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How to Land Your Dream ESL Job


Teaching abroad is a great way to expand your horizons, travel, and get paid doing it! Let's take a look at the things you need to consider in your application to help you land the ESL job of your dreams.


Required Documents

CV -  An absolute must so that the school/recruiter can find out about you. A cover letter is also a good idea, but it is not necessary.

Degree (copy) - This is required for most teaching positions. A lot of countries require these documents to be legalized/apostilled, so check that beforehand!

Passport (copy) - Another required document that will probably need to be legalized/apostilled first.

Reference letters - These are not required, but they are always a good addition to your application.

TEFL/CELTA certificate (copy) - Depending on the country, this may or may not be necessary.


CV writing tips

Use good formatting. There are a lot of CV templates on the internet for inspiration. Try to make your CV look as clean and professional as possible.

Keep it short and to the point. Remember that you are applying for a teaching position, so everything should be geared towards teaching and the skills necessary to be a good teacher. One A4 page is all you need.

Correctly label your files. A CV titled 'document1.doc' doesn't look professional and you want to create the right impression from the very start. Equally, a CV titled 'CV' or 'resume' makes it difficult for the recruiter to find. Make sure to start the file name with your full name.


Interview tips

So you've landed yourself an interview. Congrats! The interview is the next hurdle you need to get over to land that dream job. Here are some tips on how to nail your interview:


Don't talk too much! Make sure to answer the questions you are being asked, but don't babble on and on about irrelevant information.

Practice common interview questions. The school is going to ask you questions about your teaching style. Think of a list of questions they might ask you and practice answering them to the best of your ability.

Read up on the school.
Find out as much as you can about the school so that you can wow them in the interview. They are taking the time to learn about you, so it makes sense to do the same for them.

Brush up on your grammar. For many positions, this is not a concern. However, depending on the school/position, the interviewer might ask you some questions about grammar. They are not looking for perfection, they are just looking to see how well you can handle yourself. Try not to get flustered and answer it to the best of your ability.

Don't lie. This should be obvious, but don't lie at any stage about your experience or job requirements. A little exaggeration is acceptable, but if the school asks you if you like teaching kindergarten and you secretly despise it, be honest with them. It will save you from a lot of problems down the road. Similarly, don't lie about your experience. If you claim to be an experienced teacher but in reality you have never taught a class before, it will come to light. It's not fair to your employer or your students. There is no shame in having little to no experience. Many foreign teaching positions don't require any experience at all in the classroom!

Ask questions. The interview is not only for you to answer questions. It's also for you to get a better understanding of the place you could be spending a long time living and working at. Prepare a list of questions and don't be shy about asking them!


How to apply

You can find jobs online or by word of mouth and apply directly or through a recruiter. Alternatively, on Teachlingo, once you have set up your profile and uploaded your CV, recruiters will be able to search for you based on your preferences. This means that they can send you job offers that are tailored to you. You are also able to search for jobs yourself using a number of different filters.

Once you have found a job you like, click 'Apply' and add a short message. The recruiter will receive your application in their inbox along with your profile and CV. You don't have to worry about sending emails or forgetting to attach your documents anymore! You can view your applications and job offers at any time on your dashboard to message the school/recruiter about your application.

If you apply the tips outlined above you are already doing better than the majority of applicants. If you haven't already, sign up to Teachlingo and create your profile.

Good luck with your application and happy job hunting!