Free English Lessons at ELA-Edinburgh in June

Would you be interested in receiving free English lessons from enthusiastic teachers in top class facilities? Normally it would be too good to be true but at ELA-Edinburgh this June it is our reality!

Those of you who regularly read our blog will know that ELA-Edinburgh is putting on a Trinity CertTESOL course from June 5th-30th. This teacher training course will give our trainees a great qualification as they start their teaching careers.  An important part of the course is teaching practice; our trainees will do at least 6 hours of teaching during their course. This is where you and your friends can benefit!

We are offering free lessons for students who will be taught by our trainee teachers. Every weekday from June 6th -June 29th you could benefit from two hours of free lessons! This is an offer that we can only run during CertTESOL courses so don’t miss out! We only have a certain number of places available so don’t wait too long before applying.

All levels of English are welcome, when you apply we will send you a level test to complete and find the right class for you. All you need to do is pay a £30 deposit, which you will get right back if you attend all the classes! Plus, as a bonus, you will get an hours’ free lesson with a highly experienced teacher at the end of your course!

This is a unique opportunity to get lessons in one of Edinburgh’s premier private language academy and benefit from our fantastic teaching resources. As the saying goes, don’t look a gift horse in the mouth!

For more information, or to ask for a placement test, email phone 0131 2266182 or come and see us at 71 George Street!

CertTESOL course at ELA-Edinburgh June 5th-30th

ELA-Edinburgh is excited to announce that our Trinity CertTESOL course will run from June 5th-30th this year. You only have to read our blog from September 29th to know what benefits a CertTESOL qualification can bring to an aspiring teacher. To put it in a nutshell, this certificate is respected around the world and will open doors as you begin your ELT career. With CertTESOL in your pocket you can find jobs in places you want to be and work for schools that are well-run.



Having signed up for the course, what are you expected to do to earn your teaching certificate? It’s worth pointing out that every CertTESOL course follows the same strict guidelines laid down by Trinity. This helps to ensure that the qualification is respected wherever you want to work. What follows is an outline to what the course actually involves.

A pre-course task and interview. This is mainly aimed at evaluating your knowledge of English grammar but don’t worry, you’re not expected to be an expert! The interview gives the course tutor a chance to make sure the course is right for you and, if you’re a non-native speaker, assess your level of English. 

A total of 130 timetabled hours and 70 non-timetabled hours. This includes 6 hours of your teaching, observed and assessed, plus 4 guided hours observation of experienced teachers. You will also receive 90 hours of supervised input.

4 or 5 written assignments. These are in the form of a journal and are designed to help you reflect on the elements of the course you have just studied. As there is no test at the end of the course these take on added importance.

Teaching Practise. This unit is by far the biggest on the course, taking up 74 of the 130 scheduled hours. It covers a wide range of issues including: methodology, teaching skills, guided observation, textbook and materials evaluation as well as methods of testing.

Language Awareness and Skills. The second unit tests trainees’ knowledge of grammar, lexis and phonology and how to teach these to students.

Learner Profile. Unit 3 aims to teach you how to analyse students’ needs, design courses and teach one-one classes. It draws on the knowledge you gained in the first two units.

Materials Assignment. In this unit you will learn to produce, adapt and evaluate the materials that you use in lessons. You then use the materials you designed in a lesson observed by a Trinity moderator.

Unknown Language. The final unit examines methods and approaches suitable for beginners of a language, while avoiding use of the learners’ mother tongue.  

End of course party. Traditional and well deserved!

At ELA-Edinburgh we enhance this comprehensive course of learning by providing you with fantastic, modern classrooms with interactive smart boards and a wide range of textbooks. Though you will be led by our experienced and friendly course tutors, the whole ELA staff is on hand to help. 

You can find more information on the CertTESOL syllabus here and visit our website for more information. Alternatively, can contact us at

Trinity’s certTESOL might be your dream ticket

Here at ELA we’re getting very excited about the Trinity CertTESOL courses that we’ll be running in the near future:

  • 30/1/17 -24/2/17
  • 5/6/17- 30/6/17
  • 30/10/17-24/11/17




Maybe …..You’re looking to launch a career in language teaching,

..…You want to work while on a gap year

……You already have teaching experience but need a qualification

……You’re a non-native English speaker who needs to have their skills recognised

..OR.. you just want a career change

In all these cases Trinity CertTESOL can help. It’s one of the main qualifications in English language teaching and recognised world-wide by schools, governments, NGOs as well as multi-nationals. Doing our course means you can move into the next phase of our career with confidence or move abroad knowing you’ll work for a reputable school.


With certTESOL you can avoid this……

....and great facilities!

….and enjoy great facilities!









So why choose certTESOL to take the next reason? Here’s how it compares to the CELTA:

  • You’ll teach both adults AND kids, not just adults
  • You’ll practise 1-1 classes, something the CELTA ignores
  • Experience producing your own materials, a vital skill
  • certTESOL is generally cheaper than CELTA, currently it’s £925 at ELA

Course Content:

The certTESOL is made up of 5 units and involves 130 timetabled hours per trainee, ten of which you will be teaching. You will need to pass all internal assignments to gain the certificate. But don’t worry; you’ll have two highly qualified teacher trainers to support you every step of the way.

At ELA your day will normally be:

0900-1215- teaching sessions with your trainers

1215-1300 Lunch

1300-1800 Lesson planning, teaching and observations.

Nearly everyone who has done a certTESOL course remembers it is an intense but extremely rewarding 4 weeks. Reading between the lines; expect a great experience but be prepared to put in the hard work!


Non-native teachers

Non-native applicants will need to do a pre-course interview with our qualified teacher-trainer before signing up. In general, Trinity trainees need IELTS 7.0 in all skills to join a course but remember: it’s the trainer who has the final say.


Could Erasmus help you?

Could Erasmus help you?

If you feel your level of English may fall short of this, don’t worry. ELA has purposefully designed intensive courses to get you ready for the certTESOL.

Remember, as you’ll participating in an educational course you might qualify for the Erasmus + programme, specifically designed for lifelong learning.





Still pondering certTESOL? Have a glance at some of our earlier blogs for ideas of great places to jet off to when you’ve finished your course at ELA.




Completed your Trinity CertTesol at ELA??? Here are some fabulous TEFL destinations where there are no shortage of jobs (check out for an exhaustive list)


Czech Republic

Yes, Prague is still beautiful and still cheap! Go on, name another European capital city that is so affordable, liveable and has so many job opps. That’s right, you probably can’t.


Good for:

* money; you can probably earn the average Czech monthly wage very soon in your career.

* architecture, choose from one of Prague’s painfully cool but beautiful inner city areas or go for communist chic in one of the outer neighbourhoods

Will it be Žižkov or ....

Will it be Žižkov or ….


Jižní Město (south city) ???







* Sport, there are teams galore for football and ice hockey fans. Kick off times range from 1800 Friday to 1000 (yes AM) Sunday. Don’t worry, good beer is always available.

* Film, the vast majority of cinemas use Czech subtitles so gorge on the city’s independent cinema scene

* Gigs, most bands feel obliged to add a central European leg to a tour. Tickets are normally very easy to come by.

*public transport, highly efficient and highly subsidized. You’ve really no excuse not to explore the capital and the rest of the country

* Language, the locals know it’s difficult and appreciate any sort of effort you make in murdering it


But hold on:

* Czechs think nothing of having lessons at 0720 before work! Few teachers can afford to turn down these pre-morning

Winter commute- tram style

Winter commute- tram style

classes so get your beauty sleep

* You will travel a lot, from company to school to private home. In the winter this can be tiring

* it’s an employers’ market and many schools want self-employed teachers. Plus, as most TEFL managerial

roles are occupied by Czechs you may need to look elsewhere for career progression

* Whisper it to your students but Czech food can be a tad monotonous. And stodgy.





Boasting a thriving TEFL market, a dizzying selection of beautiful places to live and noticeably more money than Italy (the other major European destination).


* if you want a relaxed lifestyle with good public services look no further

* the Spanish know how to party, keep up with them if you can

In Spain even your grandparents stay up all hours

In Spain even your grandparents stay up all hours

* Village or city? Mountains or beaches? Andalusia or Asturias? The range of destinations can be daunting, in a good way

* Contracts, most academies in Spain offer proper 10 month contracts with paid holidays. The work tends to dry up in the summer.

*Tapas, go to the right part of the country and you will effectively eat for free


As tasty as it looks

* Spanish and English share a number of Latin based words. Save time by asking ‘Is it the same in Spanish?’

* Region rules. You may have dined on Galician sea food but you haven’t tasted paella if you haven’t had it in Valencia. Which region is most        Spanish? Visit them all to decide!

* Quite simply: the people. Your classroom will never be dull. Your town center will never be quiet.




It’s not all tinto de varano :

* The climate is not all it’s cracked up to be. Madrid and Granada can be cold in winter and stifling in summer. Many rental flats in the south don’t have any heating at all!

White Madrid, a more common sight than you might expect

White Madrid, a more common sight than you might expect

* Be aware that not all private academies are of the same quality. Do your research before you commit to a school!


* Learn the lingo to 1) make local friends and 2) enhance your promotion chances. Academies tend to want managers who can speak with parents and clients

* Remember the locals’ language skills may not be up to much, especially in more regional towns and smaller cities

* Fix a smile on your face, grab a strong a coffee and be prepared to teach kids!





Always an attractive option for the more adventurous TEFLer; teachers who go normally come back with tales of an unforgettable experience.

Get going for:

* the high salaries Westerners, especially those with relevant degrees, are often offered in big cities

* the buzz of International cities like Beijing and Shanghai with the thriving expat scenes

Enjoy the buzz of Beijing

Enjoy the buzz of Beijing


* Shenzhen in the tropical SE, a booming city close to some of China’s best beaches

Dameisha Beach, Shezhen

Dameisha Beach, Shezhen

* the challenge of a different script. Remember you can get by without speaking the language initially and there are lots of handy apps to help!

* the typically warm Chinese welcome

* a truly different society and a different world view






* The air quality in some of the bigger cities famously leaves a lot to be desired


* There’s a big difference between teaching in private academies and public schools, make sure you know what you’re letting yourself in for

* Chinese work places tend to have a different mentality to their Western counter parts. Bosses are rarely questioned and saving face can be all important

* to carefully consider the reputation and location of the school/academy. Finding yourself as one of a handful of foreigners in a provincial city working for a poorly run organization….is best avoided

Have you got what it takes to be a TEFLer???

If you’re looking for a way to live abroad and enjoy helping people, keep reading: ELA’s Trinity certTESOL courses could be for you.

TEFL can take you anywhere in the world but you have to be up for the challenge.

Where will you go???

Where will you go???

Moving abroad into the unknown is sure to get the heart pumping. Most expats vividly remember their first few days abroad and it takes some time for that initial buzz to wear off, if it ever does. As you rise to the challenges of finding our way around your new city, shopping in strange surroundings or figuring out how to get wifi, you will feel a sense of accomplishment out of all proportion to such mundane tasks.

Added to the undeniable thrill of living abroad is the sense of satisfaction that you are there to contribute to local skills and education. Whether it’s in public schools, language academies,italian-classroom companies or even private homes1-1-lesson you have a unique chance to get to know, understand and help local people. Along the way you will meet characters you would never otherwise have been exposed to, some of these will become good friends.

If these benefits appeal to you then perhaps it’s time to consider if you’re ready for, or content with, your 9-5 office world. Flexibility is certainly a key attribute TEFL teachers must have in bucket loads. Always remember: it’s the students’ lesson not the teachers’! You don’t have to be the expert but you do have to exploit different parts of your personalities with different groups.

Mind your Teacher Talk Time!

Mind your Teacher Talk Time

Flexibility doesn’t just extend to personalities or lesson types. The green TEFLer must also be culturally adaptable. If you expect a mini super-market open from 1000-2200 on every Italian street corner, stay in Blighty. If you have to have your tapas before 9, stay home. ‘Normal’ and ‘right’ are truly subjective matters.

Can you learn to adapt?

Can you learn to adapt? 

Embrace the strangeness of your new home  and learn more about your own as you go!