Certificate Course in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)

Overview Details and Calendar Included Travel Homestay Program Cost Application


CEDEI’s TEFL Program in South America is an intensive training course consisting of 114 hours of coursework providing students with information on current practice, theory, and research in the Teaching of English as a Foreign Language. The daily schedule includes two 90-minute classes focused on methodology and teaching techniques, and two hours of teaching practice with Ecuadorian English students. The class sessions include lectures, discussions, technique workshops and peer interaction, all of which prepare students to become well-trained and culturally aware. All teaching practice sessions are observed by peers and instructors and are followed by a peer assessment with oral and written feedback by the instructor.

Learning how to teach English and learning how to teach it in a foreign culture are two different things. CEDEI offers you the opportunity to earn your TEFL Certificate in an on-site language school where over 900 Ecuadorian students attend English classes every semester. Our approach also takes into consideration the importance of cultural context in learning English; thus, our program offers travel to sites of historical and cultural interest during the program as well as the opportunity to live with a local host family.

Since the beginning of the TEFL in South America Program in 1998 CEDEI has produced well-trained, culturally-aware teachers who contribute to global well-being and communication

Quick facts:

  • The average TEFL class size ranges from 8—12 students
  • Hours of Instruction: Monday—Friday, 8:3012:30 
  • Evening Teaching Practice: Monday—Thursday, 6:008:30pm
    • In these evening sessions, TEFL students are both teaching English to Ecuadorians and observing their peers' lessons. Students will also have the opportunity to observe English classes taught by CEDEI English Department faculty. 
  • Total of 120 hours of learning in the four week program!
  • Guaranteed 10 hours of actual teaching practice.
  • A service project involving teaching English in a rural community

Details and Calendar

Where is the program?
The program is located at CEDEI in Cuenca, Ecuador. Cuenca is a beautiful city of almost 400,000 people situated high mountain valley at about 8,200 feet in Ecuador's southern Andes. Cuenca was founded in 1557 near the Inca city of Tomebamba and has preserved its colonial architecture and narrow, cobblestone streets as it has grown into a modern, Ecuadorian city. Today it is the site of many universities, cultural sites, and it is known as the Athens of Ecuador!

When is it?
TEFL Summer is scheduled from June 6 through July 15, 2017. Upon satisfactory completion of the Program, students will receive a Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language from CEDEI. The TEFL Certificate is required for teaching English in many foreign schools. Students will also receive three CEDEI credits designated as: TEF401: Teaching English as a Foreign Language.

Who is eligible?
The program is open to college and university students of all majors who are willing to live, experience, and teach in the wonderfully diverse setting of Cuenca.

Where will I attend class?
Students will take classes at the campus of the Centro de Estudios Interamericanos. The CEDEI campus is located in the heart of Cuenca not far from the central plaza. Both Ecuadorian and U.S. professors teach classes and all professors employed by CEDEI have experience teaching U.S., Canadian and other international students.

Who directs the program?
CEDEI´s TEFL instructors are highly-qualified, dedicated professionals who offer their expertise and real life experiences to aspiring TEFL teachers. They have traveled widely and have taught overseas in a variety of countries. Our instructors delight in bringing their extensive life and teaching experiences to the TEFL classroom; they also provide a constant source of encouragement, knowledge and international contacts to our TEFL students. The academic director for TEFL Summer Program is Beatrice Jacobson, professor and Director of Women’s Studies Program at St. Ambrose University.

CEDEI TEFL Summer 2017 Calendar
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Included Travel


Quito, formally San Francisco de Quito, is the capital city of Ecuador, and at an elevation of 2,830 meters (9,350 feet) above sea level, it is the highest capital city in the world housing the country’s administrative, legislative and judicial functions. The students will visit the Capilla del Hombre, the famous museum containing many works by Ecuadorian artist Oswaldo Guayasamín, and they will also participate in a City Tour, visiting the historic center, La Catedral, La Compañía de Jesus, buildings of political importance, and many other culturally relevant sites located throughout the city.

  • Altitude: 2,830 m (9,350 ft)
  • Normal Temperatures: 10° - 27° C (50° - 80° F)
  • Climate: Subtropical Highland
  • Number and difficulty of hikes: 1 city tour, 2/10 difficulty.


Our students visit Otavalo, located north of the Equator and about 100 kilometers north of Quito, the capital. Here, the tranquil streets and sprawling markets will provide an interesting contrast to the modern city of Quito. In recent times, the market has begun to focus strongly on the tourist trade, although thousands of indigenous from the surrounding communities still descend on market day to buy and sell. They are considered to be one of the most successful indigenous groups in Latin America, and can be found selling their wares in almost every Ecuadorian city, as well as in Europe and the United States. While in Otavalo students will visit Taller Mindada, a cultural site specializing in the local history and development of various textiles, as well as a musical workshop where students will be able to see the creation of a simple Andean instrument and try playing others.

  • Altitude: 2,550 m (8,415 ft)
  • Normal Temperatures: 10° - 27° C (50° - 80° F)
  • Climate: Dry, Mediterrean-Temperate, Sub-Andean Valley

Mitad del Mundo

The Mitad del Mundo (Middle of the World) monument in the town of Cayambe, between Quito and Otavalo, marks the place where, in 1736, Charles-Marie de La Condamine’s expedition made the measurements that located the Equator. Despite this accomplishment the French team of scientists was off by 300 meters, an error which was discovered upon the invention of the global positioning system GPS. Nevertheless, it is a great place to get a photo with one foot in either hemisphere. A pre-Columbian monument from one of Ecuador’s pre-historic cultures was discovered on the hill in front of the monument, on the exact line of the Equator. There is also a museum that contains a model of Quito, a planetarium, various exhibits, several restaurants, an open arena that is occasionally used for folkloric-dance performances, and a small chapel where couples can marry with one spouse standing in the northern hemisphere and the other in the southern.

Salasaca & Patate

Salasaca is a village inhabited by some 12,000 Salasaca Indians famous for their exquisite tapestries, history, and for being one of the most vibrant indigenous cultures of Ecuador. This group which was once located in Bolivia, but was conquered by the Incas and forced to move, thereby being less of a threat to the Incan empire. This tribe is considered one of the most interesting ethnic groups because of their surly and rebellious social behavior, strong traditions and customs their reluctance to mix with whites, and because they still live in relative isolation. As you head southeast from Salasaca towards río Patate, nestled precariously in a steep valley you will begin to catch smoky glimpses of the famous Volcán Tungurahua, the 5,016m peak which is always threatening imminent eruption. From the town of Patate, where you will be staying in the Hacienda Leito, you might get the chance to hear, feel, and see Tungurahua giving a spectacular show of bursting lava cascading down its sides. Not to worry, although the hacienda in Patate sometimes will receive a light dusting of ash, there is nothing to be concerned about for it is at a safe distance from the thundering giant.

  • Altitude: 2,200 m (7,260 ft)
  • Normal Temperatures: 7° - 18° C (45° - 64° F)
  • Climate: Subtropical Highland/High Montane Forest
  • Number and difficulty of hikes: None

Ingapirca Archaeological Site

The ruins of Ingapirca, located approximately two and a half-hours from Cuenca, are the most important Incan ruins in Ecuador. Ingapirca is set on a picturesque hillside and overlooks a small village of the same name. The area surrounding the ruins is used primarily for agriculture and raising cattle, with traditional methods (hand and animal power) still used by the majority of farmers.

The main structure, the so-called Temple of the Sun, demonstrates some of the Incas’ finest mortar-less stonework, and is surrounded by seemingly less important ruins thought to be residences and storehouses. There is still debate over the use of the ruins, and archaeologists have at times referred to the ruins as a temple, fortress or as a royal stopover for imperial runners between Quito and Tomebamba (Cuenca).

  • Altitude: 3,210 m (10,300 ft)
  • Normal Temperatures: 10° - 27° C (50° - 80° F)
  • Climate: Subtropical Highland/Valley
  • Number and difficulty of hikes: 1 hike/walk, 3/10 difficulty.

El Cajas National Park

Declared a national recreation area in 1977 and a national park in 1996, “El Cajas” (“boxes”) covers an area of 29,000 hectares (72,000 acres) of mountainous terrain between 9,700-13,500 feet. The park is situated on the western cordillera at the continental divide, about 30 km west of Cuenca. A once-glaciated region (note the “U”-shaped valleys and craggy peaks) over 400 lakes and lagoons formed after the last ice age, around 12,000 years ago. Today, the park is littered with these paternoster lakes, all interconnected by visible and subterranean rivers and waterfalls. High altitude and moisture are the dominant climactic variables in El Cajas, forming two interesting ecosystems: Montaine cloud forest and Andean páramo, or shrubby high altitude grassland.

  • Altitude: 2,940 - 4100 m (9,700 – 13,500 ft)
  • Normal Temperatures: 0° - 25° C (32° - 77° F)
  • Climate: High Montaine Forest/Andean Páramo
  • Number and difficulty of hikes: 1 hike, 7/10 difficulty.


The capital city of the province of Guayas, Guayaquil, is not only the largest city in Ecuador, but also the nation’s main port and the center of Ecuador’s manufacturing and fishing industry. With a current population of approximately 2 million inhabitants, the generally hot and humid climate has transformed in recent years from a seemingly disorganized city to an international destination and the focal point for export of common products such as banana, cacao, coffee, minerals, flowers and textiles. This large natural port on the Pacific coast contains a rich mix of biodiversity as a result of the convergence of the salty Pacific waters and the fresh water from the Guayas river allowing locals to make a living through fishing and collecting a variety of shellfish.

Puerto Lopez

This is a busy fishing village of about 15,000 situated in the Manabí province of the Pacific coast. The main industries here on the beach are fishing and eco-tourism. A few kilometers off the coast lies La Isla de la Plata, famous for being an old pirate hide-out and also known as a the ‘poor mans Galapagos’ for the few species that inhabit the island which can also be found in the Galapagos. In and around Puerto Lopéz one can take time to whale watch, visit Parque Nacional Machalilla, hike local trails and see archeological sites or explore the local night life.


The small fishing town of Canoa located north of Manta is known for some of the best beaches in Ecuador as well as its allure for surfers of all skill levels. Canoa is considered a great place to spend a relaxing and relatively inexpensive vacation and also has many available options for eco-tourism nearby. The beach in Canoa is considered one of the best in the area, and at the north end of the beach are caves known for there large bat habitat.


As an integral part of our programs, our department offers our students the opportunity to stay with a host family in order to provide them with an invaluable experience. Beyond their normal schedules, the students have the opportunity to be immersed in the culture, customs, and the daily life of Cuenca; an enriching experience for both the students and for the families who host them, resulting in a true cultural exchange.

Taking into consideration that the experience of living with a host family in another country is a very important part of the international studies program, the Department of International Programs has a host family coordinator who is responsible for the careful selection of the families best suited to receive our students in their homes. The evaluation of potential host families will be based on the distance from their house to CEDEI, their motivation(s) for receiving a student, and the willingness and desire of the family to accommodate an international student while sharing their home and personal lives with them.

It is very important that the student fills out the ‘Homestay Questionnaire’ as honestly as possible. Once the homestay questionnaires have been received from our students, the coordinator will then discuss in detail the student preferences, personalities, and interests with their future Ecuadorian family. Our careful process is to assure a pleasant stay with the hopes of an unforgettable and rewarding experience through which our students will create bonds and close friendships with their host families.

Homestay family

Program Cost

The program costs $4,050 USD which includes all instructional fees, lodging, three meals per day, and laundry services all while living with a host family. Also included is medical insurance, as well as transfers and lodging on CEDEI field trips and a six-day excursion to the Coast. It’s recommended to budget about $800-$1000 USD for roundtrip airfare from an airport near your home to Quito, Ecuador. Other out of pocket expenses may include books, meals during field trips, spending money for souvenirs, airport exit taxes, passport, visa, immunizations and miscellaneous personal expenses which are all the responsibility of each student. Most students budget about $1000 USD for these personal expenses for the semester. There may be additional fees required by your university for billing and administrative costs. Please contact your study abroad office for further details. Financial aid may also be available through your university and each student should check with his or her financial aid officer.

Detail Cost
Homestay (3 meals per day + laundry) $800.00
Cultural Excursions and Trips (Orientation, weekend excursions, and departure from the coast) $1,900.00
CEDEI Academic / Administration Expenses $1,350.00
TOTAL $4,050.00


To apply for our Fall Semester, please fill out the following forms:

Application for Admission: This form gives us a general idea of who you are, contact information and what program you are applying for.

Homestay Form: During your time with CEDEI, you will be staying with a host family. Please be very clear when answering the questions included in this form, especially when it comes to explaining dietary requirements, special habits or strong dislikes. Homestay placement partially depends on this form to have a successful pairing, so please try to be as clear as possible. We say ´partially´ because a large part of a successful homestay depends on the students attitude and tolerance to a different culture. We will try to meet all of your expectations but please keep in mind that it isn't possible for a family to meet your every need. We will prioritize your requirements and try our best to make this an amazing experience for all!

Health and Emergency Form: This form gives us a general idea on your health requirements and emergency contact information that would be useful for our staff and as a guideline for your host families.

Liability Release: Please print and read this document carefully. Sign upon agreement and mail it to our office in Arizona. Upon the completion of the Liability Release, you must post it to our Arizona office which has the following address:

Centers for Interamerican Studies Attn: Kristine Nordstrom 14806 N 90th Ave Peoria AZ 85381 +1-623-521-4088

Once we receive your application forms, we will contact you with more information on the program, including classes, visas and pre-departure tips. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach us at: info@cedei.org

*This page contains PDF documents. To open, a PDF reader is required. To download a free reader, follow the link: Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  • TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language)
  • The average TEFL class size ranges from 8—12 students
  • Hours of Instruction: Monday—Friday, 8:30—12:30
  • Evening Teaching Practice: Monday—Thursday, 6:00—8:30pm
  • In these evening sessions, TEFL students are both teaching English to Ecuadorians and observing their peers' lessons. Students will also have the opportunity to observe English classes taught by CEDEI English Department faculty.
  • Total of 120 hours of learning in the four week program!
  • Guaranteed 10 hours of actual teaching practice.
  • A service project involving teaching English in a rural community

Program dates: June 13 - July 22, 2017