Notarization & Authentication of Certificates
What is notarization of a TEFL or TESOL certificate?
Notarization of your TEFL or TESOL certificate is done through a Notary Public. In California, the Notary Public will need to see the original TEFL or TESOL certificate/diploma and the ID of the individual notarizing it. Anyone can take it to the Notary Public, it doesn't have to be the student. The Notary Public will then photocopy the original certificate and certify that it is a true copy of the original. This true copy is considered to be the "notarized" certificate. Since our certificates are issued in California, it is best to have a Notary Public in California perform the notarization, rather than a Notary Public from another state. The reason is that if you will be sending it to the Secretary of State in California for authentication, they will only accept notarizations that were done in California. Some companies offer notarization services for a fee (see below).
What is authentication/legalization and Apostille?
The authentication/legalization or Apostille process is different from notarization. Notarization only involves a notary public. The authentication process and steps required are dictated by the country where you will work. You should check with the embassy of the country where you will work for the most-up-to-date rules. Below are some guidelines to help you:
Apostille - The countries which are in the Hague convention accept an Apostilled version of your certificate. The certificate can be Apostilled by the California Secretary of State since it was issued in California (visit this link for more information about the California Secretary of State Authentication/Apostille process - http://www.sos.ca.gov/notary/authentication/). Please refer to this website for more information and a list of countries which accept Apostilled certificates: https://assets.hcch.net/upload/abc12e.pdf
Legalization/Authentication - The terms legalization and authentication are often used interchangeably. Countries that do not accept Apostilled documents will required that you go through alternate steps to make your certificate valid for use in their country - this is called legalization or authentication. The process is different for each country, so please check with the embassy of the country for accurate information.
Which companies/agents offer Apostille or Legalization/Authentication services?
There are many companies that offer notarization, legalization and authentication services for a fee. We recommend using these agents because the process of notarization and legalization is often messy and complicated. It involves many parties and if you are not experienced you may make mistakes that will prove more costly in the long run. Below are two companies that we suggest. Although we are not in any way affiliated with them and cannot guarantee their work, they seem to have a good reputation and are experienced with this work. Please contact each company to find out more information about fees and the process.
Apostille Pros - http://www.apostillepros.com/index.html
Apostille Pros are based out of California. They offer notarization services, Apostille services and Legalization/Authentication services. Last we checked, they charge $95 (plus shipping) for Apostille service (which includes notarizing the certificate if it is not yet notarized). The Apostilled document can then be used for Hague countries. For non-Hague counties, typically you will still need the Apostilled/notarized certificate to be mailed to them so you have to take care of this first step. Then, you can follow the steps required by the embassy to legalize/authenticate the document. Alternately, Apostille Pros can also handle the full legalization process for you. The fee will vary depending on the country (for example, for China it is approximately $560). However, you can rest assured that they will deal with all of the headaches and steps involved.
One Source Process - http://www.onesourceprocess.com/legalization-apostille-services/
One Source Process is a larger company with a national presence in the USA. They are also able to provide both Apostille and Legalization/Authentication services. If the certificate is not notarized, they will also notarize it for you for a very small fee (so long as you use their Apostille or Legalization services). Their prices start at $150 for Apostille services (plus shipping and other associated fees), and $500 for legalization services (plus shipping and other associated fees). You can contact them to obtain a final quote for your specific country, and make sure to state whether your certificate is notarized or not.
How does the authentication process work for China?
Since China is where a large majority of TEFL/TESOL teachers find work, we have included some very general information about the process. However, the rules may have changed so it is best to verify with the appropriate regulatory parties. Parts of China (specifically Hong Kong and Macau) accept Apostilled documents, but the rest of mainland China does not accept Apostilled documents. This means that the process depends on where your certificate will be used (normally based on where the school you will work for is located). If it is in a region that accepts Apostilled documents, you will need to have the certificate notarized in California and then sent to the California Secretary of State to have it Apostilled. There are companies that will perform this service for a fee (see above). If it is for mainland China, then you will need to go through the authentication process. Here is a link to the Embassy of China in the USA for more information about the authentication process: http://www.china-embassy.org/eng/ywzn/lsyw/gzrz/
Please note that the China's embassy no longer accepts mailed application. Your application must be submitted in person, either by an agent or yourself at a Chinese embassy in the USA. For this reason and due to the complexity of the entire process, we highly recommend using an agent for the service.
Who can get my TEFL / TESOL certificate notarized?
The notarization is done by a Notary Public, but anyone can take a certificate/diploma to them for notarization. If you're not located in California, the easiest solution is to send it to a friend in California to notarize it for you or use one of the companies mentioned above to do it for you. The student doesn't have to be physically present, so long as someone is present to take the original document. This could be an agent that you hire (see above) or a friend. California notaries are unable to notarize via mail or online. Someone must be present in person with the original certificate and ID.
Can UNI-Prep get my TEFL / TESOL certificate notarized?
UNI-Prep normally does not notarize certificates as this is the responsibility of students (as indicated in our terms and conditions). However, in special circumstances, UNI-Prep will get certificates notarized, but charges a fee to perform this service. Our fees are more expensive than fees charged by other companies whose exclusive business is to perform this service. We are an educational company, not a notarization/authentication business, so students will save money by using one of the companies listed above (or other similar companies). The fee that we charge is $115 USD (for shipping in the USA) or $150 (for international shipping). Apostille Pros charges $95 (and this fee includes both notarization and apostille, whereas our fee only includes notarization). As such, we highly encourage students to use a company that specializes in the service of notarization/legalization. UNI-Prep only offers the service of getting the certificate notarized - we do not offer any services beyond this (such as apostille, legalization, authentication, etc). All other steps will be the responsibility of students.
The reason that we charge a fee is that one of our staff must physically take your certificate to a Notary Public, arrange for the notarization to be done, wait for the processing, and then ship it to the final destination. The entire process can take several hours and the fee is for our staff time. In order to offer free notarization, we would need to raise the prices of our programs. However, we strive to offer the cheapest price possible and since students are able to notarize the certificate themselves or use an external agent, we do not include this service in our fees. We also typically use FeDex, DHL or USPS Express shipping for mailing in order to ensure proper arrival of the notarized certificate. Shipping costs may also vary depending on final destination.
We do not guarantee the accuracy of the information that is provided on this page. The information provided on this page is for the benefit of students and may not be the most up-to-date information. Notarization and authentication of certificates and diplomas is the responsibility of students and students should always check with the embassy of the country where they will be working to obtain the most accurate information on what is required. It is not the course provider's responsibility to notarize, authenticate, legalize or apostille the certificate, diploma or any other student documentation. Since the process is ever-changing and there are many parties involved, we encourage students to obtain a third-party agent to perform all required steps. Typically, employers or recruiters will provide you some guidance on the authentication/legalization process and you should refer to them with any questions. The process is different for each country and is stipulated by the country where you will work. Sometimes, employers are willing to pay for or reimburse the fees associated with notarization and authentication/legalization, so students should always check with employers regarding who will pay the fees.
Certificate in Teaching Business English
UNI-Prep's online Certificate in Teaching Business English course is designed to provide training to individuals who are interested in obtaining a thorough understanding of teaching English to business professionals. The course is focused on this core subject area and is suitable for new and experienced teachers. It is suitable for TESOL/TEFL/CELTA certificate and diploma holders or teachers without any formal training and experience.
- Socializing for Business Professionals
- On the Telephone
- Technical Terminology
- Classroom Management
Who Should Take This Course?
- New and experienced teachers
- TESOL/TEFL/CELTA qualified teachers
- Individuals who are interested in teaching business English or adults
How is the Course Done?
The online course is done entirely through the Internet and offers a flexible format of studying at your own pace for individuals who are constrained by location or work hours. Students can start the course at any time and there is no schedule of classes that they must follow. Upon registration, students receive a unique login and password to UNI-Prep's online Student Portal where they can access all course material and complete any assessments. Upon successful completion of the course components, students are awarded a Certificate in Teaching Business English from UNI-Prep. The Certificate is a great way of showing employers further credentials for anyone interested in advancing or getting a career in the business world.
Any participant who completes the course receives an American Certificate in Teaching Business English issued from UNI-Prep Institute in USA.
What Does the Fee Include?
- 24/7 access to UNI-Prep's online Student Portal at elearning.uni-prep.com
- All course materials and assessments
- Tutor support
- Electronic Certificate or Diploma upon completion
- 1 year to complete the course, with extensions if needed
- There are no additional fees on top of the course fee
Course Start Date: Anytime, online course
To register for this course,
click the registration button.
Why Should You Choose UNI-Prep to be Your Training Provider?
This short video gives some of the many reasons why you should take a course at UNI-Prep. Watch this video to learn more about the benefits that UNI-Prep has to offer.
This video covers topics such as:
✔ What is the difference between a Certificate course and Diploma course?
✔ What are the entry requirements?
✔ Do I need to have any experience?
“I really enjoyed taking several Management courses at UNI-Prep. The courses are easy to follow and have a wealth of information. I have been able to leverage the knowledge and credentials and was promoted at my current position as a result. Thanks UNI-Prep!"
“Taking the TESOL Certificate course with UNI-Prep was a wise decision. It's the cheapest program available and I could take it at my free time. I'm planning on also taking the TESOL Diploma with them. I definitely recommend this school to study at."
English/ESL/EFL Teaching Jobs
Below are some job openings by various schools that UNI-Prep is assisting to recruit. Click on the job title to view the description of each job or apply to the job posting:
TESOL Specialization Courses
UNI-Prep offers a number of TESOL specialization courses that are especially suitable for graduates of any TESOL or TEFL program. Students of UNI-Prep's TESOL Diploma program are able to access all TESOL specialization courses free of charge for 1 year from the date of registration. These specialization courses are short and focused on a specific area of instruction. They are very helpful for students that want to teach specific areas and to gain more in-depth knowledge on a particular subject or student group. They are all offered online. You will receive a separate certificate upon completion of each of these courses. Please select from the courses below to obtain more information about each course.
The links below include websites that we feel would be useful to TESOL students and graduates. They include resources for current or aspiring teachers to use in the classroom, along with a wealth of information that will be useful to anyone in the teaching world.
Teaching English Games - ESL games, stories, songs and plays for teaching English to kids, teens and adults
Teach Kids English - Activities targeted towards teaching English to kids.
NZESOL Teacher - Resources and activities for teachers created by an ESOL teacher from New Zealand.
The links below are a list of our partner job search portals and recruitment agencies, or job search tools which would be useful for our TESOL students and graduates.
ESL Jobs Lounge - Our favorite job search tool! Links to thousands of new teaching jobs daily. Create a profile and apply to jobs directly through them. Ask us how to get a trial premium membership for free.
Teaching China - Access to over 500 direct employers across China, along with teaching resources.