Frequently Asked Questions

Your questions answered

What is TEFL?

TEFL stands for Teaching English as a Foreign Language. It means teaching English to people who speak other languages; usually in a foreign country. The first step is to get TEFL qualified, and for this you’ll need a TEFL course to prove you can competently teach English overseas. The industry benchmark is 120 hours, and you should make sure that your TEFL course is accredited too so that it will be recognised worldwide. Employers may also ask for previous teaching experience, and a university degree or equivalent.
TEFL is also known as TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language).

Do I meet the criteria for a paid TEFL job?

If you have a TEFL qualification of a minimum 120 hours, a Bachelor’s degree in any subject, a passport from a native English-speaking country (America, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa) and are keen, confident and committed to teaching for at least nine months, then you have all the essentials of making a successful TEFL teacher. For jobs in Saudi Arabia, visa regulations mean a Bachelor’s degree in English (dual major is accepted) or TEFL is required. We’d love to hear from you!

How do I apply?

If you’re interested in teaching English abroad and meet the criteria listed above, simply send your CV/Résumé and a recent, good-quality photo (showing your head and shoulders). If you are suitable for one of our roles, we’ll get back to you as soon as possible to arrange the next step; a Skype interview. If this is a success, we’ll begin the application process. Read our whole application process step-by-step here.

What is TTR looking for in a TEFL teacher?

Additionally to the criteria listed above, it’s essential that you have a real passion for teaching abroad, as teaching contracts are usually a minimum of 12 months. You should also be personable, motivated and approachable, and able to get on with local staff at your school as well as your students. We’re also keen to see your desire to constantly develop and improve your teaching, as this will benefit both you and your students going forward.

Why should I apply with TTR?

TTR provides a comprehensive, bespoke recruitment service and will offer support throughout your interview, application and arriving in-country. We have extensive experience in the TEFL industry so benefit from insider knowledge of what it’s really like to teach abroad and live as an expat. For more details on why you should trust TTR with your TEFL employment search, click here.

Will I receive assistance in preparing for moving abroad?

At TTR, we understand that moving to teach overseas can be overwhelming, and we’re here to make sure everything goes smoothly. We’ll give you extensive support in your pre-departure process, liaising with partner schools and in-country welfare officers (they will assist with obtaining your work visa). We will also send you out detailed contracts, introduction packs, an orientation manual and a helpful checklist, as well as being on hand throughout the first few weeks of your placement to make sure you’re settling in.

What support will I get in-country?

You will be supported to achieve your full potential as a teacher and beyond. When you arrive in-country to begin your teaching role, your placement school will provide full training; usually at the school’s head office. During training you will learn about your school and the curriculum there, and be advised on lesson planning, activities, materials to be used etc. Once you start teaching, you will be observed regularly by the Director of Studies or Academic Managers, with constructive reviews and feedback provided and workshops and additional training throughout the year. There is plenty of opportunity for further development through the Teacher Development Scheme (TDS) where additional responsibilities can be agreed, and roles such as Senior Teacher, Assistant Director of Studies and Director of Studies are available worldwide.

Do I need a degree?

Yes, for most reputable paid teaching jobs a Bachelor’s degree is required.

How old will my students be, and how large my classes?

It depends. Your students’ ages could be anywhere between 3 year olds and adults, and class sizes vary from 1 to 40! The majority of teaching positions are with schoolchildren of primary school age in small groups of 8-10 students. You will usually have the benefit of a teaching assistant. You could be teaching larger classes of around 40 students, or private 1-to-1 classes with students who are preparing for exams, university or moving abroad. Some positions are teaching adults only.

How will I know what to teach?

The curriculum is predetermined, and you will be informed on this during your teacher training. You will also be provided with a schedule when you arrive at school along with additional resources like workbooks and teaching materials. There will be aims and objectives set by the school which you need to meet, but creativity is encouraged in the classroom to help you achieve these goals.