The WTEFLAC set out to enhance the overall quality of teaching in the TEFL and TESOL marketplaces. Here's how it was founded and how it worked.

The rise of e-commerce has dramatically expanded choice and opportunity. For the thousands of people looking for TEFL or TESOL opportunities, there is a huge amount of choice available. From studying on-premises to remote and part-time courses, a quick search of the internet offers up dozens of options. What it doesn't do is give you any idea about whether a provider can be trusted or how good they are. It's all too easy to produce a slick and convincing-looking website. At first glance, there is no way of knowing if that marketing material can be backed up.


This is what the World TEFL Accrediting Commission set out to change. Among the many factors in its code of conduct was a focus on marketing literature. In order to be accredited, all marketing content would have to provide a fair and accurate picture of what the course actually contained. That means no inflated promises, no false information and honesty when it comes to pricing options. Many providers may appear to be low cost, but come with a range of hidden additions.

When assessing an application, the accreditation board would review all content on the websites and marketing literature. They would compare that against the course content and pricing information to make sure it provided a fair and accurate picture of what people could expect.

If they were uncertain about the content, they would often arrange a site visit so they could see the operation firsthand. This would be a chance to meet the staff, understand the course structure, and to satisfy themselves that this was a legitimate and reputable provider.

Assessing marketing literature

Among the common claims they would assess were:

  • Course content: They would look at each of the course modules and determine if they met best practices and were adequately described in the literature.
  • Qualifications: Courses would need to lead to a recognised qualification that would help people to take their careers onto the next level. Looking at the marketing material they would need to be clear about what the qualifications would actually lead to. For example, if a cheaper course only covered one aspect of teaching English – such as early years – this should be made clear in the literature.
  • Pricing: As mentioned above all pricing information would have to be accurate and up to date
  • Staff experience: The literature would have to accurately reflect the experience levels of staff, their qualifications and their background.

All of this information was taken into account alongside other issues such as company culture, training provisions, and the way in which the courses were taught. All this would be reviewed and a decision reached about whether or not the provider deserved to be accredited.

It was a clear, concise, and impartial approach that ensured all prospective students could trust what they saw and read.