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MATESOL lead to decent positions in M.E.?
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hewachter



Joined: 05 Jun 2011
Posts: 9

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:16 am    Post subject: MATESOL lead to decent positions in M.E.? Reply with quote

Hi there. I am a fairly experienced ESL teacher about to start a TESOL Masters on campus here in the States. I have taught 3 years in Korean hagwons, mostly with kids but some adult classes, taught adults 3 months in a Palestinian Refugee Camp {Jenin}, and am currently tutoring Saudi adults at a private language center here in Austin, Texas 20 hours a week. I have a Bachelors in International Politics from a U.S. university.
My plan is to get the TESOL Masters and head for the Middle East, most likely Saudi or Oman, as I need to acquire some significant savings. I am open to any country there, but do need to focus on savings. I have a very strong interest in the region and am also aiming to make good money and move up the ESL ladder. I should add that I'm a pretty thick-skinned guy with alot of travels and life experiences under my belt. I'm in my mid- thirties.
Reading these forums in great detail over the last few years, I am basically aware of the general picture they present. What I'm wondering is, if I get the Masters, are there ANY good jobs over there? I'm very willing to work my way up he ladder after attaining my MATESOL, but want to be sure its leading somewhere.
Many of the posts on here are rather negative and so many people seem to feel ripped off and degraded in their jobs. Is anyone getting treated professionally over there, feeling secure in their jobs and lives there in return for working hard and doing a good job? The Masters is a big investment of time and money, and I feel a bit nervous that even with it I may be treated shabbily or be no better off than I would be with a CELTA. If I do things the right way, attain the Masters and work hard in my future position, can I expect decent positions and some degree of professionalism? Also, in Saudi, could one realistically expect to save $25,000 U.S. on a $40,000 salary if living fairly humbly? Your thoughts are much appreciated, truly. This is a huge decision and I'm not getting any younger. Thanks!
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15963
Location: USA

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 3:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would not restrict myself to Saudi and Oman. Especially for that first job... also consider Qatar... and some of the better jobs are in the UAE.

Because the jobs that are available for MAs also provide housing, tickets, and other usual benefits, there is no reason why you can't save 50% of your salary without living all that frugally. This is after the first year as there are normally quite a few upfront costs setting up a new home.

But, there is really no job security for expat teachers. You are guest workers who may or may not be invited to stay for further contracts. The Middle East is a place one goes to pad one's retirement fund after paying off any loans. It is not a place where one goes for a professionally challenging career in education.

I'm not sure what sort of a ladder you are looking to climb... are you talking about moving up to management? Other than that, most teaching jobs done by MAs are university foundation courses that are all pretty much equal.

VS
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It's Scary!



Joined: 17 Apr 2011
Posts: 824

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What she said.

It's Scary!
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Middle East Beast



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
Posts: 836
Location: Up a tree

PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:41 am    Post subject: Re: MATESOL lead to decent positions in M.E.? Reply with quote

hewachter wrote:
If I do things the right way, attain the Masters and work hard in my future position, can I expect decent positions and some degree of professionalism?Your thoughts are much appreciated, truly. This is a huge decision and I'm not getting any younger. Thanks!


My thought...

It's possible, but not at HCT.

MEB Cool
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hewachter



Joined: 05 Jun 2011
Posts: 9

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you very much, much appreciated! By "climbing the ladder" I meant that I hope to improve my positions over the years by doing a good job and, in time, hope to gain employment with one of the better institutions I occasionally see posted about here.
Is the MATESOL basically the key to good jobs, in terms of formal qualifications? Thanks a lot to all of you.
PS My Saudi student was telling me today that life in many foreign compounds there is quite Westernized, and that foreigners can even buy booze on compounds. This {the booze, especially} wasn't my impression from this forum. Thoughts??
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It's Scary!



Joined: 17 Apr 2011
Posts: 824

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

With your creds/profession, you wouldn't be placed on a compound.

It's Scary!
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15963
Location: USA

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Middle East in general, and Saudi in particular, has produced many misconceptions in the minds of TEFLers slogging away in many of the low-pay jobs around the world. The roads are NOT paved in gold... and lowly English teachers - even those with MAs - don't get those jobs with posh compound living included. The majority of "compounds" are basically tolerable buildings of flats with a wall around it. Laughing (the guard is the guy that sleeps near the gate)

That said, there are a handful of teaching jobs that are assigned to the well-known ARAMCO compound, but only a handful are TEFLers these days. The rest of the teachers are those who are at the International School there... a job that requires that you have (probably US) certification and experience in K-12 and more importantly, that you know someone there... and it seems teachers don't leave until retirement.

VS
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Middle East Beast



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
Posts: 836
Location: Up a tree

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

veiledsentiments wrote:
(the guard is the guy that sleeps near the gate)


...with an automatic weapon in his lap. Don't startle him. Shocked

MEB Cool
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12377
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 7:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear MEB,

Right - that's how the last two shot themselves in the foot. Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

Regards,
John
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Rochdale Ros



Joined: 20 Aug 2011
Posts: 10
Location: Jordan

PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

veiledsentiments wrote:
I would not restrict myself to Saudi and Oman. Especially for that first job... also consider Qatar... and some of the better jobs are in the UAE.



I'd go along with this completely, I really enjoyed Qatar and made good money there, Oman is also an option for a cool place to go. I did a short spell in UAE, and its good but you can easily spend it as quickly as you earn it!
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DirtGuy



Joined: 28 Dec 2004
Posts: 529

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 3:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm looking at doing an online MATESO from USC. Big name and all that and well regarded in the States according to my bosses. The diploma and transcripts say nothing about the degree having been done online and I'm certainly not going to bring it up. The cost is $45K which I can handle but I'm having some second thoughts here. I keep wondering if any increase in salary would be enough to justify the upfront cost and that is hard to determine as I don't know how much that increase in salary would be. $45K is enough to make a sizable down payment on an investment property or buy a business that keeps paying for years and years.

I have absolutely no interest in going into management. My motivation is solely to get a higher salary and be able to continue working longer and at better schools. My bosses where I now teach say that approach is a sound one in the States but may not be applicable overseas.

Any and all opinions welcome and please hold your personal thoughts regarding online degrees. All I care about is dollars and cents.

Thanks.

DirtGuy
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15963
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 5:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Making back that $45K in higher salary depends on your age and how many years you plan to work.

VS
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millie18



Joined: 23 Oct 2007
Posts: 178

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Qatar is not a bright prospect at the moment because the Supreme Education Council has decided that most of the degrees offered at QU will be in Arabic, which negates the EFL Department in many respects (some degrees will still require English support). This begins this month.

As many of the EFL people at QU with the appropriate Middle East prerequisites will now be looking for other employment, newbies may find it difficult.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15963
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

millie18 wrote:
Qatar is not a bright prospect at the moment because the Supreme Education Council has decided that most of the degrees offered at QU will be in Arabic, which negates the EFL Department in many respects (some degrees will still require English support). This begins this month.

It will take awhile to see how this all shakes out. Many are hoping that there will be an expansion of English support classes in various majors. That will likely decide how many will be hitting the job market soon.

There will surely be no hiring there for the foreseeable...

VS
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millie18



Joined: 23 Oct 2007
Posts: 178

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.gulf-times.com/site/topics/article.asp?cu_no=2&item_no=483950&version=1&template_id=57&parent_id=56 is the link to an article in the local Gulf Times.

While it doesn't specifically state that the EFL foundation program will be discontinued, it implies that it will at the very least be reduced as it will no longer be required for certain programs. Whether this impacts on the recent accreditation for the Business program has yet to play out.
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