ESL teaching jobs in China
Teaching English in China presents a great opportunity for to learn Mandarin or Catonese and discover Chinese culture and traditions. Salaries as an English teacher in China will cover comfortable living, including entertainment and vacations. Now is a good time to teach and live in China as the country China continues rapid economic development.
Great Teaching Opportunities in China
Great numbers of private schools and universities in China are looking for qualified teachers (see our Directory of 300 Chinese Schools Hiring English Teachers). However, you must meet the following requirements to teach in China:
- Bachelor degree or above
- Be between 22 and 55 years old
- Have 2 years of work experience after graduation
- Have at least 1 year of teaching experience
- Be TEFL certified
Prepare your CV for a Teaching Job in China
Many jobs require being a native speaker of English, Bachelor’s degree and 2 years of teaching experience (negotiable). No Chinese language is required. If you have a Bachelor’s degree in Education and are TEFL certified, you can get a much better salary and have a significant advantage over other applicants. Even if you don’t have a working experience or certificates, you are a non-native speaker, you still can find a job.
Choose the City for Teaching English in China
Choose the city in which you want to teach English. Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen will pay the most, but you must take into account that cost of living is higher there as well. Cities in other provinces to explore include Yunnan, Hainan and Sichuan.
Visa for ESL Teaching Job in China
In order to work in China a “Z” visa is required. Schools generally will do all the paperwork to obtain a Z visa for their teachers. (In most of the cases, employers, will give an advantage to those who are already in China.) Make sure you have a proper Z visa as working without one is illegal and subject to large fines and even deportation.
Find an English Teaching Job in China for Free!
Check free websites like echinacities.com, thebeijinger.com, shenzhenparty.com etc. Contact agents or get a job via a TEFL certification company.
Apply for an English Teaching Job in China
University jobs are the best in terms of credibility and security, however the salaries are often significantly lower. Universities will handle your visa, accommodation, flight tickets and will not cheat you.
Competition for university jobs is more intense as, in addition to a decent salary and all the usual benefits, they have a light workload with lots of free time. ESL teachers are generally required to work about 20 teaching hours, plus 3-5 hours of class preparation time. You won’t be required to stay on campus in your off hours.
Government universities hold more prestige than their private ones becasue enrollment is very selective. Only those students who do the best on their university entrance exams are selected for admission to the more affordable public colleges.
Interview for ESL Job in China
Interviews in China can be relaxed or intense depending on the school. Top schools with high pay will check your background and education precisely. Also, you will have to give a demo class. The schools that are desperate for teachers, won’t ask you many questions and will give you a job immediately.
Negotiate a Contract for an English Teaching Job in China
Monthly salaries range between RMB 6,000 ($968) to RMB 16,000 ($2,500). This large range is due to vastly differing work requirements at various institutions. Public schools are usually found at the bottom of the range and private language institutions at the highest. Small towns and rural areas may offer less than the range mentioned above if the cost of living is very low. Other factors in salary determination are level of education, certification and experience.
A TESOL/TEFL certified teacher in a bigger city, can demand between RMB 8.000 ($1,2500) – RMB 20.000 ($3,100). Average work week is generally sixteen 45-minute classes 5-40 hours (including office hours) would be RMB 14,000 ($2,300) or more.
Cost of Living in China
- Rent: 1,000 – 3,500 RMB (usually included in salary)
- Food: 1500 RMB
- Utilities (electricity, gas, water): 250 RMB
- Phone & Internet: 300 RMB
On top of a yearly salary, many schools also provide benefits.
- furnished apartments
- dental coverage
- signing bonus
- flight reimbursement or allowance
- paid vacations
- sick leaves
- legal ‘Z’ work visas, health insurance (after a required medical check), and
- free Mandarin Chinese lessons.
Accept the job offer and start to teach!
You will never get bored in China as there is always something new to discover and something new happening every day. Teaching English in China is stress free, allowing for the enjoyment of the Chinese experience. New friends, new food, new languages and new adventures traveling to different provinces.
Read more about working as ESL teacher in China here.