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Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Finding a TESOL Job Overseas - 5 Crucial Considerations

Finding a TESOL Job Overseas

5 Questions to Ask Your Employer Before the Contract is Signed

So, you've got your TESOL Certificate and have found some appealing possibilities teaching English overseas, and are preparing for potential TESOL job interviews.  In addition to selling yourself in the interview, you also have to determine whether or not this job is right for you and whether or not the school is right for you.   
While this may be challenging for a number of reasons, arming yourself with as much information as you can get is the best way to make sure your expectations are met.

While there are employers who freely offer a lot of information about the school and community, many potential employers do not go out of their way to paint the clearest of pictures they could.  

Here are 5 broad strokes to ponder before you sign that contract to teach at that school:

  1. You may not know too much about the school.
  2. You don't know anyone who's worked there.
  3. You don't have a clear picture of the TESOL position.
  4. You don't know the real value of your compensation.
  5. You don't know much about the location.

Watch this video:  Esta Gutierrez  shares how she got 
TESOL Certified in Sant Fe, NM and taught all over the word.

Below you'll find a list of 5 key considerations to explore with a potential employer before you start packing your bags.

Finding a TESOL Job Overseas:

There are countless examples of TESOL teachers who accept a job teaching English overseas that is thousands of miles away from their homes.  They pack their bags, arrive at the school and begin teaching English.  A couple of months later they leave feeling unsatisfied, duped, and disillusioned....Some may just decide that the TESOL field is not for them.

The secret to finding a TESOL job that is a good fit for you is arming yourself with information. Here are five essential elements you should explore with a potential employer before accepting the English
teaching position.

Five Essential Elements to Discuss with a Potential Employer

John Kongsvik - 'Get up & Grammar'
  1. The School:  While you may visit a school's website and read about it's mission and see pictures of the school, staff, and students, it still doesn't give you a complete idea of what it's really like.  Ask the employer about the school.  What types of students attend the school?  What kinds of support does the school offer teachers?
  2. The Staff:  Knowing the backgrounds of teachers who work there can give you an idea of what type of school it is.  Ask the school administration about the staff.  What percentage of teachers are ex-pats?  How long does the average foreign teacher stays at the school?   Can you put me in contact with a few current and former teachers?
  3. The Position:  You more than likely know what you will be teaching, who you will be teaching, and the number of contact hours per week.  That is the macro view of the job.  Try to get a more detailed view.  Ask the employer specific questions about the open position.  What does a typical day look like?  What additional responsibilities will I have? 
  4. The Compensation:  Okay, you know the the salary and hopefully even the benefits that come with the position but those are surface details.  You want to dig a little deeper with questions like...What is the saving potential?  How are taxes dealt with?  Am I compensated for extra work?  How am I paid (USD, local currency, a combination of the two)?  What happens if there is a big currency fluctuation?
  5. The Location:  You know the city/town you'll be in and have scoured the web for information on the place.  Employers are quick to sell people on the touristy things but not always the every-day aspects of living there like...  What are the living arrangements like?  What do people typically do when they aren't working?  What kinds of transportation are available?
Would you like to know what the #1 indicator of whether or not a teacher completes a teaching assignment with satisfaction?  It's not the money, nor is it the grades the students got.  The number one indicator of job satisfaction is whether or not your expectations were met.  If the experience turns out like you thought it would (or better), you leave feeling good about it.

Don't rely on the interviewer's ability to fill in any blanks that you may have.  Just like you are selling yourself;  they are selling the school.

The only way to make sure the English teaching position you seek meets your expectations is to collect as much information from as many angles as you can.  

Considering the 5 critical categories can minimize the chances of you leaving the position shortly after starting it and maximize the chances that the TESOL job is right for you.

Watch this video:  Ashley Rhone share how taking the SIT 
TESOL Certificate course in Santa Fe set her up for success
If you want to teach overseas and aren't certified, check out our TESOL Certificate Program, get the SIT TESOL certificate and begin your journey of teaching your way around the world©.
In the next issue.......Recruiters?

We're TESOL Trainers and we provide students and teachers a scaffold to success!  Contact John Kongsvik, today.  

TESOL Trainers, Inc. offers a wide variety of professional development and teacher training for new and experienced teachers.  

If you'd like to know what we're up to, visit our facebook page.
If you are wondering why so many school call us for their professional development needs, watch this video.

You can also look at our sister blog:  Everything Teaching TESOL

Related Posts

John Kongsvik Director of TESOL Trainers, Inc.
John Kongsvik, leading a PD on scaffolding
TESOL Trainers is an education consulting company that sets every student up for success, one teacher at a time.

We work with all types of educational institutions (K-12Higher Ed) that support excellence in teaching and excellence in learning.

TESOL Trainers, Inc. offers the SIT TESOL Certificate, the most reputable in the world.

Contact John Kongsvik, the Director, for more information.


  1. Good post about TESOL it is very useful for students

    know about TESOL

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  3. Very useful info but how do we sign up for the course and what are the charges and otherdetails

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