Jon Burton, Principal, Hilderstone College

Jon Burton, Principal, Hilderstone College

Choosing the right ELT teacher development course

As with any profession, language teachers, as well as CLIL teachers, should take up as many opportunities for high quality continuous professional development as they can. One of the most popular choices is a teacher development or refresher course at a language school. Sometimes these may be funded, or part funded, by the teacher’s school, local education authority, region or state, or by international programmes such as Erasmus+ for EU citizens.

But what are, or should be, the key elements of a teacher development a course?

A good teacher development course is a great opportunity to update skills and knowledge, and develop in a whole range of areas. The chart below highlights most, if not all, of these. Which ones take precedence depends on the personal situation and priorities of the individual.

Why teachers enrol on a development course

Why teachers enrol on a development course

From the perspective of the course participant, addressing their own priority factors, as well as additional ‘bonus’ ones, is motivating, reaffirming and satisfying.

From the perspective of the language school, it is essential that the course reflects an appropriate and wide range of these elements (which ones in particular depending on the specific course description) in order to help ensure high course satisfaction.

Of course other significant factors, such as the quality of teaching, the resources and facilities available, the destination, the social programme and the accommodation are all very important, but course content is always a key component of a great teacher development course.

Jon Burton is principal of Hilderstone College, which has been running teacher development courses for individuals and groups of teachers and trainers, as well as English language courses, for over 45 years in the seaside town of Broadstairs in Kent, south-east England. All Hilderstone Teacher Development Courses are eligible for Erasmus+ funding.

Teacher training courses at Hilderstone College in Broadstairs, UK, are eligible for Erasmus funding.

Teacher training courses at Hilderstone College in Broadstairs, UK, are eligible for Erasmus funding.

Search for teacher training courses with the IALC course finder.

About this blog

Members of IALC share their insights on the language travel industry. Contributors are owners, directors, managers, teachers or administrative staff of IALC-accredited language schools worldwide.

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