TEFL internships are a great way to gain experience in the field of teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL). They allow you to combine experiential learning with life changing travel and are offered in numerous countries around the world. You might say they are an opportunity not to be missed!
Read on to find out about the benefits of TEFL internships and learn where you can find them.
TEFL Internships: The Fastest Way to Start Teaching Abroad
A TEFL internship is a perfect opportunity to gain experience teaching English as a foreign language by doing actual teaching. Forget having to look for TEFL courses with teaching practice, with a TEFL internship you get to do the real thing!
TEFL internships can be found all over the world, and they vary in length and type. A number of TEFL course providers offer them and they usually come with a TEFL course included. This means that you don’t even have to worry about getting a TEFL qualification before you apply.
Even if your internship doesn’t come with a TEFL course, it can still be a great way to find a job after completing your TEFL certification. There are plenty of placements out there for teachers who are already qualified.
Plus, if you’ve taken a TEFL course already there is nothing stopping you from applying to a TEFL internship that includes a TEFL course. You could think of it as a small price to pay for guaranteed work, or an opportunity to brush up on your existing knowledge with further training.
All you have to do is select your desired program, apply to it, get accepted and then pay the deposit. You’ll be guided through the whole process of getting abroad and before you know it you’ll be on the plane.
The hard part of finding a TEFL job is taken care of for you. It’s almost like being given a new career on a plate!
A shortcut to a TEFL job
When looking for TEFL jobs, there are many different routes you can take. You could apply directly to a language school, go through a recruiter or apply to different online English teaching jobs. However, you may have noticed it can be quite hard to find a suitable teaching job and get hired. This is particularly true of teaching English abroad where you often have very limited knowledge of the place or of the companies offering the positions.
Furthermore, if you take the recruiter or language school route they’ll usually ask for experienced teachers. This can put you in a difficult spot if you’re just starting out.
If only there was another solution I hear you say… The good news is that there is, and it comes in the form of a TEFL internship!
What are the benefits of a TEFL internship?
If you want to do a teaching internship abroad, there is not much that can rival a TEFL internship.
They are a great way to get your foot in the door as an English teacher. They guarantee you work and present an opportunity to learn more about English teaching and living abroad. This will help you to see if you want to teach English long-term and if it is the right career for you.
They also offer some other benefits that aren’t always available with other types of jobs. Some of the standout benefits of doing a TEFL internship include:
- The chance to live abroad and experience a new culture.
- Gaining hands-on English teaching experience in a foreign country. This is ideal if you plan on a career teaching abroad.
- No previous teaching experience is necessary.
- You can choose if you wish to do a short or long term internship. This could be over the school holidays or up to and over 6 months.
- Receiving good quality training and learning new skills. A TEFL certification is usually included.
- Learning about different methods and approaches to teaching, as well as how to create and use materials. Training on classroom management and how to deal with difficult situations.
- Receiving support on everything from help with your visa to settling into teaching.
- Getting to know other teachers and professionals in the industry.
- Making friends from all over the world.
- Earning money.
- Building your resume.
Not only that, you’ll also help children or adults improve their English skills. And it’s not an exaggeration to say that you can help change your student’s lives. Your teaching can have a huge impact. The great thing with a TEFL internship is that you can also have fun whilst you’re doing it!
Are TEFL internships paid?
Some are unpaid, some offer a small stipend (or living allowance), while others can pay upwards of $2,000 per month. Depending upon where you are in the world, this sort of money can go a long way.
TEFL interns usually work in exchange for accommodation and/or a stipend. Not to be confused with a salary, a stipend is a fixed amount of money that should cover your living costs and basic expenses. The amount of stipend paid is usually less than that of a traditional salary, but the benefits come in the form of reduced expenses elsewhere such as free accommodation. This means that with a paid TEFL internship you should be able to save money in other areas and may actually come out on top!
However, it is important to do your research before committing, as not all TEFL internships are created equally. Some will pay you a lot more money but may not include accommodation or be in an expensive country. Others may pay a small amount of money but be in a country with comparatively low living costs. This can have a big impact on how far your money goes.
If money isn’t a concern and you want to do something charitable, there are always volunteer TEFL teaching internships where you can start teaching English abroad.
A number of TEFL course providers offer volunteer English teaching internships, and you can also find similar placements with organizations like Pod Volunteer.
Things to consider when looking for a TEFL internship
When looking for a TEFL internship, you should always do your research and make sure you choose wisely. After all, with a teaching internship you are committing your time and money so you need to find one that is right for you. With that in mind it is worth considering the following:
Where is the TEFL internship?
Make sure it is in a country that you’re prepared to live and spend time in. The last thing you want to do is choose a program in a location you’re uncomfortable with. You should also think about the future in terms of where you want to live and work. For example, if you want to work in a country where you can get the highest salary for teaching English abroad, it would make sense to try and do your internship there.
Is it a paid TEFL internship?
Some TEFL teaching internships are unpaid, which can be an issue if you don’t have any money saved. You’ll therefore need to make sure you can support yourself abroad during your chosen internship.
How many hours does the internship require of you?
If it requires long hours this can be challenging, especially if you have other commitments outside of work. You should always check what is expected of you before signing on the dotted lime. Fortunately, most TEFL internships should allow you plenty of time to explore your new surroundings!
How long is the TEFL internship?
Some short-term internships may not offer a great deal of teaching experience. This can be frustrating for those who are primarily looking to gain as much teaching experience as possible as part of their internship. However, most TEFL internships last between 4-12 months so this shouldn’t be an issue.
How much does a TEFL internship cost?
A TEFL internship can cost anywhere between $0-2,500.
What are the requirements for doing a TEFL internship?
Requirements to do a TEFL internship tend to be quite simple and include fluency in the English language and a desire to teach English. Most TEFL course providers who offer the internships will also want you to have completed a 120 hour TEFL course before starting work. However, given that the majority of internship programs include this anyway it shouldn’t be a concern.
Some TEFL internships will require you to have a degree, and this is dependent on the visa and government regulations of that country. Not all countries require a degree, so doing a TEFL internship without a degree is still feasible.
Where to find TEFL internships in 2022?
TEFL internships are offered by a number of TEFL course providers and language schools around the world. The best way to find one in 2022 is through a reputable TEFL course provider. That way you’ll receive high quality support and always have a point of contact if you have any questions.
Here is where you can find TEFL internships:
MyTEFL offer internships in Thailand, Argentina, South Africa, Mexico, Vietnam.
The TEFL Academy offer internships in Argentina, China, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan and India.
Premier TEFL offer internships across three continents:
Asia: Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, Vietnam, South Korea.
Europe: Romania, Germany, Poland, Spain.
South America: Argentina, Colombia.
i-to-i TEFL offer internships in Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Vietnam.
TEFL UK offer internships in Argentina, China, Costa Rica, South Korea, Madagascar, Poland and Vietnam.
See TEFL offer a TEFL internship in Thailand.
TEFL Trainer offers multiple unpaid internships in Spain.
If you’re after the highest paid TEFL internship, the Japan internship from i-to-i TEFL pays up to $2,300 per month. For an unforgettable experience in South America look no further than the Argentina internship with MyTEFL.
Conclusion: Is a TEFL internship right for you?
A TEFL internship is a great way to intern abroad, experience another culture, make lifelong friends, learn a new language and gain English teaching experience. By opting for a TEFL internship you take your TEFL certification experience to the next level. You get guaranteed work and have the chance to go on the trip of a lifetime. You’ll also receive great support along the way, so you know that someone has always got your back whilst you’re abroad.
So, if you want to broaden your horizons, learn more about the world and get into English teaching, we can’t recommend a TEFL internship enough!