Little Czech List – Hello Academies/Smaller Earth

        

Czechlister’s Overall Impression: “Temptingly Affordable…but not enough!” 

Course Dates:

November 16th 2015

Price:

$1600 (includes accommodation)

…Unless you look at their page on Smaller Earth (parent company located in the UK), in which case it’s £939 ($1445USD). Not sure how to take advantage of the lower price, but interesting…

Price For Me:

$1600USD

(Unless I pay in British pounds?)

Accommodation Details:

At a place called Student Republic

“The Metro and Tram stops to downtown are conveniently located right outside your door. You will be living in Prague 6 right next to the metro Dejvicka and our housing is only 5 minutes from downtown. Housing also includes all utilities and internet. Amenities include 24/7 on-site security, restaurant, cafeteria, two pubs, and fitness center”

Accreditation:

IATQuO (International Accreditation of TESOL Qualifying Organisations)

Job Assistance:

“During the course you will attend interview workshops, meet with employers of top language schools located in Prague, and see sample TEFL resumes to get you prepared for the job application process.

Throughout the course current job postings will be uploaded to the TEFL Facebook group on a daily basis to give you first-hand access to what is available.

The Hello Academy in Prague is unique in that it has several partnerships throughout Prague and the surrounding cities with local businesses, high schools, preschools, and private schools.”

Visa Support:

“Hello Academies partners with Ripofim Law Agency. They have English speaking employees, an excellent track record of obtaining visas, and great customer service.

During the first week of the course a representative from Ripofim will come to your class and explain to you all of your different options for legally living and working in the Czech Republic.”

Course Hours/Details:

4 weeks, 110 hour course, 10 hours teaching practice

“Throughout the course there are several different assignments. You must complete the pre-departure grammar packet, a grammar quiz, an individual learner profile, a materials assignment, and the final grammar test. The TEFL course works on a pass/fail system.”

Graduate Resources:

Provided a link to TEFL Course reviews on GoOverseas.com, a lot of reviews but I didn’t see any means of contact at a glance. Could warrant further investigation?

Little things:

  • One month metro pass
  • 24/7 on-site assistance
  • Survival Czech lessons
  • Welcome dinner and graduation celebration
  • Local cultural excursions to a sporting event and castle

CZECHLISTED!

A bit confusing to research this one, as there were two sites to look over – a US version called ‘Hello Academies‘ and a UK one called ‘Smaller Earth‘. After some exploration, they seem to be the same except for the price (see above), and that Hello Academies is simply a smaller branch specific to TEFL in Prague, owned by Smaller Earth, which has many different tourist/work/live abroad programs.

Everything seemed decent and in order, the price is great, but the lack of contact information for graduates as well as the brevity of information about course content, job assistance, and visa support gives me pause. Everything looks very polished and bit too “tourist”y for my taste, as I’m not looking for a vacation – they aren’t calling it a vacation of course, but they did a good job making it look like one! Regardless of the price, I’d rather go with a course that is a little more thorough and clear on what kind of job support they provide, and what is in the course, rather than just a really clean looking website with photos of very happy people.

Overall, the price is great, but I think I’d rather pay a little more to feel absolutely sure I’m not getting into a course where I’ll be left on my own to sink or swim afterwards. Assurance of post-course assistance trumps saving a hundred bucks!

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