Talking about OTTI with Joanne Gillespie

If you're looking for a stimulating, targeted and flexible way to continue your professional development in a teaching career, the IH Online Teacher Training Institute might have the right course for you.

A new term of courses are starting soon, so be sure to browse through the possible options to further your learning. Before you do that, however, take 2 minutes to read through our interview with Joanne Gillespie, a Director of Studies at a language teaching organisation, who enjoys the interactive side of online learning through informative forum discussions.

First of all, please tell us which courses you studied with the Online Teacher Training Institute.

I took the IH Director of Studies Course and IH Teacher Trainer Certificate.

Why did you decide to take the courses with International House’s OTTI?

International House has an excellent reputation for teacher training. I couldn't attend a face-to-face course because of work, and the online option was the best solution.

How did you find the process of learning and being taught online?

Stimulating. I've done online courses before, and have always enjoyed the interaction with peers and tutors. There is flexibility in studying online. You can read more than once, watch videos again, study at midnight if that suits you. Then the forum discussions help to deepen your learning as you share ideas with peers from all over the world.

How did you find the course content?

Very targeted and immediately useful. It's practical as well as theoretical and I came out with tools I had created, which I have already used.

How did you feel you benefitted from the experience?

Absolutely. I had just been offered a position as DoS, on the strength of my DELTA, and felt I needed the DoS Skills course to start in the right way. The position requires me to train teachers, so the Trainer course was the next logical step. It has already helped. The first training session I ran was a success, thanks to course input.

Would you recommend the OTTI to a friend or colleague? 

Again, absolutely, and I already have. The content is very specifically targeted, and very relevant. The courses proceed at a pace which is just right if you're working. A couple of hours a day at the most. The assignments are designed to help you to put into practice what you learned during the week. Tutor support is quick, and feedback is constructive.

Joanne got her Trinity Cert. TESOL in 1995. She has taught in New Zealand, the Czech Republic, and Italy. She has the IH CYLT and the Cambridge Delta. She has been working as a primary teacher in an international school, but has just become DoS at a local LTO.