Site Search:
 
TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International
Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Students and Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

How to Start Out
Goto page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> China (Job-related Posts Only)
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
mcloo7



Joined: 18 Aug 2009
Posts: 413
Location: Hangzhou

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:33 am    Post subject: How to Start Out Reply with quote

I finished a TEFL course a couple weeks ago and am now ready to begin looking for jobs in China. How do you recommend beginning the process? Is it better to get a job from home or to go to China and look for jobs? Are there any websites you can recommend? What worked for you?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address MSN Messenger
Non Sequitur



Joined: 23 May 2010
Posts: 2430
Location: China

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 2:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave's posts jobs, but the one I use is seriousteachers.com
You'll have to scan your documentation, so you can upload when registering (on serious) and I recommend taping over your passport number and DOB before scanning that item.
Helps if you have an idea of the location and employer-type (public or language school) before starting out.
Don't get sucked into a 'come on a tourist visa' scam and don't take the first job offered. Also, look for the least downside rather than be dazzled by what looks like big money. Time enough to look for better things once you know your way around.
The main hiring season is April-May for a September 1 start on the public sector.
Avoid agents and look for direct employer ads.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
lemak



Joined: 19 Nov 2011
Posts: 368

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Job offers aren't a problem. Once you put up your resume on a few sites you'll get hundreds of offers within days. Ignore "Come ASAP". Quantity of available jobs is fine. It's the quality that's an issue. Allow months to find the right gig and make sure you talk to current teachers.
Serious teachers is good in that it lets you enter your qualifications and expectations and then they'll email you jobs that usually match your criteria.
echinacities.com
If possible try to find a job directly with the school. Cutting out the middle man removes one more potential liar and one more potential Chinese whisper. If going private it can also allow you to negotiate directly with the school boss about items you want changed in the contract.
Having been said recruiters aren't *all* evil, thieving liars and often are helpful and do list great jobs in many cases.
They'll all want to see photos, so make sure you have something that looks "normal" aka not too serial killerish/old/fat/black. If you are a serial killer, old, fat or black use photoshop to minimize things.
Do some city research first and list out a bunch of places that look appealing. i.e do you want the hardcore China experience, or want a place with western amenities? Hot vs. Cold. Will you study the language? What are your plans in China, essentially....The place is staggeringly diverse. Take a job in one city and have the time of your life. Take a job the next city down the road and find your life hell on Earth. Gotta work now, but will throw up some more ideas later.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mcloo7



Joined: 18 Aug 2009
Posts: 413
Location: Hangzhou

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies, some city recommendations would be helpful too. I'm not quite sure of all the qualities I'm looking for in a city. But I would like it to be at least somewhat populated, have good eateries, have foreigners, etc.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address MSN Messenger
GreatApe



Joined: 11 Apr 2012
Posts: 422
Location: South of Heaven and East of Nowhere

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 6:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

+ 1 to both posts by Non Sequitur and lemak. I wholeheartedly agree with their advice and would second the job websites they mentioned as well.

Try to come on a Z Visa with a job contract in-hand if possible, but that can be difficult without a trustworthy, solid contact who's already working the job where you're planning to work. Otherwise, it's all a bit of a risk and the experiential "come and have a look" mentality is your best friend. You need to be flexible because you won't know what it's like until you get here. You can get a fair idea from these threads and from others who are here, but if you're "100% newbie" to China and Asia ... well, it won't be much like you imagined it would be (which is a GREAT THING as long as you can keep an open mind).

As far as cities are concerned, ask yourself how hot you like your summers and how cold you like your winters and that will limit your options a little bit! You're still likely to be too hot and too cold during the respective seasons. As for me, I refuse to die by freezing or by fire, so I live and teach in Dongguan, Guangdong (which is definitely hot enough in summer, but really mild in winter). Low of 10 degrees last night, high of 20 degrees today ... and bright and sunny.

I had a good laugh when you wrote that you would like the city to be "somewhat populated." I guarantee one thing: YOU WILL FIND THAT HERE! Very Happy

Seriously, location often has to do with school or job location rather than simply city location. You can accept a job advertised "in a big city" and end up teaching in the sticks, depending on location. The reverse can also be true. For example, I teach in Dongguan, and if you read the threads here about Dongguan you'll read 98% negative comments. My personal experience with Dongguan is NOTHING like the negative things others have written or experienced here. The school where I live and work is NOWHERE NEAR the city center, and it's actually quite calm, peaceful, and beautiful. A thirty minute radius ride around my school by bus, and I have EVERYTHING I need! Location is relative to where you are, and where you NEED to be ... whether that need is for fast food, Western style amenities, a good job (or jobs) or an airport, train station or bus terminal.

Many will warn you away from Dongguan because it's a huge, fairly dirty, factory city with not-overly-friendly people and too many prostitutes, but as far as I'm concerned, the JOB is KING! I'd rather be working a job where I feel appreciated, challenged, valued, make a good salary, and can save some money and build for the future. As opposed to living in Paradise and working in misery. I can travel to the really nice places for vacation, and that's what I do, but the job satisfaction is high for me here, regradless of what others think of DG. I work for a great boss, have room to grow and have stability for the future.

My advice would probably be to come to Guangdong and have a look unless you're drawn to the larger cities up North. Zuhai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Huizhou and Dongguan all have something to offer the newbie. They're all conveniently located cities as far as transportation, availability of numerous jobs, and the resolution of any visa or consulate issues which you might have come up. Guangdong is a good place to set your feet on the ground, but certainly not the only place it's possible.

Feel free to PM me if you find yourself interested in Guangdong or if you have any other questions relating to jobs here, and GOOD LUCK!

(Keep us updated!).

--GA


Last edited by GreatApe on Wed Jan 16, 2013 7:13 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Non Sequitur



Joined: 23 May 2010
Posts: 2430
Location: China

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 7:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There has been a recent ie Oct/Nov thread on this topic 'Starting Out' or similar.
Coming from Oceania, everywhere is too hot and too cold for me aka Goldilocks. Smile
I'd go for coastal and I've worked in both Dalian (Liaoning) and Qingdao (Shandong) in that category. Both have expat communities.
If you can spend the summer (July-August) and winter (Jan-Feb) holidays out of China as I generally do, then the temps aren't so much of a worry.
I worked in central Liaoning one summer and there was no aircon in the accom - murder!
Qingdao was previously Tsingtao of beer fame so any amount of drunken debauchery to be had at the annual beer fest.
If you can find something in Qingdao tertiary sector at 5-5500RMB PM, 16-18 hours pw, single occupancy accom, paid winter holiday and 10000RMB airfare allowance, you would be making a good start on your China career.
PM me if you want actual schools.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
doogsville



Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 659
Location: China

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 11:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup, all good advice above. I would do some research on cities in China. Find a map Google a few of the names you see. I would echo Great Ape and say Guangdong is a great place to start out. I'm Scottish, so the summers are a challenge for me, but I'd rather sweat it out here and put the AC on when I need to than go back to the kind of sh**ty weather I put up with in the UK. I know a couple of places advertising at the moment in Zhuhai, the city I live in. PM if you want some links to job adverts and info on life in Zhuhai. The places I know of are all good schools with good reputations who know how to take care of newcomers.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Denim-Maniac



Joined: 31 Jan 2012
Posts: 1238

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just echoing the advice really.

I personally think the key thing is the teaching and the location. Those are the two areas that require the most attention and can make or break a China experience. Sounds like its an obvious thing to say, but lots of people choose a headline salary, or the first job offer, or even a totally random point.

All of this is a personal decision of course. Im not a city person so I would absolutely hate to be in the places discussed here, but we are all different. Likewise the teaching scenario is pretty important too ... if you are the type that enjoys singing songs with pre-schoolers (and many do) then small classes of adults asking you about present perfect is going to be a bad fit.

The climate thing is a big issue too. I wouldnt fancy the bitter cold of the north, but when you are doing your research dont be totally fooled by the temperature readings in southern places. According to Yahoo weather on my phone Guilin is 9C today .. but when I just spoke on QQ to my friend she was indoors wearing her down coat, hat and scarf.

And my final piece of advice is remember at some stage you may have to take a leap of faith. Most of us here have had many positive experiences ... of course bad employers and bad experiences exist, but if you focus on them too much its possible to sour a good job. Caution is wise, outright suspicion isnt always so wise IMO. At some stage, you have to do it and trust someone.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mcloo7



Joined: 18 Aug 2009
Posts: 413
Location: Hangzhou

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the great answers. Do the winters in northern China get any colder than the winters in Northeastern U.S.? On a map they seem to be on the same parallel. Actually it looks like Beijing is exactly even with where I live now, Philadelphia, PA.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address MSN Messenger
golsa



Joined: 20 Nov 2011
Posts: 174

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mcloo7 wrote:
Thanks for the great answers. Do the winters in northern China get any colder than the winters in Northeastern U.S.? On a map they seem to be on the same parallel. Actually it looks like Beijing is exactly even with where I live now, Philadelphia, PA.


It might help if you gave the winter temperatures in your state. In my city inNE China, the daily high is -20 and the low is -40.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mcloo7



Joined: 18 Aug 2009
Posts: 413
Location: Hangzhou

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That seems pretty cold. The average temperature around here in the winter in probably somewhere in the 30's F.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address MSN Messenger
golsa



Joined: 20 Nov 2011
Posts: 174

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2013 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mcloo7 wrote:
That seems pretty cold. The average temperature around here in the winter in probably somewhere in the 30's F.


Northern China would be quite a bit colder than you're used to. The daily high I mentioned equals about 0F. Inner Mongolia might be colder than my location.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Non Sequitur



Joined: 23 May 2010
Posts: 2430
Location: China

PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Weather Underground.com has 24 hour global conditions. These are mainly airport-generated so you won't get smaller towns.
So if you're sitting in Glasgow now and want to know what the weather is like in your favoured China locale, that's the place to look.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mcloo7



Joined: 18 Aug 2009
Posts: 413
Location: Hangzhou

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does anyone have any resume advice? If you've worked a relatively menial job for the last few years, with no relevant teaching experience, should you put that on the resume? I do have some after-school center, and private tutoring experience though, but only about 8 months worth.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message AIM Address MSN Messenger
doogsville



Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 659
Location: China

PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Put the menial job and the school/tutoring experience in. There's a good chance that whoever reads your resume may not understand every word of it anyway. They may just skim through it. Keywords like teaching and school and tutoring will all stand out. Even if you had zero teaching experience you would still get a job here, and even if you had a ton of experience you would still have to learn a lot about how to teach in China.

Teaching experience is certainly not rewarded financially here unless you go to work with an international school. People with ten years plus teaching experience will start on the same salary as people with none.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> China (Job-related Posts Only) All times are GMT
Goto page 1, 2, 3, 4  Next
Page 1 of 4

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2011 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

Road2Spain - TEFL and Spanish with one year student visa
EBC