non native English speaker, non ESL trained. any chance?

Hi, Arrived in China one month ago and started looking for a job in manufacturing engineering with little luck.

Now I am considering the option to teach English although I am non native. I also don't have the training course and didn't teach English before in a school or training center. I know.. doesn't sound so good..
Not sure where to start looking for but actually do you think I have any chance finding a job in this way? any stories or contacts?

Thanks so much. Cosmin

One question .... do you think it will be fair on the students or school if an unqualified and inexperienced person were to attempt to do that job?

Normally I would also prefer a qualified teacher for my child but this depends on the number of existing qualified teachers.
I have met in my travel in Vietnam two english teachers which I was surprised of their level of english but still they were doing a good job, I assume, raising the level of english at a moment when the school did not have the option to find qualified teachers on the market.

As non native speaker it's very to get a working visa.
An other option you could consider is finding a sales position. If you're English is ok and you also speak another language as well your odds are good to find something. Of course, speaking some Chinese also helps a lot.
Also, find Chinese friends, and let them know that you are a looking for a job.

You might get some teaching opportunities in Shenzhen or Guangzhou but getting a taeaching qualification would be a must, though that should not be too difficult to do.
perhaps you can try applying for teaching jobs via the internet n just see what comes
good luck

I actually go there, to Guangzhou today. I hope that talking in person would be an advantage when trying to contact potential employers.
Thank you for the reply.

By qualifications, you mean TEFL certification?

Actually, u should just try applying via the internet 1st , lots of good jobsites online, one being .
obviously , being a native speaker would be easier but i guess there should be openings for non-native ones too in guangzhou or shenzhen, .. especially if u r relatively fluent in Chinese and would have the advantage of being able to explain n clarify terms in mandarin

i used to be bombarded with emails from agencies seeking people to go teach english at nurseries n classes for working adults so i know a little about the market  , good luck

y, TEFL will be the most basic one , there r others that u can upgrade to once you are in the trade , should be relatively straight forward ..

To Anyone Interested in Teaching English

I am a Native English Speaker from one of the NOW 6 approved countries (by new Chinese law).  In case anyone is interested here are the NEW rules as of May 1, 2016, oh and they will be enforced.

1. You can ONLY teach English (legally) in China if you are from one of these countries:
USA, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland.  (I didn't come up with this list, the Chinese government did)

2. You MUST have a BA or BS from your native country or a recognized University.  Degrees are now being checked carefully so diploma mills are not a good choice.

3.  Minimum certification 120 hrs of TEFL or TESOL.  Soon that will be upped and soon they will begin to want a "real" teaching certification.

Also be aware NOT every school can hire foreign teachers legally.  If you are hired by a school illegally you are facing not only a fine should you be caught, but a quick exit from China will follow.  The Chinese government in some areas are cracking down hard so be on notice.

Another thing to be aware of, some schools will promise you the moon, and once you have signed a contract you'll find the moon isn't part of the deal.  Contracts are not binding you will soon discover.  Ask around and be sure of the company before you agree.  Money sounds good, until its time for them to pay you. 

Finally, enforcement has become much stricter and while you may get away with stuff for a while don't think it will last.  It's much better to do things legally for all concerned.  To teach English in China (years ago) you only needed to be a foreigner with minimum language and breathing.  Today it is much different (thankfully) and you need to be a Native speaker, with some experience and in it because you care about the students. 

Please don't do this if all you care about is the paycheck, you are cheating your students.   The students in China deserve better, the fact is, if you had kids wouldn't you want them to get the best education possible?  Why not do the same for someone else?

If you are a qualified teacher under the new rules, the school I work for in northern China is looking for good teachers.  Feel free to contact me.  BTW, I have worked in China for 9 years teaching, I have been with my current school for 6 years.  I am the Director of our College Prep Program.  The school has been in business since 2001 and was started by two American teachers (who have since retired).  China needs good English teachers they've had enough sub-standard ones.

Please don't do this if all you care about is the paycheck

That applies to any job, but about a million times more so in teaching.

As a TEFL teacher myself of many years experience, I can tell you now that it's not something you can do either without training or because you cannot do the job your are trained for. Sorry!

I am a non-native speaker and currently I am studying chemistry. I was thinking about teaching in China, so I was aspiring to get my Master of Ed in chemistry and english, but since the new law I would need to get a degree in a native english speaking country.
This would mean that I would have to take a credit, but since I am not sure that they won't decide in the future that they just want natives I am reluctant to to this step.
Any advices?

It will depend on which country you are from...there are some exceptions being made for people who are from Europe, but it depends on language level and country.

Regardless, I suggest if you do want to teach English you will still need to get your TEFL certification at a minimum, don't come without one.

I am from Germany. And a Master of Education in English and Chemistry, is a quite good qualification for those jobs, but since it doesn't really matter, just because I am a non-native, I think I will just go on a Master of Science in Chemistry and get a TEFL.

Having a TEFL will be important, and since you will also have your degree that will be very helpful.  It also will depend on where in China you choose to work.  Some provinces are stricter than others in regards to how and who they hire.

I work in Jilin Province and our company has some "wiggle" room right now so we can hire non-native speakers from Europe.  There are also some other public schools here that can do that for now.  Good luck and I hope it all works out.

Hi Irai

I am new to the site and do not want to bug you but based on some of your previous posts, you seem to be one of the people who could give me some advice.

I am a native speaker from South Africa and am busy with a 120 hour TEFL as well as a basic Mandarin language short course.
I have a business management diploma but no actual degree and I have no official teaching experience but rather, have experience managing staff.

Is it realistic to think that I might find employment teaching English in China ?

Cheers for now

Dear Tracer:

Okay, here is the short answer, maybe.  Here is what I mean, the Chinese government supposedly passed a rule that English schools can ONLY hire foreign teachers from 6 native speaking countries: USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand.  Your country was missing from the list...however, they don't seem too inclined at the moment to notice that oversight.  I have recently hired 6 teachers from So. Africa, but all of them were already here in China so maybe that's why it was fine.

If you are interested, and you don't mind very cold winters, then contact me and let's talk.  I am currently looking for another teacher to start soon.  Having the TEFL is a must.  You don't need prior teaching because we can train you to do what we need if you have some ability.  A degree is good and soon that will be an issue, but as of now it isn't.

Things here change quickly and then change again...that's just China.

I hope that helps, LRai

Dear Irai

Thank you for the reply and interesting information.

I am not too afraid of the cold as one can at least dress up, it is "furnace" type heat or humidity that I do not handle very well as I have a sensitive skin and ginger hair.

Anyway, thank you, I will contact you when I have completed my TEFL but I will probably not be ready in time for you as I have a few weeks left of the course and also still need to apply for my new passport and am still saving money for flights. I would think I would be ready around February.

Have a great week

Dear Tracer:

Your timing is fine.  Do contact me when you are ready.  If you don't like heat and humidity then stay in the North part of China, anything south and you will not be happy.  I lived in Guangdong Province for 3 years and it about killed me.  I have lived in the north Jilin Province for 6 years and love it.

Hope to hear from you again.


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