For decades, people have traveled the world, classroom by classroom, teaching English to students of all ages. To take on this education adventure abroad, one must earn a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language), TESL (Teaching English in native speaking English countries to speakers of foreign languages) or TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages certificates. These certificates differ slightly depending on your specialization goals, but a TEFL one is the most comprehensive and widely accepted for teaching position.
There is growing global access to TEFL/TESL/TESOL programs due to the advent of distance learning. Future English teachers can enroll in an online TEFL certificate program, most of which are affordable enough to fit almost any budget constraints.
For those interested in more general information regarding distance learning, check out our ranking of the top online colleges.
Rating and Ranking Methodology
- Quality of online classroom portal and learning resources (1-3 points)
- Student-teaching practicum or similar experiential learning opportunities (1-4 points)
- Range of TEFL/TESOL/TESL courses that provide an accredited, reputable certificate (1-3 points)
- Quality and range of job placement opportunities (1-4 points)
- Graduate testimonials and reviews (1-4 points)
- An additional point was awarded for noteworthy features that made it a top TEFL certificate online
The following ranking represents the top 15 online TEFL programs; These schools were selected via research based on the best elements of an accredited TEFL certificate online. In the event of a tie, the lower-cost program is ranked higher on the list.
Featured Online Schools
#15 – Anaheim University
Program Cost: $900.00
Anaheim University is an affordable, reputable school with successful graduates and top-notch instructor faculty. This college’s school’s fifteen-week online TESOL certificate is developed and moderated by an award-winning linguist; students enrolled in this TESOL program learn a vast range of teaching methods, how to conduct multi-media content presentations, research, and many other teaching resources. AU provides flexibility for its online students, offering the TESOL online certificate program the first Monday of every month.
#14 – TEFL Bootcamp / TEFL Educator
Program Cost: $158.00 to $218.00
TEFL Bootcamp / TEFL Educator is a popular option for future English teachers interested in Thailand, China, and Vietnam. This company has multiple online TEFL certificate choices to fit specified interests and career goals. TEFL Bootcamp has online certificate options that include a 60-hour fundamentals course, an 80-hour fundamentals+ course, a 120-hour TEFL professional course, and a 140-hour professional plus course. Regardless of certificate choice, all enrolled students are invited to take advantage of a TEFL teaching practicum; this optional practicum has proven to add great value to the TEFL certificate, as it provides experiential practice in managing a classroom.
#13 – International TEFL and TESOL Training
Program Cost: $199.00 – $499.00
International TEFL and TESOL Training is an expansive teacher training opportunity, providing numerous options for both in-class and online certificates. ITTT is an affordable means to an online TESOL certificate, ranging from $199 to $399 for the training; the certificate programs are either 60 or 120-hours. Both the 60 and 120-hour tracks have the added option of a tutor-support service, enhancing the learning experience for a minimal added cost. All of ITTT’s online TESOL programs are internationally credited and provide lasting job guidance.
#12 – International Teacher Training Organization (ITTO)
Program Cost: $250.00 – $325.00
The International Teacher Training Organization is a well-respected, low-cost teacher education option. ITTO has three different TEFL certificate programs online; these certificates include a basic 100-hour, a standard 120-hour, and advanced 140-hour options. All TEFL options include top-notch education resources, interactive videos, worldwide job contacts, personalized tutor support, and more. ITTO has extensive contacts on a global scale, working especially closely with Mexico, Latin America, Thailand, and several countries in Europe.
#11 – TESOL International Association
Program Cost: $1,780.00 to $2,170.00
Tesol International Association has a recognized high standard for its various membership benefits and training options. This top TESOL certificate online has a selection of pathways, the most comprehensive of which is the TESOL Core Certificate program; this six-week, 140-hour online TESOL program covers foundation, specialty, and experiential learning in the form of a teaching practicum. In addition to the Core program, TESOL International provides numerous specialization courses that can easily be completed online; some of these specialized self-study tracks include ESL for secondary mathematics, ELS for Secondary Science, Phrasal Structures, and more.
#10 – International TEFL Academy
Program Cost: $1,395.00
International TEFL Academy’s 170-hour, eleven-week online TEFL certificate is an affordable option with a long list of resources for its future teachers. This internationally accredited academy offers lifetime and worldwide job search guidance, university-level instruction, an interactive classroom environment, webinars, and much more. The online TEFL course includes curriculum in classroom management, teaching group classes from advanced to beginner, lesson planning, use of multimedia teaching aids, and basic principles of teaching. Every TEFL student is required to complete an in-class teaching practicum.
#9 – UNI-Prep Institute
Program Cost: $295.00 (120 hours) – $1,950.00 (unlimited courses per year)
Originally founded in Canada, UNI-Prep Institute is a respected name in educational, professional development. This institute’s TESOL certificate program online is 120-hours of coursework, which can be completed on each students’ own pace and schedule. At the conclusion of 120-hours, students can select either a TESOL or TEFL certificate. UNI-Prep has a 99% course completion and pass rate, and the institute has extensive connections to ESL-related employment around the world. Online TESOL students complete curriculum in lesson planning, assessments, classroom management, classroom testings, and more.
#8 – Coventry House International – ONTESOL
Program Cost: $529.00
Coventry House International has been considered a leader in teacher training since 1988. ONTESOL is the online TESOL certificate, providing a more convenient means to complete the program. While based in Canada, ONTESOL has been the choice of students around the world; students have given glowing feedback for the TESOL online program, in particular for the curriculum, knowledgeable tutor faculty, job placement, and hands-on approach to teacher education. CHI – ONTESOL has two certificate programs, one that is 120-hours, and a more comprehensive track that is 250-hours.
#7 – TEFL Certification from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Education
Program Cost: $995.00 – $1,495.00
TEFL certification online from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Education is considered a leader in the industry, offering internationally recognized teacher training opportunities. This institution’s TEFL online courses include 100, 120 or 150-hour programs. In the 120 and 150-hour versions of the course, students have elective options to further specialize their TEFL career; some of these electives include teaching English to young learners or teaching English to Mandarin, Korean, or Arabic speakers. University of Toronto’s TEFL certification is entirely self-paced but typically completed in six to twelve weeks. This particular certification is considered positively received by future employers.
#6 – Greenheart Travel
Program Cost: $1,295.00
Based in Chicago, Greenheart Travel provides a top-notch and immersive teacher training education. All TEFL online certificate students have access to lifelong job placement assistance, and alumni of the TEFL certificate courses are known to be a well-connected community. Greenheart’s TEFL certificate online is 170-hours over eleven weeks; Twenty of the 170 hours are set aside for student teaching, an experiential learning tool that prepares future classroom leaders. Greenheart Travel’s teach abroad programs span Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East.
#5 – TEFL Pros
Program Cost: $349.00
TEFL Pros has received consistently strong reviews from its graduates, in particular for its supportive staff, quality of instruction, and return on investment. This company’s online TEFL certificate online is a flexible 120-hour program; many of the 120 hours are designated for instructional videos and real-life classroom experiences. TEFL Pros builds a practical skill-set, and this approach ensures more versatility in job placement. This teacher-training company has a “try before you buy” option, where prospective TEFL online students can test out a free module to see if its a fit. For graduates of the online TEFL course, this program has extensive offerings in job placement, networking, interview and resume preparation, among other benefits.
#4 – Bridge Education Group – TEFLOnline
Program Cost: $420.00 – $1,295.00
Bridge Education Group is a seasoned leader in teacher training programs, bringing over 30 years of experience to the field. BridgeTEFL has five internationally renowned certificate programs TEFL online certification programs, all of which stay current with the latest teaching technologies, methods, and means of providing job placement; among these TEFL online certificates includes an affordable, flexible, 40-120 hour program, which future teachers typically complete within eight weeks. TEFLOnline.com has a wide range of study resources, a personal tutor, videos, a grammar advisor, and more. Graduates of Bridge’s online TESL certificates have given glowing testimonials, in particular with regard to career preparation and quality of instruction.
#3 – Premier TEFL
Program Cost: $229.00 to $319.00
Premier TEFL boasts high approval ratings from its graduates, averaging a 4.3 out of 5-star rating in over 160 reviews. For those seeking an online TESL teaching certificate, Premier has four options for accredited programs; these programs include a 120, 150, 180, or 240-hour online TEFL certificate options, all of which provide high-value benefits at an affordable rate. Premier’s online teacher-training certificates are all internationally recognized, allow for three months study time, and are led by knowledgeable, experienced instructors. Regardless of which certificate program students select, there are accessible personal tutors for added support.
#2 – i-to-i
Program Cost: $274.00 – $479.00
Established in 1994, i-to-i is a teacher training company known particularly for its hands-on, student-centered approach to TEFL education. i-to-i is the first teaching abroad outfit to offer the two-day teaching course. Employers on a global scale recognize the i-to-i reputation, which bodes well for longterm career job placement. i-to-i additionally has the benefit of being partners with the STA Travel, a well-established global tourism agency. i-to-i has highly experienced instructor faculty, and TEFL certification programs can be taken in online, classroom, or hybrid tracks; the hybrid programs are available in 140, 200, or 320-hour courses, and the 100% online TEFL certificate courses are in 120, 180 or 300-hour increments
#1 – myTEFL
Program Cost: $139.00 – $189.00
myTEFL brings over 35-years of teacher training experience, providing both online and onsite certificate programs. Future TESL professionals have numerous options in furthering their career, and myTEFL is has a strong history of job placements around the world. myTEFL’s online certificate programs include a basic 40-hour and standard 60-hour track; the 40-hour TEFL certificate online is focused in fundamental classroom management, and the 60-hour TEFL certificate online is based in teaching techniques and methods. All myTEFL course programs have 24/7 curriculum and tutor support, technical support, and full library access.
The preceding ranked list represents the top 15 online TEFL programs.