Fake TEFL Certificates Uncovered by Chinese Media! The Cost....

Source: JobTube, Arianna J., Freya W., Josh B.

On October 14th, Beijing media covered news about a domestic intermediary agency selling forged qualification certificates for foreign teachers online, where a TESOL / TEFL certificate cost 3500 Yuan, and a group discount price was 3000 Yuan if an order contains five people or above.

Agency Selling Fake Certificates Online

In July, the new policy of standardizing online education business was issued, which required foreign teachers must have teaching qualification certificates. It is understood that if a foreign English teacher applies for a foreigner's work permit, he / she needs to provide an "International English teacher qualification certificate, where the Foreign Affairs Bureau mainly recognizes the TESOL / TEFL certificates. What follows is the emergence of " forged certificates ", which disturbs the market environment.

Earlier in October, the news staff found that an employee of an agency for foreign teacher recruitment published ads under WeChat Moments. The contents of the ad are below:

"We can provide TESOL and TEFL certificates issued by professional international organizations within 30 days, could be used for work visa application, no need to finish 120 hours of classes! We will give you a preferential price! Applicable for Chinese applicants too!". 

A journalist disguising as a worker of a bilingual kindergarten, contacted the worker.

Per the worker, it was a convenient service where all the information required from an applicant was name and passport number. No need for an academic certificate or occupational training record. It would take two to four weeks and 3500 Yuan to get a TESOL / TEFL certificate. For a group buy that contains 5 pieces or above, the unit price was 3000 yuan. In addition, if an embassy authentication was needed, then there would be an extra fee of 5000 Yuan. Although it is risky, they had had successful cases.

The journalist and the agency worker chatting about the price, time and info needed for a fake certificate

The reporter also asked another foreign teacher recruitment agency about the certificates. The agency said they sent the foreign teacher as per the requirements of the employers, where some teachers had TESOL / TEFL certificates, some did not.

Also, it was not their responsibility to verify the authenticity of foreign teachers' certificates.