Starting you Teaching Career in Vietnam

Teaching English is one of many popular career for foreigners when coming to Vietnam. Every year, hundreds of teachers from all over the world come to Vietnam to teach English. Some of them are teaching for English schools such as Vietnam USA Society (VUS) English Centers, Apollo English Centre and . Many others are teaching for charity in countryside of Vietnam such as in Mekong Delta and central Vietnam. Before coming to Vietnam, there are some preparations you need to do before starting your teaching career here.

Research about Vietnam

All you need to do is to adapt yourself with life as an English teacher in Vietnam. Research about the lifestyle of Vietnamese, the cost of living and expatriate community in Vietnam will help you to adapt with local English teaching culture. Websites like and are good sources for you to start hunting for information about living in Vietnam.

Personal Certificates

If you still do not have any teaching certificates, you need to check about Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) or Teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL) courses in your home country. Some schools in Vietnam only require a bachelor degree for English teacher, but having a TEFL certificate will be added advantage for you. This courses you can pursue either in Vietnam or in your home country and this class can part-time or full-time.

Start your Application

Once you already have your certificates, you may proceed with your job application. Draft an impressive resume and cover letter for your potential teaching school. You have to determine if you are looking for a volunteer job or a paid job. If you do not have any teaching experience, you may highlight your educational credential and newly pursued TEFL in your resume as well.
In the meantime, you may search for an English teaching school in Vietnam. You may Google for the information, joining online forums to get recommendations from current English teachers in Vietnam and getting help from your TEFL centres in your home country.

Prepare for Interview Session

There are two types of interview session which is by telephone or in Vietnam. Telephone interview can be by mobile phone or Skype, and you should inform to your interviewer your convenient time for the interview in order to avoid from any noise and distraction during the interview session. You also need to talk clearly during the interview and asking your interviewer in case there is any unclear information.
You also need to ask further information such as Visa and working permit, remuneration, housing benefits and other terms and conditions. It will be good if they can pay for your yearly flight ticket as well.

Accepting Offer

Once you are accepting any offer, you have to read carefully about the offer given by the school. If there is any unclear information, it is advisable to contact the school administration for clarification. Written clarification is a better choice as verbal declaration does not help you in future.
You also can ask for contact numbers of current teachers in the school to ask for their experience and comment about teaching in the school. Good reputation schools normally have no problem to do so. If you receive more than one offer, you may choose the best school according to your preference.
Once you accepting any offer, all you need to do is be responsible to your teaching task. Be humble and spending your free time with local Vietnamese will make your living here in this country fun and more meaningful.
This article was published in The Vietnam Guide on June 26, 2012


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