Teacher in her class
Teacher in class

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Who is the CELTA for?

The Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CELTA) is an introductory course for candidates who have little or no previous English language teaching experience, or for candidates with some experience but little previous training. 

The CELTA course enables candidates to:

  • learn about and become familiar with the principles of effective teaching
  • acquire a range of practical skills for teaching English to adult learners
  • demonstrate their ability to apply their learning in a real teaching context.

Candidates who complete the course successfully can begin working in a variety of Teaching English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL, TESOL) –  also known as Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) – contexts around the world. 


Course dates and fees

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CELTA is CPF eligible. Applications for CPF funding can be made once you have been accepted onto the course. 

The British Council can also accept employer funding. 

The price includes the Cambridge English Language Assessment registration fee.


Who recognises CELTA?

CELTA is an internationally recognised certificate awarded by Cambridge English Language Assessment, part of the University of Cambridge. 

CELTA is accepted by organisations which employ English language teachers throughout the world, and is widely used as a benchmark of basic teaching skills and quality by:

  • English language schools
  • the voluntary sector
  • non-governmental organisations (NGOs)
  • publishers
  • other educational institutions.

It is accredited by Ofqual (Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation) at Level 5 on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.=

Who can apply?

Applicants must be at least 18 years old. It is generally recommended that candidates should be aged 20 or over. Candidates aged between 18 and 20 can be accepted at the British Council's discretion.

Applicants must have completed secondary education and have the relevant qualifications (for example GCSEs, A-levels, BAC, International Baccalaureate).

Non-native speakers of English must have an awareness of language and a competence in both written and spoken English, which will enable them to undertake the course and prepare for teaching a range of levels. The required candidate language level is C2 (an equivalent to Cambridge English: Proficiency - CPE) or high C1 (an equivalent to Grade A or B of the Cambridge English: Advanced - CAE) on the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). Your language level will be assessed at interview.

What does the course include?

CELTA is made up of 140 contact hours between the candidates and the course tutors, including:

  • input sessions
  • tutorial support
  • supervised lesson planning
  • six hours teaching practice for each candidate supervised by a course tutor
  • feedback on teaching
  • peer observation
  • observation of lessons taught by experienced teachers.

A typical week on the course

A typical week on the course includes:

Teaching practice
Feedback on teaching practice
Guided lesson planning in preparation for teaching
Input sessions, in which practical and theoretical aspects of teaching are covered

You will have further work during the week, in the form of written assignments, homework tasks, lesson planning and language analysis preparation, or self-reflection on lessons you have taught

This is a demanding course and will require a significant amount of your time and energy.

You cannot combine our intensive July course with work of any other nature. Please ensure that you are free of any other commitment during this time, in order to be able to give it your best and gain from it to your best advantage.

How is the course assessed?

Assessment is integrated and continuous, and it focuses on: 

Teaching Practice

Candidates teach students of two different levels of ability (lower and higher) in English for a total of 6 hours.  In line with our outreach programme, the majority of our teaching practice students are refugees who are supported by local charities. 

The assessment includes lesson planning, teaching the lesson in the classroom, and post-lesson reflection.

Written Assignments

There are four written assignments, aiming to help candidates to:

  • focus on adult learners and learning contexts
  • focus on an aspect of the language system of English
  • focus on an aspect of language skills (reading, writing, speaking, listening)
  • reflect on classroom teaching and the identification of action points.

The application procedure

Applications for our next CELTA course from 23 June to 21 July 2023 are now closed.

See also

External links