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Do You Need A College Degree To Teach English Overseas?

“A friend is interested in establishing an English/Spanish school. She’s been told that only those who hold PhDs or similar degrees have a chance to establish English-speaking schools in South America. I find it hard to believe that a Hollywood scriptwriter with a firm grasp of English structure would be required further qualification. Your feedback would be greatly appreciated.”

Michael, United States

It seems that, in most places, a candidate for TEFL (if that’s the route she chooses to go) would need to hold, at a minimum, a college degree. You’ll find lots more helpful information on the TEFL website, which states:

“The majority of schools around the world prefer that you have a 4-year college degree; many will not hire a teacher without one. In most locations in Asia–as well as in some other countries–it is a requirement in order to receive a work visa. However, in a few places, teachers without degrees can sometimes qualify to teach English. If you do not have a college degree, it is best to ask about the specific location in which you are interested.

“Although some schools may require only that you be a native speaker, most institutions prefer to hire teachers with some training. Often the best jobs with the best salaries are reserved for certified teachers. And in an increasingly competitive environment, it’s an absolute necessity at certain schools and in certain locations.”

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