English in China
English is a particularly hot item right now in China with the
Olympics in 2008 coming quickly. You can't flip a newspaper or
walk through a busy street without seeing advertisement screaming
English Lessons everywhere!
how do you find a job teaching English? Well, if you are blond,
has blue eyes, a basic University degree and speak decent
English, consider that you have been hired! Just kidding!
you can either sign up with ESL English teacher agencies or you
can look up advertisements in the internet. But apply early:
While some positions are still open as late as July or
August, try to make contact by March. (Occasionally, positions
open for the second semester, too, which begins in February.)
Learn as much as you can about China and the experience of teaching
English in China. There are many books in the
market and good websites as well. We, of course, will recommend
our eBook, Posted
to China - Find out what corporate HR does not tell you.
This ebook is very helpful if you are thinking of working or
living in China for a period of time.
Once you know something about China and what to expect from
the teaching experience, decide on a list of universities
You can try using the Internet and many Chinese universities
do have posting about English teachers' vacancies.
Contact the people at the school responsible for hiring
foreign teachers. Individual
foreign languages or English--hire their own foreign teachers,
so the right person is usually the chair or vice-chair of that
way to get in touch with the right person is to be physically
in China while you're looking for a teaching position. Bring
application materials with you. But
keep in mind
you do get a job as a student or tourist, you will probably
have to leave the country
or go to Hong Kong to get your visa changed. There is usually
a person in the University that will be able to assist
you with such administrative tasks.
Sooner or later you will need to send a resume. Be sure to highlight
any teaching or tutoring experience. You may
references and a letter
is usually no need to have a English Language degree or a ESL
qualifications. However, this can differ from University to University,
School to School.
If you are ultimately offered a position you like, you may want
to try a little negotiating. But you're unlikely to
be successful if the
has a standard
contract. In public universities, compensation for inexperienced
foreign teachers is never very much. Expect to get housing,
anywhere from RMB1,400
($169-$266) a month and sometimes a one-way ticket home
universities rarely require foreigners to teach more than 14
or 15 hours of oral English classes each week. If
to do more, insist
on no more than 14 or 15 hours and ask if some of the lessons
can be converted to optional office hours. Also, if you're
teaching any writing
courses, you should have significantly fewer classroom hours.
You can't get rich but you do have a lot of free time such that
you have time to explore the town and surrounding areas or even
to take up Chinese lessons or other Chinese studies such as calligraphy,
painting or even Chinese martial arts.
if you position is in a commercial or a private school, then
the teaching hours may go up considerably. Stories of English
teachers being exploited is common.
When you consider a job offer, you should ask for the names of
foreigners who are currently teaching or have
at that school so
you can get the real scoop on the university and its
treatment of foreigners. This is important as many schools,
the private or commercial schools, has a reputation for
bad treatment of foreigners.
more information about Chinese business culture and etiquette, check
out this interesting China
Book. Or email us
for further information.