Working overseas as a teacher can be a great opportunity to experience new cultures and make a difference in the lives of children across the globe. However, the process of finding a teaching job internationally can be daunting, especially if you are not already familiar with the country.
For teachers looking into overseas employment, this guide will help make the search for teaching opportunities overseas simpler.
Decide Where You Want to Teach
There are many countries that are seeking Australian teachers to fill positions. Having your qualifications to teach in Australian can open up a huge amount of opportunities in other countries as well.
Even non-English speaking countries including many in Asia do not require teachers to be fluent in the native languages to teach. However, to reduce the stress of moving to a new country, it is recommended that teachers become familiar with basic phrases prior to accepting a job overseas. It is also strongly recommended that teachers familiarise themselves with cultural norms before considering work opportunities because some cultures may not be compatible with certain temperaments or lifestyles.
Obtain Your TEFL/TESL/TESOL Certifications
The International Teacher Training Organisation strongly recommends that teachers who are seeking overseas job opportunities in teaching English to obtain at least one of these certifications. TEFL is Teaching English as a Foreign Language, TESL is Teaching English as a Second Language, and TESOL is Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. Each of these certifications is an internationally-recognised accomplishment that opens up more job opportunities in more countries. TESOL certifications in particular, are useful because many countries have their own TESOL affiliate groups.
Instructors who can teach English are in constant demand, so obtaining any or all of these certifications is a worthwhile step to take in securing a teaching position overseas.
Cultivate A Specialised Skill Set
Often, the best and quickest way to get your foot in the door overseas is by having other marketable skills that are applicable to the region. Though your end goal will be a teaching position, it can also be beneficial to have other highly marketable skills like information technology, marketing, graphic design, sales, business administration, medical training, accounting and even nonprofit management. Without the help of an education recruitment agency, you may find it difficult to directly get into a teaching position. Utilising your full skill set to obtain a job in the desired country may make the transition into the education sector more achievable.
Begin Developing A Network Now
If possible, reach out to old lecturers who may have contacts that can help you. If this is not an option, cultivate new relationships with faculty at your local universities by attending public lectures or social events and introducing yourself afterwards. Often, university faculty know of a variety of research positions available through colleagues overseas.
Another way to identify teaching opportunities overseas is to seek out online forums for teachers in your geographical area as well as abroad. The Internet makes it possible to broaden your network of contacts immensely, thus increasing your chances of landing an overseas job that you will enjoy.
By far the most popular way to seek employment overseas is through the assistance of a specialist education recruitment agency. And for good reason too. Agencies have established networks of contacts and teaching opportunities ready to be filled immediately by suitable candidates.
Choosing The Best Education Recruitment Agency For You
With a number of programs for teachers to choose from, it is important to understand which agency best suits your particular goals and situation. Before committing to a placement service, inquire directly about fees, salary, insurance and training.
Not all programs give equal levels of assistance and it is important to know exactly what kinds of aid they will give you on your journey. This is especially important if you are seeking employment in a country that is completely unfamiliar to you. Salary is another crucial consideration because you will need to consider what the average cost of living is in your destination country. This is where it is a great advantage to deal with a recruitment agency that has staff who are experienced living and teaching in other countries and can give honest advice about what to expect.
You will need to know what level of education you will be teaching, such as primary students versus secondary students, as well as what type of school you will be teaching at. A good recruitment agency will have opportunities in private schools, public schools for a range of age groups and subjects.
Additionally, not all programs have equivalent services built into their service fees, so you will need to inquire about what is included and whether or not you will need to purchase additional visas, training time, or special health coverage prior to accepting a position overseas.
The decision to seek out job opportunities overseas can be a challenging task but also very exciting and rewarding. Fortunately, there are companies that specialise in placing qualified Australian teachers in attractive teaching positions in UK, Asia and other countries. Point to Point Education is highly experienced in this area and has an excellent network of existing opportunities with reputable overseas schools.
At Point to Point Education, our staff have all taught overseas and understand how to make the experience as enjoyable as possible. We not only help guide you along the path towards finding and filling the teaching position best suited to your skills, we also help make the complete experience.
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