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Employers' attitudes to reputable distance degrees

 
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stephenbranigan



Joined: 06 Mar 2008
Posts: 15
Location: Poland

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 12:40 pm    Post subject: Employers' attitudes to reputable distance degrees Reply with quote

I'm just wondering if anyone has hard facts on the acceptability of distance degrees in the region?

Iíve been applying for posts, mostly in Saudi Arabia, though some in Qatar and UAE over the past month or so. I have a BA (Business Studies) and MA (Education with Linguistics), both from the Open University in the UK which has a superb reputation in Europe, but based on my applications Iím beginning to think the distance aspect of my degrees is what is leading to lack of results; though no one has openly stated so.
I have seven yearsí teaching experience in Europe, superb references and a CELTA which I would imagine should make me employable.

Iíve read various posts about Ďsomeí places not accepting online/distance degrees. Does anyone have any facts that are more substantive? My degrees were very hard won and I donít believe I am any worse of a teacher because I studied that way, quite the opposite in fact. So it would be sad if it turned out to be the case. It is not all bad news though; I did have one offer which depended on the Saudi sideís acceptance which I decided not to follow through as I was looking for something better. Is it possible they may have overlooked the Ďdistanceí problem, or might it have been acceptable to them? Iím just wondering now if that particular offer was an exception.

Feeling rather confused at this stage and wondering if my moving to the Middle East plans are not going to get off the ground. Any information or advice is really appreciated.
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vashdown2



Joined: 14 Feb 2007
Posts: 124
Location: Paris, France

PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your BA was also done online?


I would say that MA in TESOL would be accepted from an online organization, but the BA should be done on campus.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 4309
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 7:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Vashdown; the roadblocks you're dealing with may be because both your degrees were completed via distance learning. I'd guess that employers (anywhere) don't have an issue with one degree being obtained online, but two degrees via distance learning tend to raise an eyebrow.

I don't know about Qatar, but for Saudi jobs, focus on private institutes/universities; they offer some flexibility in terms of the qualifications they accept. You can get a list of Saudi unis by doing a wiki search. Also, look at your experience and how you present it. You didn't state what your specific teaching experience has been, but generally, employers in the region want to see experience in academic writing, curriculum design, test creation, ESP, etc. If employers see you have any of these skills as experience or subjects for your MA program, you're more likely to get a second look while the focus is taken off of how you got your education.
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