It is my opinion that many people seem to respect the idea of teaching overseas. Certainly where I am from there are numerous people who have been here in Korea or Japan, not to mention so many who have a friend of a friend who is currently teaching overseas.
So how does one go about getting a decent job?
The first thing I would suggest is to research your target area. Where do you want to go? What type of living conditions do you like, does it matter, etc. This is very important as I’m sure those of us who are here now can remember someone who came to Korea; didn’t like it and went home! Such a waste of potential adventure and talent.
So choose your destination, Middle East, Europe, Asia, South America. From there before you go any further you should do a check online (with government sites – not recruiter sites) as to what the requirements are to teach English in that particular region / country. If you do not qualify, best look somewhere else!
Most countries do require English teachers to hold a degree, but not all..yet.
So you have selected your country you wish to work in. From there you can scan the internet to find resource and information sites concerning the industry in your desired country. (We are not ready to apply for a job yet!)
Have a good look. What is the going pay for the jobs you have seen? What are the common complaints, and can you deal with them? You can check into school chains, however the name of the school does not mean its good or bad.
Check the blacklists for the region. Do a search for foreign community sites in your selected country.
What are the contracts like, you can find all this information online easily enough.
From there you are ready to put together a job description of YOUR PERFECT position! Write it all down. What do you want to be paid, what would be your lowest salary to accept? Do you have a particular region you want to live in? (This can slow down your job hunt)
What are your ideal housing conditions? (private, shared)
What are you willing to pay for utilities, and what are your desired benefits?
Take all these points and make a top list, a middle list, and a last resort list! Your job should fall into as many top, middle levels as possible.
Now remember as a first timer to another country to teach, you probably will not get the best of everything you wanted. On the other hand you may even be taken advantage of if you are not well informed, so do your homework!
Well now you should have your ideal job situation mapped out on paper; you are ready to start your job hunt!
So you have your written outline ready.
Let’s start looking for that adventure job you have dreamed about!
Where to find ESL (English as a second language) teaching position?
First I want to mention about conventional media advertising. (newspaper, radio, tv, etc.).
Pick up any Saturday paper (best advertising) and look in the employment section; you will no doubt see small ads like “teach in Korea, free airfare, etc”.
Usually these ads have an email address. Here is the good and the bad about these.
1) GMail, Hotmail, etc. email addresses often mean a foreigner is recruiting on the side and is looking for quick cash. Not a great bet as if you are using a job recruiter they should be going to bat for you if need be. In an initial email ask for their company info, see if they are recruiting on the side, or if they work at a school who is hiring. (most real companies would list their website)
I suggest you avoid teachers who are recruiting as a side bet while teaching in that country themselves. If anything goes wrong and you need assistance later on; its unlikely that person will be able to help you out. (time constraints, illegal moonlighting, etc.)
2) If you answer an ad posted by a recruiting company, ask to speak with former clients etc. to verify their success claims. As well inquire where the company is registered, check with the BBB to see if there are any problems.
Also find out about their hiring policy. Do they work for a school chain exclusively in your desired country or do they freelance?
When you contact a company in your desired country; many times they have a foreigner(Native English speaker) working for them. He/She could be a teacher who answers email, or a regular staff member.
Find out if this worker actually makes decisions or is just the contact.
Many times I have dealt with an English contact who tries to impress their importance, which just doesn’t fly with me.
If dealing with a recruiter, use the actual person who deals with the schools; never settle for the contact to pass on your information.
You want to impress the right person, not the company jockey! Probably the greatest benefit to those searching for an overseas job is the internet. Go to any search engine and do a search on ‘esl, overseas, teach’ , etc…
You will be bombarded with sites.