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Value of MA TESOL in Asian countries
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wayne1523



Joined: 02 Apr 2010
Posts: 100
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 7:59 pm    Post subject: Value of MA TESOL in Asian countries Reply with quote

Hello.

I'm considering getting the MA TESOL and I'd like to get a general sense of what it is worth currently in a few Asian countries I'm interested in. Which country will give me the most bang for it? (higher salary, lower hours, paid vacation days) I'm not exclusively asking about universities, but I do have preference to work in one over other kinds of institutions after I graduate. Still, I'd like to get info on other kinds of schools aside from uni's.

I know sometimes credentials don't mean much. In my experience, I got the CELTA right before finding work in Taiwan, but where I work right now, I would've gotten the job anyway regardless of the CELTA. I never got a raise for it either. This is why I'd like to know where the MA TESOL in Asia will be worth most since it takes much more money, time, and effort than the CELTA.

I'm already aware that it's best in Korea. But I don't see myself teaching there again anytime soon. In Taiwan, I know most universities hire PhD's and an MA is not sufficient. However, high schools do take a look at MA graduates from what I hear.

The countries I'm most interested to know about are: Vietnam and Thailand

Countries I'd also like to know about are: China, Japan, and any additional information on Taiwan.

Cheers Smile
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Shroob



Joined: 02 Aug 2010
Posts: 1339

PostPosted: Mon Apr 08, 2013 11:13 pm    Post subject: Re: Value of MA TESOL in Asian countries Reply with quote

wayne1523 wrote:
Hello.

I'm considering getting the MA TESOL and I'd like to get a general sense of what it is worth currently in a few Asian countries I'm interested in. Which country will give me the most bang for it? (higher salary, lower hours, paid vacation days) I'm not exclusively asking about universities, but I do have preference to work in one over other kinds of institutions after I graduate. Still, I'd like to get info on other kinds of schools aside from uni's.

I know sometimes credentials don't mean much. In my experience, I got the CELTA right before finding work in Taiwan, but where I work right now, I would've gotten the job anyway regardless of the CELTA. I never got a raise for it either. This is why I'd like to know where the MA TESOL in Asia will be worth most since it takes much more money, time, and effort than the CELTA.

I'm already aware that it's best in Korea. But I don't see myself teaching there again anytime soon. In Taiwan, I know most universities hire PhD's and an MA is not sufficient. However, high schools do take a look at MA graduates from what I hear.

The countries I'm most interested to know about are: Vietnam and Thailand

Countries I'd also like to know about are: China, Japan, and any additional information on Taiwan.

Cheers Smile


With regards to China, MAs are pretty much useless from what I've experienced. A while face, BA and a native speaker are enough to land you 80% of the jobs. Jobs which actually ask for/require an MA I'd say are less than 2% of jobs.

Most uni jobs offer 500RMB extra a month for an MA holder, pitiful really.

The only places I know of which are asking for MAs would be joint international universities (western unis with campuses in China) or international schools. You may be able to get a DoS/management position in a training centre...I'm not sure though.

It may interest you to know I'm currently in China, leaving this summer to return to the UK to get an MA in Applied Linguistics with TESOL and plan on returning and living in China. After what I've just said why am I doing this? Because there may come a time when I want out of China. Chinese experience counts for little elsewhere, so having an MA should compensate for that. I suggest you do the MA regardless of where you choose to go, it will always be of use.
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tttompatz



Joined: 06 Mar 2010
Posts: 1951
Location: Talibon, Bohol, Philippines

PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my personal experience, graduate and post graduate credentials are not a quick fix to "easier" and better paid "teaching" jobs.

Adding credentials alone won't move you up the remuneration ladder or get you much more in the way of perks.

Adding skills on the other hand (different than just adding letters after your name) does make you more competitive.

Look at graduate level work as a step into further academia and the lecture / research circuits rather than better "teaching" jobs.

If you want better remuneration packages (pay and benefits) then look at getting certified as a teacher and moving into upper level private and international schools.

In Thailand, a uni lecturer with graduate level credentials will earn about 25-30k thb/month with 10 weeks off and a class load of 12-15/week, plus 4 office hours (available to students). They are often expected to remain on campus for up to 36 hours/wk.

A fully accredited, licensed, experienced teacher at the better international schools can earn anywhere from 75k-130k thb/month plus housing, airfare, medical, and severance package, on a 2 year contract with 200 work days per year.

With an MATESOL you should also be able to land a decent job in a private (k-12) school with a remuneration package in the 50-60k thb range and 6-10 weeks off /year if you look around a bit.

.
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timothypfox



Joined: 20 Feb 2008
Posts: 372

PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As for Japan, an MA (not necessarily in TESOL) can get you in a better position to work full time for a Japanese private high school as a teacher. My colleague at my school has an MA in Politics and I have an MA in TESOL.

The job candidate profile they were looking for was experience working with Japanese students in high school, an MA of some kind, basic Japanese language skill, and a Japanese wife.

An MA in TESOL with work experience in Japan could give you a leg up on someone with work experience in Japan but only a BA. But, for general language schools, the MA is really not necessary. I would pursue it only with private high school work in mind.

An MA TESOL might also be valuable for a company that does business English. In this case, someone with a lot of business experience or even an MBA as opposed to an MA TESOL might be someone this type of company would hire in Japan.

With publications and university teaching experience, you would qualify terminal 3 year contract professor type of work. It is super competitive and you have to get new work regularly.

With an MA TESOL and public school teacher certification, and 2 years public school experience, you could teach at international school in Japan or in one of the other countries you listed. Just bare in mind that on a handful of the jobs at international schools are for ESL teachers and other majors such as math, social studies, or English language arts might serve you better...
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vabeckele



Joined: 19 Nov 2010
Posts: 439

PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 10:26 am    Post subject: Vietnam Reply with quote

A CELTA will get you university work in Vietnam as an English teacher. So, for Vietnam the effort you put in will not be rewarded, at least in monetary terms - I am talking of local universities here.

I am guessing that all international schools and universities apply the same frameworks as we are all used to, except when extenuating circumstances come into play (which is pretty often out here).

In my opinion, it would be better to have a major in something else; fashion, design, engineering or business, to make yourself standout. Even then, if you are looking for a professional environment to work within, forget it. A master's, in anything will still see you facing the same obstacles as the guy with a nice shiny CELTA.

If you are looking for advancement; Vietnam is a place to avoid. If you are looking for experience; Vietnam will certainly provide that.
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1st Sgt Welsh



Joined: 13 Dec 2010
Posts: 541
Location: Salalah, Oman

PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In regards to Vietnam, well, let me put it this way, it certainly won't hurt and you will be taken more seriously by the better schools (RMIT, the British Council and ACET) when putting in your application. That's no guarantee that you will get the position though. And, if you are looking at being a career TEFLer, then I think it is wise to invest in your education and a qualification like an MA or DELTA will stand you in good stead for the rest of your career. However, if you are only planning on working a few years in Vietnam and then going back home and changing careers then I definitely wouldn't bother.
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Voyeur



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 352

PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My understanding from friends, anecdotal to be sure, is that being a certified teacher whose BA and specialty is English, is a nice way to cover both bases. You can teach real English at an international school, and your credentials are close enough to ESL quals that you can usually do some ESL work should it be necessary.
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Voyeur



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 352

PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tttompatz wrote:
In Thailand, a uni lecturer with graduate level credentials will earn about 25-30k thb/month with 10 weeks off and a class load of 12-15/week, plus 4 office hours (available to students). They are often expected to remain on campus for up to 36 hours/wk.

A fully accredited, licensed, experienced teacher at the better international schools can earn anywhere from 75k-130k thb/month plus housing, airfare, medical, and severance package, on a 2 year contract with 200 work days per year.


What does it mean to remain on campus but not have office hours? Those are your prep hours? So a Uni position still puts in a nearly 40 hour work week?

With respect to overseas teaching in general, what are the advantages of the ESL track culminating in a PhD over the International School track with certification and ultimately an MA? The International school track seems to make more money, does the ESL track have other advantages at the end of the day?
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Jellyfish666



Joined: 03 Apr 2013
Posts: 15
Location: South China

PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 2:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't even know what MA TESOL is... I got my TESOL. Is this different somehow?

I find that TESOL is useful in big cities in China. And in smaller places they just care about your face. They'll even hire non-native speakers (like French peole who can't speak English at all... hehehe)

But in big cties, TESOL is important if you want to apply for a work permit.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 4776
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jellyfish666 wrote:
I don't even know what MA TESOL is... I got my TESOL. Is this different somehow?

Quite different. A Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (MA in TESOL) is a graduate-level university degree; whereas, a TESOL certificate is a short, entry-level teaching qualification that doesn't require a college/uni degree.


Last edited by nomad soul on Wed Apr 10, 2013 2:15 pm; edited 1 time in total
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santi84



Joined: 14 Mar 2008
Posts: 862
Location: under da sea

PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocked Laughing
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wayne1523



Joined: 02 Apr 2010
Posts: 100
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 2:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you all for the replies. Doesn't seem very encouraging in terms of tangible rewards are concerned. I think I would get it anyway just for safety when things change in the future.

Just wondering..does anybody have any experience with studying the MA TESOL in this university in Chiang Mai, Thailand?

http://ic.payap.ac.th/graduate/tesol/about.php
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santi84



Joined: 14 Mar 2008
Posts: 862
Location: under da sea

PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 3:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is ESL/EFL a long-term prospect for you? I assume so, if you are interested in the MA. What about returning to Canada? It would be very wise to invest in an MA TESOL if you decide to teach in Canada (in the future). Have you seen Trinity Western University in British Columbia? They offer a distance version of their MA TESOL, but it requires a 2 week in-person course as well (just outside Vancouver). This is a decent option, especially as it has a good reputation in Canada too. I can personally vouch for the instructor quality.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 4776
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wayne1523 wrote:
Just wondering..does anybody have any experience with studying the MA TESOL in this university in Chiang Mai, Thailand?
http://ic.payap.ac.th/graduate/tesol/about.php

It's probably fine for Thai teachers who intend to teach in their native country. However, for a native speaker, it's likely to be an issue for potential employment in other countries because it lacks accreditation by an official US/UK/Canadian/Aussie... accrediting body. Plus, the degree is not from an English-speaking country. Anyway, do a search on payap within these forums; it's been discussed.
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wayne1523



Joined: 02 Apr 2010
Posts: 100
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It certainly has been discussed apparently, and it is a concern. Now I'm not sure what to do anymore. I was thinking that it'd be great to experience Thailand while getting the Master's as I've never studied abroad before.

What would be my teaching opportunities in Canada with an MA TESOL (from a Canadian university) if say I would like to return home to teach one day?

Also, if I got an MA TESOL in Thailand, and decide to look for work in southeast Asia in Vietnam, or say China, would it matter that I didn't get it at a native English speaking country?
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