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Getting an MA TESOL in China while teaching

 
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Voyeur



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 392

PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:14 pm    Post subject: Getting an MA TESOL in China while teaching Reply with quote

I'm considering getting an MA TESOL.
The University of Nottingham has a 24-month, part-time program. I imagine that other foreign universities with Chinese campuses probably have something similar.
I'm wondering if anyone here has ever done a part-time degree (on a physical campus here in China) while also teaching to help fund their studies.
In particular, I know I'll need to investigate whether the part-time hours would work with the hours for any kind of legal, Z-Visa job. Of course, I'd also have to investigate the Visa legalities of the whole set-up. But just knowing that someone else has pulled this off before would make me more confident.

(p.s. The reason I'm interested in Nottingham is that the (a) they are a physical campus, and there remains some discrimination against distance degrees, and (b) their Ningbo campus diplomas are identical to the ones you would get in the UK.
So if anyone knows any similar university set-ups in China, let me know.)
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Elicit



Joined: 12 May 2010
Posts: 218

PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you’re looking for the UK programme in China with the best worldwide reputation in the field then Ningbo would be it. Part-time fees are not a lot cheaper than full-time ones as I remember. The only issue I had when I was considering Nottingham was the sheer amount of choice regarding modules. No real focus just a mismatch of sub-fields thrown together. Many different majors within Applied Linguistics and ELT too. One too many for sure as recently an MA programme in the field has been discontinued.

Liverpool has a programme here too, but is similar in price and is marginally less well-known for its ELT focus. Degree would be from Liverpool not the Chinese partner, or better from both as far as I am aware. 2 for the price of one. There are probably Australian and American programmes that are also well thought of here but I have no knowledge of these. If it was me, I would seriously consider going back to the UK full-time to complete one or even go distance.

The one year back in the UK may not be cost prohibitive considering the tuition fees in China for the identical degrees. This must be the preferred option for most, I would think, but finances and more significantly circumstances may be very real barriers for most.

I have a distance one and it has caused me no problems whatsoever. As a safeguard, ask the university if the programme is identical to the on-campus equivalent and the diploma and transcript has no mention of delivery mode. Some countries will be off limits but at some point attitudes may change and there are enough high paying jobs in other countries.
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Voyeur



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 392

PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

At Nottingham, Ningbo, the part-time fees are pretty much half of the Full-time fees.
But I'd prefer to do the program over two years, teaching and paying as I go, rather than trying to save up enough to cover the tuition and living expenses (~RMB 140,000) to do the program in a single year while not working at all.
The key is whether I can find a legal way to teach and do the part-time program at the same time.
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Elicit



Joined: 12 May 2010
Posts: 218

PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Voyeur wrote:
At Nottingham, Ningbo, the part-time fees are pretty much half of the Full-time fees.


Apologies. So they are, my mistake. I have been looking at a number of postgraduate courses myself recently and one part-time option was two-thirds the price of the full-time equivalent and still took twice as long to complete. Thought it was Nottingham Ningbo. Must be losing my mind.
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Voyeur



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 392

PostPosted: Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The real question I have is whether I can teach on the side, legally, with a student Visa?
Apparently, internationals on a student Visa are allowed to do some work. However, I haven't yet been able to find more details than that. Do they mean working in McDonalds? There have always been extra regulations to be a legal teacher, so I find it hard to believe I can legally teach classes at a local academy on the weekend while studying during the week. Not without some kind of extra paperwork like getting a Foreign Experts cert. (or whatever the current equivalent is).
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The bear



Joined: 16 Aug 2015
Posts: 469

PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 2:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Voyeur wrote:
The real question I have is whether I can teach on the side, legally, with a student Visa?

There have always been extra regulations to be a legal teacher, so I find it hard to believe I can legally teach classes at a local academy on the weekend while studying during the week. Not without some kind of extra paperwork like getting a Foreign Experts cert. (or whatever the current equivalent is).


Regarding the fees - part time is 45,000 per annum. Total of 24 months = 90,000. Or the equivalent of the full time, one year fee.

Regarding the visa situation - I looked on the website (where i got the fee information) and it said nothing about distance learning, so I assume you still have to be on campus for classes. There is a visa that allows study and work:

https://www.china-admissions.com/blog/can-international-students-work-china/

https://www.thebeijinger.com/blog/2014/06/09/foreign-university-students-may-seek-work-china-obtaining-permission-difficult

Another issue would be the location of the university, it's quite far out of the city. So any private teaching would require a lengthy commute.
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Voyeur



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 392

PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 3:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I have some emails in to U. of N. about the Visa issues. I'll see.

And yeah, the campus is out of the way. I've received advice that it's better to say work full-time and save for a year, and then go to school full-time for a year, than do it half and half over two years. The campus location is one more reason why this may be a good idea.

I originally looked at UNNC when I was considering working in the Gulf. The Gulf is prejudiced against online MA TESOLs. However, the Gulf is cratering as an ESL location. I have other reasons to want the MA TESOL, but I should look at the distance learning options again, to be thorough.

Anyone have any advice as to whether employers prefer bricks and mortar degrees over distance learning MA TESOLs?
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 11302
Location: The real world

PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Voyeur wrote:
However, the Gulf is cratering as an ESL location.

That's mainly the case for job seekers with unrelated degrees and not those with an MA TESOL.
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Voyeur



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 392

PostPosted: Sun Jan 14, 2018 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the trend looks bad, and that in time, even fully qualified candidates will feel it.
I'm not saying all well-paid ESL jobs in the Gulf will disappear tomorrow.
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