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Nizwa College of Technology and TATI
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balancedsentiments



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2012 8:02 pm    Post subject: Nizwa College of Technology and TATI Reply with quote

A friend of a friend sent me what I thought were bizarre questions about the Colleges of Technology and their recruiters, but then I looked online and realized why he was asking. I've been in Oman for quite a while and at NCT through TATI for 2 years. I'm putting up an initial post that I'll add to later. I'll try to include info pertaining to all the colleges where I can.

Applications
Let me start by saying that the colleges will close down on July 10 or 11 and reopen on 1 September. No interviews will happen during the summer. If you want a September 1 start, apply yesterday. There will be positions with start dates after that, but nothing will happen about them until at least September 1 and the paperwork has to pass through more than one ministry, so the final visa takes time.

Some employers bring people in on tourist visas and get them to change later. Technically speaking, that's illegal, and I wouldn't want to be in that position for very long, if at all.

I've seen some advertisements mentioning 2 years' experience. Remember that that is a minimum requirement set by the colleges. It need not necessarily be post-Masters/CELTA/whatever, but the more you have, the more likely a college will be interested in you. Have scanned copies of everything, including statements of service/employment, ready to send.

Agency hire vs direct hire
It's true the colleges don't hire directly and haven't for some time. I've had jobs where that was a huge disadvantage - more work for half the money. This isn't one of them. Everyone's treated the same and our remaining ministry hires are on less money than we are. The ministry now gives them a lump-sum payment a couple of times a year to make up the difference, but they still have to deal with more paperwork.

Having said that, I have heard of one college where agency hires were not given a holiday that old-timer ministry people were. That didn't happen at NCT.

Don't assume that direct-hire at a private institution is better than working at a CoT. It often isn't. Do your homework.

TATI
Unfortunately, recruitment agencies aren't all created equal. The packages are similar, but some are poor at dealing with their staff and with new arrivals in particular. I'm sure you'll find comments.

I did a lot of research before choosing TATI to apply through and have been happy with my choice. They're not always the best communicators, but they get things done, which is more than you can say about some others. Once they decide that something's a problem, they seem to work hard to make sure it doesn't happen again. As far as I know, they're by far the best at dealing with new teachers.

Some people seem put off by the endless advertising that TATI and the other agencies do. It's largely because the colleges are going through a massive expansion to cater for the baby-boomers who are coming through. At NCT, some people have not had their contracts renewed or even been outright sacked, but that's almost always been because they couldn't or wouldn't do their jobs. The level of tolerance shown by management has been nothing short of amazing.

NCT
The students aren't high-achievers (but, hey, this place doesn't pretend to be a university). They run the gamut from unmotivated drifters who are here solely because they got the chance and it's much more interesting than sitting at home to ones who are genuinely interested in learning and try hard (albeit not always very effectively). Almost all of them are likable and they can be very rewarding.

The facilities are basic, although the staff rooms are pretty good. There have been a number if infrastructure upgrades in the last year and there are signs that more funding is on the way. There are computer labs, but don't expect much more than a whiteboard and CD player most of the time.

There are organizational glitches and the academic standards aren't high, but if you want clockwork efficiency and academic excellence, go find a job in Switzerland. It's better than most in the Gulf as far as I can tell and far better than many.
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Last edited by balancedsentiments on Mon Sep 17, 2012 4:26 pm; edited 1 time in total
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KvK



Joined: 05 Jun 2012
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 2:42 am    Post subject: Direct hire Reply with quote

I was hired directly by the University of Nizwa. No middle-man.
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balancedsentiments



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The package is better in some ways, worse in others. Likewise the overall experience. Everyone is different. I did my homework and am happy that my choice was right for me. i hope the same is true for you and that you enjoy your time there.
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balancedsentiments



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 12:32 pm    Post subject: Transport Reply with quote

Someone on another thread asked about this. Transport isn't provided but not difficult to organise.

There's a private minibus that runs from the centre of Nizwa to the college. The times might not suit everyone's timetable. Some people who post on this site seem to have an almost idealogical objection to a bus as being far beneath their dignity, but I used it for several semesters and enjoyed chatting with people from other departments that I otherwise wouldn't have met. It costs about the same as using shared taxis. The fare depends on where you live, but shouldn't be more than about RO 13 a month.

Shared taxis, like the minibus, are very cheap and a good chance to meet new people. On the other hand, they can be difficult to find, depending on where you live and when you want to travel. They seem to be particularly scarce when you're in a burning hurry.

Some lecturers car pool or have standing arrangements to be travel with someone with a car. Some who live near the college walk. (Very pleasant in winter, but I really don't recommend it in the height of summer.) Others manage with a mix of all of the above. Or, of course, you can buy or rent a car yourself.[/b]
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16063
Location: USA

PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 1:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Transport Reply with quote

balancedsentiments wrote:
There's a private minibus that runs from the centre of Nizwa to the college. The times might not suit everyone's timetable. Some people who post on this site seem to have an almost idealogical objection to a bus as being far beneath their dignity, but I used it for several semesters and enjoyed chatting with people from other departments that I otherwise wouldn't have met.

I'm not a bus person myself, but if one is riding with one's fellow teachers, it would certainly be acceptable. My objection to using local bus systems is more a matter of the fact that in the vast majority of cities in the Gulf, they never go anywhere near where I need to go. (the idea of having to walk a few blocks and stand and wait in 40+ degree weather on both ends of the trip doesn't have much appeal) And the second problem for a female is that the passengers tends to be overwhelmingly male and sub-continental, and make a woman feel very uncomfortable with their blatant staring.

From my travels in India, it is apparent that there is no social stigma to staring - as all men, women, and children will stare openly at you - but knowing that doesn't make it any more appealing to be on the "started at" side... Laughing

VS
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FarGone



Joined: 02 Nov 2011
Posts: 97

PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In re: "the being stared at" phenomenon:

I simply, and hard in the eyes, look at the persons who are looking at me; anyone sensible and with a bone of politeness in his/her skull, will, then, look away. If that doesn't work, I will smile arrogantly and issue a: "Boo!"

That'll do it.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16063
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd have to guess that you are not female... perhaps I should say that I can only hope. So if 20-30 men are staring at you as if you had just ripped your own clothes off... which of them will you perform this little act with? Rolling Eyes

Quote:
anyone sensible and with a bone of politeness in his/her skull, will, then, look away.


Here is where your idea crashes... if you are female, in this part of the world looking a male in the eye is an invitation.

VS
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FarGone



Joined: 02 Nov 2011
Posts: 97

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 5:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup, correct. Not female. Laughing
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16063
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FarGone wrote:
Yup, correct. Not female. Laughing

Good thing. Any woman would be insane to follow your advice on this... anywhere in the world.

VS
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balancedsentiments



Joined: 03 Jul 2012
Posts: 13

PostPosted: Sat Sep 01, 2012 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

VS, if I got you to chuckle with my [i]nom de plume[/i], you got a guffaw out of me with this.

Maybe I should have been more specific. The minibus is for NCT staff/lecturers only. Being stared at is not a problem. You're deposited inside the college grounds and picked up right outside the ELC building in the afternoon. However, the schedule in its present incarnation won't suit everyone.

We are back at work but with not much to do at this stage, so I'll try to add more info.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16063
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sun Sep 02, 2012 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Laughing

Of course outside of Saudi, employer provided buses for employees are not common in education at tertiary level. I never had an employer that provided one... always one our own to get from our flat to work. (one of the reasons that I always had a car)

VS
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Turbster



Joined: 09 May 2009
Posts: 67
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2012 3:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

University of Nizwa are direct hires, so no middle man to appease.

re transport: UoN have buses to and from all of their accommodating buildings, however the drivers must be easily distracted, as teachers are regularly left standing in the sun!

Best to make other arrangements like car pooling, hire a car, or buy one. The latter makes the most sense and it works out quite nicely. A friend bought a car from a departing teacher for 3500RO, used it for a year and sold it for 3000RO Smile As far as car hire goes, I understand Budget do a 130RO a month Toyota Yaris ex Muscat Airport, and that is good!

Also, I think you need a car to get the most out of Oman as there is so much to see, and so many places to go. I also think its a bit presumptuous to expect others to 'ferry' you all over the Sultanate.

What? you pay for some petrol? Hmmmm.
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rossc



Joined: 08 Sep 2012
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Sun Sep 16, 2012 4:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Balanced Sentiments,

In your first post you mentioned adverts with two years of experience, and that the ministry may not authorise these ppl. Could clarify further the situation with TATI and the experience requirement, perhaps you could comment on your co-workers exp?

I ask as I am considering moving to Oman next year to teach at a university through TATI with the aim of accumulating ME experience with view to moving to the UAE eventually.

I have checked the TATI website and they say they want an MA and two years tertiary experience post qualication. How strict in this requirement? I have an MA in TESOL and three years experience (2 HS and 1 uni). At the moment I am in my second year at my university. Basically, at the end of this contract, which finishes next Aug, I will have an MA and two years experience only THEN. Furthermore I completed my MA online and finished 6 months after I arrived at my current university. So the tertiary experience may be 2 years but only 1.5 post MA.

So if I apply to TATI next year will they likely accept my level or should I wait an extra year just to be safe? It`s just I am very happy at my current university and don`t want to create waves by asking for a reference unless I am confident I can land another job
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rossc



Joined: 08 Sep 2012
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Sun Sep 16, 2012 4:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Balanced Sentiments,

In your first post you mentioned adverts with two years of experience, and that the ministry may not authorise these ppl. Could clarify further the situation with TATI and the experience requirement, perhaps you could comment on your co-workers exp?

I ask as I am considering moving to Oman next year to teach at a university through TATI with the aim of accumulating ME experience with view to moving to the UAE eventually.

I have checked the TATI website and they say they want an MA and two years tertiary experience post qualication. How strict in this requirement? I have an MA in TESOL and three years experience (2 HS and 1 uni). At the moment I am in my second year at my university. Basically, at the end of this contract, which finishes next Aug, I will have an MA and two years experience only THEN. Furthermore I completed my MA online and finished 6 months after I arrived at my current university. So the tertiary experience may be 2 years but only 1.5 post MA.

So if I apply to TATI next year will they likely accept my level or should I wait an extra year just to be safe? It`s just I am very happy at my current university and don`t want to create waves by asking for a reference unless I am confident I can land another job
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Turbster



Joined: 09 May 2009
Posts: 67
Location: UK

PostPosted: Sun Sep 16, 2012 6:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rossc wrote:
Balanced Sentiments,

In your first post you mentioned adverts with two years of experience, and that the ministry may not authorise these ppl. Could clarify further the situation with TATI and the experience requirement, perhaps you could comment on your co-workers exp?

I ask as I am considering moving to Oman next year to teach at a university through TATI with the aim of accumulating ME experience with view to moving to the UAE eventually.

I have checked the TATI website and they say they want an MA and two years tertiary experience post qualication. How strict in this requirement? I have an MA in TESOL and three years experience (2 HS and 1 uni). At the moment I am in my second year at my university. Basically, at the end of this contract, which finishes next Aug, I will have an MA and two years experience only THEN. Furthermore I completed my MA online and finished 6 months after I arrived at my current university. So the tertiary experience may be 2 years but only 1.5 post MA.

So if I apply to TATI next year will they likely accept my level or should I wait an extra year just to be safe? It`s just I am very happy at my current university and don`t want to create waves by asking for a reference unless I am confident I can land another job


You should have no issues getting an appropriate position in Oman. Whether via TATI or direct hire to the likes of UoN, your credentials are no barrier.
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