We know that finding a teaching role overseas can be overwhelming with so much choice and so many processes. Hopefully, these frequently asked questions will help.
What is TEFL?
TEFL stands for Teaching English as a Foreign Language. It means teaching English to people who speak other languages, usually in a foreign country. The first step is to get TEFL qualified, and for this, you’ll need a TEFL course to prove you can competently teach English overseas. The industry benchmark is 120 hours, and you should make sure that your TEFL course is accredited too so that it will be recognized worldwide. Employers may also ask for previous teaching experience, and a university degree or equivalent. The Intrepid Teachers TEFL is a great way to get qualified and start your teaching journey.
TEFL is also known as TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language).
Do I meet the criteria for a paid TEFL job?
If you have a TEFL qualification of a minimum 120 hours, a Bachelor’s degree in any subject, a passport from a native English-speaking country (America, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa) and are keen, confident and committed to teaching for at least nine months, then you have all the essentials of making a successful TEFL teacher. For jobs in Saudi Arabia, visa regulations mean a Bachelor’s degree in English (dual major is accepted) or Education or an accredited TEFL is required.
How do I apply?
If you’re interested in teaching abroad and meet the criteria listed above, simply send your CV/Résumé and a short introduction video about yourself and why you want to teach overseas or a recent, good-quality photo (showing your head and shoulders). If you can also send us any documents such as copies of your passport photo page, degree certificate and any teaching-related qualifications, then that can speed up the process.
Why should I apply with Intrepid Teachers?
We give you a comprehensive, bespoke recruitment service and will offer support throughout your interview, application and before arriving in-country. We have extensive experience in the TEFL industry so benefit from insider knowledge of what it’s really like to teach abroad and live as an expat.
Can I get assistance in preparing for moving abroad?
We understand that moving to teach overseas can be overwhelming, and we’re here to make sure everything goes smoothly. We’ll give you extensive support in your pre-departure process, liaising with partner schools and in-country welfare officers (they will assist with obtaining your work visa). We will also send you detailed contracts, introduction packs and a helpful checklist, as well as being on hand throughout the first few weeks of your placement to make sure you’re settling in.
What support will I get in-country?
You will be supported to achieve your full potential as a teacher and beyond. When you arrive in-country to begin your teaching role, your placement school will usually provide full training. During training, you will learn about your school and the curriculum there, and be advised on lesson planning, activities, and materials to be used etc. Once you start teaching, you will be observed regularly by the Director of Studies or Academic Managers, with constructive reviews and feedback provided and workshops and additional training throughout the year. As a TEFL teacher, you will have plenty of opportunity for further development through Teacher Development Schemes (TDS) where additional responsibilities can be agreed, and roles such as Senior Teacher, Assistant Director of Studies and Director of Studies may be available worldwide.
Do I need a degree?
Yes, for most reputable paid teaching jobs a bachelor’s degree (or above) is required. It is also required as part of the visa process in some countries.
How old will my students be and how large my classes?
It depends. Your students’ ages could be anywhere between 3-year-olds and adults, and class sizes vary from 1 to 40! The majority of teaching positions are with schoolchildren of primary school age in small groups of 8-10 students. You will usually have the benefit of a teaching assistant. You could be teaching larger classes of around 40 students, or private 1-to-1 classes with students who are preparing for exams, university or moving abroad. Some positions are teaching adults only.
How will I know what to teach?
The curriculum is predetermined and you will be informed of this during your teacher training. You will also be provided with a schedule when you arrive at school along with additional resources like workbooks and teaching materials. There will be aims and objectives set by the school which you need to meet, but creativity is encouraged in the classroom to help you achieve these goals.
How Much Money Do I Need?
As you can imagine there are various costs associated with moving to a new country. As such we strongly recommend that you research ahead of time how much the visa process will cost for your country of choice, how much an airfare might be and how much money you will need in reserve for any emergencies. We can give you some idea of what these costs may be but we do recommend that you do your own research, so you have a full idea of what you need to make the move to a new country. Rest assured many schools will reimburse the visa costs, but you will have to pay this up front. Many schools offer a flight allowance that is paid in stages over the length of your contract, typically you will need to pay for the flight to your new country.