What is your citizenship?
What is your citizenship?
What is your citizenship?
Stretching from the western shores of North Africa across the Sahara to the Levant, the Arabian Peninsula and into the heart of Central Asia, the Middle East is a vast and diverse region not only from the standpoint of its cultures and geography, but in terms of the opportunities it offers certified English teachers as well.
In the wealthy Arab nations of the Persian Gulf region, English teachers can command some of the highest salaries and finest benefit packages in the world and must compete in a competitive job market. Often schools in this region of the Middle East will require English teaches to have a Master’s Degree (sometimes in education) and previous teaching experience, on top of their TEFL certification. That's not to say it's impossible for first-time teachers to get a job in this region (especially in Saudi Arabia), but you will need to be persistent, patient and flexible in your job search. Those who qualify for such positions will enjoy some of the highest salaries in the field as pay can range from $2,500 - $6,000 a month, plus free housing and flights to and from the teacher’s home country.
When I was graduating from college, I had two study abroad experiences under my belt and a full-blown addiction to travel. All I wanted to do was buy a one-way ticket abroad and never come home. I only knew of two options to do so--teach English abroad and join the Peace Corps--but neither option seemed to get the approval of my parents. So I didn’t do either.
Instead, I appeased everyone and went to grad school...but I did it under my terms: in Europe! After two years of grad school and a short stint working full time abroad, I ended up back home...suppressing the travel bug by ‘getting a real job’ and ‘settling down’. Not long after I got married, my husband and I knew we needed an international adventure, but felt at a loss for how to make it happen. I threw out the idea of teaching English abroad, but neither of us took it very seriously.
Unfortunately, like many others, we held a prejudice that it wasn’t a ‘real job’ and that it was only for ‘recent college graduates who don’t want to get a real job’.
We tabled the idea until we couldn’t any longer.
Living and teaching English in Ankara, Turkey as a woman wasn't that different than living in Europe or the USA. I lived in a middle-upper class area, working with professionals (doctors, lawyers, university professors, government officials, engineers, etc.), many of whom had traveled internationally and, of course, were highly educated. On the surface, they seemed to be western in many regards. Having said that, they were, at the same time, fiercely patriotic and had so much pride in their culture and its traditions. It’s incredible to experience centuries-old traditions. But at the same time, parts of society and social norms tend to be..... a bit old-school. To be honest, sometimes those old-school mentalities were a bit hard to swallow for me, an independent woman from the west...
For many, moving to a Muslim country brings about many questions and sometimes fears. Questions about women’s rights; personal safety & freedoms; food; and work conditions are just some of the concerns that come to mind. As a Midwestern American woman, born and raised in Wisconsin, I was excited at the thought of moving to a "secular" Middle Eastern country--Turkey--but I too also had some questions.
As a two-time study abroad alumni, I was always on the lookout for ways to get back to Europe. I searched high and low for any opportunity that would take me abroad—Peace Corps, WOOFing, couchsurfing, etc. But after all the time, money, and studying, I couldn’t justify moving back to Europe without a professional reason. So I decided to go to graduate school in Europe and spent another four years abroad. After graduation, I worked for a while. But once my work contract ended, again, I was left with the task of figuring out how I could stay in Europe...but I came up short and returned to the US.
By Jeff Penick
With a higher population than all of the other continents combined, Asia continues to reign supreme in terms of demand for English teachers around the globe. Throughout Asia, schools are hiring thousands of new teachers on a monthly basis and most jobs can be found in the larger cities. Listed below (in no particular order) are five of the top Asian cities that provide a culturally rich and unique lifestyle along with an abundance of English teaching opportunities.
Throughout the past year, we received dozens of fantastic Q&As from International TEFL Academy Alumni who are teaching English all across the globe. Listed below are 8 of our top examples from our graduates teaching anywhere from Peru and Turkey, to Japan and Spain. Thank you so much to our alumni for taking the time to create these highly informative Q&As and sharing their stories and experiences teaching English abroad!
As a passport holder since the age of 5, you can say I’m somewhat of a travel addict. Even when I’m on vacation or living abroad, I feel jealous of those who are in places I’m not.
This love for travel turned into an addiction about ten years ago while I was studying abroad in France. Upon my return to the United States, I continued exploring other cultures through volunteering, my coursework (I ended up getting a Spanish minor), and studying abroad in Spain.