English Success Academy


ESL Exam Prep Coaches


We can show you how to raise your TOEFL iBT score quickly.
Even if you struggled before.

Did you ever take a class and feel like your teacher didn’t really know or understand you? Or did you feel like your teacher made assumptions and just started teaching you something (without asking if you know it)?

Our certified ESL Exam Prep Coaches look at your whole score in all areas of English (reading, listening, vocabulary, grammar, writing, speaking, strategies and confidence).

We don’t believe in giving you random, irrelevant activities or homework. Before lessons start, we analyze your strengths and identify your current weaknesses. Then, we make a customized learning plan that fits you (not some other student) and your target score.

We understand that you’re making mistakes today because your previous teachers and schools did not explain concepts to you in a way that you could remember.

We are confident you can do better if we use new approaches to learning.

We know that you may need help with things that are beyond a normal English class — like how to balance work and family and find time to study, how to rebuild your motivation after lots of disappointment, or ways to increase your confidence with speaking.

Plus, many of us teach online lessons, so we can help you, no matter where you are in the world.

You may be surprised to discover this, but the industry for English as a Second Language (ESL) is highly unregulated. In the area of preparation for exams like TOEFL iBT and IELTS, there is even less regulation and quality control.

Anyone can say they are a “TOEFL teacher” or an “IELTS teacher.” Unfortunately, at schools from America to Taiwan, it is common to hire teachers who have 0 hours of training for ESL exam preparation. A teacher’s bravery is often the main qualification in getting a job teaching ESL exams.


Comparing Teachers’ Options for Getting Experience

Only very dedicated teachers choose to enroll in organized training programs. Here are some of the available training programs.

Amount of Training Organization & Training Name
4 hours ETS’s Propell Teacher Workshop for TOEFL iBT
20 hours Canadian College Teaching TOEFL Preparation Certificate
40 hours Oxford Seminars Teaching TOEFL Specialization Module
90 hours English Success Academy certified ESL Exam Prep Coach, Level 1

As you can see in the chart above, there is a lot of variation in the depth of training that is offered for ESL exam preparation.

How much training do you want your tutor to have?

Typical Qualifications of ESL Exam Prep Coaches

If you’ve tried to find teachers on iTalki or Wyzant, you know it is exhausting to look through hundreds of profiles. It is difficult to guess if your potential teacher knows what they need to know. (After all, if you knew what teachers need to know to help you, then your score wouldn’t be stuck anymore!)

Thankfully, teachers who become ESL Exam Prep Coaches tend to share a lot of the same characteristics. Here are some of the most common qualifications that they have:

  • An extreme level of dedication to you (Remember they completed the world’s longest ESL exam training program!)
  • A university degree
  • An extra teaching certification (common ones include CELTA, TESOL, or a Masters in Linguistics)
  • Experience taking the same test that you’re going to take
  • The ability to speak, write, read and listen in English at an extremely advanced level
  • Like-minded colleagues
  • Knowledge about how to conduct your Score Analysis, identify the causes for your low score and make a customized study plan that raises your score within 6 to 16 weeks
  • Techniques to help you forget old mistakes with grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation — and replace it with the correct memory so you speak and write accurately and spontaneously

As a student, I love this certification program. You want to be sure these teachers are 100% ready to teach exams like TOEFL.

A lot of people think that studying with a regular ESL teacher would be enough for TOEFL preparation. Some teachers tried to teach me the TOEFL but they did not take the actual exam and when I learned this, I thought “They do not have the skill and experience.”

Seriously, I lost years wandering around teachers who did not know how to teach for exams. Honestly, if I had known before I started, I would definitely study with one of the teachers who are certified.Dilanur Komar, Turkish Nurse, finally scored Speaking 26 after just 12 weeks of lessons with ESA

Find one of our certified ESL Exam Prep Coaches

The internet is a big place where anyone can say anything. That is why we confirm the teachers who are certified ESL Exam Prep Coaches by listing their name below.

Look on the list below. When you see your teacher’s name, you know that she is who she claims to be!

If you don’t see your teacher’s name, send us an email.

Specializing in TOEFL iBT

Andrew Kean, Level 1 Click to learn more about him.

Amy Jones, Level 1

Gregory Quinliven, Level 1

Jane Birkenhead, Level 3   Click to learn more about her.

Jaime Miller, Level 4 Click to learn more about her.

Jenica Epp, Level 1

Jennifer DeLapp, Level 1

Kate Gregorio, Level 1

Louise Borden, Level 1  Click to learn more about her.

Matthew Radley, Level 2 Click to learn more about him.

Peggy Khoury, Level 1

Sherlen Tanner, Level 2

Sierra Yohalem, Level 2  Click to learn more about her.

Tanya Brown, Level 1

Woodrow Woodbridge, Level 1

Specializing in IELTS

David Pattinson, Level 1 Click here to learn more about him.

Julie Reynolds, Level 1

Level 1: These teachers have completed ESA’s exclusive course, How to Teach Exams, which is the world’s most comprehensive training for ESL teachers. These teachers have (1) attended regular Question and Answer sessions, (2) passed a test about the methodology of exams, (3) completed twelve separate assignments like how to do a Score Analysis, how to assess strengths and weaknesses, how to plan lessons, effective ways of spending lesson time, and more. They are gaining their first 70-100 hours of experience with TOEFL iBT students in online private lessons

Level 2: These teachers are partnering with ESA and gaining their next 500-700 hours of experience teaching for exams. By this point, these teachers have already taught with ESA for 3-6 months. They have completed various professional development activities for Score Analysis, lesson planning and using “Serial Repetition” as a technique for destabilizing fossilized errors in grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. They continue to meet regularly with Jaime Miller and other teachers who specialize in guiding exam students.

Level 3: These teachers are gaining their next 2000 hours of experience teaching TOEFL iBT. By the time they receive their Level 3 title and badge, they have completed more professional development activities to deepened their knowledge and expertise with doing Score Analysis and planning effective lessons. They have also developed considerable experience blending pronunciation or normal English topics (like grammar and vocabulary) in with strategies for the TOEFL iBT exam. They continue to meet regularly with Jaime Miller and are moving into a leadership position, guiding other teachers.

Level 4: These master teachers have at least 2000 hours of experience (but often have many more — like 3000+) guiding students in TOEFL iBT lessons. At this point, they can train and mentor other teachers who are at lower levels.


Notice: Certified status indicates that a teacher has completed a combination of defined education, experience or examination requirements. Certification is not a guarantee of the competence or ability of any particular teacher. English Success Academy and Jaime Miller cannot guarantee results.