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What are the requirements to teach English in Korea?

Introduction

Teaching English in Korea has become a popular career choice for many people, especially for those who are interested in exploring new cultures and gaining valuable teaching experience. However, before making the decision to teach English in Korea, it is important to understand the requirements and qualifications needed to be eligible. This article will provide a comprehensive guide on the requirements to teach English in Korea.

Education Requirements

In order to teach English in Korea, you must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university. It is important to note that the degree does not necessarily have to be in education or English, but having a degree in these fields may increase your chances of obtaining a teaching position. Additionally, having a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification can also be beneficial in securing a teaching job.

Age Requirements

The legal age to work in Korea is 18 years old; however, to teach English in Korea, you must be at least 21 years old. This is due to the fact that most schools prefer teachers who have some life experience and maturity.

Citizenship Requirements

In order to teach English in Korea, you must hold citizenship from one of the seven countries that are recognized by the Korean government: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and South Africa. Additionally, you must have a passport from one of these countries and be a native speaker of English.

Background Check Requirements

All foreign teachers applying to teach in Korea must undergo a criminal background check. The background check must be conducted by an authorized agency and should not show any prior convictions for drug-related offenses or crimes involving minors.

Health Requirements

Before entering Korea, all foreign teachers must undergo a medical exam and obtain a certificate stating that they are in good health. This is to ensure that teachers do not have any communicable diseases that could be spread to the students.

Visa Requirements

In order to teach English in Korea, foreign teachers must obtain an E-2 visa. To obtain this visa, you must have all of the necessary documents, including a valid passport, a criminal background check, a medical certificate, and a contract from a Korean school.

Experience Requirements

While having teaching experience is not necessarily required to teach English in Korea, it can be beneficial. Many schools prefer teachers who have at least one year of teaching experience, especially in a foreign country.

Language Requirements

Although foreign teachers are hired to teach English, it is important for them to have some knowledge of the Korean language. This can help with communication with students and other faculty members.

Salary Requirements

The salary for teaching English in Korea varies depending on the school and the teacher’s experience. However, most schools offer a salary between 2.0-2.5 million won per month (approximately $1,700-$2,100 USD).

Housing Requirements

Most schools in Korea provide housing for their foreign teachers. The housing is typically a small studio apartment within walking distance of the school.

Contract Requirements

Before accepting a teaching position in Korea, it is important to carefully review the contract. The contract should include information on salary, working hours, vacation time, and other benefits such as airfare reimbursement and health insurance.

Conclusion

Teaching English in Korea can be a great opportunity for those who are interested in gaining teaching experience while exploring a new culture. However, it is important to understand the requirements and qualifications needed before making the decision to teach in Korea. By meeting these requirements, you can increase your chances of obtaining a teaching job and having a successful experience in Korea.

Can you teach English in Korea without a degree?

To be eligible for teaching in South Korean schools, certain minimum requirements must be met regardless of the location. Prospective teachers must have a Bachelor’s degree in any field, and be native speakers from either the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, or South Africa.

Is it hard to get an English teaching job in Korea?

Whether or not you are eligible for the job depends on a few factors such as your criminal record, educational background, and if English is your first language. If you meet these requirements, you have a good chance of getting the job if you apply. However, if English is not your first language, it may be a little more challenging, but still achievable.

Do you need to be fluent in Korean to teach English in Korea?

It may seem obvious, but Korea is a non-English speaking country, even though English teachers may go there to teach. It is highly recommended to learn at least some Korean, as older generations may not have a strong grasp of English, despite younger generations generally having better English skills.

How much money do I need to teach English in Korea?

If you work as an English teacher in South Korea, you can earn between $500 to $1,000 or more per month, depending on your experience and qualifications. The average cost of living is around $650 to $900 per month, which includes housing if applicable. Housing may be provided for free or subsidized by your employer, and you may also receive other benefits such as reimbursed airfare.

How much is rent in Korea?

As of February 2021, the typical cost of renting a one-bedroom apartment in Seoul, South Korea was roughly 510,000 South Korean won per month, an increase from the previous month’s rate of about 480,000 South Korean won.

How long can I teach English in Korea?

Although it is possible to teach English in Korea indefinitely, most people do not stay for more than a few years. Those who stay for more than 3-5 years usually advance to higher positions in their schools.

Working Hours

The working hours for English teachers in Korea vary depending on the school and the age of the students. Most schools require teachers to work around 22-25 hours per week, with additional time for lesson planning and other tasks. Teachers may also be required to work on weekends or in the evenings for adult classes.

Cultural Adaptation

Teaching English in Korea requires a certain level of cultural adaptation. It is important for teachers to be open-minded, patient, and willing to learn about Korean culture. This can help create a positive relationship with students and other faculty members, and can also make the experience more enjoyable.

Social Life

Teaching English in Korea can provide opportunities to meet new people and make friends. There are many social events and activities for foreign teachers, such as language exchange meetups, cultural festivals, and sports leagues. It is important to take advantage of these opportunities to fully experience Korean culture and make connections with others.

Professional Development

Teaching English in Korea can also be a great opportunity for professional development. Many schools offer training programs and workshops for their teachers, which can help improve teaching skills and provide opportunities for networking. Additionally, teaching in Korea can provide valuable experience for those interested in pursuing a career in education or international relations.

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