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Frequently asked questions
The Suzanne Furstner Foundation
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Monday to Friday 9 am till about 5/5.30 pm
The school is located in the New Town, just minutes' walk from Princes Street, the city's main throughfare with its remarkable view of the castle. Here there is a wide range of shops, department stores, cafes and restaurants, a main post office and several major banks. The school is in a nineteenth century Georgian building in the centre of Edinburgh. There are five fully-equipped modern classrooms and a common room with computers online for the students' use, or alternatively you can sit and relax and read a newspaper.
Many local buses lead to Princes Street, which makes the school simple to find, and easy to reach.
Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland and has a population of some 500,000 people. It is one of the most historic cities in Europe and is situated only a few kilometres from glorious countryside. The city is built on seven hills and is divided into the old and the new towns. The old town is the medieval area of Edinburgh whereas the New Town dates from the eighteenth century. The school is in the West End of the New Town. The city's rich history and tradition provide a warm, safe and accessible centre. Edinburgh does not, however, live on its past. Today it is a bustling commercial centre with a dynamic and vibrant arts scene. It is also a great place for shopping and has excellent restaurants.
About the CELTA
It gives you a qualification for entry into the field of EFL teaching to adults internationally. The acronym stands for Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults. It is validated by the University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate who set the guidelines and criteria for centres running these courses.
How long does the course take?
The course is a minimum of 140 contact hours and is full time over four weeks. You attend the school from 9 a.m. till about 5/5.30 and then spend most evenings preparing lessons for the following day. Cambridge recommends that a minimum of 80 additional learning hours for reading, research, assignment writing and lesson preparation is required on a course. This would average out to about 15 hours a week on top of contact hours. On part time courses run over 12 weeks, the contact times are Saturday mornings from 10.00 to 13.00 and Monday and Wednesday evenings 18.00 to 21.00.
Can I enrol?
Yes, if you are at least 18 years old at the start of the course. It is generally recommended that you are aged 20 and over though. You should also have a standard of education that would allow entry to Higher Education in your country. You should have an awareness of language and a competence in English, both written and spoken, that enables you to follow the course and complete the assignments set throughout the course.
What are the course contents?
Input sessions are devoted to methodology, language awareness, phonology and lesson preparation. It is a Cambridge requirement that you observe 6 hours of classes with qualified teachers (4 are of live teaching and 2 can be of videos) and have a minimum of 6 hours observed teaching practice. On our courses here, teaching practice takes place in the afternoons and by the end of the course you will have taught two or three levels of classes.
Is there an examination at the end?
No. You are assessed on 2 components: your teaching practice and written assignments. Cambridge has a set of criteria for each component that you must meet to get the certificate. Towards the end of the course an external assessor comes in to moderate the course and to ensure that assessment is carried out consistently. You will have at least two tutorials during which you will be given an indication of your progress to date.
Do I need to have previous teaching Experience?
No. The CELTA course is designed as a pre-service course for people with no previous teaching experience. It is also a popular course with those who have a PGCE and experience in the state sector but who are looking for a change of direction.
Is it easy to find a job?
It is more difficult to find a full-time job in Britain, except in the summer months when there are many summer schools operating in Edinburgh and the rest of Britain - particularly in the London area. We therefore recommend that you go abroad after the course. During the course information will be available to assist you in finding employment.
Accommodation can be arranged for you by the school.
* Single room in private home with access to the kitchen is £110 a week
* Single room in private home on B & B basis (with access to the kitchen, so you can prepare your evening meal) is £130 a week
* Single room in private home on half board basis (breakfast and evening meal provided) is £160 a week
* In July and August there is university residence accommodation available. This is single room in a large student house with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities. This is around £23 a night. Single room with ensuite facilities but shared kitchen facilities is £26 a night
Monday to Friday 9 am till about 5/5.30 pm
I thought the school was excellent including the quality of the trainers.
Although there was a lot of work to do, the tutors were always on hand to help, for even the most trivial of questions. The course was well-balanced, with methodology sessions in the morning and teaching practice in the afternoons. I thoroughly enjoyed the course and would recommend this particular school to anyone wanting to take the CELTA course.
The school was very small but well organised and had a great atmosphere. The library had many useful books. The teachers were welcoming and helpful, and the course was well run, with input from two teachers and teaching practice overseen by three teachers. I found the course challenging, but very rewarding and informative. Much of the materials that I collected throughout the course will be useful for the future and I will refer back to many of them.
We help candidates on the course by providing them with useful websites and information about getting a job. Trainees have to find their own job.
1. Choose the start date which interests you. If you’re still unsure, please choose an approximate date for now – you will be able to specify later.
2. Register your details with Cactus TEFL (1 minute) to help us track your application.
3. Download the application form and save it on your computer.
4. Complete it offline in your own time
5. Go back to www.cactustefl.com, sign in and submit your completed form.
You can also submit an application by email. We will explain how to do this on the application form. Please contact us if you have any problems with the application procedure.
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