Teaching English abroad is one of the most immediate methods of obtaining a paid position in another country. It also provides a platform to fully experience and explore the host community and culture. Many destinations are eager to hire native English speakers and therefore many teaching positions do not require previous experience or certification, however your chance of placement may rise significantly with a certificate. You should research the various options and decide what path is most appropriate to your situation and goals.
Training & Certifications:
Many different “credentials” or certifications exist for teaching English as a second or foreign language and exist in both in-person and online formats. Furthermore, some placement organizations include certification and training in their overall program fee. You should research what suits you best.
American Language Institute TESL/TEFL Certificate Program
The American Language Institute is located in the College of Extended Studies at San Diego State University.
U.S. Government Sponsored Programs:
Many Peace Corps volunteers now teach English or other subjects during their service. Teaching as a Peace Corps volunteer is an excellent way to be fully immersed in the local culture and community. Each volunteer receives a living stipend and a relocation allowance at the end of his/her two-year contract. The program can also help pay off student loans. All training is part of Peace Corps service.
Fulbright English Teaching Assistantships
Fulbright grants to teach English are available all around the world. Assignment lengths vary, but most last for one academic year.
Other Government Sponsored Programs:
Many national governments have programs to sponsor native English speakers to teach in their public schools. While these programs may be more competitive than private ones and have extensive applications, they may also be subsidized thereby minimizing costs and not including program fees.
- American-Scandinavian Foundation
- Czech Ministry of Education
- English Program in Korea (EPIK)
- French Embassy Teaching Assistant Program
- Fulbright English Teaching Assistantships
- Japanese Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program
- Language and Culture Assistants in Spain
There are many organizations that will assist with training, preparation and placement in a teaching position. Please use the resources below to search for programs, however be sure to collect as much information as possible prior to signing up.
Placement programs provide you with the structure and support of finding teaching positions abroad. These positions and programs vary in their application process, requirements, salary and location, and may require an application and program fee. Inquire directly with the organizations for more specific information regarding their teaching opportunities.
Online References and Databases: