TEFL Certification in Manuel Antonio Beach, Costa Rica

Video and Photos

The view!
The view!
March 2017
March 2017
Manuel Antonio
Manuel Antonio
Cooking class at Cosi
Sunset in Manuel Antonio

About

Become a certified English teacher by earning a TEFL certification with Maximo Nivel on the beach in Manuel Antonio. TEFL Certification is your passport to living and working as English teacher anywhere else in the world!

The 4-week/150-hour certification program includes more than 15 hours of practical English teaching and observation of experienced teachers. Groups are small with 2 to 14 people.

The TEFL Program consists of 12 modules:

- Learning & Teaching Theory
- Lesson Planning
- Class Management
- Critical ESL Techniques
- English Grammar I
- English Grammar II
- Teaching Grammar
- Teaching Vocabulary
- Teaching Speaking & Writing
- Teaching Listening & Reading
- Teaching English with Games
- Assessing & Testing Learners
- Introduction to international English exams: TOEFL, IELTS, and Cambridge

Maximo Nivel is internationally accredited and the Maximo Nivel TEFL Certificate is accepted by institutes, language schools, and universities around the world.

Travel Grants Available for a Limited Time!

Ready to work as an English teacher abroad? Register today for our award winning TEFL Certification in Costa Rica, Guatemala and Peru and apply for a special travel grant.

Questions & Answers

Apart from what the others have already suggested, I would also advise that any travel you intend on doing, you are prepared to leave until you've finished or to start beforehand. Manuel Antonio is a beautiful place, and you will certainly have beach time. But don't be fooled! The classes are intensive and require outside-the-classroom prep time. Good luck and have fun!

Thanks so much for your reply. I'd love if you could connect me with them! I'm going to be studying at Maximo in January 2017 and am very keen to teach :)

I would definitely recommend a laptop. You'll need it to work on assignments and lesson plans out of class. The building can get pretty hot, so being able to relocate to cooler locations is a must. Regarding clothes, I wore decent shorts and collared shirts for the classes. For interviews, I would recommend something more business casual.

The cost of the program varies by location and what type of stay you prefer (apartment, hostel, or homestay). I have added a link to the estimated program costs below that you may find helpful. In general, the cost will be somewhere between $2000-$2500, not including your flight. http://www.maximonivel.com/tefl-tesol/prices/

Reviews

98%
based on 153 reviews
  • Benefits 9.5
  • Support 9.8
  • Fun 8.2
  • Facilities 8.3
  • Safety 9.2
  • Instruction 9.9
  • Support 9.9
  • Value 9.5
  • Academic Rigor 8.5
  • Job Assistance 9.7
  • Instruction 10
  • Support 10
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 10
  • Value 10
Showing 16 - 30 of 153
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Alexandra
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Learning in paradise

Costa Rica is an amazing location to obtain the TEFL certification. The friendships that one makes with their fellow classmates are unforgettable and long-lasting. Sometimes I asked myself if all of the TEFL classes became as tight knit as our particular class had become. Everyone in our class meshed really well and I felt a different type of connection with each student and with each teacher. It is impossible not to feel proud of your classmates when you see how much they have grown from that first day of class. The times of vulnerability, stress, and triumph create and unforgettable experience amongst the class. There were only positive vibes here! I do not know if it was because of the wonderful people or because of the positive rainforest energy in Manuel Antonio.

What would you improve about this program?
The only issue I had with this program is that the resources available to complete the work can cause a bit of a struggle. I did not bring my laptop with me to Costa Rica because I had been traveling alone the month before. My only regret was not bringing my laptop because getting out of the school to do some work on my own would have been beneficial.
Default avatar
amy
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Live and Learn in paradise!

This program is excellent if you are interested in getting a good, comprehensive introduction and practice into the world of teaching English. The course is comprehensive with strong academic rigor. There are several things that I think the make this course so worthwhile. It is 150 hours as opposed to 120 and the academics are to be taken seriously, for example, you will be writing a paper on a grammar topic! Another is the location - living in Quepos and making the short trip to Manuel Antonio daily was an enjoyable and easy aspect of daily life. Plus you get sure footing as starting a network and life in Costa Rica beyond the class. Last but not least is the instruction. As you are learning and testing new skills, you need an instructor that gives you practical feedback and lots of encouragement. Our instructor in Costa Rica offered that and a clear commitment to seeing you grow and succeed.

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Amelia
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Thank you Maximo Nivel!

I would recommend this program to anyone. The skills learned in the class are applicable to almost any job. The care and support given by each staff member are truly unmatched. Everyone is there for you and will work with you for any problem, big or small. I was having a problem late at night so I messaged one of the staff members and they responded to me so fast and helped resolve the issue. I was shocked by the speed and professionalism of the staff. I had such an amazing experience, I almost feel bad for my friends because they do not know how special and incredible it is getting your TEFL in Costa Rica. The location is absolutely stunning, and on your off time, there are so many activities to do close by. I wish that everyone can have the opportunity to experience this first hand.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
My advice to future travelers on this program would be to believe in yourself. Yes, you are capable of completing this course with flying colors. There are times when the workload seems to be piling up and you are stressed. All you need to do is believe that you can and will do it. And if you need a little extra help, just ask one of the amazing instructors who are more than happy to assist you in anything you may need.
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Don
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Excellent Experience

Maximo Nivel gave me great preparation for a career teaching English as a foreign language. The exciting techniques I learned will revolutionize my approach to teaching. I now have the skills and confidence I need to be successful as a teacher of English to speakers of other languages. I would highly recommend this program to anyone who is contemplating teaching English as a foreign language to adults or to children. It's one thing to know the English language. It's another thing to be able to effectively teach English to speakers of other languages. I think the most eye opening thing for me was to see how to create an immersion experience for learners where only English is used in the classroom. I would not have imagined this to be possible. But, not only is it possible, it is by far the most effective way to teach languages. I give Maximo Nivel my highest praise and recommendation for the experience they gave me.

What was your funniest moment?
A very funny moment was when our school was invaded by Capuchino monkeys. Being so close to the jungle, this is to be expected. But, it was a truly funny and lively moment for all involved.
Read my full story
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Sylvie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A truly transformative experience!

I went into this program as a mousy 18 year old with no teaching experience whatsoever. I knew it would be a good way to get out of my comfort zone, but I had no idea what was ahead of me. While I did underestimate the workload (this is an INTENSIVE course - don't think you'll get off easy and be able to go to the beach every day), more importantly, I underestimated how incredible this experience would be. I met and worked with some of the most amazing people who I got closer to in 4 weeks than I ever thought possible. I had the two most wonderful teachers, Karen Wilke (we love you our ubuntu queen!!) and Courtney Miville, who were always so supportive and made class fun, dealt with breakdowns like champs, and gave invaluable feedback that helped me become a better teacher. All of those people made the hard work well worth it. I would highly recommend this program to you, even if you don't plan to become a teacher, although it might just turn you into one :) Through it all, I grew so much as a teacher and as a person - in my confidence, in my willingness to open up and be vulnerable in front of others, and in my understanding that no matter what, there is always someone going through it with you. "I am because we are." Thank you to all of my ubuntu people for this truly incredible experience.

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Natalie
10/10
No, I don't recommend this program

Awesome experience!

To say that I loved the program is an understatement. I wanted to travel with a purpose, and thanks to this program, I did just that. It was nice to travel and have something to do while I was there. It was intimidating at first to travel alone as a petite woman, but I overcame my fears and had the time of my life in a wonderful place with wonderful people! It was honestly as safe as most places I've been to. I have to be equally careful no matter where I go, and I didn't feel in danger in Manuel Antonio/Quepos at all. I would highly recommend this program to anyone who wants to travel, but still get something out of it. This program opened so many new doors for me; I'm excited to see what career opportunities await me now that I have my TEFL certification!

What was your funniest moment?
Playing Rock Paper Scissors with my students... so much fun!
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Elisa
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

TEFL Certification - Oh what a rewarding experience.

My biggest question prior to coming on the programme was whether I could teach English as a second language without knowing the mother language of the students. The ESL techniques, methodologies and practical experience imparted have all confirmed that it is not only possible but it can become a reality in one month.
This programme is no walk in the park. It is intense and rigorous at times but also fun filled and enjoyable. I had the pleasure of being tutored by the dynamic duo of Karen Wilke ( lead trainer) and Courtney Miville. These ladies created a learning environment that was nurturing, supportive, challenging, fun filled and dynamic. I also had the pleasure of interacting with seventeen of the finest people from all over the world.
This has been the best investment in self and my best birthday present to me.

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Kayleen
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Experience of a lifetime: I am because we are!

I am a 32 year old woman with a few years of university professional experience under my belt. I did not need a TEFL certificate, but I was excited about the professional development and alternative doors that could open.

This experience was by far one of the the most beautiful surprises - it has changed me (for the better) as a person, professional aside. I grew into a more whole human being through this program, my instructors, and my peers. I am not sure all programs are like this, but there was magic within our group throughout.

For starters, this program is intense. There are high expectations and you end up learning SO MUCH. If you are not ready for that, then don't come until you are. You need to have a level of maturity or drive to sustain the intensity. That said, this program attracted people who were ready and wanting this challenge. We were a diverse group in many of our identities, yet we all left our egos at home. We flourished day in and day out - there was no competition within the group, just support, love, and everyone giving it their best selves. I have never felt so good about being myself and confident in who I am when working with a group and I think many of my peers would echo this feeling.

This tone was set by our instructors, lead instructor Karen Wilke and support instructor Courtney Miville. These two are literally born to do this work and it shows - they are creative, passionate, wise, fun, and literally give us 200% every day of the week. If you have a chance to work with them, do it. Your life will be better because of this decision.

As for the program itself, the Maximo Nivel staff who work in MA are fabulous. They are calm, cool, collected, supportive, and always go out of their way for all of us despite the many demands of their job. The amount of logistics they coordinate behind the scenes paired with the needs of all their students in real-time, is astounding. I suppose the astounding part is you would never know. They don't complain and they are so top-notch and calm.

I do not usually review, but I couldn't not review this experience.

Thank you,
Kayleen

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Regina
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Life Altering Experience

Stop thinking about it. Do it! Get TEFL certified! Now, wherever my global travel takes me, I can teach! My host family, TEFL teacher extraordinaire, Audra, and my ESL students inspired me to give 100% to this effort every day. This program requires commitment, tenacity and passion for the work and students. The location was a short ride to beaches and public parks. Public transportation was easy and frequent. Housing accommodations were amazing. Everyone on staff was an absolute rock star! The school is hot, but if your TEFL class is small, the lessons are held in an air-conditioned room. The one area for improvement is assistance with job placement. Use the resources provided to do some research on your own. You will find your perfect TEFL job fit!

What would you improve about this program?
Job placement if not interested in Maximo locales.
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Rachel
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

TEFL Class of June 2019

From exploring the jungle to experiencing the culture and meeting many new people, these last four weeks have been incredible. I came into this program somewhat blinded and hoped for the best. I quit my job back home in order to travel and the TEFL Certification was the first stop along the way. The little expectation I did have was completely blown out of the water. I have enjoyed every bit of the experience here in Manuel Antonio. Audra is a magnificent TEFL Trainer as well as a good-hearted person. Yes, these days in the classroom are intensive, (don't underestimate these comments) but Audra is not your average teacher. She brings her dynamic personality every day and it allows for easy engagement in every lesson. I never saw myself as a teacher, but I thought why not try it. Now, I can confidently say that I have the knowledge to do so and I can't wait to teach more. I am thankful for the key Maximo has provided me to unlock more opportunities in other's lives.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Everyone that I met stayed with a host family. I did not hear any complaints and it is definitely the way to go if you want to practice your Spanish and have two meals made for you every day.
Fortunately, I found a hostel (The Secret Garden Guesthouse on Air BnB) for five weeks that was half the cost of the program accommodations. I loved this experience and am even coming back. I would recommend this hostel for any solo traveler looking to meet new people outside the program.
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Carol
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

TEFL Time

TEFL Time is what we called our regular classes at COSI with our amazing instructor, Audra. I so looked forward to TEFL Time every day because I knew I was going to learn more and have fun doing it. Outside of class, there was lots of homework, but none of it useless. The program was crafted to build EFL teachers, and it built them well. I have a MA in Bilingual Ed, but I never felt ready or excited about teaching English till now. Despite the main goal, getting that TEFL Certificate, I was also encouraged and supported to go out and explore...hiking to Nauyaca falls and along the RetoMAE, sea kayaking and snorkeling, looking for sloths and other animals on the many trails of the National Park, etc.

I recommend staying with a host family (with WiFi) and having a room of your own, and bring your laptop and cell phone--you'll use them every day and late into the night. Having a host family to take care of you, preparing meals, washing your clothes, helping you figure stuff out, speaking Spanish with you, and maybe even allowing you to practice teaching English lessons on them is priceless. The ties you make will make it hard for you to leave, and the skills you learn will open the door for you to go anywhere. Welcome to TEFL Time!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
(From a journal I kept...) last night's adventure getting "home" with Rachel and Yurika after our first mini lessons teaching English to a group of 14 adult learners. We ended up walking down the narrow road, no sidewalk, and no real shoulder, in the wrong direction to the bus stop and finding ourselves at the bottom of a hill, past a bridge, at a long deserted driveway with a dumpster waiting for the bus, because that is where the locals farther up the hill said it would stop. At that hour the bus only comes every half hour. So we are waiting, and what do we see? A sloth, so captivatingly slowly making its way upside down along, of all things, the power lines. About the time the sloth disappeared, the bus appeared, and indeed did stop and we gratefully boarded and were taken to now familiar surroundings. Phew!
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Owen
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Intensive but amazing experience

I got my TEFL certification in Manuel Antonio with Audra Wooldridge and it was an amazing experience. If you are taking this program be prepared to work but also be prepared to learn and have some fun along the way doing it. The program is very intensive but also very effective, by the end I truly felt prepared to teach wherever my path takes me. Audra had a way of making the course quite fun as well and I’m sure other TEFL trainers will be similar, I cannot count how many times I heard or saw either myself or my fellow TEFLers smile or laugh. A couple of suggestion is first to bring a laptop, you will for sure need one as otherwise you’ll have to do all your work at Maximo nivel when with a laptop you could be working anywhere you felt like. Also don’t be afraid to have fun, the program is very intensive but don’t let that keep you from having fun on the weekends or evenings every now and again, Manuel Antonio/Quepos have a lot of fun things to do, don’t miss out on them completely!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
The most nerve-racking part of the program was practical teaching week but it got better with every day I taught.
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Jessica
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

TEFL/TESOL Certification

I am a certified teacher from the United States. I lead a group of high school students to Costa Rica and fell in love with the country. I have a passion for education and learning so I was interested in the program. In the program I learned effective methods for teaching adult English learners. Some of the methodologies are different so I started to discern if I wanted to finish. The staff is amazing and our instructor, Audra Wooldridge, is very passionate. The experience pushed me out of my comfort zone, taught me more than I can possibly describe and was life changing.

Also, Manuel Antonio and Quepos are very nice places. I am from Michigan and not familiar to public transportation. The bus system in Quepos is very efficient and the people are very friendly. I was also nervous about my basic level of Spanish. The locals are very kind and many places even accept US currency.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Costa Rica is beautiful but this course is designed to help adult English learners. Do not signup if you are not committed to the students. I have taught many different ages and this was my first time with adults. The students at Maximo Nivel are some of the sweetest students I have ever met.
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Lena
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

This course is a must-take!!!!

I came as a certified language teacher, confident in my teaching style and methods. However, this course, specifically the director, Audra Wooldridge, pushed me to improve my skills and eventually I was able to get my students to talk for 80% of class time! I know that has never happened in one of my lessons in the US. She is an absolute queen. She had me cracking up every single day, she had invaluable information about everything from classroom management to where you should go on your weekend getaways while in Costa Rica. You should definitely take this course if you have ANY interest in teaching English in the future. I adored my host family, the support staff and my location in Manuel Antonio! I would suggest bringing a laptop if you have one.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
The most nerve-wracking moment was teaching my first mini lesson. With the help of my classmates, Audra and my host family, I survived!
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Sam
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

TEFL + Paradise = wonderful experience

This was my first time studying abroad, and I'm really glad I went through Maximo Nivel to complete my TEFL certification. From the initial communication, to the course material, to the job finding assistance, I felt that it was a complete and personalized experience. The school is located in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, a 10-minute bus ride from gorgeous beaches. In the surrounding area are shops and great restaurants to choose from. My program included housing with an authentic Costa Rican family, which meant that I had support getting to the know the area and culture. My favorite part of the TEFL course was actually getting hands-on training by teaching real students for my last week. By the time I was done, I had 2 job offers, so my intensive 4-work course helped me to get to the next adventure in my life!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
My advice to future travelers is just know that this is a serious program. The course is intensive, but well-balanced, so you can enjoy yourself in your spare time. If you're looking to find work in other countries, this is a great place to start or improve your English-teaching skills.