Awarding Teacher Training Recognition

TESL Canada grants recognition of TESL Training Programs providing the designation as a TESL Canada Recognized Teacher Training Program. Recognition decisions are made based on a comprehensive review and assessment of the program. The assessment includes successive levels of review and includes a site visit (“inspection”) as a component of the five year recognition.


Recognition decisions are based on a collaborative approach. Each successive level of review is conducted by different members of the TESL Canada Standards Committee team. The only constant in the process is the Executive Director (ED) whose role is to facilitate the flow of information. The ED acts in an ex-officio capacity where any voting is concerned.

Based on the final recommendations of the TESL Canada Adjudicator, TESL Canada may make one of the following recognition decisions:

A) Full Recognition

Established teacher training programs that have been in operation for more than one year or three sessions, whichever is shorter, may be granted full recognition. The period of recognition is normally a five (5) year period provided that all the TESL Canada standards have been and continue to be met. Official TESL Canada Recognition Certificates clearly specify the applicable dates of recognition. It is the responsibility of the program to commence the re-application process at least three (3) months in advance of the expiration date. Failure to reapply may result in program probation. The ED notifies the program of the timelines at least six (6) months prior to the expiration date.

During this five year period recognized teacher training programs must:

  • Submit the TESL Canada Annual Report (Form B) on June 1st of each of the four years following recognition
  • Submit the Annual Report Fee of $110

Failure to submit an annual report, annual report fee, and the timely submission of additional information requested by TESL Canada adjudicators via the ED may result in program probation.

Programs will also be required to remain members in good standing by renewing their membership on June 1. TESL Canada Membership Fee is $165 annually. The ED will notify programs in the form of an invoice at least two (2) month prior to their anniversary date. Failure to maintain membership in good standing may result in program probation.

B) Interim Recognition

Interim recognition may be granted for a period of up to one (1) year or the completion of one session (whichever is shorter) and the approved submission of Form A and its supporting documentation. This designation applies to programs that meet TESL Canada standards, but are new teacher training programs that have been in operation for less than one year. Interim recognition is intended to provide the opportunity for programs to demonstrate that they are able to meet and to sustain TESL Canada standards.

In order to achieve full status, an interim program must:

  • Submit a TESL Canada Interim Status Session Report (Form A) at the end of the first session. The report will include the number of trainees per session, a description of the facilities, teacher trainers’ qualifications and trainee evaluations of the program
  • Report on any significant changes to the program that were not submitted in the original application, i.e. staff, facilities, curriculum

Interim programs that meet the above criteria and maintain TESL Canada Teacher Training Standards will be granted full recognition and will then be expected to comply with recognition requirements as listed in (A) above. A successfully completed interim period will be considered part of the overall five-year recognition period. Final approval may require an additional site visit and/or spot check.

Students who graduate from an interim recognized program will be able to apply for TESL Canada certification once the program has received full recognition.

C) Declined Recognition

Recognition may be declined to a program that does not substantially meet all the requirements of the TESL Canada Standards. The ED, on behalf of the Standards Committee, will provide the program with details, in writing, pertaining to this decision.

The program may appeal the declined recognition by requesting an Application or Site Visit Appeal. Please see the TESL Canada Procedure for Appeals for more information.

D) Site-Visits and Additional Reviews

TESL Canada may conduct spot checks to verify information. These reviews may be the result of discrepancies in the annual reporting mechanisms, items flagged for further scrutiny by the Standards Adjudicators, or any complaints or concerns reported to the ED, or simply a scheduled site-visit. The ED will notify the program of a site visit with a minimum of five (5) days notice. Program directors are expected to comply with the site visit evaluator and provide access to all facilities, resources, instructors, students, and documents as necessary.

E) Probation

Programs may be placed on probation for a period of up to one (1) month. Probation may result from:

  • Non-compliance with standards
  • Failure to complete the annual report
  • Failure to pay membership or annual report fees
  • Failure to re-apply at least three months prior to anniversary date of recognition
  • Failure to submit requested additional information in the timeframe allocated
  • Verified complaints

The ED on behalf of the Standards Committee will notify programs, in writing via registered mail of the conditions to be met including the applicable timelines (no more than twenty (20) business days). Failure to remedy the conditions of probation within the required timeframe may result in cancellation of recognition and suspension of membership.

Confirmation may require an additional site visit and/or spot check. The cost of this is the full responsibility of the program.

A program violating standards in any of the above mentioned ways which then results in program probation will be subject to a sanction of $110 for each and every infraction of the standards. The fee will be assessed and an invoice sent with the conditions to be met and is payable with the same applicable timeline (no more than twenty (20) business days. Failure to pay the fee may result in the cancellation of recognition.

*NOTE: Programs on probation will have their probation status reflected on the TESL Canada Approved Teacher Training Program List on the TESL Canada Website. The program will be noted as on probation until the probation conditions (including fees) have been met and Recognition Status regained.

F) Cancellation of Recognition

TESL Canada may cancel recognition for a program that no longer meets the requirements of the TESL Canada Teacher Training Program Recognition Standards. This decision will be made only after a thorough investigation and review has taken place. Cancellation terms also apply to failure to submit the Annual Report and/or payment of fees after a probation period. Program may reapply for recognition one year after recognition is revoked.

Programs may appeal recognition decisions in accordance with the terms and conditions as set forth in the TESL Canada Procedure for Appeals.