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Teaching English in China

Discuss working and making a living overseas, starting a business, or studying abroad.

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Teaching English in China

Postby Chrissays » Sun Dec 28, 2014 2:56 am

I'm Korean American, I'm currently 25-29 units away from getting a bachelors but I don't have the time or money or desire to finish it. (That's at least 10grand in student loans and one full year of schooling, maybe longer).

Is it possible to get a English teaching job in China or sonewhere in Asia? Preferably East Asia.
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Re: Teaching english in China

Postby MrMan » Sun Dec 28, 2014 6:37 am

I've taught English in Korea before. In Korea, having a black or Asian face could hurt you in getting a job. Being Korea, though, is probably a plus if you speak both Korean and English. In South Korea, you need a degree to get a job. But you could look into whether there are other options for ethnic Koreans.

Being 3/4 of a way through a degree is kind of a lousy place to stop studying, IMO. I can't say for it will be worth it for a return on investment, but typically it is for some fields. If you are studying African American Studies or Women's Studies, whether you are 3/4 or completely done, McDonalds and Walmart will probably pay you the same. :) Having a bachelors does open up some doors for the field of teaching English overseas. But there are places you can go without that.

About 10 years ago, a friend of mine from Singapore took a course in teaching English and got a job in China without a degree. Maybe you can still do that. I think S. Korea's immigration rules set the same requirements for foreign teachers (to have a degree) nationwide.

Another thing you might consider is taking a year off and working for the Peace Core. They may be able to set you up teaching in some village in Africa, and you could take advantage of student loan forgiveness programs. If you want to get an actual job with the Peace Core after volunteering and living off some small stipend, I think ex-volunteers have an advantage.
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Re: Teaching english in China

Postby Chrissays » Sun Dec 28, 2014 10:02 am

Hey Mrman,

Yeah the fact I'm almost done with my degree gets to m, but it's more conplicated. I got academically disqualified from university my senior year, and the cost of taking classes is almost double (4 grand for 12 units ) and I need to maintain at least a 3.0. My GPa is less than 2.0

So I could end spending a small fortune and not even be able to get the grades I need to enroll back into school and gradiate. Stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Do you know how your friend was able to teach english in china without a degree? I know there's some places in china that will overlook it but those are probably rural areas with 2nd tier living conditions, correct me if I'm wrong.

I'm not looking to get a job in Hong Kong or shanghai but at least a high populous city. (Chongqiuing or shenzen)
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Postby Ghost » Thu Jan 01, 2015 1:14 am

Last edited by Ghost on Thu Oct 27, 2016 4:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Teaching English in China

Postby Winston » Fri Sep 16, 2016 2:49 pm

According to Winston, Serpentza on YouTube, teaching English in mainland China is better than in Taiwan, because in China they work you less and are more relaxed, yet give you the same pay. But in Taiwan, they overwork you and treat you like you live to be a workaholic and do not like to have fun or have a life. I can believe that, because I had a boss in Taiwan once long ago. She literally told me that she looks down on people who want to have fun in life and don't work to work 7 days a week with long hours, as though you were defective if you weren't a workaholic. She was crazy.

So if that's true, then why would anyone teach English in Taiwan rather than China? Especially since China has a MUCH MUCH BETTER dating and social life for men. Here is the video where Winston talks about this while comparing China to Taiwan. However, he never talks about dating or social life though, since those are taboo subjects, because you are expected to say that people are wonderful and friendly everywhere, so he has to be politically correct about such things.

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Re: Teaching English in China

Postby yick » Fri Sep 16, 2016 4:01 pm

My first and last piece of the advice to the OP would have been 'finish your degree' I don't care how long it takes - the degree is your passport to legal employ. Sure, you can get a job without a degree in China but it is now tightening up properly and if you fancy life in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and you don't have a degree, I'd forget it if I was you, so that's my first bit of advice - if you don't have a degree - go and get one - I know I know - I wanted to be happier abroad and didn't have the degree, so I took out four years of my life to get a degree, what's four years in the big scheme of things.

I love China, China is a great place but it isn't 'foreigner friendly' place and it certainly isn't for everyone, and it is a place where you need to be mentally self reliant - especially outside the big tier one cities. I know seasoned expats who rate places on the availability of decent Mexican food and Serpentza mentions this in a video about Culture Shock.

It's a place where one can be easily offended, easily disgusted, easily - whatever - a lot of westerners are just not suited for it which is why they are attracted to places like Taiwan - it's understandable really.

China has a great work-life balance in the universities and public schools BUT you will take a pay cut for this quality of life, enough to live on but those 20000 RMB a month jobs, you'll work for that kind of money, if you are happy on 7500-9000 RMB a month, you can work 14-18 hours a week with no office hours, but - it isn't a lot of money.

Dating/social life - you'll never get a western style scene outside the tier one cities - or it is very difficult anyway. But you can get a nice girlfriend, be happy, be stress free - that's all there but of course, there will be days you hate the sight of everyone and everything around, it isn't a perfect place - but I like it.
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Re: Teaching English in China

Postby The_Adventurer » Sun Sep 18, 2016 6:17 am

They just got bacon in the supermarket in the small town where I live!

I have found that when you get to that "Hate the sight of everyone and everything" mode, which happens to me a lot, its time to get out into the street, go to the park or anywhere else, and interact with people. Random people. Talk to some kids who ask a million silly questions. (I guess this requires speaking the language though) Fixes the problem every time.

Unfortunately, nothing can fix the internet, so I still will probably leave by next year.
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