Posted 22 Jun, 2020 | One Comment
Posted in: Teaching English

Choosing a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course can be tricky. With so many options available, you might be wondering which program is best for you.

For those who want to go above and beyond a basic credentials, a rigorous Level 5 TEFL certification course might be your best bet!

Generally speaking, TEFL Level 5 courses are some of the most widely recognized and accepted TEFL certifications in the business.

They are more work and are usually more expensive than a standard certification, but you could end up with more job opportunities and a higher salary as a result.

online english teacher

I took my TEFL certification online and it has allowed me to teach English while working and travelling all around the world! Getting certified really is one of the best things I ever did.

This guide will break down the 5 best Level 5 TEFL courses on the market today. 

What Is A Level 5 TEFL Course?

To be categorized as a TEFL Level 5, the course materials must be regulated by the UK government and must meet higher requirements than standard TEFL certifications.

The governing body that regulates and monitors Level 5 TEFL courses is called The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation, or Ofqual

A Level 5 TEFL certificate must meet the same standards as a CELTA or TrinityCertTESOL certification. Collectively, these certifications are considered top-tier for aspiring English teachers.

Usually, level 5 TEFL courses are less expensive than CELTA or TrinityCertTESOL courses, making this an affordable alternative for someone who wants additional training. 

The courses must meet rigorous accreditation and regulatory standards.

As I discuss each program below, I’ll share more information about their regulation and accreditation status. 

Who Should Take A Level 5 Course?

Level 5 TEFL courses are more advanced than standard TEFL training programs. They require more work and will take longer to complete, but you’ll leave with a deeper knowledge of teaching practices and a higher level certification. 

While a basic TEFL certification will be sufficient for most teaching jobs abroad, having an advanced certification can be helpful if you plan to apply to more competitive positions.

tefl teacher in china

This could help your application stand out and give you more opportunities in the long run.

A Level 5 TEFL course is for you if: 

  • You want to teach abroad in a country with a competitive teaching market
  • You want to apply for higher-level teaching positions abroad
  • CELTA and TrinityCertTESOL courses are out of your price range
  • You don’t mind spending more time getting a higher-tier TEFL certification
  • You want to have a deeper knowledge of TEFL practices and methods

1. The TEFL Academy

The TEFL Academy offers two Level 5 TEFL course options. Both courses are approved and accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (a USA government body) and Ofqual (a UK government body). 

Online Level 5 TEFL Course (168-hour)

The online course is a 168-hour TEFL certification that can be completed remotely.

It also includes a free 30-hour top-up course. Students can choose between extra training for business English, teaching young learners, or teaching online. 

The course includes modules about: 

  • Lesson planning
  • Teaching vocabulary, pronunciation, and grammar
  • How to teach listening and reading
  • How to teach speaking and writing
  • Using materials and resources in the classroom 

Because the online Level 5 TEFL course from The TEFL Academy is the same level as a CELTA certification, it will be widely accepted no matter where you hope to teach. 

Cost of the 168 Hour Course with The TEFL Academy: 

The cost is $530 but it’s often discounted on their website (It’s currently 50% off, bringing the cost down to $265). 

If the price is an important consideration for you, make sure to check the course description page for the latest price before making a decision. 

Your course fee includes the 168-hour TEFL training, a free 30-hour bonus course, 6 months of course access, and virtual tutor support. 

tefl teacher level 5 in china

Combined Level 5 TEFL Course (168-hour)

The second Level 5 TEFL course you can take with The TEFL Academy is a combination program.

In the combination course, you’ll complete a 148-hour online TEFL training and then participate in a 2-day in-person training session for 20 hours. Your total certification will be for 168-hours of coursework. 

Like with the fully online option, participants will also get a free 30-hour specialty course in a subject area of their choosing. 

With the combined course, you’ll receive access to your online training materials immediately after you sign up. The TEFL Academy will also give you information about how to sign up for your in-person training days. 

During the training days, you’ll get a chance to practice hands-on teaching skills, classroom management, and receive peer feedback. 

Cost of the 168 Hour Combined Course with The TEFL Academy: 

The cost of this course is $840 but it is often discounted. This includes the online TEFL course materials and 20 hours of in-person training spanning two days.

If there aren’t any in-person training centers near you, you might need to account for accommodation and transportation fees as well.

click here to learn more and sign up with the tefl academy

2. i-to-i TEFL

The i-to-i Level 5 TEFL courses are regulated by Ofqual and accredited by the Open and Distance Learning Quality Council. You can choose from three different certification packages which are explained in detail below. 

Online Level 5 TEFL Course (180-hour, 240-hour, or 300-hour)

The 180-hour training from i-to-i TEFL will help you build a strong foundation in teaching while earning a reputable Level 5 TEFL certification. 

Designed for people who want to go beyond 180-hours of TEFL training, the 240-hour program also includes an extra 60-hour module about online English teaching and teaching students one-on-one. 

Finally, students can take a 300-hour Level 5 TEFL diploma course fully online as well. The 300-hour course includes everything in the 240-hour course as well as a 60-hour add-on about teaching business English. 

Even though all three of these options are online, students will get feedback and support from virtual tutors if needed. 

Cost of the 180, 240 and 300 Hour Courses with i-to-i TEFL: 

Below you’ll find the normal prices for each of the online Level 5 courses listed above.

Keep in mind that i-to-i TEFL often runs significant discounts on their courses so it’s worth going to their website to see what the current deals are. (For example, at the time I’m writing this, all courses are discounted 60%)

  • 180-hour Online Level 5 TEFL: $1,495
  • 240-hour Online Level 5 TEFL: $1,595
  • 300-hour Online Level 5 TEFL: $1,695

cost of i to i level 5 tefl courses

Combined Level 5 TEFL Course (200-hour, 260-hour, 320-hour)

i-to-i TEFL also offers combined Level 5 TEFL course options. Each of the three combined courses includes one of the options above combined with a 2-day in-person training. 

You’ll complete the first portion of your training online in whichever quantity you choose. Then you’ll enroll in a hands-on training day where you can put your new skills into practice.

Training days include feedback from an experienced TEFL trainer and a chance to gain valuable hands-on teaching experience. 

Cost of the 200, 280 and 320 Hour Courses with i-to-i TEFL: 

The prices for the combined courses are as follows. Remember to check the website frequently for discounts. Right now, these courses are all 60% off!

  • 200-hour Combination Level 5 TEFL: $1795
  • 280-hour Combination Level 5 TEFL: $1895
  • 320-hour Combination Level 5 TEFL: $1995

click here to learn more and sign up with i-to-i tefl

3. Premier TEFL 

The Level 5 TEFL course by Premier TEFL is regulated by Ofqual and accredited by the Accreditation Council for Distance Learning. Training Qualifications UK has also approved Premier TEFL as a training center. 

168-Hour Level 5 TEFL Course

Premier TEFL offers a 168-hour Level 5 TEFL course that can be earned completely online.

Students will learn about general teaching philosophy as well as how to instruct pupils in grammar, speaking, reading, writing, and pronunciation.

The course also covers lesson planning tips and how to use teaching resources in your classroom. You’ll walk away from your course feeling more prepared and confident in your teaching abilities. 

The 168-hour program also comes with a free 30-hour specialty course about teaching English online

premier tefl level 5 certification

Cost of the 168 Hour Course with Premier TEFL: 

The cost is $639. Check their website for discounts and promotions. They are currently discounted to $259.

click here to learn more and sign up with premier tefl

4. The TEFL Org

The Level 5 courses offered by The TEFL Org are regulated by Ofqual and accredited by the British Accreditation Council.

At this time, they offer a self-paced online course as well as a combination online course with virtual practice sessions.

Level 5 Online Course (168-hour)

The TEFL Org offers a fully online 168-hour TEFL course for a reasonable price.

In addition to providing information about how to teach core concepts to English learners, this course includes entire modules devoted to teaching over the telephone and teaching large classes. 

The TEFL Org also includes a module with video observations so you can see how classes look in real life. Several student reviews pointed out how helpful it was to see what they were learning put into practice in real classrooms. 

They created this course for students who were seeking a deeper TEFL knowledge. While their 120-hour traditional TEFL course is still very popular, this course is a great option for aspiring teachers who want a more rigorous credential. 

teaching english classroom

Cost of the 168 Hour Course with The TEFL Org: 

The course costs $579 but is frequently available for a discounted rate on their website. The courses are currently $169 off.

Level 5 Combination Course (188-hour)

The TEFL Org also offers a combination online and hands-on course with Level 5 distinction. The unique part about this option is that the hands-on training component can be completed virtually.

While getting to practice teaching skills face to face is ideal, TEFL Org understands that not everyone can take time off for a full-day training.

If you have a busy schedule or don’t live in an area with TEFL training centers nearby, this could be a great way to get some personalized feedback without missing work or spending a ton of money on travel. 

When you enroll in the combination course, you’ll receive instant access to the 168-hour online TEFL course mentioned above. You’ll also be able to sign up for an additional 20-hour virtual classroom course.

Virtual classroom courses are offered weekly on a rolling start basis, so you can choose the time and dates that work best for your schedule. You’ll meet over the course of four days for live sessions, so it’s important to make sure you can attend every meeting. 

Cost of the 188 Hour Combination Course with The TEFL Org:

The combination course costs $729. This includes the full 168-hour online course and the 20-hour virtual classroom component. You’ll also get a reference letter from your virtual classroom teacher. The courses are currently $169 off.

click here to learn more and sign up with The tefl org

5. TEFL Institute of Ireland

This company offers a 180-hour TEFL level 5. They are approved and regulated by Ofqual and accredited by the Accreditation Council for Distance Learning.

Regulated Online Level 5 Courses (180-hour, 240-hour, 300-hour)

The TEFL Institute of Ireland has three Level 5 TEFL training courses available. The 180-hour course will take you through the fundamentals of becoming a teacher and best practices for your classroom.

On its own, this course will leave you prepared and qualified for many teaching jobs abroad, but if you want to learn about more specializations, there are two other courses to consider. 

The 240-hour course includes the entire 180-hour TEFL training as well as additional training for teaching English exam preparation.

This course includes a 30-hour module to help students prepare for the IELTS exam and a 30-hour module to help students prepare for the TOEIC exam.

Having this training could make you more desirable as an instructor or private tutor around the world since many English learners wish to prepare for these important tests — especially if you hope to teach English as a freelancer, having a background in exam prep could help you attract more clients.

You can also choose to go a step further with the 300-hour Level 5 TEFL course.

This online course includes everything in the 240-hour course with an additional 30-hour module for teaching business English and an additional 30-hour module for teaching young learners. 

students laughing take a tefl course

Cost of the 180, 240 and 300 Hour Course with The TEFL Institute of Ireland: 

The TEFL Institute of Ireland’s course cost breakdown is listed below:

  • 180-hour Online Course: €449
  • 240-hour Online Course: €499
  • 300-hour Online Course: €596

Is A Level 5 TEFL Certification Right For Me?

A Level 5 certification course is a great option for those who want an advanced credential without a high price tag.

Even though a basic 120-hour TEFL will qualify you for most teaching abroad jobs, having a Level 5 course under your belt could make your application stand out to employers and allow you to apply for more competitive opportunities. 

Consider your budget, timeline, and what kinds of jobs you hope to pursue in the future. No matter which course you decide on, getting TEFL certified will provide you with countless opportunities to work and travel around the world. 

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Nic is a fulltime writer for Goats On The Road. She’s a former classroom teacher turned full-time traveler and online English teacher. In June 2017, she stumbled on an online English teaching gig that allowed her to travel anywhere with good WiFi. She got TEFL certified, packed up her classroom and decided to take her job on the road to combine her two passions – teaching English and traveling! You can also find her at See Nic Wander.

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One thought on “Best TEFL Level 5 Courses Online

  1. I’m looking for a course that goes above and beyond in the ‘teaching English online’ side of things. As opposed to a course that focuses too heavily on skills for in-person classroom teaching. If you had to pick a provider out of the 5 that you have reviewed, which provides the best training for teaching English online.


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