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Age limits, University degrees, Non-native speakers

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Joined: 20 May 2004
Posts: 14
Location: The Baltic Area

PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2004 1:17 pm    Post subject: Age limits, University degrees, Non-native speakers Reply with quote


Is there any one who could tell me, whether I would stand a realistic chance of finding employment as an English teacher in Central- or Eastern Europe, after having succesfully having finished the CELTA teacher training.

The reasons why I ask this is, that in spite of the continuously rising demand for good English teachers in this part of the World, the requirements that most employers announce in their ads, seem to be quite rigid and strict, more connected to formalities than to true competence.
I lack many of these basic requirements, but in spite of that, I would make an excellent teacher, once I would get a job.
The problem is, that it's hardly possible for me to convince potential employers of this, for the simple reason that I hardly even get a chance to meet them in person, let alone get a chance to prove myself on the job, let alone get a chance to keep up and improve my competence by actually working.
This post-modern system of applying through a home site, which has to be filled in, before one even gets a chance to meet someone in person, has had catastrophic consequences for me.
For me, this has resulted in constantly being "deleted" from the applying "crew", even before the true selection was even getting started.

To further explain my situation:

* The requirement of being a "Native speaker".
I am not a native speaker of English. However, I am fluent in English, speak (British English) without any accent (according to British friends),
and I am the owner of the "Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency", which I obtained on the highest level (A).
Another advantage is , that I know six other languages besides English, several of them spoken in the countries where I would like to teach (Russian, Polish).
As I am fluent in German, Dutch/Flemish and Swedish as well, I could even teach these languages, if there would be any need for this.

* The requirement of being "young".
I am already 44, but still as vital and flexible as many people 10 to 15 years younger than I am.
Most of the people, who meet me first time, can hardly believe me, when they hear about my age.
Another advantage of this is, that I have much more life and work experience, im several fields, than most younger applicants, and that I through life experience have learned to take responsibility on a much deeper level.

* The requirements for a BA or MA.
As I have not had the chance of studying during my younger years, so I do not have a university degree yet.
I do, however, have the intelligence for it, and the same intellectual level as many of those BA's, MA's or PhD's.
And I am working at accomplishing this it now, since I finally found the chance to study at the adult age of 40.
But because of the lack of money, I cannot continue it to the end (practically).
Therefore, I would need to find me a job beside, so that I can finish my studies inmy spare time.
Another advantage that I have lost of working experience, which many younger applicants with degrees lack.
I learned the hard way, which would increase my chances of functioning and coping in new situations.

Another advantage that I have, is that I have lived in Eastern Europe before for several years, and sso I am used to the kind of living and communication there, as I know as well (as I already mentioned) some of the most important languages spoken there.

Is there a chance for me of finding a job, with this lack of meeting the formal criteria, but also with these qualities?
Is there a way to make my advantages and competence visible to potential employers?
Is there a way around this "computerised" application system?

Thanks a lot for any help, advice or tips any one could give me.

With best Regards.

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daily chai

Joined: 16 Nov 2003
Posts: 150
Location: Brussels

PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2004 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know, but I wish you the best of luck. It's not easy but you are making the best of it!
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Joined: 05 May 2004
Posts: 70
Location: Poland

PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2004 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my 2 years here in Poland I have encountered quite a few private schools with no native speaker that would be more than happy to hire you with those qualifications.
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Joined: 26 Mar 2003
Posts: 73

PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2004 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe you shouldn't mention that you are not a native speaker when you apply and explain your situation when you meet the employer. If you mention it in your application they may erase it the minute they see "non native" and you don't get the change to go for an interview. I think what puts them off is that you were not born in an English speaking country since the schools usually advertise "native teachers".
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