International TEFL Academy

International TEFL Academy


International TEFL Academy is passionate about two things:

1. Providing the highest quality TEFL certification classes.
2. Ensuring all of our graduates find professional, paid English teaching jobs abroad & have a wonderful experience overseas.

All of our staff at ITA have worked, lived & traveled abroad extensively. We "get it," and we're passionate about helping you have a great international adventure like we did.

Based in Chicago IL, ITA is a worldwide leader in TEFL certification for teaching English abroad offering accredited TEFL classes in 25 locations worldwide & a state-of-the-art Online class. We certify 5,000 people per year to teach English abroad and we have graduates teaching in 80+ countries.

In addition to earning an accredited teaching qualification recognized worldwide, all of our students receive lifetime job search guidance & access to a full array of alumni services and networking opportunities.

ITA has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.

How Has Coronavirus (COVID-19) Affected Teaching English Abroad, Online & Getting TEFL Certified?

Should I still get TEFL certified? Is it still safe to plan on teaching English abroad? Can I still teach English online? Get all of your frequently asked questions about getting TEFL certified and teaching English abroad & online during the coronavirus outbreak in the article below:


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Yes, I recommend this program

The International TEFL Academy was very easy to fit into my schedule. I loved how everything was set up each week of doing peer responses, a quiz, and an activity. It is a good mix of lesson planning and learning for the activities. The book used is amazing and easy to understand. The second instructor was good at explaining what was going on each week and graded the homework quickly. I also felt heard through the experience, when I felt like my first instructor was not doing the best, ITA immediately found a new instructor to take over and help make the rest of the class. My favorite thing was that I got an extra 60 days after the 11 weeks to complete the practicum experience.

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Yes, I recommend this program

I am a lawyer by profession. I have spent all my life behind a computer trying to solve urgent problems happening all around the world in the shipping industry. I had never worked with children nor as a teacher before. The course gives you a very good insight as to how a language should be taught. This method is far from the methods used when I was at school. At that time we only learned grammar and literature and never in context . The TEFL course shows you how to teach grammar and vocabulary, always in context, making sure the student is in the centre of the class, learning games that students enjoy.

What would you improve about this program?
Giving more guarantees about finding jobs afterwards.
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Yes, I recommend this program

The International TEFL/TESOL Course was the best decision for me because it allowed a degree of flexibility that other courses different offer, but, don't let the online nature of this class fool you. The class content was rich and the amount of materials, examples, videos, etc was outstanding. The course instructor I had (Barbara) was excellent in providing constructive feedback, live office hours, and timely with assignment grading. If you're looking for a course that will give you what you need to know to teach English abroad, and more, this is the one.

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Yes, I recommend this program

International TEFL/TESOL is definitely not one of those certifications they just hand out for a fee. I found the course to be very informative and very challenging. Definitely not an easy A! I feel confident that I am now qualified to teach in just about any environment and that I was properly trained. I would have liked a little more time to complete assignments and take advantage of some of the resources like the live lectures. I may try to go back and rewatch some videos before it's too late.

What would you improve about this program?
I would like more time to access resources such as the live lectures.
Response from International TEFL Academy

We really appreciate this review! You're 100% right - we are not one of those TEFL classes where you just get a piece of paper. You truly have to put in the time and effort to make it happen, so we're very glad that you did and had a great experience! We are always here to assist you along the way, so don't hesitate to get in touch and we'll be here! Cheers to all your adventures! - ITA

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Yes, I recommend this program

This TEFL course has helped me understand how to become a stronger teacher and has given me the tools/resources to continually improve upon that. I have enjoyed every week of the course and hope to utilize the strong TEFL community moving into the future. After near completion, I am glad to have chosen the International TEFL School over other options as it exceeded my expectations. More than anything this course has allowed me the mindfulness of how to approach the world of teaching and provided a strong base to build on.

Response from International TEFL Academy

Hey Trinity,

Thanks for this review! We are so glad that you're experience exceeded expectations. We're always here to assist you so don't hesitate to get in touch! - ITA


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Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Why did you choose this program?

I chose the program offered by International TEFL Academy (ITA) because the course was available at a classroom location in person as well as online. The ITA website provided a wealth of information regarding tuition, course dates and availability, the length of training, class locations, job search guidance, accreditation, and numerous other topics.

I phoned the contact number on their website and spoke with an ITA adviser who answered my remaining questions and helped me select an online class that worked well with my 40+ hour work week. He also set up a payment plan so I was able to pay the tuition in a timeframe that worked well for me. It was evident from the start that the ITA staff really wanted me to succeed in their TEFL program, and that played a major factor in my positive first impression of the program.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

ITA’s descriptive website provided me with the knowledge I needed to select a TEFL course, and the adviser assisted with enrolling me into the course. The instructors lead the 11-week course that resulted in my becoming more culturally sensitive and an overall better TEFL teacher for my students.

The ITA website also has job guidance advice, and there are numerous social media platforms with ITA groups where alumni offer tips and suggestions on finding work after completing the TEFL course. I’ve even seen alumni offer other prospective teachers a place to stay while they find a place to live once they’ve arrived in their country of choice. There’s a great support system with ITA, and I haven’t felt alone in organizing anything so far.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

A piece of advice I would give to someone going into my program: do not procrastinate on the readings and assignments. The workload may seem heavy at times, but the instructors provide a syllabus and a course calendar prior to the start of the class so students are able to prepare a plan for completing the work by the deadlines. All of the assignments are relevant and beneficial to someone with the desire to travel to a different country and become a TEFL teacher, so it’s important to complete all of the work and do your very best.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

For a participant of ITA’s online TEFL program, the course runs for 11 consecutive weeks and includes an additional 20 hours of in-person practicum teaching. Students are provided with a syllabus at the start of the course as well as the textbook so they are able to plan accordingly. At the start of each week, assignments are posted to the online portal for students to complete prior to the weekend. Assignments include chapter readings, quizzes, a discussion board, course projects, and various other activities that transform students into well-equipped TEFL teachers.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

My biggest fear when going abroad was not succeeding. It was extremely intimidating to travel to a different country on a different continent where I didn’t know anyone or the language. I wanted to be a great teacher for my students but the road to achieving that goal seemed so uncertain.

I overcame my fear by not expecting everything to go perfectly and having a backup plan if “plan A” didn’t follow through. Traveling overseas to be a teacher required me to “roll with the punches”, and I quickly realized that the unexpected twists of the journey made the entire experience even better.

Do you have to be rich to become a TEFL teacher?

No, you don’t have to be rich to become a TEFL teacher. I was fresh out of college when I first went abroad as a TEFL teacher to China; I paid around $950 for a one-way flight to Shanghai, and then I had around $500 left in my pocket. The school I was working for had on-campus apartments for teachers, so I didn’t have to pay rent or utilities, and I had no additional expenses upon my arrival to China.

I was able to save a few thousand dollars during my first year of teaching in China, and that allowed me more financial freedom for the next year. There are different opportunities available, and it’s important for prospective TEFL teachers to find the position that is the right fit for them. I recommend saving as much money as you’re able to prior to embarking on your new adventure. You don’t have to be rich to take that first step.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

John Bentley

Job Title
Senior Admissions Advisor & Head Writer
A lifelong traveler who grew up in Cairo, Egypt, John Bentley wrote for the Egypt-Israel Edition of the famous Let’s Go! guidebook series during his student days at Harvard and has worked in the fields of international travel, education, and journalism ever since.

What is your favorite travel memory?

Having grown up overseas in Cairo, Egypt there are too many to count - from camping & fishing on desert islands in the Red Sea to exploring ancient monasteries in the Sinai and visiting the Berlin Wall at the end of the Cold War in 1989. Our high school in Cairo even had our high school graduation at the Great Pyramids of Giza.

But really the most rewarding moments of travel are the small ones you experience when immersing yourself in a foreign culture: strolling through a market in Saigon, riding a train through the countryside in India, interacting with the locals at a coffee shop in Cairo or a pub in Liverpool. These are my favorite travel moments.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

One of the great aspects of working at International TEFL Academy is that we are constantly encouraged to learn as individuals, as team members, and as international travel experts.

We are constantly receiving new training and updates on all aspects of teaching English abroad.

From work visas in Poland to hiring requirements in South Korea, we are constantly getting updated on job markets and TEFL course options to provide the best information to our students & graduates.

Personally, I have also been able to learn a ton to enhance my skills in areas like writing, blogging, personal communications, and social media.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

There are too many to count, but certainly the most rewarding aspect of working at International TEFL Academy is seeing the people you work with realize their dreams of living, traveling, and teaching English abroad.

I love following my students' blogs, photos, articles and videos after they've gone overseas to teach English, especially for those for whom teaching English abroad is their first international travel experience.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would take my TEFL class online or in Chicago and then teach English somewhere in East Asia like Japan, South Korea or Vietnam, though it would be hard to pass up an opportunity to live and work in a tropical country like Nicaragua, or even a class European country like Italy.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

The passion of our team for helping others realize their dreams of teaching English & traveling abroad. International experience is the number one requirement to work at ITA so each member of our team understands personally the challenges and rewards of living and working overseas.

We also do our best to provide the most comprehensive and realistic information possible about teaching English abroad - this is why have more than 600 blog articles, FAQs, alumni interviews & videos on our website.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Passion for what we do and providing the best possible experience to our students so that they can realize their dreams of living, traveling and teaching English around the globe.