How is Your Qualifications & Experience Suitable for This Job?
Feb 3, 2018 Career Development 914 Views
Applying for a qualified teacher position that you seen advertised does not mean you will be appointed to the role. When is a teacher not a teacher? When you do not have the specific qualifications and past experience in the subject area that the employer is looking for. This information is based on my personal experience and input from others.
As a qualified/certified high school teacher in the UK, native English speaker, BA, MA holder and years of teaching experience I am suitable for various teacher roles. Business & Economics specialist, although I have also taught English first language in England to 11-18 year old pupils.
Attending an interview for an English teacher job in the Middle East with one of the best employers is an achievement for many people. They have looked at your resume/cover letter and matched skills, personal characteristics, traits and your command of the English language.
Difference between a language teacher of English and a high school teacher:
English language teacher is an instructor/teacher of English as a second language. Their class will have students from 3-18 years, as well as adults. Primary aim is to teach or enhance the English language ability of students that do not speak English as their first language.
Typical qualifications: Bachelor degree/master degree, CELTA, TEFL, TESOL, BA or MA in English; Language/literature, linguistics or education, teach adults DELTA.
Tefl: Classroom or online certification training. Completion can be full time class attendance on an intensive 4 week course. CELT has more rigor and perceived value in the Middle East.
Qualified kindergarten/elementary/high school teachers teach a specific subject at high school or at a primary school to an age group. Learners are taught topics from a specific subject, such as history with a primary aim that students learn about the subject being taught. Students are already fluent or native speakers of the language of instruction.
Typical qualifications: BA, BSC, BEd. MA, PGDE, PGCE. PHD
Postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) 11 months full time attendance at university following an undergraduate degree, with 7 months at 2 school placements.
Language and subject teachers have work based skills similarities from:
- Lesson planning following a set curriculum
- Record attendance, grades, and write student report cards
- Behaviour management strategies
- Marking & grading coursework, tests, homework
- Encourage students to participate using appropriate teaching & learning strategies
- Provide appropriate written & oral feedback in workbooks and in lessons
- Develop interesting and engaging worksheets
- Use of teaching aids, technology and smartboard
As teachers, we all use an assortment of teaching strategies, learning methods and instructional techniques to delivery effective lessons.
Teaching English as a second language to students is the crucial difference, nowhere near the same as a business teacher at a high school in an English speaking country.
Language school learning:
Pronunciation: Students begin to better pronounce words after first learning and then practice in class or at home. Repetition of words & sentences is used to remember, and for better fluency of speech.
Vocabulary: A person may not be able to speak, write, listen or read even one word of English when they first arrive in class. Instructors first begin with basic introduction lessons of names, greetings and places of interest. Use of teacher lead instruction to explain, lead repetition of words and provide clear pronunciation is used. Students then practice in pairs.
Sentencing: String a few words together to form a sentence could take weeks of study with part time instruction. A learner has grasped same basic words and with teachers guidance will be able to write and speak in English.
Phrases and verbs: Students begin learning to phrase sentences and the use of verbs when they have a basic grasp of English. Constant teacher explanation of different meanings of verbs appropriate to use is crucial.
Idioms: Takes time for beginners & intermediate learners to identify/learn, such as it was “easy as pie” to ride me bicycle to class today.
Methods of teaching are clearly different in relation to mathematics or business lessons at a high school and first language English classes at a state school in the USA or England.
Further a language teacher:
Teacher speaks and explains
Repeats a word or sentence, widely used instructional method
Student and teacher together speak a word or sentence
Class pronounces the word on their own
Use of audio recording or listening to a passage on a television programme
TEFL certified teachers can show a certificate that they have been trained and passed a course to teach English as a second language. They have been taught how to teach, explain concepts, grammar and idioms instruction.
No, I did not get the job. The interview panel of 4 explained to me that students in your classes in England can already understand every word you say, meaning, write, read, listen and speak in English fluently. An educator to teach beginners English involves using different skills of what you have been using to teach business classes at a school.
Moral of the story is that when an employer advertises for a qualified teacher to teach English at a language school they are looking for a TEFL, CELT or TESOL holder.