Earn the Prestigious CELTA Certificate

Become an ESL (English as a Second Language) Teaching Professional

What is CELTA?

CELTA is the mostly widely recognized initial teaching certificate for those interested in teaching English around the world. It is also an excellent opportunity for those with teaching experience to develop professionally.

CELTA provides an unparalleled opportunity to receive 6 assessed teaching hours and 6 hours of observing experienced teachers included in a 120-hour course. The maximum trainer to trainee ratio is 1:6.

Awarded by Cambridge ESOL, through the University of Cambridge, the CELTA certificate opens doors to possibilities in the US and abroad.

Who should take it?

The CELTA award is ideal for anyone with little to no formal experience teaching English as a foreign or second language, or for someone who has been teaching and is looking to develop and hone his or her teaching skills.

You do not need to be a native English speaker but demonstration of proficiency is necessary through IELTS or TOEFL scores submitted.

Potential candidates also need to demonstrate that they can also handle stressful situations and an intense workload with no other commitments during the length of the course.

What is the difference between CELTA and other TEFL/TESL certifications?

The biggest difference between CELTA and other TEFL/TESL certifications and the reason it’s highly recognized around the world is that every CELTA course is internally moderated and externally assessed. This means that outside assessors, trained and approved by the University of Cambridge, assess and check that every single course around the world is performing to specific standards that the University has set (there are only two standardized TESL certifications recognized worldwide – CELTA is one of them). Another reason that sets the CELTA course apart from other certifications is its practical component; during the 4 weeks you will be teaching real ESL students (at 2 distinct levels) for a total of 6 hours. Furthermore, every CELTA center around the globe has gone through the same process to become authorized to run Cambridge CELTA courses.

What are the trainer qualifications?

All CELTA trainers must meet the following minimum requirements: MA degree in TESOL/TEFL or Cambridge DELTA, 5 years of ESL/EFL classroom experience in multiple environments (including 1 year of teaching abroad), and complete a rigorous 2-month training program under University of Cambridge supervision.

Current ELS Tacoma CELTA trainers

Stephanie Burns

CELTA Director

Stephanie comes to the ELS CELTA program from 3 years in sunny San Diego where she received her M.A.E. in TESOL from Alliant International University in 2010. She has taught in a variety of settings including community colleges, private language schools, immigrant programs, and has taught abroad in both Spain, where she received her CELTA certificate, and the Czech Republic. Stephanie is also a certified oral examiner for the Cambridge First Certificate and Certificate of Advanced English, as well as an examiner for IELTS. When she's not training teachers, Stephanie enjoys exploring the Pacific Northwest and photography.

George Rowe

George graduated from the University of Oregon with a BA in Journalism before moving abroad to pursue a career in TESOL. He completed the Oxford Trinity CertTESOL in Prague and landed his first teaching job in Kiev, Ukraine. While teaching in Ukraine, George became highly involved in preparing students for Cambridge ESOL Exams (FCE, CAE, IELTS) and became a certified speaking examiner for FCE and CAE. In his fourth year of teaching, he completed the Cambridge DELTA and was promoted to Director of Studies. Before returning to the States in 2012, he spent some time teaching English for Special Purposes in Finland. In his free time, George enjoys outdoor pursuits and cooking.

What is the ratio of trainer to trainees?

Trainer/Trainee ratio of 1:6 or better.

What is the curriculum?

The CELTA program is a 4-week course, with 120 contact hours. There is also an additional 80 learning hours devoted to pre-course preparation and tasks, on-course reading and research, assignment writing, lesson preparation and record keeping.

Teaching practice is included in the curriculum and entails:

  • Working in small groups with a maximum of five other trainee- teachers
  • Tutor-led instruction during lesson planning
  • Practice teaching where you will teach a total of six hours of classroom lessons to at least two different levels of language learners
  • Small-group feedback sessions with written feedback given by the trainer

Is there a final test?

There is no final examination on the CELTA. The assessment is continuous (throughout the course) and integrated (all components count towards the final grade). Assessment is based on a continuous evaluation and assessment of candidates throughout the course in the following components:

  • Teaching practice
  • Written assignments
  • Professionalism

Admission Requirements

  • Student must possess the ability to manage an intensive course load similar to that of university-level courses

Course Dates

  • October 20 – November 13, 2014
  • January 5 – January 30, 2015
  • March 2 – March 27, 2015
  • April 27 – May 22, 2015
  • June 22 – July 17, 2015
  • July 27 – August 21, 2015
  • September 7 – October 2, 2015
  • October 12 – November 6, 2015
  • November 16 – December 15, 2015


Limited off-campus housing available, plus referrals to other area hotels


Application fee: $165
2015 Course fee: $2,550
*Course materials not included in price of class


2015 CELTA Application
2015 CELTA Brochure

More Information

Contact Us:
CELTA Director
ELS Language Centers/Tacoma
Bates Technical College
1101 South Yakima Avenue
Tacoma, WA 98405
Telephone: 253.680.7296 or 253.680.7284
Fax: 253.680.7289

Are you interested in TEFL Certification? Click here to learn more.