American TESOL Institute Online

Does anyone know anything about American TESOL Institute? Or has anyone actually gotten a certificate through this program? I am going to Taiwan to teach in August and I want to be a little more familiar with teaching English to foreigners since my major was Business. I know a TESOL certification is not required, but I figured it would help. This seems to be the best option for me since it is only a few hundred dollars and it is online since I don’t have much time. I’m just worried it’s a scam or something. I read a few things about people taking this class in Thailand and they weren’t happy with it.

Also, in order to get a visitor visa for Taiwan I was told I need to write a letter of intent. Should I tell them that I plan to find a job in Taiwan, or just tell them I am visiting friends?


This isn’t a ‘do it/don’t do it’ post, just some thoughts. Although these courses seem cheap, in reality, they don’t offer more than a really good beginners book on the subject will get you, so they are actually expensive. I could set one up in a day. Also, if you decide to take TESOL further as a career, or you want to teach outside a few countries or in your home country, it isn’t really useful.

What you get from a TESOL course is observed practicum (this doesn’t have that from what I see) and from an online course, acess to online communities which there is also no immediate evidence of: there’s no evidence that they have any expertise online learning.

What this certificate IS is a sign of good faith to your employer. You have tried to do something positive, which is always good. It may not get you more money or even further up the list of candidates. It will also give you more confidence in your first few weeks.

Visiting friends: you aren’t allowed to work on a visitor visa.