What is the difference between a TEFL certification and a teaching license?

A TEFL certification is not a teaching license. Both qualifications are used for entirely different things. TEFL is an internationally recognized certificate for teaching English abroad as a second language at all levels. Whereas, a teaching license is a domestically recognized certificate for teaching specific subjects/levels in your home country.

It's important to note that a teaching license is not required for most ESL jobs and to understand that teaching licenses allow you to become a certified teacher in your home country. These generally require a longer time commitment and are issued by a provincial or state issuing body. So if you want to be a math teacher in New York... you should probably get a teaching license.

If you're interested in getting TEFL certified, read our ultimate guide to TEFL.


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