A native or non-native
English speaking teacher?
If you take a look at all of the top, well-known English language centres around the world, you will note that they only hire native English teachers and that the vast majority of English teacher jobs require native English speakers.
Let’s just make it clear that both native English-speaking teachers and non-native English-speaking teachers can make exceptional teachers, with equally good skills and competency to teach English as a second or foreign language.
However, it is important that English learners are aware of the differences:
Firstly, a non-native English-speaking teacher may not give you a truly authentic English learning experience when it comes to speaking and pronunciation. While you can still learn a great deal from a non-native English-speaking teacher, learners should be aware that certain nationalities of non-native English-speaking teachers may carry a strong accent, which sometimes does not reflect the natural way that a native English-speaker would naturally speak English.
Pronunciation of words includes the way words sound, the intonation and the rhythm, and if your non-native English-speaking teacher’s own native accent is very different from native English, it could affect your level of English speaking and pronunciation skills. Note that pronunciation is part of the marking criteria for most internationally-recognised English language tests such as IELTS, PTE and CELPIP, so it is important that your English pronunciation is clear in order to get a high score in speaking tests such as IELTS.
Another reason why a native speaker may be a better teacher is because they naturally have a greater knowledge of vocabulary and structural grammar. For example, in English, native speakers know how to use phrasal verbs correctly, which can be very complex to use, and there are over 10,000 phrasal verbs in the English language! However, some will argue that non-native teachers are just as good if not better at explaining grammar structures because it’s automatic for a native speaker, whilst a non-native teacher would know all the possible challenging areas and can explain the rules in a way that is understandable to a beginner or intermediate foreign student.
If you are looking to improve overall English fluency or get a higher English test score, then a native English-speaking teacher would be a better choice to help you perfect your English to a higher level, and there is less of a risk that your teacher makes mistakes when it comes to grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation.
One thing to be aware of is that many language centres tend to hire non-native English-speaking teachers who are unqualified and inexperienced, so make sure that you check before you sign up.
To learners who are considering whether they should learn with a native English-speaking teacher or a non-native English-speaking teacher, look first for a teacher with teaching skills (at least a TEFL/CELTA/TESOL certificate) as this is a very important factor, as well as finding a teacher who loves his/her job!
Here at Aurora World Education, we believe that the quality of teachers is what makes your learning experience most valuable and we can guarantee that all of our teachers are native-English speakers, qualified, experienced, and passionate about teaching and inspiring their students.
Feel free to book a free consultation with us to learn more about our courses and our teachers!