
What I learned was how to teach a language. While my background as a product trainer is really helpful—I feel comfortable presenting to just about anyone and I know how to work a room. But I realized there are some key differences between presenting a product and getting someone to successfully acquire a new language.
At Vantage, we learned about the different teaching mythologies and then put the ESA method into practice into our observed teaching practices. You really learn to be an English teacher as you first develop a guided lesson plan and then execute it in front of a live classroom of non-English speaking students.
Learning to Teach in 4 Weeks
However, the heart of the program—at least in terms of me becoming a professional teacher—are the observed teaching practices. What I learned in Vantage’s classes, I now had to apply to a real classroom of non-English speaking students.
The feedback I got after each class from Vantage’s trainers was invaluable and really contributed to the development of my confidence as a teacher.
The faculty and staff are a wealth of knowledge in helping students understand the many job opportunities available in Thailand and in Southeast Asia.
World Class Trainers
Vantage trainers have decades of experience. They also experts in testing and know how to use language proficiency systems to test students and to source teaching material appropriate to the level of the students were teaching.
No other TEFL program covers this key area.
I’m Ready to Teach
The instructors also make you aware of all the additional information that you will need to be a teacher, which is not covered in the course book, through a supplemental book that they’ve clearly taken many hours to build based on their teaching experience.
A Common Misconception
Being a native English speaker you often have people telling you how easy it is to find a job teaching English in Thailand. It's a common misconception to assume that anyone who can speak English has the skills to teach the language.
The Vantage Extras…
There are some additional things Vantage did which I found very important, too. There was a high level of patience who answered all my emails, solving all my concerns. They were willing to help me with accommodation on my strict budget, giving me different options. They helped me arrange bus and train connections. They even let my 5 years old daughter to come with me to the school for the first week.
Teachers are Born in the Classroom
I did the Combined Course where you do the book’s 20 units online. I then joined Vantage for about 2 weeks doing the practicum. I had to create six lessons plans, develop the courses materials and then teach six classes. It was a great—and fun—experience. While I learned from the online course, it was really in front of really students where I learn to teach. The coaches at Vantage were fantastic and helpful each step of the way.
I already had experience and even success as a teacher. However, I felt I could be even better in the classroom if I learned the best teaching practices for language teaching.
After doing a lot of research, I chose Vantage as it has American university certification at a Master’s degree level.
Formulating Successful Lesson Plans
Where I had previously been a trainer, I had little in the way of formal lesson planning.
At Vantage,I first learned how to formulate great lesson plans that would be successful in the classroom.
I chose to study with Vantage TEFL due to their unique offering of the combined course which allowed me to complete the practice teaching component during 2 weeks of annual leave from my existing unrelated employment.
, I was extremely happy at the opportunity to put my lesson plans into practice and see the real life application of my online learning.
100% Ready to Teach
Taking this TEFL certification course has been one of the best decision I’ve ever made! I have met so many wonderful people and classmates. The class itself is intensive—there’s a lot of material to get through—but they make it so interesting that’s it’s over before you know it.
If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to be a professional English teacher, this is the place to do it!
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