Teaching English as a foreign language could allow you to pursue a career that sees you travel the world, make friends across continents and help your students achieve their life goals. It is a thoroughly rewarding and life enhancing experience.

If you would like to develop a successful career in teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL) then becoming CELTA qualified with International House is the first step. The CELTA is an intensive, initial TEFL qualification designed for people with little or no previous English language teaching experience or training.

The CELTA is certified by Cambridge English Language Assessment and as a result is highly regarded internationally and recognised by Ofqual at level 5 on the Qualifications and Credit Framework.

Taking a qualification such as the CELTA is essential if you want to pursue a career in TEFL, the course is very practical and will give you the confidence and skills you need to teach English to adults effectively.

Did you know?

The CELTA as it is known today was actually born from an initial teacher training course called the IH Certificate that International House first ran in 1962. This course rapidly set the standard for teacher qualifications in TEFL, with thousands of teachers worldwide becoming IH-trainees and teachers.

Now approximately 4,000 teachers take a CELTA with IH every year.

Who takes the CELTA?

You might be a graduate who wants their first job to be teaching overseas or someone who has worked in a different career for several decades and is looking for a change. Some people use the CELTA as a way to travel the world; others teach students in their home country.

English teachers from all over the world take the CELTA, the entry requirement is that you are Proficient English language user (between CEFR Level C1 and C2 or above) and educated to the standard required for entry into higher education.

Do I need to speak the language of the country that I would like to teach in?

No, you will learn how to teach English without using the students’ native language. This means you can teach students of different nationalities in the same class and teach in countries all over the world. (Though we would always encourage teachers to learn a language themselves, it will give you a very important insight into the challenges your students face).

How long is the course?

You can either take the course intensively over 4 weeks or part time over 12 weeks. Some centres also offer a blended version with some input delivered online.

What does the CELTA involve?

Standing up in front of a class for the first time is a daunting prospect, so you need to make sure you have the skills you need to teach effectively. The CELTA course has the following core components to prepare you for the classroom.

  1. The course is 120 hours in total and you will receive a lot of input from your tutors on teaching methodology, lesson planning, language analysis and language skills.
  2. You’ll have the opportunity to observe experienced teachers in a real life language classroom situation and learn about the different skills and techniques they use.
  3. You will teach real language students throughout your course and by the end you will have had 6 hours of observed and assessed teaching practice. This practical experience is invaluable when you start your first job.
  4. As well as being assessed in the classroom, you will complete four written assignments based on the input you receive. There is no final exam, you are assessed throughout the course; so you can learn and improve as your progress.

Every course is moderated by an external assessor, appointed by Cambridge English, so you will receive a certificate from Cambridge English, part of the University of Cambridge.

Schools offering this course


Prague, Czech Republic

BKC - IH Moscow

Moscow, Russia

CLIC IH Malaga

Málaga, Spain

CLIC IH Sevilla

Sevilla, Spain

IH Aberdeen

Aberdeen, United Kingdom

IH Almaty

Almaty, Kazakhstan

IH Auckland

Auckland, New Zealand