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I decied to start a career in English and heard about the CELTA after doing alot of research I decided it would be a great chance for me.
I took the CELTA in Vienna, Austria . I was very excited and in the beginning it was alot of work. But right away I and ALL my colleagues noticed many things that were not fair.
A couple of our colleagues who didnt take the course seriously, would come in late or wouldnt come in at all (two weeks absent). One of the colleagues I would see on more than one occassion writing his lesson plan minutes before the class, while I stayed up late into the night preparing mine.Yes his lesson was horrible and during our input session we would get the same grade "a pass". Which would infuriate me. But I knew better to say anything. Then I might get a lower grade under "getting along with other teachers".

So I would just sit, smile and take it. There were a few times he would actually come in smelling like beer. I worked hard and thought my hard work would pay off in the end. I watched during the four months as my beer drinking colleague sailed through the course without a care and thought he would surely fail.

Finally came the day, for our reports which we received in the mail one week after our course was done. I eagerly opened it. What was written: PASS
PASS!! I couldnt believe it!! Under the comment section they (our Tutors) didnt even write anything personal it was a standard template issued with a Pass grade something along the lines of: bla bla will need furthur guidance to become a succesful teacher.
Which lets face it once you start teaching in the classroom you are on your own.

I spoke with my colleagues including my beer drinking one and found out that only one of us received a PASS B. No one received a PASS A. During our observations I wouldnt even give my tutors a PASS A. But anyway the point is that the grading system is a very strict, unfair whatever word you want to use. I am very upset that I would be put into the same grade category as my beer drinking teaching friend who also somehow managed to pass!!
I worked really hard!! Juggling family, work, and traveling to this CELTA center (three hours) for four months.
Luckily I can get over it. But I have to add that many of my colleagues are very discouraged and many arent pursuing English positions as they should be.
So let this be a warning to all who are considering in taking the CELTA course. I was told in the END that only about 5% of people receive a PASS B, and 5% Fail. The way the fail is by being absent, I dont know how many times they have to be absent since one of our colleagues missed about two weeks.

NEVERTHELESS...I have to say I learned wonderful teaching methods!! I met wonderful people! At this point I cant stay I regret taking the course, but I wish someone would have told me in the beginning.

Maybe I could have saved myself some heartache.

Let me know what you think.

Sincerly,
A disappointed CELTA Graduate

The good thing is you do learn great teaching methods from CELTA. ALso alot of teaching institutes only want CELTA teachers.

So good luck to you.
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Comments  (Page 2) 
At university and indeed on my CELTA course I've experienced such attitudes towards others success. In terms of your 'beer drinking' colleague you do not not the full picture, therefore should reserve judgement.

Unfortunately in life you will encounter those more articulate and quicker than you. They appear to accomplish more despite a lack of application. Instead of feeling jealous congratulate them; as if they had failed I doubt this would have brought you much happiness either.
I just read your post, as I was doing some research on the CELTA course, I just wanted to say, I had a similar situation (not in the CELTA) when I had spent a whole 2 weeks working everyday on a project, my friend who was quite lazy had to do the project also, however he only did his the night before and finished the whole thing in around 2 hours. Anyway we both handed in our projects, and he got an A and I got a B... Needless to say I was FURIOUS! I asked to speak to my teacher, and explained how unfair it was that I had put in so much time and effort and my friend had barely spent an afternoon on it and he got a better grade... The teacher replied, to be honest, I don't care how long he or you spent on your projects, what matters is the final result... I think this is quite relevant to your story as well, as even though you may have been putting in more effort that doesn't mean you had done a better or more quality job than the "beer drinking friend" you describe. It is annoying, but sometimes some people can do just as well or better than others by putting in minimal effort whereas others have to put in 10 times as much work to do as well.

In regards to the grades of CELTA, the fact of the matter is most people get a Pass (just like most people get C's at school) and a B is that much harder than a Pass and of course an A is that much harder than a B... Just because you think you did a super job, doesn't mean you did in all aspects which may be very well why you ended up with a pass rather than a higher grade. I think if Pass A and Pass B were handed out to everyone they would have no value, so I think its quite good they are careful with who they give them to... probably why they're so highly regarded in the ESOL world as employers are able to distinguish what kind of teacher they may be hiring...
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wow! Got shocked while reading your post,

I am going to take the course in a week and they told us being absent is impossible and if we do we are so fail!

any way...I was wondering if you could help me by the assignments, I have heard they are horrible, could you please help me by sending a copy of the assignment you have done so that I won't be desperate during the first few sessions...Thanks.

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anappleI am going to take the course in a week and they told us being absent is impossible and if we do we are so fail
I have spoken to my colleagues, one said that 4 people on her course failed. I wouldn't go thinking that you can't fail. If you put effort in you won't, or if you have natural talent. I put effort in and found that I got lots out of it. My assignments won't be the same as yours and although I passed all 4 of them I don't feel it will help you as mine weren't the best.
Hello there.

I have just finished my course and I am a pass B...but to be honest I find the assessment quite unfair...don't want tosay that i was more qualified than a "B"...want to say there were more professional tchrs in the course that they could get a B rather than just a "pass"...I donno how it works..I Had 3 tutors...on my TP 7 an assessor from Cambridge came to the class and observed my teaching practice beside my tutor..I am not sure how it works...I myself am satisfied with what I got...But I think it's puzzling as well...
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Congratulations on passing with a B Annapple!
I did the certTESOL and would recommend it. A colleage of mine did the CELTA and what he learned was a bit different. I found out later when I bought one of Harmer's books that the certTESOL course was more based on Harmer's methods, which I think I heard are more modern. I think the price for the course, student teaching hours, and the course work are about equal with the CELTA. It's also backed by the British Council like the CELTA.
Hi,

Its not a shocking thing. Because in almost all the fields people are like this. U r a person who is very straight forward and hard working as I too do. Any how I really feel sorry for u. U wl be rewarded in future sure.

I am working in a place, u can call me workaholic, but some other colleagues r not at all doing anything, butstill they are also considered to be great.

Take it easyyyyyyyyyyyyyy
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I took the CELTA in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and I have had the opposite experience. The course was very intensive, and we were expected to have perfect attendance, and be well prepared for every lesson. It was possible to fail the course every step of the way, through written assignments, the quality of the lesson plans, and the quality of the lessons. You could fail one lesson and still be awarded a pass at the course, but that was the limit (and you had to show a real turn-around on the next lesson). The grading was fair, and the course was very rewarding. The teachers were amazing! The only thing I would warn about is that you can't expect to have any time for anything else for the duration of the course.

If anyone want information about the course (such as how many get a pass b and how many get a pass a) you should check out Cambridge Esol: http://www.cambridgeesol.org/exams/teaching-awards/celta.html

That way you'll be prepared in beforehand (and look for other's experiences on the center you wish to apply for to make sure you're getting what you're after)
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