Happy New Year from Promise Opens Doors! As mentioned a year ago in our 2017 Year in Review, we launched 2018 by at last planting the seed of an idea we had been carrying for over a decade: to create a certificate program out of our expertise as online teachers.
We began by identifying the key objectives of an effective certificate program for online language teaching:
analysis and evaluation of historical and contemporary SLA approaches and methods
hands-on learning of activities for all language skills in the online classroom
creation-level experience with lesson planning and assessment in the online language classroom
application of all aspects of technology for online teaching
the formation of a plan for getting established and ensuring success in an online TESOL career
the demonstration of professional development through a reflective teaching practice with actual experience in online English classrooms.
From that foundation we built a framework of resources, activities, and assessments to guide trainees through the creation of a personally meaningful online teaching toolkit for all of the objectives above. The toolkit was designed to provide individualized take-away reference materials for participants to keep at hand during their establishment of a fulfilling and successful online teaching career, oriented to continuous improvement of skills for enhancing the lives of language students around the world.
With the framework complete, we brought on experienced online teachers to share their knowledge and flesh out the program resources. We also collaborated with other experienced TESOL curriculum developers to provide periodic reviews of the program. Finally we recruited a team of experienced language teachers to beta-test the program, then implemented another round of updates before it was released. This certificate program was a grand project accomplished through the hard work and effort of so many, and we are thankful for the opportunity and the experience of working with them all.
As our curriculum development team was hard at work, our vice president and career center professionals were continuing to build relationships with universities, schools, and organizations to support our program. We developed a relationship with Athena University, a US-based university with strong overseas TESOL connections. Athena University is now a program sponsor for our Promise Opens Doors TEFL Certificate Program for Online Teachers. We further collaborated with other schools online and abroad to provide teaching placements for our program participants. We continued running cohorts in the 145-hour TESOL Core Certificate Program and placing teachers into online classrooms, and we had great experiences getting to know and train some truly talented and passionate aspiring teachers for the language classroom.
This was a year of long nights at the computer while our families slept; a year of email chains that went on for weeks; a year of collaboration, planning, drafting, writing, reviewing, adjusting, testing, and polishing, always with our objectives in mind; and a year of prioritizing all of the needs of a quality certificate program, to make it at once affordable for participants and effective in our mission: to equip aspiring online teachers with the resources, background knowledge, and toolkit necessary to ensure their success in an online teaching career.
2018 was a year like no other, and we look forward to all that is to come. As always, we wish you the best of all years, with prosperity, adventure, and health in 2019.