A variety of people are served by the training at S-TESL. Here is a sampling of the feedback we have received from students in exit interviews, in private course evaluations, or in emails:
Click images for audio testimonials
You'll end up excited to teach and excited about learning.
The staff is knowledgable, friendly, and encouraging. The content is excellent, and the staff is very concerned about preparing you for a job search at the conclusion of the course.
You will have fun, you will learn a lot. This course is really well organized and very valuable. The staff is great!
I definitely recommend this course. I signed up for the course in order to receive the certificate but I gained so much more than that. It was more enjoyable and informative than I thought possible.
Do I recommend that you take this course? Yes! It is far more comprehensive than other courses on the market. A lot is expected from you, but you will leave with the knowledge, confidence, and ability to teach. It is more than just a certificate
Bachelor's degree, student who will enroll in a program for public school certification, Suzie M. wrote: "I passed the ESL Praxis, and your excellent teaching contributed to that effort."
From an evening class student in 930:
"The content of this course was excellent. It was so nice to finally take a class filled with such practical knowledge. I will use so much of the content (activities, unit plans, lesson plans) in my actual classroom."
From an evening class student in 932 (also in SU MA/TESOL program):
This was the most challenging ESL course I've taken at SU and they've all been very challenging. I have learned more and worked harder than ever before. Challenging, hard work, and fun. Never a dull moment. Overall a great class!
recent BA graduate degree, no teaching experience.
Carmen M. wrote, "Definitely. A great way to develop an outline on how to teach English."
Non-native speaker of English.
Kui Son L. wrote, "I will definitely recommend this course to anyone. No other school can provide such a well-organized, condensed, interesting course like this course."
Public school teacher in Alaska.
Liz B. wrote, "I would highly recommend this course Intensive TESL I because it has definitely prepared me to teach ESL students and has taught me to look at the world through different eyes. I feel that regular classroom teachers should take courses like this since the student population is always of mixed cultures."
M-TESOL candidate at Seattle University.
Kim F. wrote, "Yes. I feel I got so much out of this. The info and materials I will leave with are forever valuable."
Master's in Curriculum and Instruction candidate at Seattle University.
Norma G. wrote, Intensive TESL I is one of the best teacher instruction classes I have ever been in. The theories and ideas are taught, modeled, and incorporated into every aspect of the program."
Doctorate in Education.
Nancy L. wrote, "Absolutely. I believe in the philosophy -- and everyone connected with S-TESL seems to "walk their talk."
A graduate who had just returned to the states from two years of teaching in Japan
Jessica S. wrote: "Because of my excellent training and education at the School of TESL I was known as one of the best teachers in the company and chosen to be one of the three teachers to run the summer camp in Gumma."
These statements were posted on Dave's ESL Café in February, 2002, in response to a discussion thread on the School of TESL. Most of the comments are about the Intensive I course.
"This is probably one of the best programs you could ever attend. I attended two summers ago (2000) and apply what I learned to my classroom teaching on a daily basis. The instruction adheres to the Active Theory of Learning model...so you listen/read, discuss and APPLY the knowledge everyday! S-TESL strongly advocates the Communicative Method for teaching English. This method is easily understood and converted to any class you may be teaching. I have been teaching now for a year and find that even most of my other Masters program courses have not helped to prepare me for teaching English like this course has!! I strongly endorse S-TESL...but be prepared to work your rear-end off for 4 weeks! It is worth it, though."
- Wendy H.
"Hi, I took the intensive class in Nov. of 1997 and I can honestly say that I had a great time. The staff is very friendly and professional and the curriculum, while intense, is very valuable as a tool to refer to when teaching. In my particular instance, I was able to combine my degree in Communications and previous Medical experience with my ESL certificate to land a job as a Medical Vocational Instructor at a Job Corps facility. In that regard, every day I use the tools that Barbara and the other staff taught me to apply to the difficult task of teaching at risk students. In my opinion, this is a great school to get the basic background and training that you will need in any area of teaching that you pursue."
- Chuck L.
"I've just completed the Intensive I course at the S-TESL school in Ballard and I'm on my way to Italy this Thursday. I enthusiastically recommend taking it!! You can pretty well get certified to teach English anywhere in the world, but from what I understand each school prescribes its own preferred methodology -- many can be lacking in variety and contrast. The instruction at S-TESL was thorough and comprehensive. I had a delightful time and feel confident about my abilities as a teacher (I was previously lacking there-in). Re: the expenses, you know... I've acquired a priceless wealth of knowledge - I feel every penny was worth it and well spent. I did very little research before hand and signed up late... I've been counting my blessings ever since. It was a stroke of luck for which I'm very grateful that brought me to S-TESL. It's a course designed for all people - people with prior experience teaching, people like myself with none. We even had two non-native speakers of English in our class who provided insight and inspiration. Good luck in what ever you decide to do!!"
"Hi there. I am a graduate of the Seattle program of January 2000. I am currently teaching in Thailand and using the skills and confidence that I gained in that course. I highly recommend studying teaching ESL in a classroom setting. There is so much to be learned and practiced- learned from the instructor and other students. The Seattle program was excellent. I particularly liked the 'homey' feel of the school and the friendliness of the staff. It is a challenging program in such a short time, but for me that challenge helped me enjoy it even more. I think it is also beneficial to study in the US before going abroad. Reference books and people are right there, easily obtained, unlike living overseas. I taught ESL in Seattle immediately following the course, and that was really helpful. I use the course and work experiences each day as I confidently create my own classes and lesson plans (teaching privately). One last benefit of the Seattle program I will mention is the fact that all graduates are invited to join an emailed list serve that informs us of current jobs as well as a forum to share ideas/ask questions."
"I wish I could testify to the International reputation of S-TESL, but I haven't taken my certification overseas, yet. I have found that S-TESL's reputation is, at least, nationwide. On the other hand, I can tell you that the 4-week "Intensive I" course gave me a lot more than a TESL certification. I benefited greatly from the following items, and many more, too many to mention off the cuff in this way. Those items include: The professional interaction with my teacher trainer; the invaluable input of my classmates; the well crafted custom course work; the practical exercises; the challenging group and team projects; the necessary exposure to less commonly seen books and articles; the useful and interactive micro-teaching; the opportunity to work with what was then Dr. Butler's inside ESL class; the job placement services; the entry to professional TESL organizations, the extensive book review and text review; and last, but not least, the post-baccalaureate credits with which I am continuing my Master's degree. Although the program was not cheap, it has paid for itself several times over. As you might be able to tell, it was the right program for me. I'm fairly certain that no one genuinely interested in learning about teaching ESL or EFL would regret the expense."
"I would recommend it on the condition that he/she truly intended to teach English. Absolutely! I would advise he/she not to work at the same time. (I imagine for many people this would be an issue.)"
"Absolutely. I feel confident about going out, getting a job, and actually performing well in the job because of this course."
"You will give more of yourself than you knew you had to give, and receive more from others than you ever suspected possible. You will change and grow from every situation and every project you undertake. At the end you'll be highly rewarded for every lost hour of sleep."
"The course is especially focused on being very useful - to effectively teach people to teach English in a way that is gratifying for the teachers and effective for the students. It is not just lecture, but the teacher also teaches by example. The TESL students are very active in their learning and with working with the other TESL students."