I want to work in ..... TEFL and Teaching Abroad
The Careers Service receives many TEFL vacancies throughout the year – too many for us to personally check the organisations’ credentials. Therefore, before you apply for any vacancies, please do some research of your own. You can find a checklist of points to consider at www.kent.ac.uk/careers/int/TEFLChecklist.htm
TEFL = Teaching English as a Foreign Language.
TESOL = Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
TESL = Teaching English as a Second Language
The terms TEFL and TESOL both mean teaching English to people whose first language is not English and who are normally resident in a non-English speaking country. These students may wish to learn English for many reasons – for business purposes, to improve their educational or career opportunities or to travel.
TESL normally refers to teaching English to people who have moved from their own country to the UK (or another English-speaking country) and need to develop their English language skills in order to work, study, access services and/or develop social networks.
See www.prospects.ac.uk/links/ Occupations for detailed job profiles of TEFL and TESOL teachers (under Education)
- TEFL Teaching English as a Foreign Language .
- TESOL Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
- TESL Teaching English as a Second Language
- ESP English for Specific Purposes e.g. law, technology, medicine
- EAP English for Academic Purposes. Training EFL teachers
- ELT English Language Teaching
- CELTA Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults. One of the two internationally-recognised TEFL qualifications
- DELTA Diploma course for graduates with two years' ELT experience
- UCLES The University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate , which validates CELTA courses
- RSA The words 'RSA certificate' are often still used when referring to CELTA, although Cambridge ESOL took over RSA certificates and diplomas for teachers in 1988!
- CertTEFLA - an even older name for CELTA
- CertTESOL The Trinity College Certificate in TESOL – the other internationally-recognised TEFL qualification
- JET Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme
- PGCE Postgraduate Certificate in Education – the essential course to teach in state schools in the UK . A few PGCE courses include TEFL as a subsidiary subject
- VSO Voluntary Service Overseas
For many of the better jobs in Europe you need a TEFL qualification. The TEFL Certificate is the preliminary qualification and the one sought by most language schools when recruiting teachers. Courses are open to undergraduates and graduates of any subject who are native speakers of, or completely fluent in, English. They take about 1 month and costs around £1,000.
Cambridge ESOL courses (CELTA) and Trinity College London (TESOL) are known to be well established and respected worldwide and these qualifications are often specified by recruiters. See the Listings section below for lists of these courses
However, there is a great variety of TEFL courses available. Anybody can set up such a course – there is no requirement for any accreditation in this field. Always find out exactly what a course offers before signing up to it.
We have an excellent reference book called "Teaching English Abroad" (available at Reception) which includes a chapter covering 'The Value of ELT Qualifications' and the range of courses, which provides a useful overview of the types of courses available and some of the potential pitfalls. It also lists CELTA, TESOL and other courses in the UK and abroad.
Free TEFL E-Book from onlinetefl.com "TEFL Uncovered: How to teach your way abroad with TEFL". Described by Kenneth Beare as “an excellent starting point for anyone interested in teaching English abroad. It is a workbook that will provide useful time and time again when making decisions about and applying for work.". You can download a copy here
You will see Diploma and even Master's courses in TEFL but it is not necessary to have one of these to teach: most students on these courses already have a TEFL certificate plus teaching experience and are often preparing to train teachers themselves.
- Cambridge CELTA centres: www.cambridge-efl.org
- Trinity CertTESOL courses www.trinitycollege.co.uk
- The British Council - advice on teaching and TEFL qualifications with many links www.britishcouncil.org/teacherrecruitment-tefl-qualifications-certificates-2.htm
- English in Britain www.englishinbritain.co.uk - database of English courses in Britain accredited by the British Council and other agencies
- English UK www.englishuk.com - the national association of accredited English language centres
- Cactus TEFL www.cactustefl.com information and admissions service for CELTA and Trinity courses
These are just a few, mentioned here because they are based locally or regularly provide the CAS with details of their courses. See the “Listings” section above for comprehensive lists of courses
- Canterbury Christ Church University College www.canterbury.ac.uk
- Concorde International www.concorde-int.com
Both the above offer the four-week Cambridge CELTA course in Canterbury
- International House www.ihworld.com runs TEFL courses (for the Cambridge CELTA certificate and other qualifications, in London and overseas) and also has over 110 schools in 31 countries where you can be placed on completion of your training.
- Saxoncourt http://saxoncourt.com runs Cambridge CELTA courses in Central London
- The Language House www.thelanguagehouse.net Prague, Czech Republic. Recommendation from a Kent graduate: "The course is excellent with students gaining a sound grounding in the methodology and techniques of language teaching but also indulging in far more actual teaching practice (14 hours +) than many similar providers. Participants have the chance to explore the beautiful city of Prague, whilst the total cost of the course (which includes accommodation for the duration of the course, transport passes, 8 hours of survival Czech and course materials) is extremely favourable when compared to gaining the certification within the UK, even allowing for the cost of flights. The tutors are all vastly experienced and are extremely approachable and helpful. You can even check out the school on Facebook by searching for 'The Language House TEFL')"
- TEFL Lab London www.tefllab.co.uk beautiful teaching centre on London's Bloomsbury Square. Offer Full time and Part time Trinity TESOL qualifications, Weekend TEFL Introductions and 1-day TEFL Tasters.
- TEFL Worldwide, Prague www.teflworldwideprague.com/Our-Graduates.html
- TtMadrid www.ttmadrid.com TEFL school based in Madrid. Also offer information on TEFL, living in Spain and visas
- Eslbase www.eslbase.com database of over 500 TEFL courses, as well as list of TEFL jobs currently available worldwide.
- English as a Second Language Resources for Teachers and Students www.eslpartyland.com suggested by Abby
- English Teaching Professional www.etprofessional.com magazine for English language teachers worldwide
- One Stop English www.onestopenglish.com careers advice, job vacancies and useful links
- TEFL.net www.tefl.net database of TEFL courses world-wide, a guide to terminology, job vacancies, destination guides and discussion forums
- Guardian http://education.guardian.co.uk/tefl TEFL news and features, including courses
- International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language (IATEFL) www.iatefl.org
- EmbassyCES.com. International English Language School - recruits for positions in 20 colleges across England, the USA, Australia and New Zealand
- onlinetefl.com TEFL Activities Book-20 classroom activities for elementary learners www.onlinetefl.com/activities-book/?source=uniofkent excellent introductory guide which includes 20 lesson plans, activities and ideas for those planning on teaching English as a foreign language (PDF file 4.6 MB)
- 5 Minute English www.5minuteenglish.com
- Also see our Verbal Reasoning Test, Synonyms and Antonyms Test, Vocabulary Test, Homonyms Test, Verbal Logic Test and Spelling and punctuation test for applications
- The Internet TESL Journal http://iteslj.org updated monthly with advice, news and links for practising teachers
- British Council - advice on teaching and TEFL qualifications with many links
- Alliances Abroad www.alliancesabroad.com American company recommended by UKC graduates for work abroad. Teaching programmes in Argentina , China , Ecuador and Spain
- www.corkid.co.u country-by-country guides, plus a guide to EFL teachers' wages worldwide!
- ESL Jobs World www.esljobsworld.com lists a wide range of TEFL jobs by country.
- ESL Job Project www.esljobproject.com TEFL Jobs, ESL Jobs and teachers resumes mainly in China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan
There are many language schools throughout the UK , with the largest number being in the South-East and along the south coast. They may offer vacation employment opportunities for activity leaders and social organisers (who will not need a TEFL qualification) as well as for qualified English language teachers. Much of this work is seasonal, from June to August. Again, we are only able to list a few of the many language schools individually.
- English UK www.englishuk.com the national association of English language centres accredited by the British Council
- English in Britain www.englishinbritain.co.uk lists EFL courses accredited by the British Council
- Embassy CES www.embassyces.com recruits teachers and activity leaders for summer and year-round schools. Locations in the UK include Canterbury , East Sussex, London and Oxford
- Concorde International , Canterbury www.concorde-int.com
- Pilgrims www.pilgrims.co.uk also uses the Canterbury campus for its summer courses
- Studio Cambridge www.studiocambridge.co.uk recruits staff with teaching experience or qualifications to teach English on summer courses and Activity Organisers to oversee the running of courses, help run activities and supervise students
- tefl-jobs.co.uk tefl-jobs.co.uk positions in the UK and abroad to suit any level of qualification and experience: specialise in posts at schools and summer camps in the UK.
See our pages on Work Experience and Vacation Work at www.kent.ac.uk/careers/vacwork.htm
Assessment Centre Report: ESL teacher Canada with the British Council
Questions asked in 15 minute interview with 2 interviewers
There was a group exercise for an hour and a half. We had to come up with a 30 minute lesson plan which related to British culture then present it as a group.They asked questions such as
Tips: Research the country you are applying to really well. Even if you have lived there it might not be enough. Also have a lot of ideas of what kind of lessons you would plan and be forceful at getting your answers across during the group interview.
Most of these organisations do not require a TEFL qualification and some will provide introductory TEFL training
- Africa & Asia Venture www.aventure.co.uk placements teaching a variety of subjects and activities in primary and secondary schools, including English and sciences, music and art, clubs and sports. Now offer 4-5 month volunteering placements teaching in India, Nepal, China, Thailand, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi, South Africa, and Mexico
- I-to-I Ventures www.i-to-i.com voluntary placements teaching in South America , India , Africa, China , and many other places. Paid teaching posts in South Korea. TEFL training is provided.
- Projects Abroad www.projects-abroad.co.uk short or long term placements in Argentina, Bolivia, Cambodia, Chile, China, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, Peru, Romania, Senegal, Sri Lanka, South Africa, and Thailand. Offer projects in Teaching, Journalism, Conservation, Law, Community projects, Sport, and Medicine.
- Travellers Worldwide www.travellersworldwide.com teaching conversational English, generally to children and occasionally to adults, usually in the poorer sections of society. Placements in 16 countries in Africa, Asia, South America and Eastern Europe
- UNIPAL www.unipal.org.uk summer vacation opportunities to teach English to Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza and Lebanon
- VSO www.vso.org.uk opportunities for English/Modern Languages graduates to teach English in China
- British Council www.britishcouncil.org/languageassistants recruits graduates, and students taking a year abroad, to work as language assistants in schools in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland and Spain
- Comenius www.britishcouncil.org/comenius.htm Comenius assistants work in schools and colleges across Europe for 12-16 hours a week, teaching their language or another specialist subject.
Some private language schools known to the CES
- Access Sprachschule www.access-sprachschule.ch Language school in Switzerland which has previously recruited a Kent graduate
- Adom Lingua www.adomlingua.fr Language school in Paris which has previously recruited a Kent graduate
- Anglo-Hellenic Teacher Recruitment http://anglo-hellenic.com Recruits for schools throughout Greece , many of which do not require a TEFL qualification
- DAD International UK-Romania www.dad.ro Summer placements teaching English at youth camps in Romania
- English Summer www.englishsummer.com - runs residential summer language courses for students aged 5-17 in southern Spain . TEFL qualifications are preferred but not always necessary.
- Escuela Kilkenny www.escuelakilkenny.com Language school in Salamanca which has previously recruited a Kent graduate
- Inter-Com English SA www.inter-com.com Language school in Madrid which has previously recruited a Kent graduate
- Jump into English www.jumpintoenglish.es Language school in Madrid which also organises courses (including English+Rugby and English+Football) in the UK. Has previously recruited a Kent graduate
- London Language Centre www.londonlanguagecentre.com Language school in Barcelona which has previously recruited a Kent graduate
The above list is only a selection, of schools which regularly advertise vacancies through us or which have recruited Kent graduates, and does not imply any recommendation.
TEACHING IN ASIA
- JET - the Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme - is supported by the Japanese government and recruits graduates in any subject to work as Assistant Language Teachers in Japanese schools. ALTs work alongside Japanese teachers to develop English language teaching and international understanding. You don't need Japanese language skills or teaching experience - just an interest in Japan and its culture. Closing date is usually around late November for the following summer's entry.
The JET site for UK candidates is www.jet-uk.org
There is a PowerPoint presentation on JET here. About 80% of JETs stay more than one year and it is an advantage if you show at interview that you are interested in doing this. Salary is about 300,000 yen per month which works out at just under £30,000 p.a. (2012). Evidence of voluntary work or teaching experience is very well received.
See below for help with the JET interview.
- Interac www.interac.co.jp/recruit teach English in state schools in Japan. Japanese school year starts April but recruits can start work at almost any time of year. Take about 250 graduates per year from Europe but this number is rapidly increasing. Teachers get about £19k (2009) per annum (depending on exchange rate). Flights are not paid for but taxation is low and accommodation is cheap: about £300 per month, so living costs are much lower than in the UK and teachers can usually save quite a lot of money to travel or pay off student loans. Teachers get holidays in which they can travel. Teachers can stay as long as they want and quite a few stay permanently in Japan. The application process is much shorter and simpler than for JET. You don't need to be able to speak Japanese or to have teaching experience. Application to offer only takes about 6 weeks normally. The next stage after making an application is telephone interview, then an interview, normally in Oxford.
- GEOS www.geoscareer.com – operates 450 language schools in Japan, recruiting graduates as English conversation teachers – interviews are held in London. TEFL qualifications are not necessary
- 121sensei www.121sensei.com teacher and student matching service for Japan based instructors of any language.
When you arrive at the Embassy you are escorted in pairs to watch a video, and take the grammar test at the same time. Before the interview you are able to talk to previous JET candidates and ask them questions about their experiences. Visiting the Embassy is a fantastic experience, the ex-JETs are very friendly and keen to answer your questions. It is a very nerve-racking experience, but also very rewarding.
How many interviewers were there?
Two, a Japanese woman and a previous JET participant. Lasted 20 minutes, plus a 10 minute grammar test.
Questions asked at the interview
What tests were you given?
I was given a grammar test which lasted about 10 minutes, which also covered spelling. The test also asked you how you would explain popular English phrases, such as ‘hit the nail on the head’ to a non-English speaker. We were given three tests - one on English grammar and usage, one on British culture and one on Japanese culture. Don't worry too much about the tests; I made quite a few glaring mistakes on them, but it didn't make any difference! Studying British culture as much as Japanese though, as British questions were the hardest.
China, Hong Kong and Taiwan
- Teach English in China www.teic.co.uk Recruits graduates as Teaching Assistants in schools, colleges and universities (no experience necessary) in conjunction with the China Education Association for International Exchange www.ceaie.edu.cn Also 2 month summer internships.
- Chatteris International Graduate Programme www.chatteris.org.hk recruits graduate teaching assistants to work in schools in Hong Kong
- China Recruitment www.china-recruitment.co.uk placements in various locations throughout China, including Shanghai and Beijing
- English First www.englishfirst.com/trt/teaching-english-in-china.html Over 90 schools across 50 cities in China
- Evergreen International www.evergreeninternational.co.uk Run by a Kent postgraduate, Evergreen recruits volunteers for summer and full-time English teaching positions. Teaching experience is NOT essential for any of these programmes.
- Hess Educational Organisation www.hess.com.tw – teaching in language schools and kindergartens in Taiwan
- IST Plus www.istplus.com –Teach in China or Thailand on a 5 or 10 month paid contract. TEFL qualifications not necessary
- Jordans Language Schools, Taiwan www.jordan.com.tw Recruits native English speakers with degrees in any subject - TEFL qualifications are not necessary. Recommended by Kent graduates who've worked there.
- Reach to Teach www.ReachToTeachRecruiting.com China, Taiwan and South Korea
- EPIK www.epik.go.kr Korean Ministry of Education programme for graduates to work as English language instructors.
- Hi Teacher - Teach English in Korea http://hiteacher.com Information, Job Listings, Website, Directory
Other countries and general information
- Lemongrass www.lemongrass-volunteering.com strictly not for profit. Specialises in placing volunteers on English teaching projects in one of the poorest regions of Thailand. Recommended in the Lonely Planet 13th edition 2009.
- Starfish Ventures www.starfishventures.co.uk volunteer opportunities in Thailand;
- Dragonfly www.thai-dragonfly.com volunteer opportunities in Thailand;
- IST Plus www.istplus.com Teach in China or Thailand on a 5 or 10 month paid contract. TEFL qualifications not necessary;
- TotalESL www.totalesl.com ESL/EFL teaching jobs, resumes, schools, resources and lessons-Asia and the Middle East
- Times Educational Supplement pages on working abroad
- Teach Overseas teaching in international schools www.k12teachoverseas.com
- Council of International Schools www.cois.org
- ECIS www.ecis.org European Council of International Schools
- The European Schools www.eursc.org multicultural and multilingual schools in seven EU countries
- www.call-the-register.com Qualified teachers can register on this site to have their details passed to international schools seeking staff
- Fulbright Commission www.fulbright.co.uk useful links for teaching in the US ,including a teacher exchange scheme for qualified teachers
- National Education Association www.nea.org very rich resource for everything about US education
- VSO www.vso.org.uk opportunities for Maths and Science graduates to teach their subject in Africa
- Teach in the USA - Visiting International Faculty Program www.vifprogram.com
- National Education Association www.nea.org very rich resource for everything about US education
- Teacher training in the USA www.ncate.org there is a section on 'Becoming a teacher' at www.ncate.org/public/CurrentFutureTeacher.asp
- Global Visa www.globalvisas.com recommended as "really helpful in getting through the visa process"
- UK teachers will need to have their qualifications evaluated by Australian Education International (see link below) a division of Australian Department of Education and Employment. Teaching qualifications are assessed in the visa application process: you need a PGCE and to have completed your NQT year. The visa application requires certified copies of certificates from A-levels onwards. Accreditation and registration requirements are stringent: accreditation of overseas teaching qualifications is done at state level, with the relevant body in each state responsible for registering teachers working there. Chances of getting work are higher in priority subjects such as science. The Graduate Teacher Programme is currently not recognised in Australia, so you should take the PGCE training route. Teachers qualified in Australia can teach in the UK for up to 4 years as unqualified teachers, during which time they must obtain Qualified Teacher Status through the Overseas Trained Teacher programme.
- It is possible to work as an NQT in Australia with a UK primary PGCE. It does vary by state and there is a centralised body within those states that advises on that matter. For example a student might have their qualifications assessed by VTI (Victoria Teachers Institute). They then apply for a job through the Victoria government website for jobs, not to the school directly. It would be best to apply to teaching temp agencies as a casual teacher. The student will have to apply for a work visa as it can be quite tough. He/she could apply to teach in the Northern Territory as it is easier and he/she can get government sponsorship toward the visa.
- Teaching Australia www.teachingaustralia.edu.au the national body for the teaching profession and accreditation of teaching qualifications for purposes of migration to Australia including skills assessment for migration:
- Australian Education International http://aei.gov.au/Aei/Default.aspx details of licensing or registration requirements for teaching in Australian states & territories.
- Australian Visa Bureau www.visabureau.com/australia/teaching-jobs.aspx
- Times Educational Supplement www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6000147 articles about teaching in Australia
- Education Department for Western Australia www.det.wa.edu.au has to recruit British trained teachers.
Requirements for teachers in the US are controlled by each individual state. The web site of each state education board has a 'teacher certification' section - some of which outline the certification requirements and process for international teachers.
You are also required to have a US recognised teaching qualification and a licence to teach. To teach in a public school you would need at least a PGCE (or equivalent) qualification.
The best way to teach in the US is to get a PGCE in the UK first and then apply for US jobs. You then have to apply for a visa to work in the US. It would be very difficult for a UK citizen to train in the US as they would need to have the appropriate visa and sponsorship and all courses are of 4 years unless they could enter via a lateral entry program which is similar to the GTP route. You need to have a recognised teaching qualification: a UK PGCE is accepted in most places whilst the GTP is often not, YOu also ned to register with the professional teaching body for the state that you wish to work in. If moving permanently you would have to meet the immigration criteria, or get a temporary visa. You can find the professional teachers’ body for each state via the web e.g. North Carolina www.ncpublicschools.org/licensure/beginning
You need to consider how long you intend to stay in the US and what type of visa to apply for. You could study for a post graduate teaching qualification at a US university - but this would be expensive and you would still have to get a a visa at the end of the course. For visa information see www.usembassy.org.uk
The Illinois Education Board states: 'In order to become certified in Illinois, foreign applicants must have been prepared as an educator outside of the United States, meet all coursework and testing requirements, be legally eligible for employment in the United States, and meet all other requirements detailed in Illinois statute and rules.' Qualifications then have to be assessed by an agency appointed by the State Education Board which can take time. Details of teacher certification requirements for each state are at http://wdcrobcolp01.ed.gov/Programs/EROD/org_list.cfm?category_cd=SEA
The qualifications needed for private schools are similar to those for public schools. A master's degree or PhD will help greatly. A school will normally make it very clear if certification is required in the first instance. A school may hire provisionally if it feels a candidate can meet the state certification eligibility requirements within a reasonable time. Most states will require evidence of your degree and a background check before approving a teacher hire in a private school. Apart from this, most state education authorities take a hands off approach. The bottom line is that private schools can hire whoever they wish. http://privateschool.about.com
- VIFInternational Education www.vifprogram.com recruit UK qualified teachers to certain states - currently Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia and assist with visas. Look for qualified teachers BA/BEd with QTS or PGCE courses with 3 years teaching experience, although do consider teachers who have only completed their probationary year in the UK in some years.
- Educational Partners International https://teachwithepi.com Designated by the US Dept. of State as a J-1 exchange visitor program sponsor, EPI provides highly-qualified international teachers with the visa sponsorship and support needed to teach critical needs subjects. EPI assists teachers and schools with visa processing, licensure, professional and cultural development, and more. They provide a unique cultural exchange program with emphasis on support.
- International Teacher Exchange Services www.itesonline.com Designated by the U.S. Dept of State (Exchange Visitor Program), ITES sponsors and supports highly-qualified international teachers for critical needs subjects.
- The Times Educational Supplemet chat forum on teaching in the USA www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storyCode=6013874
Last fully updated in 2011