What’s the application process like for teaching English abroad?

close up of laptop and person's hand holding a globe

English is one of the most widely spoken languages on the planet, and the demand for English teachers isn’t slowing down. 

For those interested in exploring the world of teaching English abroad, you'll be happy to know you don't necessarily need any prior teaching experience. 

So, what are the requirements for teaching English abroad

First, you’ll need to meet the minimum eligibility requirements, which is usually a TEFL certificate and a bachelor’s degree. Keep in mind, it's possible for the requirements to differ from country to country and from school to school. 

Then, take some time to think about where in the world you’d like to teach. We suggest the top 5 countries to apply to this year, below.

Once you have your TEFL certificate and an idea of where you'd like to go, you're ready to start the TEFL application process. We'll walk you through each step of the process from creating your teacher profile to booking your flight!

Here are the six steps you need to take in order to complete the TEFL application process:

  1. Create a teacher profile 
  2. Finding the right job
  3. Start applying 
  4. Preparing for the interview 
  5. Getting all your documents ready 
  6. Booking the flight 

Are you ready to start living the dream and jet off on an exciting new adventure, teaching English abroad? 

Great! Let’s get started: 

1. Create a teacher profile

woman wearing glasses sitting behind a laptop

The Teach Away website is incredibly user-friendly, allowing you to easily create and start setting up your teacher profile

All you have to do is click the “register” button at the top right corner of the website. 

Simple enough, right? 

But you want your application to stand out, meaning you will want to take some time to create an eye-catching profile

Make sure that you upload all the necessary supporting documentation, including videos and pictures in order to make your profile sparkle. 

A candidate who has completely filled out their profile will be assessed immediately and may even receive a screen call that same day. 

Don’t wait for a Teach Away recruiter to reach out asking you to add more details to your profile. 

Recruitment can move quickly, and you want to make sure you don’t miss out on your opportunity. 

List out your credentials and work experience in a way that highlights your achievements and eligibility for the role. 

Break everything down so that it’s digestible and recruiters don’t have to dig in order to understand your history. 

Think, why are you the best candidate as an educator? Allow yourself to shine. 

Learn more about what schools are looking for in your Teach Away profile video. 

2. Finding the right job

It’s time to start browsing through the Teach Away job board

There are hundreds of opportunities available with international schools, government programs, universities and language colleges in over 40 countries. 

With so many options to choose from, it’s important to ask yourself what you are looking for. 

What countries intrigue you the most? What age range would you like to be teaching? 

Remember, you want to ensure that you are happy with your decisions. And whether this is a long-term career or a short-term experience, ask yourself how you’d like to feel throughout this entire venture. 

Tip: Read through all the requirements of the job listing and make sure that you are aligned with what they are asking. 

3. Start applying

man on lap looking out at rainforest jungle scenery

You can apply for as many or as few jobs as you’d like. 

What is calling to you? This part of the process is quick and easy, as you are able to directly apply for your favorable jobs by clicking the “Apply” button. 

The top 5 countries hiring ESL teachers in 2021 are: 

  1. Spain
  2. Hong Kong
  3. Mainland China
  4. Japan
  5. Saudi Arabia 

Before you submit your application, check that you meet all of the eligibility requirements for the position. 

Most employers will require that you hold a bachelor’s degree and a TEFL certification

And make sure you are mindful about the application deadlines! 

4. Preparing for the interview

As soon as you send in your job application, placement coordinators and schools will begin reviewing your application. 

If you are a successful candidate, you will be contacted for an interview. 

The number of interviews and rounds will depend on the position and country which you are applying to. 

But regardless, this is your time to start preparing for the job interview!

Have you done your research on the school that you’re interviewing with? 

Teach Away will offer a page with key information on the school, but it is worth going to the school’s official website in order to read more information about them. 

This is a time to self-reflect and sell your skill sets. 

Two questions that you will be often asked are:

  1. Why do you want to work at our school? 
  2. What would we see if we were to walk into your classroom? 

Stand confident and firm in your capabilities as an educator. Don’t be afraid to tell the school why you are the perfect candidate.

The recruiter you are speaking to is assessing you for fit, in addition to your expertise. 

That is why conveying your passion for this role will go a long way!

Practice does make perfect, so don’t worry if you don’t nail the first interview. There will be more to come! 

5. Getting all your documents ready

Congratulations, you got the job! 

The next step is to start processing your documents and obtain your visa

And this is something you will need to acquire prior to your arrival in the country. 

Again, it’s important to note that different countries will have different requirements for eligibility. 

But fear not! The Teach Away coordinators and school will help you out with everything.

In many cases, the employer would also sponsor you and help you obtain the necessary permit by working with various government agencies. 

You will simply have to make sure that you are organized in order to get everything processed in time for your departure. 

6. Booking the flight

woman in a hat and wearing a backpack at the airport looking out at an airplane

You signed your contract and have secured a visa, meaning that it’s time to book your flight and pack your bags. 

Note that some schools will take care of the flight for you, some will reimburse you and others will not provide the assistance with flights. 

Double check which category you fall under, and if you are responsible for booking your own flight, be sure to google different airlines and dates to find the most cost-efficient journey. 

Get ready for a memorable experience

Teaching English abroad is a truly memorable experience.

Not only do you get to experience life in a different part of the world and make new friends, but you have the opportunity to teach and make money. 

This pipe dream is within reach, all you need to do is take a chance and start the application process.