Have you got what it takes?
What are potential TEFL employers looking for when they scrutinize your application form, your CV / resume, your qualifications, your experience, or when they meet with you in a formal or informal interview situation? How can you demonstrate that you ‘have what it takes’?
Taking part in a CTEFL course provides you with the perfect opportunity to take stock of your current skills, knowledge and qualities, develop and further enhance them, and demonstrate your self-awareness and adaptability.
Perhaps, the most important piece of advice would be: “Be true to yourself. Be as authentic and original as possible.” Doesn’t that sound a bit like a contradiction in terms? Well, maybe a little but if you can find a way to combine the two, you might be on to a winner. For example, an essential characteristic of a TEFL teacher is their ability to communicate effectively (with students, employers and colleagues). Whatever your natural personality (you might be quiet or loud, introvert or extrovert, confident or unconfident), you can develop unique ways to utilize that characteristic and communicate effectively. A CTEFL training course provides a great opportunity to “try out” new strategies and approaches and take personal control of the professional development process.
A good starting point is to complete an inventory of how you (and others) rate your current strengths and weaknesses in relation to the desired characteristics of an effective TEFL teacher. (The Vial Lingua CTEFL program includes a study unit devoted to this). You might choose to work with a “buddy” when engaging in the process. The key is to identify how you can consolidate the strengths, develop strategies to combat the weaknesses, while also identifying original approaches that complement your authentic personality. You then need to develop and work on an action plan. At a future interview, you will be in a position to share your progress, thus demonstrating a range of essential characteristics you have developed along the way: pedagogical awareness, subject knowledge, communication skills, self-awareness, organization skills, tenacity, professionalism, confidence, commitment, creativity, patience, clarity of purpose and adaptability.
Why not share your personal experiences on this forum?