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Re: TEFL Training Coursesâ€“Accreditation and Cert
It would be good if things were this simple... but unfortunately they're not.
There is quite simply no international, independent accreditation organisation for TEFL courses. That's the bottom line.
Those "accreditation" organisations you mention all have issues associated with them.
Cambridge, for example, whilst providing a very good course (CELTA) do not actual accredit courses. Unless of course you mean they accredit their own franchise schools.
The same with Trinity.
Of the others you mention, some are organisations which accredit any course offered to them (i.e. they're not specialised in TEFL) or, worse still, schools pay them per student to offer accreditation to their courses.
Some don't accredit at all, a school just pays a certain fee per year to put their stamp on their website.
Others, worst of all in my opinion, were set up as supposedly independent organisations but were, in fact, set up by the schools which they were accrediting.
The situation with accreditation is appalling. We, as a course provider, would dearly love to see a truly independent, international organisation who could accredit our courses.
We've looked into this subject in depth but the unfortunate fact of the matter is that we have yet to find a decent accreidtation agency which is actually legitimate, international and respected.
Re: TEFL Training Coursesâ€“Accreditation and Cert (views: 5045)Online (North America) - Mon, 22 Mar 2010
Posted by MGHines
Pete:You are correct that there is no international accreditation agency. It is that simple. But with regards to traditional on-site training, there are some accreditation agencies that are more "recognized" or "approved" by schools/employers than others which is really what teachers are concerned with. Regardless and as you suggested, it would be nice to have an impartial, internationally recognized accreditation agency.As I mentioned and as you pointed out:"..courses such Trinity TESOL and Cambridge ESOL rely on self-accreditation"You are correct that they only approve centers to provide their training course and that is self-accreditation. All that aside, I believe no-one will argue that they are the most universally recognized and accepted by schools/employers. The problem is that they are beyond most teachers reach because of the cost and time commitment required. CELTA requires upwards of 6 weeks full-time to complete and there are very few people in the world nowadays with the luxury to go unemployed for 6 weeks.Regarding other traditional on-site training courses, all accreditation is regional meaning that to be truly 'accredited', it most often must be offered by a university that is accredited by the associations for that region. This is especially true in the US where there is no real national accreditation scheme even for universities. There is only the accepted regional accreditation which are not governmental but are rather private organization that universities pay a fee to belong to and, as a member, must meet the criteria/standards set by the organization.Regarding online or distance training courses, there is nothing official, regional, national, governmental or otherwise. My point to teachers focusing on some sort of accreditation was to look for accreditation that is more widely "recognized" or "accepted" with the caveat that there is nothing â€œofficialâ€ so they should check with their schools to verify acceptance.In other areas of education/learning, there are accreditation organizations that are accepted or recognized regardless of whether they are governmental or â€œofficialâ€ which is a loose term when dealing with international standards. Similar to the regional accreditation agencies for US universities, the Council of International Schools (COIS) is not a governmental organization but is rather a private organization that accepts members for a fee who must first meet (and maintain) their criteria and standards. Regardless, COIS is generally recognized and accepted universally to provide standards by which international schools govern themselves which is what it needed in the TEFL training arena. Having to pay a fee for membership shouldnâ€™t disqualify an organization try to set universal standards but impartiality is needed. No organization should be beholden to a company or educational provider/institute.On a side note: As an educational service provider employing about 100 teachers here in Thailand, we accept ICAL ;-)