Do I need a TEFL certification if I'm a licensed teacher?

Do I need a TEFL certification if I'm a licensed teacher?

By Paula Dicu

A TEFL certificate offers many skills to those looking to teach ESL, whether in an international position abroad or virtually. 

And yet, it’s a myth that only ESL teachers will gain benefits from completing the OISE TEFL

Countless other professions would benefit from the knowledge gained, specifically the ability to become a better teacher and guide English-learning speakers. 

Plus, everyone should experience what it’s like to be a teacher at one point in their lives.

If you’re already a licensed teacher, you may be asking, “Do I need a TEFL if I already went to college?” 

The short answer? Yes. But this article will go on to explain why.

Whether you’re signing up for TEFL to learn new skills, start a new career path or even have it as a side hustle, these 7 professions will thoroughly benefit from completing this certificate. 

  1. Licensed Teacher
  2. Tour Guide
  3. Private Tutor
  4. Podcaster
  5. Translator
  6. Coaches
  7. Children’s Book Writers

Licensed Teachers

Licensed teachers have already gone to teacher’s College, and yet, regardless of your past experiences, the TEFL certification offers new skill sets and insights that will positively impact your educational growth.

A qualified teacher can gain the experience of teaching abroad at an international school and increase their cultural knowledge as a result of the places they live and teach in.

Teaching overseas is entirely different from being in a local classroom, and while traveling isn’t a prerequisite with TEFL, the option for it is life-changing alone. 

Mentoring language learners continues to create a positive influence on the lives of so many people, and so if one of the reasons you became a teacher was to make such an impact, your passion for your craft would only grow from here. 

Tour Guide

As a tour guide, you must know how to speak to a variety of people.

There will be many individuals interested to learn more about the local culture and history you are knowledgeable about. 

And while your passion and zest for your craft may come across fairly easily, how well do you know how to communicate with those whose first language is not English? How much experience do you have teaching? 

Practice makes perfect, but gaining the skill sets from a TEFL certification will further enhance your ability to show up as a tour guide. 

Private or Online Tutor 

A tutor often works outside the classroom! They work one-on-one with their students in person or online. 

These after-hours are geared towards helping students excel in a particular field or subject they may be struggling with. 

As someone who works freelance, you have complete control over how you create lesson plans and guide others.

And yet, continuously learning how to be a better teacher and tutor will always benefit your career development in the long run. 

A TEFL certificate will not only allow you to expand your ability to communicate with English-learning speakers, but it can also lead you to tutor English as a second language abroad. 

The other great advantage is that there are so many TEFL certificate specializations that you can pursue and become a tutor in.

A few options to choose from include:

  1. Teaching English to Arabic speakers
  2. Teaching English to Korean speakers
  3. Teaching English to Mandarin (Chinese) speakers
  4. Teaching English to Young Learners
  5. Teaching Test Preparation Courses
  6. Teaching Business English
  7. Online Teaching and Learning


A podcaster is someone who loves to use their voice to share wisdom. They could be speaking from their own experiences or interviewing guests on their podcast show. 

These days, more people are tuning into podcasts as a great source of entertainment and knowledge, whether they do so while in the car, at the gym, or in the comforts of their homes.  

So, how does a TEFL certification help you? 

Completing TEFL will allow you to teach ESL as a side hustle while you’re growing your podcasting business. At the same time, it will enhance your ability to communicate with a wide variety of people.


A translator can take a body of text and make it understandable for others who do not speak the original language of the written piece.

An ESL teacher's role is to guide those who don’t understand English, and so in many ways, the overlap between the two professions is already profound.

Completing a TEFL will allow you to gain more experience explaining information to English-learning speakers.


Coaching is another people-oriented profession with the goal of boosting an individual’s confidence, sense of self, and so much more.

A coach can help individuals create the life they desire. 

But of course, the clients that come to you will be from all different stages and walks of life.

The skill set of communication is key, including teaching and relating to those whose first language is not English. 

Children’s Book Writers

Have you ever considered being a children’s book writer who caters their stories to those learning English? 

Reading is one of the great ways that many learn to expand their vocabulary and grow their literacy.

And so, the OISE TEFL will help you better understand how English-learning speakers learn and what works. It can positively influence your own creative writing in unexpected ways.

Completing a TEFL certification

Choosing the right institution to accredit you for your career growth is so important!

The world-recognized University of Toronto continues to set itself apart from other regular TEFL courses with its self-paced course

This certificate was specifically created to help you qualify for more teaching jobs, equipping you with all the skills needed to boost your confidence.

Some of your key takeaways will be:

  • Lesson planning
  • Teaching methods
  • Principles of grammar
  • Second language acquisition theory
  • How to develop a portfolio of student-centered activities
  • Helpful techniques for teaching abroad

No matter your experience level, the course will provide solid foundations to help you feel ready for the classroom. 

Read more about enrolling in the right TEFL course for you.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.