Top 6 tips to vetting your future employer


How do I contact language schools and find English teaching jobs around the globe?

With more than half a billion people taking some form of ESL class each year, the demand for qualified English teachers has never been higher and in many markets the need for properly trained instructors will never be met.  This means that even in challenging economic times, English teachers with an internationally accredited TEFL/TESOL certification will always have a highly marketable and transferable skill.  That said, good jobs do not grow on trees and you could complete ten TEFL courses and still be sure that nobody is going to show up at your doorstep offering you a full-time job in Florence or Paris.  You will need to be proactive and willing to use every resource at your disposal. Here are just some of the tools you will use to find quality job opportunities around the world.

1)      Job Boards – There are nearly a hundred of ESL online job boards listing tens of thousands of teaching opportunities around the world. Some job boards are general in nature and list jobs all over the world; others are country or region specific.  In some cases, you may apply directly through the website, in others, contact information will be provided.  Some of the most popular and well established online job boards include,, and .

2)      Contacting Schools Directly –Reaching out to specific schools makes good sense if you are looking to work in a very specific region or city. It’s often as simple as calling a school while in town and asking for an interview that day. One website that provides extensive listings of individual schools by country is

3)      Placement Agencies & Recruiters – In some countries and regions, like Asia and the Arab Gulf countries, a large percentage of teachers are hired through recruiters and placement agencies. It is strongly recommended that you research any recruiter that you consider working with as some have better reputations than others. A notable agency is Footprints Recruiting

It is highly recommended that you do NOT pay any fees for someone to help find a job.  The only money you should invest in should be in TEFL certification.

If you get your TEFL Certification through a quality school, free job search guidance should be part of your tuition. This is a good article on the 7 Tips for Evaluating a TEFL School.  

4)      Networking and Word of Mouth – Contacting other English teachers can be a great way to learn about schools and job opportunities, particularly if you are on the ground in the city or region where you want to teach. Learn where local English teachers socialize and congregate and try to meet some in person.

5)      Web search of English Language schools – Language schools often have a website for the clients looking for language classes.  Some of these are translated into English; some have an icon of a British Flag which links to an English version.  Google now has a feature to translate foreign text to English.  If you can’t find it in English, look for the “Contact us” button, often on the right side of the site.  Some schools have listings for their English teachers but many do not – that does not mean that they aren’t necessarily in need of new teachers.  Find the email or phone number and contact the school and ask for the hiring director.

6)      Yellow Pages & Phone Directories - As simple as it seems, most European and some Latin American countries have a version of the yellow pages, all of which are online. Examples include in Spain and in Italy.  As nearly every business is listed and directories are kept up-to-date, Yellow Pages and phone directories can often prove to be some of the most useful resources for those looking to locate specific schools and potential employers.  Simply look under language schools and if you need help with translation simply ask for help from a native speaker. 

Interested in learning more about each country to teach?  Request a Country Teaching Chart Comparison Brochure to see the world at a glance.

Learn more about teaching English abroad or request a brochure to learn about TEFL training courses and a comparision of the most popular countries to teach Englsh.