A Review of the Premier TEFL Level 5 168-Hour Online TEFL Certification
This is a solid course for anyone who wants to gain an internationally-recognized TEFL certification that is regulated by the The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual). This TEFL certification will qualify you for the majority of job opportunities for teaching English abroad or online.
About Premier TEFL
Premier TEFL is a TEFL certification provider based in Ireland. The founders of Premier TEFL have over 30 years of combined experience in the ESL industry. The company offers programs including TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certification, IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Certification, and Business English Certification. It offers both online and blended courses.
Premier TEFL is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Distance Learning (ACDL). ACDL is an accrediting body based in the United Kingdom. It awards accreditation to organizations offering online courses in various fields, including journalism, programming, and language education.
ADCL has the following code of conduct:
What ACDL seeks from those it endorses:
- Correct and up-to-date documentation.
- Competence in written English correspondence, course content and all official documentation.
- Organisation must function as an institute of learning and this function must be reflected in all public content, media and documents.
How an ACDL-approved organisation must conduct itself towards potential students:
- Organisation must offer a degree of transparency in how it conducts its business. Private business must still exhibit trustworthiness.
- Courses, Media, and Course Procedures must all be advertised in a truthful and professional manner.
- Language competence must be consistent and of the highest standard.
- Materials needed in order to complete course must be justified in their requirements and clearly outlined before commencement of course.
- Course must follow a fair and appropriate pace and time-frame.
How an ACDL-approved course should be structured:
- Methodology must be clearly outlined.
- Course must be structured with coherent/sequential modules.
- Modules should cover a range of aspects of said subject.
- A valid certificate is awarded upon successful completion of course.
- For all courses, content and procedure must always be current and up to date.
Source: ACDL Code of Conduct
Courses Offered by Premier TEFL
Premier TEFL offers a diverse range of online, blended learning and specialist TEFL courses:
Online Ofqual Level 5 Courses
Blended Learning Courses with Virtual Teaching Practice
- Teaching English Online – 30 Hour Course
- Teaching TOEIC – 30 Hour Course
- Young Learners – 30 Hour Course
- Teaching IELTS – 30 Hour Course
- Teaching Business English – 30 Hour Course
Premier TEFL 168 Hour Qfqual Level 5 Online TEFL Certification
Premier TEFL’s course menu is vast, and its specialist courses offer the full gamut of skills training for those seeking specialized skills as an ESL teacher. However, our primary focus is on the 168-hour online TEFL certification. This is the best option Premier TEFL offers for most people seeking a TEFL qualification, because it is accredited as a Level 5 qualification, and the accreditation is regulated by The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual), a non-ministerial department of the UK Government. Premier TEFL is a approved training center of Training Qualifications UK (TQUK), an independent Ofqual approved awarding organization.
The 168-hour online TEFL certification is equivalent to a CELTA or Trinity CertTESOL qualification. By completing this course, you will gain 29 Credit Points at Level 5 (RQF).
This TEFL certification is verifiable with Ofqual: the Qualification Number is 601/5234/5 on the OFQUAL Register. Why is this important? Prospective employers can validate the certification as a legitimate Level 5 qualification in the UK. Not all TEFL certifications are accredited, and many accredited TEFL courses do not have government endorsed or regulated accreditations. This places the Premier TEFL 168 hour online TEFL certificate in a select group of TEFL certifications that can claim legitimacy through a government endorsed accreditation.
This course is intensive, and takes 13 – 16 weeks to complete. This is a self-study course that must be completed online. Premier TEFL currently does not offer a blended learning option for this course. There are 11 modules in total:
- Module 1: Principles of Teaching English as a Foreign Language
- Module 2: Understanding English Grammar
- Module 3: Teaching English Grammar
- Module 4: Teaching English Vocabulary
- Module 5: Teaching Productive Skills: Speaking and Writing
- Module 6: Teaching Receptive Skills: Listening and Reading
- Module 7: Materials and Aids for Teaching English
- Module 8: Teaching Pronunciation of English
- Module 9: Lesson Planning for Teaching English as a Foreign Language
- Module 10: Young Learners
- Module 11: Use Resources Effectively when Teaching English as a Foreign Language
Passing the Level 5 Course
It is possible to fail this course. You will have to complete assignments and tests, and an academic tutor will assess your coursework. You will be given two attempts to re-submit any incorrect answers, but will receive a failing mark if you are unable to successfully complete your assessment questions on the third attempt.
As this course is completed online, all of the TEFL assignments are contained within the learning portal. As a Level 5 qualification, the assignments will be comprised of a mix of multiple choice and open-ended questions, including essay-style questions. An academic assessor will review your open-ended questions and responses.
Guidance and Support
Every enrollee will be assigned an academic tutor to assist them with academic queries. Enrollees will have direct access to the academic tutor throughout the course.
Who Can Enroll in this Course?
To enroll in the 168 Hour Level 5 Online TEFL course, you must be a fluent English speaker and have excellent writing skills in English. It is not necessary to be a native English speaker, nor is it required to have prior teaching experience. It is also not necessary to have a university degree.
What's Good About This Course
Intuitive Course Design
Premier TEFL has organized this course so that it is easy to follow and intuitive. This is important when selecting a TEFL certification program as you don’t want to spend a lot of time navigating to find specific sections and content.
Upon opening the course, you are immediately taken to a section where you are able to download all of the included supplementary material: (grammar books, lesson plans, reading resources, etc.). In the left sidebar, there is a navigation menu for accessing each module in the course, In the right sidebar, there is a navigation menu though which can move between sections within the current module.
Every module within the course is convenient navigate through, and on the whole, this course has been very well laid out compared to other courses we have evaluated.
In-depth Content and Solid Delivery
A TEFL certification course should be designed to prepare people to be effective ESL teachers. Unfortunately, many TEFL courses exist purely to issue certificates for a quick buck, so people can teach abroad or online. Since most employers require their teachers to have a TEFL qualification, but there is no regulator of TEFL qualifications, the TEFL certification industry operates with both good and bad apples. However, what is the point of adding such a requirement if the certification does not properly equip graduates to be effective ESL teachers? How does a quick and easy TEFL certification help either the teacher or the student?
The Level 5 168 Hour Online TEFL Certification offered by Premier TEFL does. Each module has been thoughtfully designed to help enrollees prepare for all common aspects of teaching ESL learners. The course conveys relevant knowledge and skills to prepare and deliver successful ESL lessons and help ESL learners improve their English language proficiency. It is a complete course, and because it also includes a module for teaching young learners (the largest ESL segment), there is no need to take an extension course as you would if you were to enroll in the CELTA.
Enrollees are also provided with a broad spectrum of supplemental resources that are available as downloadables. This includes an extensive grammar book and lesson planning resources.
The course is delivered through a blend of short videos, podcast clips, text and reading references. Most low-end TEFL courses, which surprisingly don’t cost much less than this one, tend to be inundated with text and PDF attachments. ESL teaching is a hands on skill, and an online course is already missing the in-person element. Video instructions can help to overcome that to some extent.
Most importantly, this is a course you can fail. There are assignments, and open-ended assignments will be assessed by an academic tutor. This is necessary to qualify as a Level 5 qualification, and gives the course credibility.
Actionable Information and Advice
During our review of the Premier TEFL 168 hour online course, we really appreciated that each section provides actionable tips that can be implemented in the ESL classroom. An example of this is the understanding grammar module. Throughout the lesson, there are various side notes under each section of the module which provide tips for teaching specific concepts, and activities that can be used with both younger and older ESL student age groups to help them better understand complex grammar concepts.
The course is chock full of advice to equip enrollees with actionable information they can bring into the classroom. Even if you are an experienced ESL teacher intending to earn a quality TEFL certification, the course content will offer you new insights and perspectives you might not have considered beforehand.
What Can Be Improved
Premier TEFL is undoubtedly delivering a top-notch qualification via the 168 Hour Level 5 Online TEFL Certification. There is no second guessing Premier TEFL’s position as among the best online TEFL providers, in large part due to the Level 5 Ofqual certification. Unfortunately, Premier TEFL only offers Level 5 certification courses online. While this should be sufficient for most people aiming to gain a TEFL qualification, many higher paying employers prefer candidates who have completed their TEFL certification through an in-person or blended learning course. As well, many people actually want to take an in-person or blended learning course, as they can learn and acquire more practical skills during in-person sessions.
Premier TEFL does offer blended learning courses. They just don’t offer Ofqual Level 5 qualifications as blended learning courses at the moment. That doesn’t mean their current offering of blended learning options is inferior. However, Premier TEFL’s most important competitors currently offer some mix of Level 5 TEFL certifications via online, blended learning or in-person course options. Here’s hoping Premier TEFL will introduce a Level 5 blended learning option, too.
Who is this Course for?
The Premier TEFL 168 Hour Ofqual Level 5 TEFL Certification is suitable for almost anyone aspiring to earn a qualification as an ESL teacher. Owning this qualification will open up ESL job opportunities around the world. Even if you don’t have a university degree, you can still teach English in some countries with this qualification.
Currently, many employers in the Middle East will only accept TEFL qualifications that have been completed via in-person courses. As such, this course may not be ideal for ESL job opportunities in the Middle East, or with employers that require a qualification earned through an in-person course. If you need to enroll in an in-person TEFL course, we recommend International TEFL Academy.
The 168-hour Level 5 Online TEFL Certification tuition fee is regularly priced at $639. However, Premier TEFL frequently runs promotions discounting the course fees by as much as 50%, so it’s not unusual to see this course available for a very reasonable price. Indeed, Premier TEFL seems to offer its 168 Hour Level 5 Online TEFL Certification at a lower price than its counterparts. Aside from anyone interested in an in-person or blended learning course, we can’t think of any reason why you would not enroll in this course to earn a TEFL qualification.