Dublin is a cosmopolitan city with an artistic, energetic, youthful vibe. While still an ancient city that is mindful of its rich and complex history, Dublin is always looking forward, ensuring that it is competitive in the world and home of the best and brightest. This is a fascinating, vibrant place full of interesting people, excellent music, and vivid culture. For many teachers considering a TEFL course, Dublin is the perfect place. The courses are well-known and respected in the teaching world and there are a multitude of options that serve every budget, schedule, and interest. Not only does your TEFL course prepare you for an exciting career of teaching English abroad, but you will enjoy the classroom experience in fabulous Dublin.

Dublin is quaint and charming, but chic and exciting, combining all the best that Ireland has to offer. It is important to remember when exploring options in Dublin that the cost of living is high and that unemployment is at near record levels. This means that these costs should be factored in and while some programs encourage you to seek employment in Ireland, jobs are scarce. That being said, there are some very highly respected courses offered in Dublin that might give you a leg up in the job search. Be sure that the program you choose is credited by the Irish Department of Education.

The types of TEFL courses vary and can be as extensive or as moderate as you want. TEFL Ireland provides several options, including on-line, classroom, or a combination of the two. The most basic program is twenty hours of classroom learning over two days. Here you learn the fundamentals of TEFL and become prepared to teach your first English class. The course covers everything from classroom management to teaching reading comprehension skills.

The “industry standard” is a 120 hour course. This is really the course that serious students should consider if you want the more competitive jobs and higher salaries. Often these courses are a combination of classroom time and on-line workshops. You will learn classroom management and then in-depth lessons on teaching vocabulary, grammar, reading comprehension, pronunciation, etc. At the end of the course, you should feel confident, competent, and ready to tackle your own classroom.

TEFL Ireland also offers an EDI CertTEFL Combined course, which is for those who have already completed at least 140 hours of standard TEFL training. This specialized certification is ideal for those who are seeking employment at the top schools and want to ensure the highest possible salaries. These programs are expensive, but well-respected.

When and Where to Look:

If you are looking for a course that combines classroom work with on-line tutorials, there is no better place in Ireland than Dublin. Dublin has some of the more highly respected TEFL courses and providers in Europe and has been building a reputation as a TEFL hotspot for the past decade. There are a myriad of options, from a simple twenty-hour course to level five courses that are the highest TEFL accreditation. Enrollment is rolling and can be done easily on-line. If you are interested in a more complex course, there may be prerequisites required.


Speaking of prerequisites, TEFL programs are some of the most accommodating programs for students. Often, there are few specific qualifications required. Most likely, you will need your A-Level (equivalent to high school degree with AP or IB coursework) but no bachelor’s degree. You will need to be at least eighteen years old and proficient in English. This is one of the reasons TEFL is so popular, it’s accessible to so many people. There are specific programs, such as the highly-respected EDI-CERT TEFL course, that require previous TEFL hours.

Post-TEFL Resources:

While the job market is pretty slow in Ireland, there are opportunities to teach English. Finding opportunities to work in Ireland will take serious networking and high TEFL certification. Organizations that provide TEFL courses will be able to help in the job search process and the more highly-respected ones will even give you direct access to international recruiters. While Ireland does draw non-native English speakers who want to learn the language, most TEFL certificate holders find excellent employment elsewhere in

Europe or in Asia. Czech Republic, Georgia, Ukraine, China, and even Ecuador are seeking qualified teachers and recruit heavily in Dublin.

Once you have your TEFL certificate, the key to looking for jobs abroad is good research. Focus your search on where you’d like to be or the type of students you would like to teach. For higher salaries, focus on Asia and the Middle East. If you like the security of having a job before arriving, look for schools that will interview you via phone or Skype as opposed to in-person. European schools generally interview and hire in September and January. For more tips and insider advice, see the Beginner’s Guide to Teaching Abroad.

Cost of Living:

The majority of programs in Dublin do not offer accommodation, so this cost must be factored in to the total. The average price of a one-bedroom apartment in the city-center is about €900 ($1215). Outside the city is more like €735 ($992) per month. Going to the movies will cost about €10 ($13.50) a ticket and dinner out afterwards will be about €15 ($20). A Coke is €1.50 ($2), a cappuccino is €3 ($4), and a domestic beer is €4.50 ($6). A monthly bus pass is €112 ($150).

Contributed by Kate Evans


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The English Academy, Dublin

CELTA is by far the most famous and universally recognised initial qualification for people wishing to teach English to...