The International Open Academy TESOL Review: Is it Legit?

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The International Open Academy is an educational marketplace for courses on professional development and training. You can find all kinds of courses here, from interior design to cocktail making.

But what about their TESOL course? In this no-nonsense article, we will break down everything you need to know in this International Open Academy TESOL review.

What is The International Open Academy?

The International Open Academy is home to many popular e-learning courses, and a particular bestseller is their 120-hour TESOL course.

They provide video courses and they are accredited by the International Council for Online Educational Standards (

All the courses are online and affordable. Students can learn from any digital device.

Is the International Open Academy TESOL legit?

Here is the deal with the International Open Academy.

If you apply to do the TESOL course and you pass, you will receive your TESOL certificate which enables you to apply to any online teaching company you wish.

You will have no problem getting a teaching job online with this certificate. Thousands of teachers have successfully taken this course and landed jobs with high-paying online companies, such as Gogokid and Magic Ears.

Saying that, if you are looking for a particular specialism, like exam preparation, this course will not cover you.

teach online ioa tesol

Is the International Open Academy TESOL accredited?

They are recognized and approved by TQUK (Training Qualifications UK). This is a national awarding body regulated by Ofqual (The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation) and recognized by the UK government.

The International Open Academy’s courses are also accredited by ICOES (The International Council for Online Education Standards).

Should I take the International Open Academy TESOL course for a teach-abroad position?

So we have already established that this TESOL course is all you need to get a teaching job online.

Another point I would like to make is that according to the website, this course should cover you if you want to teach abroad. I would be very wary about this for two reasons:

  1. This course can be completed quickly

First of all, the course can be completed so quickly and some even claim they have completed it in just a short weekend.

Realistically, would you feel prepared to teach abroad if you completed a course in such a short period of time?

Teaching online is a whole different way of teaching. If you have the lesson material prepared by the online teaching company, you have few problems to worry about. The training and one-on-one classes enable you to learn pretty quickly.

On the other hand, when you teach abroad, you might be thrown into a class with 50+ Asian kids, and expected to meet demands with your own lesson plans.

If you are interested in teaching abroad, I recommend checking The TEFL Academy Course. I also have a detailed review of this course, if you want to learn more.

2. This certificate costs more to get the printed version

If pricing is an issue and it is the reason you are choosing a cheaper course, you might be out more money than you expect.

Online schools do not require a printed version of your certificate, so you don’t have to worry about this one. However, if you are teaching abroad, some schools require you to bring a printed version of the certificate.

I believe this certificate costs 70 EUR ($85/£63) to get the legalized printed version. Why not just save that money for a more in-depth TESOL course?

Who is the International Open Academy’s TESOL Course best for?

This course is best for those who want to get their feet wet and learn about teaching English as a second language.

It is particularly suitable for those who want to teach online, as the certificate number will be required upon hire.

TPRTeaching does not recommend this course for teaching abroad, as it simply does not provide enough value or learning for that.

teach online course

What will I learn about in the International Open Academy’s TESOL Course?

Here is what you can expect to learn from the course:

  • Pedagogical techniques for teachers
  • Classroom management
  • How to motivate students
  • Linguistics: the basics (phonology, lexicology, semantics…)
  • Using a student’s primary language to teach them English
  • Teaching reading, writing, speaking, and listening
  • Lesson planning
  • Job hunting tips and advice


  • It is short and doesn’t take long to complete.
  • Good for a quick fix if you want to teach online.
  • Proof of TEFL certification means you are more likely to get an online teaching job.
  • Meets the minimum threshold for a 120-hour TEFL certificate as required by the Chinese government.
  • Money-back guarantee if you are not satisfied.


  • If you want to get the printed version of the certificate (required if you are teaching abroad) you will have to pay.
  • No teacher trainer support.
  • Online only; no practice in the classroom.

What is the difference between their TESOL and TEFL course?

The International Open Academy has 120-hour TEFL and TESOL certificates. Both of these courses cover the same thing according to the International Open Academy, so you don’t have to worry about which one you get.

TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) and TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Language) are acronyms used interchangeably, but the TEFL is the best-known name of the two.

Interested in purchasing the International Open Academy TEFL course? Get 84% off at checkout with the discount code “RK”

Other Popular Courses at the International Open Academy:

Other popular courses you can find at the International Open Academy:

  • Master Herbalist
  • Interior Design and Home Styling Course
  • Financial Trading Online Course

In Conclusion

It doesn’t hurt to buy The International Open Academy Course if you are interested in pursuing teaching English online.

It is okay to choose the TEFL or TESOL and you will still get an online job– of course, the job is not guaranteed no matter what course you do! You still have to show you are a good teacher.

If you are interested in teaching abroad, I recommend checking The TEFL Academy. They are one of the most internationally recognized and affordable while providing a level-5 government-regulated course!

Did you take the International Open Academy Course? Write your response to the International Open Academy Review in the comments section below!

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Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.

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2 years ago

Alert! after months I still didn’t get my certificate delivered. Makes you wonder if something will ever come up in the mail or if this is a joke.

2 years ago
Reply to  Meril

I’m planning on getting the hard copy for authentication. Please update me once you get it i wanted to make sure it’s legit.

2 years ago
Reply to  Ellie

The printed certificate is free. However, legal doesn’t accept it. I paid 27EUR for the physical certificate and they refuse to refund it. Instead they want me to pay for the DHL for 55EUR, which I still don’t trust if it will actually arrive. No I have not received the paper for 4 months now. Yes I get all sort of domestic and international mail to my address all the time, except this.

2 years ago
Reply to  Meril

This is very much unprofessional, they should resolve your matter as soon as possible. This site seems legit but such experiences shake the trust element.

2 years ago

Hey Guys

I am in the process of applying for my Tefl, and it is asking me for my billing address? What is it for?

9 months ago

I just wonder why I can’t resit the exam. Even I spent 5 extra EUR I can’t find a portal to let me retake the exam. What’s wrong?