TEFL v. TESL v. TESOL
So you want to teach English as a language? Awesome. Teaching English, abroad or at home, as a language opens many doors. It can give you the chance to travel and experience different cultures, earn some extra money and/or experience, and looks great on a resume.
As one of the hardest languages to learn (with 44 sounds and only 26 letters + with English being non-phonetic, you bet your knees, it’shard), as a potential teacher, you’re probably wondering what kind of teaching qualification you need in order to get the position you desire: TEFL, TESL, or TESOL?
Thankfully, all three of these certificates give you qualification needed to teach English to students. The easy part is deciding what you plan to do with it: travel or not?
TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language): This certificate allows you to seek an English teaching job in another country with non-native speakers. So if you want to see China, Japan, France, or Brazil, this is the certificate for you. The TEFL is highly recognizable so no need to worry about that. I suggest you make sure you get at least 120-hours of training as that is the most expected standard for schools and language institutions. (side-note: I will post more information on how to get this certificate later and what employers are looking for later)
TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language): This certificate is designed for teachers who wish to teach to foreign students living in an English-native speaking country (i.e. USA, Canada, or England). You will not be able to use this abroad. Positions you can seek include working as a language support teacher at public/private schools or as an instructor at a private language school or as a private tutor. (side-note: if this is something that interests you, unfortunately I cannot help as I am only familiar with the TEFL certificate. That said, please check out this site as it will give you the basic information needed: http://study.com/esl_teacher_requirements.html)
TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of another Language): This certificate is newer and provides the most ease as to whether you wish to teach overseas or at home. That said, this certificate covers a wider range of topics and does not study them in-depth as compared to the other certificates mentioned above. Here are a few links to TESOL certificate providers:
This is just an overview of the 3 certificates. Please do your own research in order to choose the right certificate for you!