Review of i-to-i TEFL

i-to-i

We’re the leading TEFL provider on the planet. We have over 14 years’ experience of maximising our students’ potential. More than 50,000 people have graduated from our courses and many are living and working abroad, putting the techniques we’ve taught them into practice.

This success is based on the quality of training we provide: our teachers have been there and have the expertise – each has at least three years’ experience of teaching English abroad, and many have masters degrees and decades of experience – so they can give you the skills and confidence you need to be a success.

As a result, our graduates overwhelmingly love our courses, and a massive 94% recommend them to their friends.

Special Offers

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Courses Offered

Type: Combined CoursesOn-site CoursesOnline Courses
Length: Mini Courses (<30 hours)Short Courses (40-100 hours)Standard (120-140 hours)
Certificate: TEFL / TESL / TESOL
Specializations: GrammarTeaching Business English (BE)Teaching One-to-OneTeaching Young Learners (YL)

Location of Courses

Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, Spain, UK, USA
Overall Rating3.043.043.043.043.04
Course Content3.353.353.353.353.35
Practice Teaching1.911.911.911.911.91
Quality of Feedback3.213.213.213.213.21
Lesson Plan Guidance3.063.063.063.063.06
Instructor Competency3.533.533.533.533.53
Job Placement2.232.232.232.232.23
Facilities/Resources3.023.023.023.023.02
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60 Customer Reviews of i-to-i TEFL

Review by Alexia, November 13, 2008

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 55555
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 44444
Facilities/Resources 44444

This is a great quick course to do. I did the 40 hour on-line course for a basic beginner introduction to TEFL. I supplemented the course by reading 2-3 of the recommended text books, so I feel like I got a lot out of it. Course content was good, nice balance between challenging but not overwhelming. I completed the course in about 2-3 weeks, no worries. The best part was the personal tutor feedback – very useful suggestions and quick to respond. We did 1 lesson plan, which was really well taught, but the reason why I only gave 3 stars for this component was because there was only the 1 (can’t expect too much from 40 hours though I guess). A good starting course.

Review by Chris, January 7, 2009

Overall Rating 33333
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 22222
Facilities/Resources 22222

I did a 20 hour course and a 20 hour grammar module, before teaching abroad, and it was a great way to get the qualification and the confidence necessary to jump right in at the deep end. The course was so accessible, the material really well designed and the instructor was excellent. However, in Ireland the Department of Education (ACELS) does not recognize i-to-i ‘s qualifications, and now that I have taken training courses and a Masters TESOL course with other providers, I can see the limitations of i-to-i ‘s training, with almost no lesson planning guidance, and no chance to teach real students, the end product is what you expect from a quick, cheap and easy TEFL course. The real hard work starts after the course when you try teaching for real.

Review by Teflabc, May 7, 2009

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 22222
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

Be careful of ‘online’ courses that promise that they are accepted worldwide and are accredited to a high standard. There are a number of issues that must be considered
before doing an i-to-i TEFL course;
1. There is no actual teaching practice on this course. The weekend course (20hours) , the only classroom segment of the full course, is amongst your fellow tutees, and there are no real students to practice teaching on. Therefore, the i-to-i course fails on one of the major requirements of most schools; a Tefl course with practical teacher training.
2. The majority of the main course (100 hours) is studied entirely online, with no opportunity to demonstrate what you learnt in a real classroom. It’s no better than buying a TEFL book and studying it.
3. The 8000+ job list that is provided is very out of date, has few contacts with email addresses and is no better than looking online for your own contacts.
4. Accreditation is poor; ODLQC is a paid monkey that doesn’t do much checking of the course standards. Compared to the University accredited Celta and Trinity courses, the i-to-i shrivels in comparison.
5. Most ‘good’ or ‘semi-decent’ schools do not recognise i-to-i TEFL certification. The only certifications that are accepted worldwide and that are respected are the CELTA, Trinity Tesol and University degrees in TEFL related subjects. Most schools that ‘accept’ i-to-i certificates would employ you regardless of having this certificate or not. Remember, demand for ‘native’ speakers of English out strips supply in China, Korea and Thailand.
6.You may be considering i-to-i because it portrays itself as a sustainable and ethical company, however it is owned by the uber-travel corporation TUI, which is anything but ethical.

What you need to consider is, for 3-400 pounds extra, you could study the Celta or Trinity in Thailand, Japan, UK, Spain etc, in a classroom with a real trainer, with actual teaching practice.

Review by Chris, May 11, 2009

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I just wanted to respond to Teflabc— Most of the things you state, are things that i-to-i wouldn’t disagree with with the exception of #6. They are very clear about what they offer, what it is and what it isn’t.

Just yesterday, I completed the 20 hour weekend course–and I wanted to post my observations. I was nervous because I hadn’t seen many reviews and was prepared to be let down.

First–Karen, our teacher taught for 10 years in Japan, is head of a major organization that coordinates up to 300 teachers in England. She was amazingly qualified, and the hours literally flew by. Dynamic teaching methods and overall introduction to everything you would need to understand the different components to teaching English. We were a group of 14 and no one left disappointed.

Second–and this is for Teflabc: When the course was over, Karen discussed very openly what further training opportunities were there. She was very clear that i-to-i’s program will do fine for many rural areas and where the standards are not that high. She then reviewed Tefl, Celta and Trinity and explained that if we were still interested and wanted to be certified internationally that those were the routes to go.

Teflabc makes it sound like i-to-i is some scam: the fact is that they speak very clearly about what accredidation they have, they introduce very clearly what the purpose of the weekend courses are for. Because of i-to-i, I am beginning a month long celta training.

So, if you think you may be interested in teaching english–Definitely spend the money for the 20 hour weekend course–a great experience that would be a great first step!

Review by ZGM, June 26, 2009

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I purchased and began work on the I-to-I TEFL 100 hour course in June 2008. By October I had completed it. I then left for Spain to get a job with it. I went for a few interviews but was unsuccessful, as they all wanted someone with at least some experience, I didnt have any, and the course didnt contain any practical experience. After 1 month in Spain I ran out of funds and had to return to the UK bitterly dissappointed. I was determined to try again in the future (I was desperate to leave the UK) and I did. In May 2009 I left for South Korea, and thats where I am now. I had a definite job, contract and accommodation set up for me before I left. I was also accepted without having any teaching experience, you just need a university degree in any subject.

Looking back, I know consider the I-to-I course as a waste of time and money, as I could have got this job in Korea without spending £395 on I-to-I’s online course. Their course may be a good introduction to what TEFL is like, but certainly not worth the money especially when you can do the proper recognized CELTA or TRINITY course for another £400. The reason I bought I-to-I’s course was because I was taken in by their ‘internationally recognized course’ and ‘accredited’ claims. I really should have been more careful and done more research before I got my wallet out, but that doesnt excuse I-to-I from making misleading claims. Let this be a lesson any TEFL newcomers.

Review by Sarah, September 28, 2009

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I did the 120hour course in January, I was talked into it by one of i-to-i’s sales reps on the phone. I even thought I got a good deal with 20% off, but now realise they offer this every month.

The course was OK, but definitely not worth the 400-odd I paid. The only good part of the course was the weekend course, the rest of it isn’t really useful.

I tried to get a job in Japan with this certificate, however most schools wanted a minimum of 120hour in classroom training (like the CLETA, I think it’s called). At the moment, I managed to get a volunteer placement with a school.

I would suggest people go for a 120 hour course (in-classroom), which is accepted worldwide. From what I’ve heard from existing teachers here, i-to- courses are just a paper-mill.

Review by Lucy, October 18, 2009

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 44444
Facilities/Resources 55555

Thought I’d add my own thoughts on this subject. As an English graduate with a PGCE I am already recognised as a qualified teacher, however I have no experience in teaching TEFL so thought I’d do the 100 hour course to boost my knowledge and make me more prepared for teaching abroad.

I actually think that the i-to-i course is pretty good; so it’s not CELTA or TRINITY- but have you seen how much they cost?! All for, at the end of the day, a slighty different bit of paper!

The i-to-i course is thorough; they do not just pass everyone; you have to complete each module to a certain standard or retake it ( you can only resubmit twice), and you are given very good feedback from the well-qualified tutors; so you become more aware of your strengths and weaknesses. I am now almost finished on the course and have taken advantage of the Job Placement Service offered to register to work in Czech Rep. Normally this country requires the 120 hour course (inc practice), the i-to-i rep who spoke to me recognised I had a PGCE, saw common sense and said she was sure that was fine (if they were so “money-grabbing”, surely I’d have been pressured to add the 20 hour course?).

I honestly feel that i-to-i offer good value. They explain from the beginning what is included, and don’t try to con anyone. I think CELTA and TRINITY are charletans, they charge a lot more than i-to-i, and you still only get 6 hours of practical teaching! At the end of the day a lot of schools abroad are more bothered about you having a degree than a TEFL cert, whatever TEFL you take; it does more to prepare you, than give you any clout when applying for jobs.

Review by Keith, December 23, 2009

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I did only a short course on multilevel classes with i-to-i (because I did my TEFL certificate through a university) and I was satisfied. I learned a lot.

To ZGM: Any preparation for working in Korea is appreciated, especially in the public schools. I work in a public school and in Korea I feel there are way too many people coming to teach these wonderful children and don’t have a clue what to do. ZGM, you made an investment and probably you are a better teacher for it.

About Spain: I have heard that it is a tough place to get an English teaching job. You have to be super-credentialed and super-experienced because there is a lot of competition. But it makes sense because many people want to go to Spain because of some idealized notion of life there.

Korea is a great place to get teaching experience, but I hope that people at least get some fundamentals under their belts before coming here. I would not advise anyone to take an expensive course like Trinity or CELTA if the plan to teach for a short time. If you want to make teaching English a career, by all means take one of those courses or do a Masters in TESOL or ELT.

I am American and I taught English in Germany and Finland without any certification. I wish I had taken some course before…things would have gone much smoother.

Review by James, April 6, 2010

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 22222
Job Placement 22222
Facilities/Resources 11111

I completed the 40hr weekend/grammar course in January and headed to Thailand to teach. To be honest, the weekend course was great; the trainer was knowledgable and motivational and the course was structured. However, the online course was bit of a con as I didn’t feel it was any different from buying a good grammar book and studying it by yourself. Also, although the weekend course was great, it was way too short, felt hurried and had no actual teaching practice with real students.

The main reason I just did the 80hr course was to try it out before going the full hog and doing the 120hr course (while in BKK). However, when I arrived in BKK, all of the respected and high-paying language schools and institutes said that the certification was insufficient. I heard from 8 employers in Bangkok (ranging from British Council to Wall Street) that the i-to-i course was inadequate because it was studied for the majority ‘online’ and that there was no actual teaching practice involved (this is what they stressed the most).

In the end, I managed to get a job a small government school on the outskirts of BKK. However, i believe that it was more to do with their desperation for native speaking teachers than the i-to-i course. And by the way, the i-to-i courses I did were in no way sufficient for preparing me to teach.

Since I’ve been here, I’ve met a number of experienced teachers teaching in some prestigious locations. They said that if you want to work in a good school you need the following;

- a year of experience (sometimes, at the right times of the year good schools will hire newbee teachers as long as they have an internationally recognised TESOL/TEFL)
- a CELTA, TRINTY, A SITtesol or at least a 120hr CLASSROOM based TESOL corse (with teaching practice)
- a degree

Most of these teachers I spoke to said that the i-to-i course, like most of the other online courses, is a very basic ‘intro’ course. It is not sufficient for a career in TESOL/TEFL.

I have now completed a CELTA in BKK, and I wish I did this initially rather than wasting my money on the i-to-i course. Although, the CELTA was full on for four weeks, I left feeling ready to teach anywhere. I also secured a job with a top international language school in BKK.

Review by Carl, April 11, 2010

Overall Rating 33333
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 33333
Facilities/Resources 22222

I took the 40 hour online course, if you know next to nothing about teaching this guide will indeed help you but some of it proves to be tedious for a learner who does best hands on. If you can study online easily this will work for you and get you started but I think its hardly worth the 200 and something USD I payed for it.

If I were to give it a dollar value, it would be $10 USD, simply because you can buy a book for that price that’s going to teach you twice as much.

Review by Danny, May 16, 2010

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 33333
Quality of Feedback 44444
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 33333
Facilities/Resources 44444

As somebody going with EPIK (English Program in Korea), having a 100+ hour certificate qualifies you for around $100 extra/month pay raise. Considering it is a year-long contract and they do not care on the type of certificate you have, $500 for the i-to-i 120hour TEFL certificate is without a doubt worth it. Besides making my money back after five months abroad, I also feel more confident and prepared to teach English.

I also think the interactive structure of the online course is very good. Nobody here seems to be talking about that component of the course. The modules are actually fun to do (if you think that’s possible. haha).

Review by simon, June 8, 2010

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 33333
Facilities/Resources 44444

I feel obliged to write a review of i to i here as I feel there are far too many negative one’s being written. I am 46 years old with no degree, but I have 3 college diplomas from the early 80′s (which is where a university degree would have been from should i have one). I did the i to i course purely to see if teaching english would suit me rather than just going into a job abroad with all guns blazing and no teaching experience / certificates.

Doing this course made me realise that it would be something i could and will enjoy doing. It has taught me the basics ie lesson planning, grammar amongst other things. It has also given me a brief outline of teaching one to one, large classes, limited resources, business english and teaching young learners. This course has never pretended to be the be all and end all, I have always known i could get a job in thailand with just a tefl certificate albeit not in bangkok necessarily because of the university degree and the ageism aspect, but, i could get a job elsewhere there and cambodia, vietnam etc should i desire to.

My intention has always been to take a celta course in which ever country i choose to teach in, as well as having my tefl cert i would bet i can find a decent job and get a proper teaching licence without a degree.

The tutor feedback was excellent, I now know how to lesson plan which was something i could not do before the course, the grammar module has reminded me of all those dark days back at school doing english, overall the course content was very good, no teaching experience but this can always be gained on the job or even one to one private lessons in this country.

ODLQC are a british government backed accreditor, many people have slated them, but i think it is a very good accreditor, not as good as celta admittedly, but if you want celta then pay the extra money and do it. I to i is a good start in the tefl world and will get you a job and a teaching licence in most cases, so please stop putting it down so much, I enjoyed doing the course and as such will be moving abroad to teach within the next year.

Review by Mic, June 15, 2010

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I would stay away from i-to-i. I had a terrible experience with them. They advertised their internship in China claiming that you would get a chance to select your region. Initially they offered a choice of four regions, but then, only AFTER the money had been paid, they informed me that in fact there were only 2 regions to choose from, which were something like ‘North’ and ‘South’ China, regions so large they could realistically include anything.

I also found them unhelpful in moving dates and in making changes. Their 120 hr course, also, is a bit of a joke. It’s intuitive, and you learn very little new. I’d stay away.

Review by Amy Robin, June 21, 2010

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 55555
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 55555
Facilities/Resources 55555

I was surprised to read Mic’s comment on 15 June. My experience of the i-to-i TEFL course so far has been nothing but overwhelmingly positive. I’ve completed the Weekend Course and am thoroughly enjoying working my way through the online component (I’m doing the 120 hour combined course). My expectations have been exceeded in every area so far. I’ve been particularly impressed by how quickly the assignments are marked and how comprehensive and helpful/constructive the feedback is. If only university tutors were as good at providing timely and useful feedback! The quality of teaching on the Weekend Course was second to none and I’m rapt with the wealth of TEFL resources now at my fingertips. I taught English in Japan with no qualifications or experience a few years back, and had a good experience.When I return to Japan next year, having completed i-to-i’s 120 hour combined course, I know that I’ll be equipped with the knowledge, tools and confidence to have an even better TEFL experience. An outstanding one, in fact. So thank you, i-to-i. Keep up the fantastic work.

Review by Nick Pellatt, July 7, 2010

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

One star rating for all categories….Can you say zero stars? I dont know!

I did a 40 hour course prior to taking a paid job in China, and realised very quickly that employers who accept an i-i qualification will normally accept you without any qualification if you have a BA/BSc. This is true for many countries where the only requirement is a degree.

In order to continue teaching, I had to complete a recognised course later (I’ve also reviewed that course with St Giles Eastbourne on this site) and so the i-i course was a waste of time and money. So much so that I actually omit it from my resume now as it detracts rather than adds to my qualifications.

I would advise everyone to avoid courses like this, and invest the money into a couple of textbooks instead that will teach you just as much at a far better price. Likewise for the reviewers who say ‘i-i is a good introduction to EFL’, well, books like ‘Learning Teaching’ by Scriverner is just as good an intro at a far lower price.

Anyone who is confused by the mixed reviews on here should just look at some job adverts on a site like TEFL.com and see what employers actually want from candidates. A quick look there will quickly show you that in some regions, a degree is enough, in other regions, a Master is the minimum. When EFL qualifications are required, Trinity/CELTA etc are normally the industry minimum.

This leaves i-i and similar programs as being superfluous. Avoid.

Review by Anon, August 24, 2010

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

Complete waste of time, effort & your money. Your resources would be better spent looking at doing a practicle course with a reputable provider.

Let me offer a working example, here we see the assessment question;

Devise concept questions to check student understanding of the sentences. Write 3 or 4 questions to each sentence. Make sure all your questions are useful, i.e. they check the essential meaning of the grammatical structure.

I wish you wouldn’t smoke so much.

Answer:

Does the person smoke often?
Is the person happy when he/she is smoking?
Do you think his/her’s cloths smell?
Does he/she smoke regularly?

Below is the feedback

Comment: Mostly correct but you’d also have to establish that the speaker wants the smoker to smoke less.

My point being that the course question is asking for concept questions in relation to the statement made, I cannot get my head round what the tutor mean’s by his/her comment.

Also be prepared for further nonsense as follows;

Since this is your final attempt at checkpoint 3, I have to fail you on the Online TEFL Course. We often allow an extra attempt for those students who are on a learning track but still a little short of the required level. However, in your case I am not inclined to do so, because you have not followed my explicit instructions in some tasks.

Despite 3 attempts and writing the answers to the fairly simple questions, spending an awful lot of time and money the Tutor here tries to say I fall below the required standard.

Read the response carefully before you make your mind up, hardly worded very well for a DOS, is it?.

What a complete load of non-sense I will be asking for the DOS to either re-consider their decision or refund on my course, if not expect an unbelievable website to appear about i-to-i horror stories where there are no holds barred.

Anyone even signing up to this course should be aware that if your answer does not agree with the tutors you will get some pedantic, useless feedback!

Review by Mark, September 10, 2010

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 22222

I took a 20 hour weekend course just as a taster to see if I would enjoy TEFL. I didn’t really get much of a chance to find out.

There didn’t seem to be any structure to the course and I’ve no idea what the learning outcomes were or how these were assessed. At the end none of the students seemed at all prepared to go into a classroom and teach and I was shocked to learn that there would be no more teaching practice, even for those on the 140 hour course.

And they spam you constantly with new offers. Their business strategy seems to be to draw you in with cheap offers then tempt you to keep topping up your training, which you will need to do because of the deficiency of training you receive.

Review by Bob, September 14, 2010

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

If you want to pass the online course, you have to second guess what answers the tutor wants.
The marking, IMO, is too subjective. They want answers that are short (quicker to mark?) and are what the tutor her/himself would write. If your answers are short, they split hairs and have a go at you for what you didn’t say!

Eg: ‘describe when a teacher should shout, and why’.
I don’t think shouting is a good idea at all, but you have to say something, so I said in an emergency, or if it is needed for role play.
Response?
You shouldn’t shout, because that is bad discipline and students won’t respect you!
I hadn’t said shout for discipline. If you shouldn’t shout! why ask such as stupid question?

Other resources are needed to give you more examples and better explanations about TEFL terminology and how it works in the classroom, to enable you to answer the questions.

I struggled with some of the questions Anon (August 24) mentions, and hey presto! Type the question in to web search, and you’ll find you’re not alone.

It has some good points though: videos of a teacher in action, with a nice big self-advertising screen in the background, and constant repetition of the English-learning students being rewarded with the word ‘excellent’.

Excellent is something this course is not, and I recommend finding another one, with better reviews.

Review by Hector, October 19, 2010

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 55555
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 55555
Facilities/Resources 55555

Aside from all the comments from above I personally think that this would help NEW people entering the teaching area.

I do empathize with the idea that some questions are not ad-hoc for the course or to develop one’s english teaching proficiency.

But overrall I thank everyone on the team for the great character and constant support.

Review by Benjamin Crompton, November 15, 2010

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 44444

I understand the negative comments from those of you who have failed elements (or the whole of your course), but if you review the errors you’ve cited it’s quite clear there is something lacking in your answers. Bob – the point of that particular question was to make you prove that you’re aware of the importance of never shouting in a classroom.

A TEFL certification is not going to get you a full time job in the better academies and centres around the world. But, that doesn’t make it useless. Our weekend tutor emphasised that the course would be perfect for working on a summer school. Which it was – I managed to land a 2 month contract with a British Council accredited school in London (although note that when I applied I already had several months’ experience leading a class in Ghana and working as a private tutor).

When I did my 120 hour course there were lots of comments and questions on the i-to-i forum about the tutors, and how effectively they mark. If I’m honest, I always put this down to confusion or anger on the students’ part; people who were getting activities right and passing each module were frequently happy.

As for the course, I thought it was well structured and interesting. The 20-hour weekend element was excellent. Followed by 100-odd hours of online work, you do feel like you’ve accomplished something. At the end of the day, this is only a certification. If you’ve done your homework, you’ll know that a CELTA or Trinity ESOL are the qualifications you need to find well-paid EFL work abroad (and with two or three years’ experience, work in the UK). You’ll also know that most academies and schools around the world will ask for a CELTA or equivalent and a BA/MA at undergraduate level.

The bottom line is that the i-to-i TEFL is perfect for people who are considering a career in teaching, but don’t have the time or money to commit to an intensive month-long CELTA training program. Again, if you’ve done your research, you’ll know the i-to-i fee of around £400 is nowhere near the average CELTA fee of £1000.

If you want to start teaching English as a foreign/second language, a TEFL cert. is a great way to start; to test the water, if you will. i-to-i’s TEFL certification is a great way to do that.

Review by Sara, November 17, 2010

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

i-to-i is like seeing a trailer for a movie that looks great only to realize that all the good parts were in the advert.

Although the i-to-i TEFL course is easy and cheaper than many other TEFL courses it is not worth the time or money you will invest. While the website is very accessible, there is little to no feedback from real people. The only feedback you receive is after completing the module assignments, each of which is graded by a different online tutor; the feedback is thin and inconsistent. It is more a tutorial than a class.

I also took the classroom portion of the i-to-i TEFL course. The teacher was very engaging and competent. She clearly had experience as a teacher and kept the lessons paced well. However, the material covered had no more depth than the slides in the online modules.

This was frustrating but what I find infuriating is that i-to-i TEFL certificates are not recognized by most schools. They are only recognized as a bonus in places where you could teach TEFL cert. or no TEFL cert. Additionally, the job placement services that i-to-i promises are sparse. The few placements they list as examples before you sign up are in fact the only placements they offer.

You are far better off with CELTA or a TESOL program at a major university.
(As a point of credibility I would like to add that I passed every module and am not simply upset about a grade. I am angry about the shortcoming of this flimsy course)

Review by kbtravel, November 21, 2010

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 22222
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

Hi All, Just so you know- I was not successful in my phone interview for apparent unknown reason only the Chinese counterparts know. I really don’t understand. English is my first language I have worked in numerous organization speaking to COOs, CEOs and CFOs and I have a Bachelors degree in an Reputable Australian Universities – I think its a bunch of bollocks. There was no reason my application should have been rejected I completed the course requirements and online assessments well before it was due. I don’t think they are professional at all. I honestly believe I was not given a fair chance. Not worth wasting your money especially if you are Australian wanting to teach English overseas. I did the course as it was a requirement of the internship program. I think people should know that it is not right. How many other people have signed up only to be knocked back by a ‘third party’ and then still have to pay for the course? Its a scam to pay for the course with the hope of travelling to china. I would not recommend i-to-i to anyone.

***Are you preparing for your Phone Interivew with i-to i???***

After reading countless blogs and not being able to find out about what the phone interview was like I thought I’d give you a heads up about what came up during my interview.

Firstly I need to say that getting them to call at or around the time they advised was a huge problem in itself.

I received an email on Friday for a scheduled interview on Tuesday. After confirming straight away that everything was good to go I waited all day for a phone call at 6pm (4pm BJS time). The phone call never came but at 7.50pm the same night I received a call/voicemail saying they were sorry for the delay and to call them back. My initial response to this was it was an international phone line and they were almost 2 hours late which led me to believe my impression of the school/company themselves was disappointing. I’ve never been late for an interview and usually if one partner is late its not a good sign. Anyway, I emailed i-to-i and the contact in China who set up the interview and rescheduled for another day same time. Thinking last night would be different it wasn’t. I waited again for the call at 6pm which came at 9.

It lasted 7 minutes and the questions I was asked was -
* Tell me about yourself and why you signed up to teach English?
* How do you feel about being placed in the other areas away from the city?
* What do you know about China/Why do you want to teach here and what have you heard about the classes in China?
* How did you feel about the TEFL course?

Im sure there was another two but I can’t remember. He didn’t ask about grammer or how I’d teach a lesson plan. the interviewer was an employee at the partner company in China. I felt I couldn’t ask him much about the school and my queries specifally questions that matter include – how safe are the building blocks and how far is it from the school and are the rooms furnished? He could only answer general questions which made it hard to decide if it would be the right school for you. (I know they assign the school on arrival in Beijing but perhaps this is what they can improve on- giving interns a better idea of where they are staying)

Review by anenglishteacher, November 21, 2010

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

My 100-hour online course was a gift so there was no “choice” involved for me. I have been teaching English in Jakarta for a year now, and my i-to-i education gave me enough confidence and ability to design my own course materials, create lesson plans and begin teaching within a week of certification. I never had intended to consider the traditional route as far as teaching goes since I have no degree; a more self-employed/independent approach was what I was after.

I don’t consider the course I took “flimsy”; I was reacquainted with many of the complications of English grammar and tackled them from an ESL perspective. English is a challenging language and the modules were logically structured as they guided me through varying levels of understanding grammar, syntax and usage. The certificates also gave invaluable training in areas such as teaching business English, young learners, with limited resources, etc..

My tutor, fortunately, was a good one; he gave timely responses and always answered my questions concisely. I never felt his advice was pedantic and certainly never useless. I, too, remember being baffled at first about concept questions and specifically the question about smoking. The tutor is correct, Anon! If you use the transitive verb WISH, you must get the point across to your students that this is a strong request/desire/want for the smoker to smoke less!

If I had the money, I would always invest in the best. Yet I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this online course for the self-motivated types who can work successfully on their own, not requiring a classroom situation necessarily to keep them on the right track. The knowledge I gained was not lacking in depth, to say the least and like most things in which we make a sincere effort in this life, what we get out will be commensurate with what we put in.

Review by James Barr, January 10, 2011

Overall Rating 22222
Course Content 22222
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 33333

On the whole I had a bad experience with itoi. I purchased the 120 hour combined course. As part of this I did the 20 hour weekend course, the 60 hour online, the grammar awareness course and the specialist certificates.

I would only recommend the 20 hour weekend classroom course. The 60 hour course basically repeats everything done in the classroom. Even most of the examples are the same. I don’t really think its fair to charge someone twice to study the same material. I also had problems saving, I did a 37 question module and lost 34 questions, it took me nearly two hours to re-do them, my girlfriend also had problems saving too. The grammar awareness course is just a multiple choice quiz which you can attempt as many times as you want. Not reall y worth the money.

The customer service is poor too. When I e-mailed the customer service department and asked for a partial refund they replied in a very rude way telling me I was wrong that I shouldn’t be dissatisfied. Basically as soon as they have your money you are not going to get it back. I know it is a cheap course but its not good enough and most countries don’t accept it as a qualification. Overall, not worth doing.

Review by LR, January 11, 2011

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 44444
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 44444

I just finished the i – i 120 hour online course and found it to be challenging and informative. I’ve been teaching English for several years now in Europe and used many of my own experiences with the situations which were asked to evaluate. I feel much more confident. I decided on i – i because of its online course and the tutors and because of many of the good reviews. I agree that it is not a CELTA but I do not have the time to be able to go away for a week or 2 to study. That is not an option. It seems to me those that have written poor reviews did not pass or expected the certificate to open doors to high paying jobs. I did it for self enrichment, to test myself and I ended up learning in the process! I really enjoyed reading the tutor feedback.

Review by James Barr, January 12, 2011

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

I did pass the course and wasn’t expecting a high paid job even though i now have one (didn’t put itoi tefl on my cv, some employers count an online tefl against you). I was unhappy with the repetition and the software. I think its a pretty expensive way to enrich yourself.

Review by Bob, January 19, 2011

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I passed the course, and 100% of its questions, first time round, but that doesn’t mean I can’t see i-to-i’s drawbacks.

Inspite of what contributor Benjamin says, I understood that the question:

‘describe when a teacher should shout, and why’

is asking for examples of when it IS appropriate to shout. It’s not asking for reasons for why it is NOT appropriate to shout. Err, if someone thinks the question means the opposite of what it says, perhaps they’re thinking in George Orwell doublespeak!

If you want to know what I mean, you can read Benjamin Crompton’s comments, 15th November, 2010, and I quote:

”the point of that particular question [‘describe when a teacher should shout, and why’] was to make you prove that you’re aware of the importance of never shouting in a classroom.”

Come on! If the question asked why should you not shout in a classroom, I would have known enough answers, based on over ten years of experience. The question quite clearly asks for egs of when it is appropriate to shout, so I gave the appropriate answer. I was somewhat bemused by a tutor’s response, which said that you shouldn’t shout! That clearly contradicts the question itslef, and the i-to-i course is not exactly a PhD in the philosophy of education. As my answer was still correct, the answer couldn’t be failed, and therefore it wasn’t. I didn’t fail any of the answers and passed all first time round.

Other tutors’ feedback was more positive, and didn’t split hairs, but considering how much it cost, I would shop around and find something cheaper, which gives a bit more back, such as direct tutor-contact, and a more flexible approach for how you submit assignments, and course extensions for compassionate/health reasons.

As I was already PGCE qualified, I was just looking for a course to add-on to that. Still, I’ve been teaching English before I even started the course, and the employer didn’t know I was planning on taking the i-to-i. I wasn’t expecting it to be a fantastic course, but thinking about the cost, I would have expected a bit more.

If the comment I submitted on 15th December was added, then pls accept my apologies for any repetition.

Review by Odysseus, January 25, 2011

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 33333
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 44444
Facilities/Resources 55555

I’v almost finished the online course. I have to say I’ve been very impressed with it. I chose the 120Hr course as this is the amount of time for a certificate that is deemed appropriate.

Summary: Grammar is very good to get you up to speed in an active learning capacity. Online course content is on an equal footing with celta. The Resources is better than celta due to the e-version being so user-friendly but actual teaching is where CELTA trumps as well as the accredited stamp you’ll get with it.

Discussion:
- The resources and online content is all thorough and very well organized so that you can build a small portfolio of resources in neat formats such as pdfs etc and answers to the assignments for future reference.
- The level of questions and assessment is perfectly respectable.
- I think this course challenges CELTA if you already have some teaching experience and want a certificate to teach in eg Asia first and is cheaper and more accessible. In fact in terms of content it’s similar enough. What is different is the amount of classroom time that CELTA provides, but if you get that at the end then you’ll learn better “on the job” I think as long as the school is supportive so if that’s part of your intended goal then this course could be a better option despite limiting where you can apply.
- They make it clear that CELTA is a career choice where this is more of a gap-year ticket so from a needs perspective this course can be very suitable and as I repeat, the standard and content is just as good except without the classroom time.
- The standout thing is the online resources and connections. I think this actually tops a few CELTA centers and learning by yourself can be more efficient than being stuffed into a small, hot classroom taking notes while the celta teacher drones on and you clock up your classroom hours; only 6 of which are actual teaching yourself. You can learn a fair bit from other tefl teachers would be the bonus of those “live” courses.
- So in conclusion depends on the individual’s preferences and intentions. But i-to-i is very good for theory of teaching and building your own teacher resources (80%) that’s needed for tefl training and just lacks some real teaching but hopefully you get that abroad anyway if you decide to teach in some high demand countries. It’s when you want to teach in Europe that you’ll have to go the CELTA route, for sure.
- This course like any tefl will be most rewarding if you combine resources from lots of places eg get a copy of a tefl learners book and learning teaching book as well as online and the course notes and you’ll accomplish as much as training can really achieve all bar the live sessions.

Trust this review will be informative.

Review by Cherie, March 22, 2011

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 33333

I took this course last year while living in Viet Nam. My instructor was in Rio. I was eager to get the certificate as I had a job lined up. She was amazing. At the end of each module I would get feed back almost instantly. The program was excellent and helpful and I started doing private tutoring almost immediately and plan to go to the on campus program in Colorado in June.

Review by Luke, May 11, 2011

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 22222
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 33333
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

I took the 80hr i-to-i course before embarking on my trip to teach in Asia and I definitely was disappointed however I cannot place the blame 100% on them (maybe 80%). I did the course based on the information given by i-to-i on their website. It clearly says that it is internationally recognised and will prepare you for teaching esl anywhere in the world. I should have researched a little harder.
The course teaches you some basic things like concept questions and recognising grammar structure but really what need is quality teacher observed teaching feedback. I arrived in Indonesia before I even tried to get a job and then by asking around for a job I soon realised that this piece of paper that I was carrying around with me was just that – a piece of paper. Unless I wanted to work for English First (nooo thanks), language centres are not interested unless you have actual inclass hours under instruction from a tutor. I did eventually get lucky with one language centre who took me on, on the condition I would complete the CELTA at first opportunity. The 3 months before the CELTA course started were pretty much hell for me (and probably the students). The i-toi course gave me no preparation on how to handle classes and structure lessons to suite. I had no class management skills and felt a complete waste of time. After the CELTA course (which was quite stressful) my world just opened up. The course taught me so much about teaching techniques and the feedback sessions gave me so many things to work on. No doubt the CELTA course is what you need to be fully prepared for almost any situation without being stressed. I now feel I am a competent teacher and I can really see the results in my students.
So in conclusion, sure this course is quite easy but it will get you nowhere to being able to produce quality lesson plans and deliver quality leassons.

Review by Ross, May 25, 2011

Overall Rating 33333
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 22222
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 33333
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 33333

Quick and inexpensive courses are offered but resultant certificates seem to have next to no prevalence in the international job market.

Placements for Europe are extremely limited (I found out after taking the course, despite talking with tutors who seemed to think that the course COULD get me a placement in Greece), i-to-i focus mainly on Asian internships (Thailand, China being the main placements).

Do your research before doing a TEFL course; you get what you pay for and the courses do vary from company to company. You may find it easier to find work if you do your course abroad in the same place you take your placement.

Review by b8hoven, July 10, 2011

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 22222
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 22222
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

I did the 40 hour online course way back in 2006. As I had had no prevous teaching experience, I found it useful in becoming aware of all the names of different tenses etc. The classroom video was useful as well, as I had no idea of how to go about teaching a class.
That being said, the materials were useless and I had to use the couple of grammar which I had purchased just to answer the questions at the end of the module.
I was teaching in Poland and I got a teaching job before I had even finished the course. When I had my interview I had to create a lesson plan, the classroom video in the course helped me create the lesson plan and in turn helped me secure the job. That’s probably the only positive thing I could say about this course. It is ok if you don’t know anything about teaching english, but don’t expect the certificate to be accepted anywhere.
You are better off reading a book on teaching and and using English Grammar in Use. If you have done a Bachelor degree, I wouldn’t even worry about the “qualification” at the end of the course.
I wouldn’t waste my money on the i-to-i course, as it is NOT “An internationally recognised 40 hour TEFL certificate”.
And this statement is definitely NOT true. “Our courses are accepted by 1,000s of language schools worldwide”.
Do a proper internationally accepted course like CELTA/DELTA as others have stated above. Stay clear of i-to-i if you want qualifications.

Review by Bridget, August 10, 2011

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 33333
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 55555
Facilities/Resources 44444

I’ve been lucky enough to have an entirely positive experience with i-to-i. I signed myself up to the Thailand internship which included a 120-hour online course and a 20 hour weekend course (in Thailand). I found the content of the course to be really comprehensive, and followed a logical course of thinking. The feedback was helpful, and my instructor for the 20 hour weekend course was incredible. He was immensely patient, understanding and clear in his explanations – everything you need in an introduction to TEFL. I feel the course, combined with my time teaching here in Thailand has been a wonderfully helpful and positive introduction to the TEFL world. Not only has the internship given me career experience, but I’ve also been fortunate enough to meet a myriad of wonderful people. This may just be the best thing I’ve done, and would highly recommend i-to-i. I’ve had my job found for me, my accommodation found for me, as well as sorting out all my visa extension stuff. i-to-i takes out the stress of all the bureaucratic nonsense, so you can focus on having fun and getting stuck into teaching!

Review by Steffan, August 13, 2011

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 33333
Facilities/Resources 33333

I think it essential comes down to how much you put into the course. As the saying goes, ‘you get out what you put in’. If you are like me and highly interested in making a career out of being a TEFL teacher, and are attracted to the travelling lifestyle, you most definitely won’t just do the minimum requirements to pass, but go that extra mile.

I’ve just passed checkpoint 3, which was a very long and demanding assessment and is certainly no stroll in the park. I got every question pretty much nailed on because I spent a long time researching and fine tuning my answers, in order to make sure I full understood the teaching concepts/techniques that I was being taught. They clearly know what they are doing, because in these two weeks I already feel so much more confident in my abilities and feel that in many ways it beats the traditional structure of learning that gets taught at university; where all you do is paraphrase and regurgitate other peoples ideas, into your own language, on top of direct help from the tutor (where in so many words they tell you exactly what to mention). Here, the responsibility lies squarely on your shoulders.

I don’t understand what people expect from a 120 hour course (20 hours classroom), that is roughly the same as a month at university! If you want a highly reputable job, go get yourself a masters, than you go teach anyway you wish, but for people who prefer to it themselves who don’t want to spend a decade in education this course is perfect…

Review by moirab, November 6, 2011

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I started they year as a literacy/numeracy teacher for adults in a small town in the north of Australia. The majority of the students were aboriginal.
gradually through the year more and more overseas students joined the class as there were no dedicated language shcools in the town. I was struggling as I had no training in ESL.
Reseach and advice from others led me to the CELTA course. This was impossible for me as it was only offered face to face in the state capital 2000kms away!
So I enrolled for the 60hr online i to i course.
Because I was already teaching and had an immediate need for the information I found it incredibly helpful. I was immediately aware that much of what I had thought was good was the students was useless and, apart from the interaction they had with each other, coming to my classes was a waste of time. I have changed my methods completely and immediately noticed an improvement in language learning.
I am going to do the CELTA course in January but in the meantime I’m grateful for what I have learned from i to i.

Review by Johanna, November 13, 2011

Overall Rating 33333
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 22222
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 55555
Facilities/Resources 22222

I found the course to be quite thorough and not as simple as I had imagined it would be. All in all, I did learn quite a few things.
As for teaching practice, since this is an online course, there is none. So I suggest you do as I did, which is to volunteer at a local English school.

I honestly feel these courses are hogwash. If you want real credentials to be a teacher then get a masters in Education. Otherwise all of this you would have learnt shortly after starting to teach anyway.

The whole industry is just a money making cash cow for those of us who did not study education but want to work in another country.

Did it work? Yes. I immediately got offered a few of the positions I applied for. But don’t kid yourself that you will somehow be a better teacher because you took this course.

With that I say good luck on your adventures.

Review by Naomi Abrahams, February 11, 2012

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 44444
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 44444

I found the course harder than I thought it would be. However, this was good because I feel that I have the skills needed to be a good teacher,once I get the needed practice. Since completing the course and advertising online, I have had numerous from Asian countries. Unfortunately, I’ve had none from Europe, which is what I want. I don’t know if I will succeed as I didn’t realise that age, lack of a degree and experience would play such a big part. Nevertheless, I can’t fault the course content.

Review by Kate, March 26, 2012

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 33333
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 33333
Facilities/Resources 55555

I’m amazed that i-to-i has had these bad reviews. I have benefited from the 50% discount so perhaps my expectations were lower than others who might have paid twice as much.
I am getting so much out of this course! I started teaching individual lessons at home to elementary school kids and really needed some guidance. This course has helped me see where I was going wrong and how to get better results out of the kids.
I found the structure really motivating and I couldn’t wait to do the quiz at the end of each module. I aimed for top marks each time as I already know quite a lot about language learning from the student perspective but invariably there were one or two things I’d get wrong and have to re-read the pdf summary to correct myself.
The checkpoints were much more time consuming but the hard work paid off in terms of really understanding the methodology.
The ressources were great. I’ve saved all of the internet links and am looking forward to carrying on with my learning even after the course is over.
I have a part time job, two young kids and am on another course so for me this was an ideal way to fit TELF around my busy life. Also I neeeded the deadline that they give you otherwise it would have just become another one of my unfinished projects!
Ok there’s no teaching practice, but how difficult is it to offer some free lessons to someone you know in exchange for a bit of feed back from them? You soon discover what works!
I can’t comment on job placement because I’m already taking care of that myself.
For anyone in a similar situation to myself I’d recommend i-to-i and say it’s great value for a really well presented on line course.

Review by Tina, April 22, 2012

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I have just completed the i to i 120 hour course and I thought it was great. I agree entirely with the last review posted by Kate. I think it is a shame that i to i suffer such bad reviews from people who are clearly expecting something other than what they have bought.

i to i are a profit making company offering training courses, just like any management training company and you pay for their package. What you do with the knowledge you gain is up to you. They won’t transform you into an experienced teacher in a couple of months. They give you the basics and check you have understood. If you simply buy a book (b8hoven) you have no feedback and you’re never tested – if you have no previous teacher training how do you know if you’re on the right track?

I have no teaching experience and the course has taught me loads of techniques and different approaches. It has given me a thorough grounding that I can build on and opened the door to a new career path. The tutors were great and very helpful and I had as much support as I asked for.

As for classroom experience, i to i never state that you will have teaching practice with students. Practice with tutor’s is very useful – you get feedback on your lesson presentation that you wouldn’t get from students.

On the job front, TEFL is internationally recognised (no lie) but is someone in the depths of South Korea really going to look at your i to i certificate and hire you because of it? You could design and print a fake one – would they know? I have high level professional qualifications from the UK deemed ‘international’ which are totally worthless in France. If you believe an i to i certificate alone is a passport to international travel and work then you probably belive all those ads for slimming products and anti-ageing creams…….

All this said, i to i are a commercial company and they do have one or two sneaky marketing tricks. They say ‘book now -offer ends on the 15th’ when in fact the offers roll on for months!! And when you book they give you a free module – great, you think, except that you’re hard pushed to finish the course in the time and if you don’t finish then you end up paying extra for a time extension! But that’s business.
They’ve given me what I need to get started and I consider it was very good value.

Review by Linz, May 15, 2012

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 22222
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

This course is absolutely rubbish! Having a teaching degree already I thought I would walk into a job as an English teacher… this is not the case. I have been told by several potential employers that this course is not recognized as an official course and that they could not accept my certificate. I feel cheated out of valuable time and money!

A minor point to add is that it took several months before i-to-i sent me my certificate. I phoned and e-mailed several times before they resolved the problem. I would not recommend this course at all. My time and money would have been put to much better use on another tefl course.

However, the instructor was very friendly and helpful and I enjoyed the course from that aspect.

Review by Daniel Kent, June 25, 2012

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 11111
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 11111
Lesson Plan Guidance 11111
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 11111

I have had many problems with this course. It seems that the main goal for i to i is to dress the course up very nicely but you get no actual experience at the end of it. I am dyslexic and have not received any support in the way of being given extra time to work things out. This has led to me having to pay for numerous extentions which the i t i team are very happy to sell for £50 to £80 a time. If I had been supported and the person marking the assignment had not split hairs over the most minor thing thens then I would be happy to carry on with the course. I am starting to think that they probably want you to fail numerous times so that you will have to keep paying for the extentions…Oh yeah I have a degree which I have used successfully in numerous educational settings so with the right help I could have completed the course. I am now considering taking legal action against TEFL for there lack of consideration for those who need extra help when learning as they have set me up to fail and have done nothing to adhere to the disability discrimination act 2010…

Review by Tim, August 29, 2012

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 44444

Just finished the 60 hour course, and plan on going back to turn it into a full 120 hour course. I have to say that I can’t really agree with many of the negative comments on here. Being someone who has had no experience in teaching English, I feel I know a lot more now than I did prior to starting the course. This certificate isn’t going to get me into high paying jobs in the most popular destinations, but I’ve never been expecting it to.

I actually started this particular course at the recommendation of the owner of a private English school, so I can’t say that it’s completely worthless. The feedback I received from the tutors was for the most part excellent. On the one assignment I failed on my first try, the feedback provided from the tutor was very clear about what was expected, and helped me pass it with no problems on the second try. All other feedback I received, I thought was quite helpful in understanding the information that the module wanted to convey.

This course seems to provide to people what they are willing to get out of it. It’s no cakewalk, though, and plenty of resources are provided, including PDFs of the course content as well as many additional resources. Someone will get much out of this course if they apply the effort to do so. If they don’t, the blame doesn’t really lie with i-to-i.

My only complaints would be that some of the instructions in the assignments could have been more clear, and more video examples of teaching techniques and lessons would have been very helpful. However, what is there is definitely enough to give someone a good start in the world of TEFL.

Review by Lara, September 12, 2012

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 55555
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 33333
Facilities/Resources 44444

I had great fun doing the 20-hour weekend TEFL Course, having almost completed my 120-hours online, it was extremely useful for consolidating what I had already learned (especially some of the trickier grammar points).
The course was necessarily long, and the number of breaks was just right for the amount of contact time. The only negative I would say is that for me, the 9am start on a Sunday was a bit too early because of transport issues. Perhaps a 930am start would’ve been more logical…a few of us were late because of this and missed the overview from the day before.
Meryl was a fantastic teacher and her sample lessons were very useful, in particular the sample ‘foreign language’ lesson which really put us in our future students shoes.
I now feel a lot more equipped to Teach English as a Foreign Language and can’t wait to get started!
I would definitely recommend this course.

Review by Danielle, September 15, 2012

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 44444

It’s been a while since I completed the course (close to a year), but I wanted to review the program since I went through the process of comparing programs before choosing one.

I already had an English degree with a minor in secondary teaching, so that definitely influenced my experience. Because I had this background, I found i-to-i’s program very helpful and full of ready-to-use ideas. I was able to get through the in-depth grammar portion rather easily, but there were days that it numbed my brain a little. I say that to the program’s favor: it covers every aspect of grammar that you’ll need in TESL.

The feedback was usually good and helpful and I actually kept all of the materials (you can save them as PDF files) and quizzes so I could go back to them. I started teaching an Italian adult while I was taking the course and she really responded well to everything I implemented into my lessons. The course was a life-saver and made the lessons much more interesting and engaging.

I don’t remember why people panned this program, but it is definitely one I would recommend as someone with a background in English and teaching and someone who is using it in a private tutoring setting.

Review by Jo, October 7, 2012

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 44444
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 22222

For an online course, I was pleasantly surprised by the content of the course and the high level of attention given to online students. Yes, I would have preferred the course to include a little more content, but there are so many links for suggested reading that as a student wanting to teach it is up to you to put the effort into the course in order to get more out of it.
I-to-I have also been running a number of online webinars which accompany the course which cover a variety of topics and allow for a question and answer session following a half hour interactive presentation.
I doubt this is the best course available, but I would definitely recommend it as a starting point in order to gain confidence and get a clear insight to what ESL teaching really involves.

Review by Robert, November 29, 2012

Overall Rating 22222
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 22222
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 22222
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 22222

The course is mediocre at best, feedback from tutors is sporadic, when I rang i-to-i to ask for assistance in going over application forms, they replied ‘we are not a recruiting company and we cannot help/guide in any way’..

I was shocked at the response and couldn’t believe what I had just been told. I was just looking for a bit of advice on how to handle my CV and personal statements.

Is that too much to ask?

When I initially expressed interest in the course I kept getting calls from them and I took my time researching the company and they did a pretty good job of convincing me to sign up to the 140 hour course

i-to-i play all friendly and send out plush emails enticing us in to believing its as easy as 1-2-3 , but the harsh reality is once the course is done, they really couldn’t care less about you.

Review by Lucy, December 7, 2012

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 22222
Quality of Feedback 22222
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 22222
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 22222

The course content is quite good, The feedback from tutors is ok, could be better, Placement help is a joke, I too (just like Robert) suffered from a lack of help with i-to-i when it came to getting help with finer details of CV’s and covering letter i too was told the same thing.

Im not looking for answers but a nudge in the right direction goes a long way…

Review by Hannah, January 20, 2013

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 33333
Quality of Feedback 44444
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I recently completed i-to-i’s 20 hour classroom weekend course and really enjoyed it. The instructor was very friendly and had a lot of experience – she’d taught in many different countries for many years – and she was also very honest about the qualifications you need, emphasizing that this course is just the starting point. Time never dragged as we did lots of different activities (providing lots of ideas for activities to use with students), including two teaching practices, and I feel I learnt a lot. I signed up to the course looking for a taster of TEFL to see if it was for me and it definitely provided a great introduction.

Review by izabela, January 22, 2013

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance 22222
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

The course was booked through the school I worked at, the two day weekend course was ok but I didn’t manage to complete the grammar course within the three months’ time limit due to my illness. I rang them; they were very unsympathetic and told me i have to pay another £50 to complete it. Money grabbing, unhelpful, would never recommend the company to anyone.

Review by Eve, February 14, 2013

Overall Rating Not Rated
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I think everyone has a decent point to make here…but personally, I have enjoyed the i-to-i 120 hr online course as I feel it is preparing me for what it will be like to teach english abroad. The 20 hr course was also good prep, however the online course really made me learn about grammar, which I wouldn’t have got from just reading a text book. It makes you pass tests and complete lesson plans for submission. Of course it isn’t classroom based but if you’re going to teach for the first time I would suggest just going to an Asian country, throwing yourself in the deep end and starting in a school kind of desperate for teachers, best way to crash learn! My only regret is not getting the online course through groupon where it’s only £80, and as it seems these certificates aren’t really recognised overseas anyway, it wouldn’t have made a difference trying to use the groupon certificate for jobhunting. I agree that CELTA etc is best if you want a longer term career in TEFL, but as I only want a career break or to see if I really could enjoy teaching abroad, the online plus weekend course is sufficient for me. Ask me again after I have actually tried teaching in Thailand though! ;)

Review by Amy, February 15, 2013

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I have recently completed the 120 hour online course and am surprised by the overwhelmingly negative feedback on this page.
Firstly, anyone who is looking into proper qualification for a career in tefl should certainly look at a CELTA but if you mistakenly think that this is on the same level then you should have done your research more thoroughly. I-to-I does not mention teaching experience so I fail to understand why people are upset about this. The descriptions clearly state there is classroom training and there is even an itinerary which does not mention teaching students – if you didn’t read it before buying it, it’s hardly fair to blame the institute.
I’m in the same boat as some of the people here; I already had a job teaching English in Asia as I have a bachelor’s in English. In my particular location there are no certified centers for me to do classroom observation or workshops, so the CELTA was not an option. Doing this course online was a great review of grammar and I picked up a few things along the way. As someone in Korea had mentioned, finishing this course boosts my pay by about $100 a month (and I’m only working a few hours a day).
I don’t think the three month limit is unfair either – I understand if you’re unable to complete it you would like a little sympathy, but honestly they are a company after all; I wouldn’t have expected a free extension from any other institute.
Personally I found the course quite enjoyable and the tutor feedback was immediate (always marked within ten minutes). I didn’t have a problem with length, my answers were usually around 800 words when the minimum was 150/200 and nobody complained. My boss recommended this course to me and I’m pleased with it. My only complaint is the never-ending sale which I mistakenly believed would end (I bought the course in a rush) but I would recommend this course to anyone who is dabbling in the idea of teaching English in Asia.

Review by Markus, March 19, 2013

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 33333
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 44444

I think it is a good website with a lot of potential interaction, however not much at present. I think that the 60 hour TEFL online course is comprehensive, but that the resources must be exhausted by those of us who have not got a degree in education in order to pass the assignments. I think that checkpoint two is misleading and unclear, especially the video. I have completed the extra modules and I feel they were not with the money, even though I learnt something. They just felt padded out.

Not everyone can expect to pass. If you cannot complete the course in the given time then maybe you should not be a TEFL teacher, because the nature of the job is only slightly less demanding. Just my opinion.

Overall a solid foundation for TEFL work.

Review by Ellie, June 27, 2013

Overall Rating 11111
Course Content Not Rated
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback Not Rated
Lesson Plan Guidance Not Rated
Instructor Competency Not Rated
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources Not Rated

I have had an AWFUL experience with this company.
And I didnt even make it to my internship!

Firstly after paying £995 I didn’t hear from Laura the girl who sorted it out for me for over a week. I emailed and had no response I was left feeling vulnerable and a bit tricked especially as it took me while to save that money. I was emailing her asking about various different things. I was nervous traveling alone anyway and felt so nervous after not hearing from her for such a long time. They offered me a full refund for the trouble but I turned the other cheek and continued with my training.

Some time ago I think about a month back, I messaged her again and wouldn’t get any replies. I emailed her expressing my worry of not being able to complete the training in time and I was looking for advice on what to do. She basically turned around n said you’ll loose your money and I’m not going to sell you insurance when I know you can’t finish the training, meaning I’d probably have to cancel my place. After thinking about it I really didn’t want to loose a thousand pounds so I booked many days off work and carried on with the training. I must of sent her about half a dozen emails saying I’d like to proceed and I asked for help with many different things, no reply. I didn’t see the point carrying on with the training when the TEFL lady who arranged everything for me wasn’t responding so I had no idea what was going on! I then tried contacting customer service and got through to somebody else. I felt like I had to complain because I feel extremely let down by one of their colleagus- Laura. I put my trust in her and she told me I could call or email her with any question or query I had no matter how small. My biggest concern is the loss of my savings and how I still haven’t heard anything at all from Laura. Something needs to be done, because it would be sad if someone else had to go through what I have. It’s really hit me badly, I have barely any money now and I have to delay any further travels I had planned because of the loss of £995. To be honest with you this has been a really shit situation and its really really sad that this had to happen because I would love nothing more than to teach in china. I’ve lost confidence in booking something like this, that is why I shall not be a returning customer nor will anyone I know.

DONT BOOK WITH LAURA!!!!!!!1

Review by Naomi, July 31, 2013

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback 44444
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 33333

I have just completed the 120 hour online itoi course and have found it really enjoyable. I have had teaching and instructing practise in my previous jobs so felt the online course would be a good foundation for finding out about TEFL. For me personally it suits what I am going to use it for which is homestay teaching in the U.K.
It is quite clear about not having any teaching practise and I do think the content is good and very informative. The grammar course is good as a refresher and foundation. I agree with an above comment that you will get more out of it if you put more in! I made sure I did extra study and research so that I really understood things.
Obviously if you are going to work in a school you need to have some teaching practise with real students as part of your training, although some people are just not natural teachers and that can not really be taught.
I think it is capable of being a well respected course especially with an add on of practical practise. Not everyone can take time off or afford a CELTA/TRINITY so why should online be so disrespected as an avenue for learning and qualifying?
I have shown my lesson plans to CELTA/TRINTY teachers who are quite happy with them.
Overall I think this is a good course.

Review by Sara, August 8, 2013

Overall Rating 22222
Course Content 33333
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 22222
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 22222
Job Placement 22222
Facilities/Resources 33333

I signed up for the Poland internship with i-to-i for August. When I first signed up, I was told by the i-to-i representative that the London 20hour course, held the weekend before the start of the Poland internship, was recommended and that’s how “most people” do it. I am from the USA and so at first it seemed plausible that I would fly over to the UK, take the London course, then fly to Poland. Well, after being accepted into the Poland internship, I was told I needed to arrive on the sat or sun before the Monday start date. Due to the course schedule and flight schedules, it was impossible to take the London course and then make it to Poland on time. I felt misled by i-to-i, because it seemed like they should have been aware of this and told me I needed to do another course. Of course, any course would be a big expense for me since I don’t live near a big city (I’m from the USA). But this isn’t even my main complaint.
After calling them twice, being promised a return call, and not receiving it, the London Course listed on my online account switched over to an online video course, which supposedly fulfills the 20 hours of training that the weekend in-person course is worth. That’s a little bit ridiculous, even just considering that these are videos you watch, and there no instructor. Someone in the same situation as me received a small refund when she switched, so I called them to try to get a refund as well. But the i-to-i person said that since I didn’t ask for a refund at the time that I “elected to switch to a video course” (like I had a choice?), I wasn’t going to get one. I tried to tell her that I didn’t feel the video course and weekend course should be worth the same… She said, “you don’t think its worth as much?” and I said… “Well, do you?” and there was a moment of silence, before she went back to parroting the line about how I didn’t get a refund since none was agreed to when I switched to the video course. Funny thing, I never received a call or notice that they had indeed switched me to the video course, just noticed it when I signed on to the account to continue the other online portion.

About the Poland internship in general – There were lots of hidden costs for me (as an American). Consider: visa fees, IRS tax residency letter, cost of flying to LA to apply for the visa (must be done in person), any costs related to weekend course if you choose to do that (staying in London would have easily racked up another $800).
And I’m honestly not sure what I’m paying i-to-i for in regards to the internship (other than obviously the cost of the online courses). It seems like you can apply for an internship with the Poland school via their website.

The online course was okay. I’m hard to impress, because I already have a MA in linguistics w/TESOL emphasis, but did the course just to get the little certificate for the sake of the internship (though I have since learned that I might have been able to skip that and just done the internship).

Review by Sandra, September 27, 2013

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 55555

I have just completed the 60hour course in Sep 2013. I have two small children and the other TEFL courses (eg CELTA) are out of my budget and impossible because of childcare.
I have enjoyed the course content, I don’t think its the same as reading a book! It depends on what type of learner you are but that’s not me.
The assessments (not quizzes) were difficult but made me think and I have sat down and written my first lesson plan that has been checked and marked by a tutor.
I put one star for the practise teaching as its an online course-so there isn’t any. I am booked on a weekend course in a couple of months so there is an opportunity there.
I also didn’t rate the job placement as I have already got a job lined up and don’t need to use them.
I used the online webinars which I must say were excellent. Not jut reviewing the course material but giving you a chance to ask questions to a teacher.
I think the mixed reviews depend on what you want the course for. I already have been teaching informally 1:1 and I have a business English job lined up which I didn’t need any teaching qualification for. The i-i course has provided with preparation and so the confidence I need to go into class and start teaching. Its only the beginning but I’m glad I have done it. Thanks i-i.

Review by olga, January 20, 2014

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement Not Rated
Facilities/Resources 55555

I just finished my 120 hours online i-to-i course and I really enjoyed it.
Like some others here, I don’t understand all the negative comments.
I am forced into a new job career (due to cuts in jobs at my recent company, my job will come to and end) and by taking this course, I now know that I would not mind to work in the teaching field.
I really enjoyed each module and the few questions that I had, were answered within a day. Also the work that I put in with the result that I passed 100%, I really did not mind at all.
The only thing that is of course true, that I don’t have practical teaching experience. But I now will go to Colombia for 1 month for a internship, so that I see as the beginning of a new carreer.
Like somebody else here wrote, after that I “will ride the wave, where it takes me”, and in the future I will see where the succesfully finished
120 hours i-to-i TEFL course, will bring me. Who knows, if I have the money, I might spend it by taking that CELTA course, but that is future talk.
I want to thank all the i-to-i people who helped and advised me in a very professional and friendly way.
Hopefully I am still as enthousiastic after I return from my upcoming internship in Barranquilla (Colombia, South America).

Review by Veronique, March 15, 2014

Overall Rating 55555
Course Content 55555
Practice Teaching Not Rated
Quality of Feedback 44444
Lesson Plan Guidance 55555
Instructor Competency 11111
Job Placement 11111
Facilities/Resources 55555

I have just completed the I-to-I TEFL 60 hour course and I really enjoyed it.
It should occur to people that an online course cannot lead to a proper teaching job, especially in Europe. Everyone would stop going to Uni which is way more expensive and way longer.
I have myself taken this course as an introduction to Teaching English abroad and I strongly recommend it.
It’s a perfect way to know wether it is worth spending more money on a Celta for example as it might not suit you.
The I-to-I TEFL is a good value considering the small amount of money you spend and the broad knowledge you can get out of it if you take it seriously enough.

The staff have been in contact with has always been nice and efficient.
The feedbacks I had after submitted my four assessments were all full of sense and really helpful.
When I read Anon’s comment in 2010 regarding a feedback she/he found inappropriate and useless I just want to say that maybe she/he should have paid more attention to the grammar modules. In my opinion it makes total sense.
Anyway.

Don’t expect the moon, the I-to-I TEFL is just a big first step to reach it.

I am planing on taking a face to face TEFL course in October in London which I expect to be easier for me now.

Don’t give up on your dreams and make them come true.

Review by RICHARD-NICOLAS François, April 8, 2014

Overall Rating 44444
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 44444
Quality of Feedback 33333
Lesson Plan Guidance 44444
Instructor Competency 55555
Job Placement 33333
Facilities/Resources 33333

I-TO-I course provides a good basis in English pedagogy. The feedback is quick, personalized and not too lenient: I failed at 2 tests on my first attempts. You can try 3 times.

I consider it as a not-so-cheap but good preparation to the CELTA.

The week-end of practice (in a Paris hotel) was excellent. I had never met such a motivated and competent teacher during all my studies.

Don’t do like me, discuss the price!

Review by Leon-D Dublin, June 3, 2014

Overall Rating 33333
Course Content 44444
Practice Teaching 11111
Quality of Feedback 55555
Lesson Plan Guidance 33333
Instructor Competency 44444
Job Placement 22222
Facilities/Resources 22222

Hi , I finished the 120 hours course with i to i in July 2011 , I prepared before starting this course with 3 months of text book reading , and took my time in completing the course in a profession manner which too another 2 months . Everything went really well and tutor feedback was excellent and very helpful.
Only problem that I encountered was not having any classroom experience directly . So after going to Thailand and trying to apply for jobs I felt that I was in over my head and not confident to stand in front of a real class and I can speak Thai at intermediate level, also I was only be offered job paying 25,000 to 30,000 per month so my decision was no return home.
I am now doing a degree almost finished .

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