If you do not have a permanent, year-round teaching contract in Ontario, I am sure that you have considered alternative careers or income streams from time to time. We all have our own reasons for our professional situations whether they are extrinsic or intrinsic. As I see it, there are five paths forward for short-term, contract ESL instructors in our sector:Continue reading
Category Archives: Employment
The Path to Employment through OCELT Certification
Written by Reza Mazloom-Farzaghy, Accreditation Services Manager, TESL Ontario
Equipped with OCELT (Ontario Certified English Language Teacher) certification, job seekers have access to employment opportunities across a broad spectrum of teaching sectors in Ontario and beyond.Continue reading
New Job? No Problem
I recently began a new role – a coordinator position – and it got me thinking about what I need to do to get off on the right foot. Here are three suggestions I came across in my research that will be useful in any TESL work environment. In this blog, I want to discuss 3 keys to a successful transition into new employment.Continue reading
SOS: Tackling Mid-Career Malaise
People sometimes joke about having a midlife crisis yet the truth is, research shows midlife (i.e., approximately in your 40s) is when people really do experience the lowest satisfaction in their personal and professional lives. This is a stage of life during which many have the highest financial burdens and the most at-home demands.
Canadian TESL professionals also experience malaise mid-career. In a study on the reflections of three mid-career ESL teachers in Canada, one participant noted she had “gone a little stale.” Another felt she had “plateaued professionally.” Experts say the signs that you are experiencing malaise can include feeling lethargic, disinterested, and unmotivated. You may be asking yourself questions like Is this truly what I’m meant to be doing with my life?Continue reading
Navigating Ontario’s EAP Sector (Part 1)
2022 marks a professional milestone for me: one decade as a contract instructor within Ontario English for Academic Purposes (EAP) programs. The last ten years have seen me criss-cross the province undertaking assorted contracts for eight post-secondary institutions. Every college/university I have worked for has had a unique culture and slightly different approach to academic preparation for English language learners. However, some common themes have emerged about how the Ontario EAP market seems to operate.
In a two-part series, I will share insights about navigating a career in EAP that I wish I had realized from the start. I am confident much of what I say can apply to other TESL environments too.
In this first blog of the series, I discuss how people can get their foot in the door.Continue reading
Tip for TESL Career Advancement: Be Visible!
Are you a part-time ESL/EAP instructor hoping to step into fulltime employment at your institution? If so, you are not alone. Recent evidence shows most ESL/EAP instructors in Canada are sitting in the precarious part time employment boat with you and are hoping to advance.
Perhaps you are wondering how you can distinguish yourself from the pack? One method of distinguishing yourself is to have workplace visibility.Continue reading
Why Do We Need a Mentor?
If you google the meaning of “mentorship”, you can find the literal meaning in the dictionary. According to Merriam-Webster, mentorship means “the influence, guidance, or direction given by a mentor” (n.d.). But what does this mean in practice? Why is having a mentor important? This article discusses the importance of mentorship at work, how to find a mentor, and how to maintain a healthy and successful mentorship.Continue reading
Stand Out and Stay Ahead in the TESL Market
Even during prosperous times ESL professionals in Canada encounter precarious employment: contract work, limited hours, and no/minimal benefits (Breshears, 2019). TESL graduates often struggle as they enter the field with limited knowledge of how to navigate the diverse segments of Canada’s TESL market (Wu, 2019).
Preparing for the TESL Ontario Conference
The 47th Annual TESL Ontario Conference is quickly approaching, and I am gearing up for a great time.
A Chance to Network and Learn
This will be my first conference as a newly certified teacher. I am looking forward to seeing my colleagues – some new faces, and, hopefully, some I have seen before – and learning something new.Continue reading
A Positive Group Volunteer Experience
While teaching a module about working in Canada, I found my students were a bit surprised when I told them that volunteer work was not only valuable to have on a resume, but also one of the best ways to gain work experience in Canada. For many, “paid” work experience seemed to be the only valued work experience they had known. So, when I mentioned to my class that employers like to see volunteer experience on resumes and hear about it in job interviews, students started asking how they could do it.Continue reading