United States TEFL Certification Course in Chicago

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  • Overview

    Earn your 190-hour TEFL Certification while enjoying all that Chicago has to offer. Enjoy a TEFL course with small classes and highly qualified university-level professors in the beautiful Lakeview neighborhood, while utilizing brand new classroom facilities, computer work stations, a reference library and student lounge.

    Through a series of course readings, tasks, peer participation, essays, and a final thematic unit, students will develop all the skills necessary to be a confident, well-resourced, professional teacher -whatever your background!

    This course will qualify you for not only for Greenheart Travel teach abroad programs, but for teaching positions all around the world: Teach in Asia, Europe, Latin America, or the Middle East!

    Course Overview:

    • 4-week course in Chicago, Illinois
    • 190 hours of TEFL training
    • Internationally accredited by TQUK
    • 10 hours of practicum (observation, teaching practice, lesson plan prep)
    • Student teaching with actual ESL students
    • Class sizes limited to 12 students
    • 3 main components: teaching methodology, language acquisition, student teaching (practicum)

    Have questions for a program manager? Email us at travelapplications@greenheart.org

  • Course Dates

    Class sizes are extremely limited (12 students), so early registration is highly recommended. Classes usually fill 3-4 months ahead of time so please think ahead if you’re interested in a Chicago course!

    Course Date Availability
    September 11, 2023 Open 
    October 9, 2023 Open
    November 13, 2023 Open
    January 8, 2024 Open
    February 5, 2024 Open
    March 11, 2024 Open
    April 8, 2024 Open
    May 13, 2024 Open


    Can’t commit to a full time, four-week course? You can get the same great certification around your current schedule with our Online TEFL Course!

    *Summer courses fill up 3-5 months ahead of time so it’s important to register early to ensure your spot on a summer course!

  • Eligibility

    Our Chicago TEFL student ages range from 18-88. Nobody is too young or too old to earn their TEFL Certification. Please note that many countries have age, degree, and language requirements for their teaching positions and work permits. Greenheart Travel is happy to talk with anyone planning to take a TEFL course about realistic teaching opportunities abroad.

    • At least 18 years of age
    • Native English Speaker*
    • High school diploma
    • Have a laptop (tablets not acceptable)
    • Legally able to study in the US
      • International students must already possess the necessary visa to legally study in the US to attend this course

    *Non-native speakers are also eligible, but must submit a written essay and engage in an interview to assess their level of English proficiency. 

    If you have any questions regarding eligibility, please contact Greenheart Travel at 888-ABROAD-1. We will be happy to assist you with all of your questions regarding TEFL Certification and teaching English abroad.

  • Costs


    What’s included?

    • Pre-course grammar module
    • 190 hour TEFL certification
    • Four weeks of full time, in-person TEFL training
    • Live practice teaching (practicum) with actual ESL students
    • Job search guidance workshops
    • Letter of recommendation
    • Lifetime job guidance
    • 350 page ESL job search manual
    • ESL school directory (approx. 8,000 schools worldwide)

    What’s not included:

    • Accommodation
    • Meals
    • Visa*
    • Insurance
    • Airfare to/from Chicago
    • Access to a computer

    *Our courses in the United States are available for all citizenships, ethnicities, native and non-native English speakers.  For non-US citizens or non-legal residents of the USA, you will need to understand US law and the visa that allows or doesn’t allow you to enroll into job training courses (vocational training).

    1. It is your responsibility to understand this information prior to registration and we highly advise prospective students with non-legal US status outside the US to not enroll in a Chicago TEFL class or make any travel arrangements until you have the correct visa. Greenheart does not check visa status for enrollment into our TEFL courses.  Your ID will be checked on the first day of class only to verify that you are the correct student registered for the course. This complies with our accreditation and issuance of the completed TEFL certificate.
    2. Non-US citizens or non-legal residents trying to enter the US on a visa need to comply with the US State Department’s regulationsNote that a tourist visa does not allow foreign citizens to enter the US with the intention of taking a job training course. A Student Visa is for this purpose and the Chicago class is not authorized to issue this.  Greenheart cannot assist students to obtain any visa for the Chicago TEFL Course.
  • Why Greenheart Travel?

    As an alumnus of the Chicago TEFL certification course, you will receive:

    • A highly accredited TEFL certification upon completion of the course
    • $100 alumni discount off any future Greenheart Travel programs
    • Lifetime job placement assistance for jobs worldwide
    • A community of other graduates who are teaching all over the world
    • A community of other Greenheart Travel teachers to reach out to for tips and advice abroad
    • Access to Greenheart Grants to establish community service projects at home or abroad
    • Waived Teach in South Korea Program Application Fee
    • Check out reviews of the course to learn more about our commitment to our TEFL students’ experience
  • Accommodation

    Housing arrangements are not included in the course, but we can suggest various options and recommendations for your month-long stay in Chicago, including local hostels, rental apartments, Airbnb, and Craigslist.

    There are several hostels that are conveniently located near the school, with prices ranging from about $27-35+ per night. Other options include short-term furnished apartments or rooms for rent in the city.

  • Job Searching

    All students and graduates of the Chicago on-site TEFL course receive lifetime job search guidance to find paid jobs teaching English abroad. This includes — but is not limited to — the following:

    1. Greenheart Travel Teach Abroad programs – if you meet the other program requirements, obtaining a TEFL certificate will qualify you for any of our excellent Teach Abroad programs. You’ll receive step-by-step assistance and support from your application to the end of your program. This is a great option for anyone who wants a little bit more structure, support, and community in their teach abroad experience.
    2. Personal guidance from an experienced Job Search Advisor – Expert Job Search Advisors are available to speak with you and correspond by email to address all of your questions and to assist you with every aspect of your job search from writing your resume/CV and cover letter, to coaching you on the interview process in different job markets, to helping you assess which destinations might be the best fit for you based on your preferences and qualifications.
    3. ESL job search manual: All graduates of the online course receive a manual detailing all relevant information for major job markets around the world, including hiring seasons, academic standards, and the interview process as well as templates for resumes and cover letters. This manual also incorporates extensive listings of online resources, including nearly 100 ESL international job boards listing thousands of teaching opportunities around the world.
    4. ESL worldwide school directory: We will send you a directory of approximately 8,000 schools worldwide that you can contact directly regarding employment opportunities.

    Job Search Guidance Workshops for the Chicago TEFL Course:

    In addition to the lifetime job search guidance outlined above, workshops are provided throughout the 4-week Chicago TEFL Course. Three 90-minute workshops are incorporated into the course schedule. These will cover:

    • Country details, job markets, and hiring practices for the four major ESL markets: Europe, Latin America, Asia, and the Middle East.
    • Cover letter and resume development
    • Interviewing prep, strategies and techniques
    • Choosing the right Teach Abroad destination
    • Work visas and travel preparations
    • Expenses and finances
    • Cultural understanding
    • Working with recruiters
  • FAQs

    How do I know if this course is right for me?

    You should take this course if you:

    • want the highest quality TEFL/TESOL course available
    • prefer learning in a classroom over learning online
    • live in Chicago or want a destination TEFL/TESOL course in a vibrant, beautiful city!
    • are looking for an intensive, full time learning experience
    • are seeking the best accreditation from an independent accrediting body
    • decide on quality rather than price alone because you realize that you are investing in your education and your future
    • understand that a highly qualified, experienced instructor, an exceptional curriculum and excellent accreditation are absolute necessities in TESOL / TEFL Certification training

    What’s the daily schedule like?

    The course schedule is quite intensive during the week. Class is held from 9:30am-7:00pm, Monday-Friday. Weekends are free!

    Sample schedule (subject to change):

    9:30 am – 1:30 pm: Class time
    1:30 pm – 2:30 pm: Lunch
    2:30 pm – 5:30 pm: Class time
    5:30 pm – 6:30 pm: Q&A with Instructor
    6:30 pm – 8:00 pm Practicum*

    *Practicum times and days will vary for each TEFL student and will begin on the first Tuesday of the class. Your first week of practicum will only be observing ESL classes, not teaching them.

    What are the “Job Search Guidance” workshops?

    Job search workshops are built into the course and are meant to teach you about the international TEFL/TESOL job markets around the world.

    Job search guidance workshops will cover:

    • Resume and cover letter development
    • Interviewing techniques & strategies
    • Choosing the right country to work
    • Work visas, expenses and travel preparations
    • Cultural understanding
    • Working with recruiters

    What is the “student teaching (practicum)” component of this course mean?

    This course includes 10 hours of practicum, including observation, teaching practice and lesson plan preparation.

    Live practice teaching (practicum) with actual ESL students (not role playing with fellow students as some TEFL schools offer) is an integral part of any accredited, professional-level TEFL training program.

    Practice hours will be arranged for you. For your practice teaching, you will be providing lessons to local ESL students from the Chicagoland area.  The Chicago TEFL School offers free ESL lessons to the Chicago community as part of our dedication to serve the local community. All student teaching is observed by our class professor and given immediate feedback.  This is important for the TEFL student to have their professor observe (not just a staff member) to meet criteria established by our accreditation.

    Our Chicago TEFL class students have on average 10 hours of live student teaching and 20 hours of prep time and instructor review.

    Is this course valid and accredited?

    Yes. The Chicago TEFL Certification course is taught by university-level professors who must hold at least a Master’s Degree (most will hold a Ph.D.) in teaching English as a foreign language or a related field. All professors have at least 10 years of professional teaching and training experience at the university level.

    What content does the course cover?

    • Pre-Course Grammar Module
    • Basic Principles of Teaching
    • Grammar
    • Resources
    • Reading
    • Listening
    • Writing
    • Speaking
    • Classroom Management
    • Lesson Planning
    • Error Correction
    • Visual Aids

    Bonus TEFL Units:

    • Teaching Young Learners
    • Teaching Business Professionals
  • Application Process

    1. Start Your Application Here (Approximately 5 Minutes)Greenheart Travel Application. This first step includes things like your name, address and chosen start date and should take around 5 minutes to complete. Once complete, you will receive a link to a digital Terms and Conditions form.

    2. Sign the Terms and Conditions Document (Approximately 10 Minutes): These are our basic policies like cancellation policies, deferral policies, etc.

    3. Fill out your Registration Form (Approximately 10 Minutes): Fill out a simple form to formally register for your course.

    4. Submit your $600 payment (Approximately 5 Minutes): A payment is required in order to apply for the program and is subtracted from your total program fee. After you submit your payment, we will start to arrange your arrival details!

    5. Schedule your video interview! (Approximately 15 Minutes): Once you have submitted your online application and paid your application fee, you will be asked to schedule a video interview with a Greenheart Travel representative.

    6. You’re accepted! Woohoo! We are usually able to accept people within a 1-2 weeks of their interviews.

    6. Balance: Your remaining tuition balance will be due 6 weeks prior to your course start date.

  • Schedule a Call

    Have questions or want to talk to a program manager? Set up a time to have a phone call below.

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