Teaching English with no degree

I wanted to spend some time next year travelling around Asia, and staying in Vietnam for a while as well, I was there earlier this year and loved all of it.

How feasible is it these days to land a job teaching English at language centres or private tutor? I just need to make enough money to get by as I also have savings to live off also, but I would obviously expect salary wise to be on the lower end of the spectrum.

In Australia I currently work for a large Bank doing project management type work, I have a pretty good resume/CV for my age but I never went to University or College as I just worked my way up the ladder.

I know back in the day you could almost walk in as a well presented white guy who spoke English and land a teaching job. But I'm sure things have changed a lot, I know in Thailand for example they've really cracked down. Thoughts?

My thoughts .............

No training and no clue, but you want to educate - Is that fair on the kids?

All due respect I'm not looking on advice on whether I should do it or not , I'm sure you're well aware this is something done by thousands of expats looking for work.

Go ferret, 1989.

There is plenty of work at all levels.

Word of mouth, a bit of footwork, free demo lesson..?
You'll find what you're after, and once you have proven
your worth, the pay will too.     :top:

Your biggest problem would be the Government regulations. The puplic school system is, of course, funded by the Government. It in turn contracts private institutions to supply native English teachers. These private agencies and schools have to follow government regulations and stipulations. They can only hire teachers that have some kind of certification, like TEFOL, TESEL and at least a Bachelor Degree.

I'm in the same situation. If you're blonde with blue eyes, yes, just walk into any learning center and you will have a high chance of getting  hired. I have many friends with no degree teaching at centers. If not, I found it's easier to find private students. Don't stress about having a degree. You're teaching kids basic English. Also, try advertising yourself on sites. Txxx hope this helps.



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Government regulations require that all foreign employees have the proper visa and work documents. This is for three reasons:

1) So immigrants from poorer countries (Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar) are not "taking" jobs from Vietnamese citizens. Same as in your country.

2) So unqualified individuals are not in a position to do societal damage. Could you imagine if Gary Glitter was teaching English to children, or the unibomber working for a de-mining operation?  Again, it's the same in your country.

3) Taxes. You (or your employer) are supposed to pay income tax on your earnings. Obviously, the government wants that money. Yet again, the same as in your country.

That being said, you probably won't find a problem finding a job in major population centers where demand is high. However, you need to be aware of a major risk: being scammed.

The reputable schools won't hire you without the proper documentation as schools face severe fines for illegal laborers. This means you could end up working for an untrustworthy school. These establishments take many forms. Sometimes they're only open for a few weeks. Sometimes they're desperate and failing businesses.

Your pay could be drastically less, chronically late, or both. Also they may make unexpected deductions from your paycheck for "documents". There are many stories on this forum about teachers not getting their due.

Consequently, as an illegal laborer you can expect no legal recourse and the employer knows this.

Happy hunting, but be careful what you wish for.

It all depends on your attitude and aptitude comes second.

In general education helps. But morally, no issue. The demand is for a degree, they do NOT scrutinise which degree you hold. Which means, the "qualified" teachers are not more able than you by default. Most people that are "qualified" hold business degrees or similarly non-relevant degrees. Don't take pay that is too low! Aim for 17-18$ an hour and you are making sure that you are not taking the piss.
Basically, have the right attitude and be prepared to learn. Take the job seriously and you will be fine. Someone who is conscientious and methodical is better than most of the teachers here even just holding those two traits.

In general, education helps.   (woops, bad teacher)

freds negative and has an ego, don't be like fred. become a teacher even if you don't know what to do because people like fred don't help other people to help kids.

Lots of teachers work in Viernam illegally. It’s just a frank reality of the ESL industry here. What’s more important is your devotion to the kids. Don’t bother finding a job if you are only going to stick around for a few weeks. It’s unfair on kids to have such a high turn over of teachers. They need consistency.

Legally you need a degree, TEFL certificate, work permit, health check and police check to work in Vietnam. The reality is lots of teachers in Vietnam work cash in hand under the radar.

If you are working illegally though you do run the risk of getting blacklisted. After the recruitment company I got a business visa with couldn't give me a job, I worked in Nam Dinh for a month cash in hand and got busted. The immigration police cam knocking, the recruitment company had lied to the government and I had to leave country.

It looks as if the country is gradually clamping down on the cash in hand, under the radar mentality. It is now very expensive to extend tourist visas from within Vietnam. Now when you do a visa run you have to be out of the country for a few days (in the past you could hop across the border for just a few minutes).

I had my first teaching job in Angeles city at AELC, (one on one classes) no degree, no experience in teaching at all, and doing 10 lessons a day, teaching Taiwanese, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese students, but unless any of my students were taking IELTS for immigration purposes or better job prospects, the majority of my students, stayed with me because i gave them what they wanted, they all wanted to converse in English and improve their English speaking skills.

Whilst i was at the school i was working from a lot of books (purchased by the students) that are supposed to teach the students the English language, most of them were complete BS, and taught the students nothing about SPEAKING the English language, like i said i have no qualifications, but i do know the English language.

I am not really interested in teaching in schools because i prefer one on one teaching, and i to see the results of my teaching being shown in a real way ( people learning to speak the English as it is meant to be spoken.

I give them homework...   "Watch (any) movie with subtitles"      They get the works;
meaning, context, accent, body language, (etc)  ..all while 'relaxing'. 

Class discussions (almost) unnecessary: they have already joined into sub-groups
and appointed speakers.   Best for me, because they remember it all...

Quite often, better than me...     :cool:

If deportation and blacklisting is all you get for getting caught working illegally, it ain't that bad, unless, of course, you have some 'ties' in Vietnam. In Thailand you are likely to  spend some time in the slammer as well.
Compared to doing time in this region, deportation and blacklisting would be the least of my worries.

Is it illegal to do volunteer teaching in Vietnam?

No.   Some NGO's advertise free accomodation, food (and transport) for a few hrs
per week (varying 5, 10, never more than 15)   Go Ogle to find where.

This not only gives you experience & credibility, but opens doors to opportunity...

Works for me     :top:

Currently I am too in Tay Ho. I just didn't know if there will be implications as such. But looking forward for the opportunities here while volunteering.

Just type in; NGO volunteering in (place) for many offers

I guess you can volunteer in any school if you choose to do so.

Bazza139 :

Just type in; NGO volunteering in (place) for many offers

That sounds like good advice to me. It's a great way to get experience, create goodwill, develop a reputation, and make contacts. Where do I find NGO volunteeering?

I just found this via Google: https://www.volunteervietnam.org/teachi … o-vietnam/

Jim-Minh :

Where do I find NGO volunteeering?

Get in touch with your chosen ones (or visit their sites) to look for volunteering opportunities.

I have always understood this volunteering , but not real fan of this pay us and we let you volunteer.. 😆

Wald0 :

I have always understood this volunteering , but not real fan of this pay us and we let you volunteer.. 😆

I couldn't imagine what you were talking about until I looked. I don't think they want volunteers:

Volunteer Project Fees
Participation in the Teaching English at an NGO Volunteer Project starts at a minimum of two weeks at $699. Each additional week is $119.


How much money is it per visa run.
Are there other ways to.make money aka tutoring ect jobs with less risk??
Thank you for all the information much appreciated.

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