The Czech Republic is a fascinating country that invites visitors from all over the world to engage in a unique blend of Eastern and Western Europe. But its visitors are not always there just for the history and culture. The country offers several options to those who want to become certified to teach English to non-native speakers.
The TEFL courses in the Czech Republic are recognized in many other countries around the world, so your job options aren't limited to this country. Yet nearly all students who earn their certificate are able to find jobs quickly in the Czech Republic, especially with the help of instructors and former students.
It is easiest to find courses in Prague, but you can find some options in smaller cities as well. Regardless of where you go, TEFL training will not be a walk in the park. But you can walk in Prague's beautiful parks while you study!
Nearly all course types for English teaching courses in the Czech Republic use acronyms, so it can be a bit confusing to know which one you should choose. TEFL, TESOL, and CELTA are all equally recognized by employers. The main differences will be in the instructional methods, number of hours included in the course, and level of assistance provided by the organization. The length of the course will almost always be four weeks, though you might find a few ten week, part-time programs.
As you search through the many course options for English teaching certifications in the Czech Republic, you'll notice most of them are referred to as TEFL programs. TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) and TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) are interchangeable when searching for a job teaching English in the Czech Republic. These courses should be at least 120 hours, but some can be quite a bit more with in-class trainings and practicums.
English language training courses in the Czech Republic have gained a reputation for being academically challenging. CELTA courses are no exception. They might be bit longer, at 134 hours of instruction rather than the standard 120, and this course type has an association with Cambridge University.
It is possible to find programs that allow you to volunteer as an English tutor in exchange for TEFL training. While this training will likely be in online classes only, the only fees you're responsible for are flights and personal expenses. Angloville is one such program.
Be wary of offers that seem too good to be true. Only trust verified volunteer organizations, and read several reviews before committing to anything. Also, keep in mind that volunteering as an English teacher abroad is much different than taking a paid vacation.
Taking a TEFL course in the Czech Republic is more of a commitment than a simple getaway. It's never too early to start planning. There are deadlines to register for most courses, often more than a month before the class starts.
When to Take Your TEFL in Czech Republic
Although many TEFL courses offer rolling admission, the best times to start four week courses are in late summer or November and December. School semesters begin in September and January or February. You can start applying for teaching jobs before the class ends so you'll be employed shortly after getting certified.
Popular Destinations for TEFL Courses in Czech Republic
The vast majority of TEFL courses in the Czech Republic will be in Prague. Any general Google search will show options in the city or just outside on the outskirts. If you are interested in another Czech location in particular, such as Brno, try using the name of that specific city in your search.
What to Look for in a TEFL Course in Czech Republic
TEFL courses should always include at least 120 hours of instruction. If the hours are not listed in the program information online, contact a representative to be sure it is 120 hours or longer before investing any money.
Most descriptions let you know if there will be job placement assistance after the course ends. Some even offer a guaranteed placement for successful students. Other things to look for include:
- Instructional methods (is there an online component?, is there practical in-class training?, etc.)
- Are there networking opportunities during and/or after the course?
- Qualifications of the instructors
- Enrollment and logistical support in getting settled in the Czech Republic
- Class size
Health & Safety
While some organizations offer a welcome orientation and advice on staying safe and healthy in the Czech Republic, you should always do your own research before you go. This country is relatively safe for travelers from the United States, but Prague can get extremely crowded during the summer -- so keep a close eye on your belongings when passing through touristic spots! Avoid going out in the evenings by yourself, ask cab drivers in advance what the price of the ride will be, and follow local laws without exception.
Completing TEFL training in the Czech Republic will be hard work, but once you're finished there are plenty of employers looking for English teachers. Working as a private tutor at K-12 schools, universities, and even businesses are all possible options. If you are in the Czech Republic during the summer, camps are another great option. Your certification will also be valid in other areas of the world should you choose to continue your travels.
When to Apply for Jobs in Czech Republic
You can actually start applying for jobs before your training is complete. Most employers hire before the start of the school semester, so have your applications submitted by late August or early September for the fall semester. For the spring, you should apply in early January.
Average Salary of Post-TEFL Jobs in Czech Republic
The average salary for English teachers in the Czech Republic falls between $700 and $1,320 per month. The high end of this range should allow you to save a little extra after accounting for living expenses. Some jobs will only allow you to break even. The cost of living is not high in the Czech Republic when compared to much of the Western world, but Prague is certainly more expensive than smaller Czech cities.
Tips for Finding a Job in Czech Republic
If you have a college degree and you are a native English speaker, the TEFL certification will certainly be enough to help you land a job teaching English in the Czech Republic. Non-native speakers and those who don't have a Bachelor's degree can still find work, but it might be a bit more challenging.
Either way, you can help yourself by starting early and research potential employers before you even start the course. Organizations in Prague, Brno, Ostrava, and Pilsen are always posting job openings. Make connections during the course and ask for advice from your instructors. Ask to speak with previous students and work hard to complete the training with high grades to help you stand out.