TEFL - Teaching English as a Foreign Language

TESL - Teaching English as a Second Language

TESOL - Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

ELT - English Language Teaching


If you are interested in doing a TEFL course, have a look at my TEFL course reviews.

TEFL refers to the teaching of English to students whose native language is not English. This usually occurs in the students' own country, either in the standard school curriculum, in private language schools or with private lessons. Teachers of TEFL may be either native or non-native English speakers. As the students are usually not in an English speaking environment, their exposure to the language is limited.

TESL refers to the teaching of English to students whose native language is not English, but are resident in an English speaking country. They therefore have much more exposure to the language.

TESOL is the most commonly used term in the United States for all kinds of English language teaching. It's also the name of the professional teachers' organisation (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc).

ELT is the generic British term used instead of TESOL.

Teaching qualifications for ELT/TESOL include the Trinity College of London, Certificate in TESOL (CertTESOL) and the University of Cambridge CELTA.

For a more detailed explanation of the differences between EFL, ESL and ESOL, look here.

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