Teach English abroad: get a job in three months

Teach English abroad: get a job in three months
Teach English abroad: get a job in three months

Eighty percent of South Africans with a teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL) qualification secure work in less than three months, according to a survey conducted by The TEFL Academy, South Africa’s leading course provider. For university graduates looking to avoid the frustrations of a drawn-out job hunt, teaching English abroad presents an opportunity to lock down a stable income in a short timeframe. Qualified teachers enjoy the added benefit of traveling the world, while they’re at it.

“Foreign language English teachers are in high demand all over the globe. As a result, landing a job can be as simple as getting qualified and choosing the country you want to live and work in. Especially for graduates who don’t have time to waste, because they need to start earning a living,” says Rhyan O’Sullivan, Managing Director at The TEFL Academy.

According to the Stats SA quarterly labour force survey, many young people are looking to improve career prospects and accelerate their job search. Additional qualifications may help, especially considering that almost a quarter of South Africans who are unemployed after graduating, will remain so for more than three years. In this time, one can easily gain a new skillset. “It can take as little as four weeks to complete a TEFL course, a short-term commitment that has the potential to provide long-term opportunities for your career – and your wallet,” says O’Sullivan.

According to the TEFL Academy survey, 40% of respondents say they receive more than $2 000 a month (just under R40 000). Hourly rates fall between R190 and R560, exceeding most local entry-level jobs. Money-savvy graduates can leverage this to plan towards their financial goals, help out their families, and improve their standard of living.

Almost 14% of participants found work abroad through recruitment agencies, while 41% secured a position via online jobs boards, like the one hosted by The TEFL Academy. “Once you’ve signed up for the course, you can start looking for work and exploring opportunities right away – which speeds things up even more. Lots of people think age and lack of experience will affect job prospects. But both of these are non-issues – you just need to know where to look for work,” says O’Sullivan.

South African TEFL teachers are employed across more than 25 countries, with schools in South Korea, China, and Vietnam being the most popular. “For graduates who are feeling discouraged about finding work, a TEFL qualification is a small investment of time with big returns. Within just three months of qualifying, you could be spending your weekends relaxing on the beaches of Danang, or exploring the vibrant nightlife of Seoul,” says O’Sullivan.

Offering accessible and cost-effective ways to get TEFL-qualified, The TEFL Academy provides internationally accredited and regulated online courses. The company hosts a jobs board on their website, with over 1 500 international teaching opportunities for potential teachers to pursue, across a number of countries. For more information, visit www.theteflacademy.com/za/.

Duncan’s story

”Completing a TEFL course has been the single best decision I have ever made, and I implore you to do the same,” says South African TEFL teacher Duncan Drever, who grew up in George in the Western Cape. Using the money he saved while teaching, Duncan is now studying to pursue a career in education. Here are three highlights from his journey to financial stability:

  1. Hired a month after qualifying: Duncan completed his 168-hour level 5 certificate with The TEFL Academy in August 2018. Just five interviews later in September 2018, he landed a job at a private international English academy outside Shanghai – with no teaching experience whatsoever.
  2. Finally making a living: Working as a tour guide in South Africa, Duncan made ends meet. In China, his first job provided payment that exceeded all of his expenses. “My salary for teaching at this school was going to be more money than both my parents and I had ever seen as a monthly salary ever before,” says Duncan.
  3. Freedom to work to his own schedule: At the end of 2019, Duncan switched to teaching online, giving him more time to explore. “It enables me to live my longest-standing dream which is to work from anywhere while I travel the world and experience all this life has to offer.”