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20 years ESL in Asia - MA or CELTA and Middle East?

 
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Fred Brown



Joined: 22 Mar 2012
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2012 5:15 am    Post subject: 20 years ESL in Asia - MA or CELTA and Middle East? Reply with quote

I am 51 years old with a BA in Liberal Arts. I have spent the last 20 years teaching English in Taiwan, Korea and Japan the last seven years teaching university level students at a private language school in Sapporo.

Things are getting tougher all the time in Japan, and the recruiting agencies keep bringing in thousands of new college graduates every year to compete with for fewer jobs and less money. Even with a MA in TESOL, in Japan, at my age, with all the competition, I wouldn't stand a chance at a good university job.

I realize that I quite missed the boat 15 years ago when I was in Korea working at a university. My friend went on to start a distance master's program, and has been working his way up the ladder at universities in Korea and Hong Kong ever since. He's quite wealthy now, pulling in almost 80,000 dollars a year in Hong Kong, with three or four month vacations and all.

Anyway, last year I quit my job in Japan and am now back in the U.S., doing nothing.

I may just go back to the Far East, but I would really rather try to make, and save, more money in Saudi Arabia or elsewhere in the Gulf.

Getting a MA in TESOL would take at least a year or two of time and money I would first have to establish state residency for a year in the U.S.

Getting a CELTA would obviously be much faster and cheaper.

Considering my age and experience, does anyone have any insight or suggestions?

Would I really be able to get a much better job at my age, one with the good salary and even paid vacation, with an on-campus MA in TESOL? Would it ever pay off as opposed to the much more immediate CELTA?

Thanks!
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rainbowprof



Joined: 18 Feb 2012
Posts: 133
Location: Penang

PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2012 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you would benefit from another job in Korea or Japan or similar, preferably a tertiary position, and at the same time do an online M Ed, MA TESOL, or the like through a reputable accredited university in Aus, NZ, US, Canada or Britain (eg USQ, UNE, U of Birmingham). This could prepare you for work in the ME and the hiring requirements. Or get a CELTA, apply for work in Oman at the colleges there, and do an M Ed after you get there. You need a masters that isn't flagged as an online degree. Don't wait too long, your age may end up being a limiting factor. I think it could work for you, depends on how frugal you are and your personal spending habits, I guess. Good luck.
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Fred Brown



Joined: 22 Mar 2012
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2012 11:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the advice rainbowprof. I will definitely start looking into the Oman job listings.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 15863
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri May 04, 2012 2:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would also look into ESL/EFL Fellowship programs where you teach a few hours a week over a couple years and get a free MA. I did mine at the American University in Cairo, but there are many universities in the US offering them too. They are not advertised, but are a win/win sort of thing for both the student and the university (which gets a super cheap teacher who sits in on currently running classes).

But your timing isn't very good... most places will have already chosen for this coming academic year which would put you into a 3 year time frame to complete.

VS
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