Way back in 2008 I did my Trinity Cert. TESOL in Barcelona with OxfordTefl as a way to pursue my ambitious travel itinerary. I’d always wanted to teach but never thought about TEFL before. After the course I worked, travelled and discovered that I really loved teaching English. This was something I wanted to make a career out of.
I knew that the best way to advance my career was to do the Dip. At the time I was working in various schools in Scotland and Ireland but found it difficult to get a permanent position. Come the winter months, jobs were scarce. I thought that having the diploma would give me an edge…and it did. In 2011, I told my DoS that I was planning to do the Dip, the school were really enthusiastic about it and even offered to fund it. I was the only teacher in the school doing the course at the time which gave me a huge advantage and resulted in me getting a core teaching position in the school.
3 months after completing the course, the Assistant Director of Studies position became available at work. I knew that having a Dip/Delta was becoming more of a requirement rather than a desired skill in management positions, so my certificate winging its way through the post couldn’t have come at a better time. I applied for and got the job and I truly believe having the Trinity Dip. TESOL was instrumental in that.
But it’s not just a piece of paper.
I learnt so much on the course. I think the thing that sets the Dip. apart from the DELTA is the pronunciation module. I was not confident at all using phonetics in class and to be honest, got into a bit of a panic when I saw the little pronunciation sections that appeared in course books. Having guest tutors like Adrian Underhill giving you advice and face-to- face workshops with Duncan and Cat in Barcelona, massively boosted my knowledge and my confidence. I even ran a pronunciation workshop at my school after the course! Never in a million years did I think I’d be giving advice on teaching pronunciation.
It wasn’t just the pronunciation element of the course that was useful though. The online modules were intense but extremely organised and useful. I got a lot of support online from fellow diploma trainees, Nicola Meldrum (course director) and various guest trainers. I don’t think I would have been motivated or organized enough to complete the workload without the help and encouragement I received.
My confidence in myself as a teacher also grew tremendously. I knew I could teach but it’s reassuring to have someone experienced observe you and tell you that you’re doing well and of course how you could further improve your lessons.
Where am I now?
In the past 6 months I’ve been working with fellow “dipper” Aoife McLoughlin on a website: ELT-Connect. We post weekly lesson plans and blog posts and aim to get teachers from around the world connecting with each other. If I hadn’t done the Trinity Dip. TESOL, I definitely wouldn’t have had the confidence to put my own work and ideas out there. I feel now that I have the relative knowledge and experience to back up what I’m writing.
If you’re planning to stick around in the TEFL world and are thinking of taking the next step, I would strongly advise you to do this course. It will give you the tools and the confidence you need to advance your career. Go for it!
Cheryl Malanek completed the Trinity Dip TESOL course at Oxford TEFL in 2012.
If you would like to learn more about the Trinity Dip. TESOL, visit the course page or contact us. You can also apply for this course by clicking here. If you are not sure if the Trinity dip. TESOL course is for you, take our quiz.