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5 questions about getting a job at a Korean university
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Tukkong



Joined: 27 Apr 2004

PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 5:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree that being in Korea is a significant advantage. I am in a somewhat similar situation to the one you are in.

I taught in Korea for five and a half years before coming back to Australia, in mid 2001. My last two years, in Korea, were spent at a computer college. Before that I concentrated on teaching businesspeople. I am now looking at going back to Korea. Due to my teaching and training experiences, I have concentrated on applying for university positions that specialise in business English, or require business knowledge. Despite a Bachelor of Business, Master of International Business and a number of training qualifications, I have had no luck with these jobs. The most feedback I have received was from one university that informed me that I did not get an interview because I was not in Korea. There must be a lot of business graduates in Korea.

The interesting thing is that, last year, I was offered a job with a chaebol after one phone interview. I couldn't accept if because my Australian university was busy jerking me around with paperwork. As a result, I am quite sure that that particular chaebol will not consider me in the future.

Unfortunately, many universities do not state this in their job ads. Also, when an international phone number is stated it is more confusing. I always took it as location not being an issue. In one case, I found that I could not get a response from the foreigner who was listed as the contact person.

Being in Japan, you will understand the importance of personal contacts. However, don't place too much importance on this issue. I got my college job simply by applying to an ad.

Having a hubby can go either way. Generally, I think it might be viewed as a good thing - they will think you are more settled. Of course, housing might be an issue.

Your appearance will be a disadvantage.

Otherwise, as others have said, not being in Korea is the biggest hurdle.
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Zed



Joined: 20 Jan 2003
Location: Shakedown Street

PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 6:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Perhaps I missed something here. The unis hire for March and September, right? But when do they actually do the hiring? Do they hire for March starts in January, Christmas, or does this carry on throughout February? What about for September starts?
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the_beaver



Joined: 15 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 6:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zed wrote:
Perhaps I missed something here. The unis hire for March and September, right? But when do they actually do the hiring? Do they hire for March starts in January, Christmas, or does this carry on throughout February? What about for September starts?



I love this topic.

Universities are all different. Mine did interviews in May (or maybe early June) for September and informed successful candidates the next week. Same sort of lead-in for the spring semester.


I want to add some information here that might be helpful:

1. Universities (leastways the ones I'm familiar with) keep a file of resumes and if you hand in an application package and come back every once in a while to give an updated one I guarantee that it'll be looked it and, if during your visits you come across as personable that'll help your cause all the more.

2. Getting turned down isn't necessarily the end of it. One of the interviewees who didn't get a job at my university started yelling at my boss on the phone. A couple of days later one of the people who was offered the job had to turn it down (long story and not relevant). Well, the interviewees' resumes were looked at again with the exception of the one who yelled.

3. Lots of people, for whatever reason, don't sign, and lots of present employees decide to bugger off at the last moment -- if you play it right you could find the job thrust at you when the mix of desparation and knowing your face is right.
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Pyongshin Sangja



Joined: 20 Apr 2003
Location: I love baby!

PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 11:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My uni hired in October to start in March. The Sept. hiring is usually much smaller, it's just the start of term 2. In fact, we had people quit this June and they will not replace them until next March. Oh well, job security for me.
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Tiger Beer



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2004 3:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pyongshin Sangja wrote:
My uni hired in October to start in March. The Sept. hiring is usually much smaller, it's just the start of term 2. In fact, we had people quit this June and they will not replace them until next March. Oh well, job security for me.

Hmm.. sounds good. I'll have to start looking now for March.
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Tiger Beer



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pyongshin Sangja wrote:
My uni hired in October to start in March. The Sept. hiring is usually much smaller, it's just the start of term 2. In fact, we had people quit this June and they will not replace them until next March. Oh well, job security for me.

Hmm.. sounds good. I'll have to start looking now for March.
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SuperHero



Joined: 10 Dec 2003
Location: Superhero Hideout

PostPosted: Wed Jun 01, 2005 3:53 am    Post subject: Re: 5 questions about getting a job at a Korean university Reply with quote

dminn wrote:
I have applied to over 30 openings at Korean universities that I have seen on this site. However, I have not received a favorable response yet. On paper, I think I meet the required qualifications.

Just reviving an old favorite and wondering if the OP ever did get that university position he was after?
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PRagic



Joined: 24 Feb 2006

PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2006 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to ask about this SWELL program. Strictly from a management perspecitve, how do you go about creating a program like that that attracts seemingly highly dedicated instructors. More importantly, how do you sucker these people into making less money than they could at other places, while working more contact hours than they normally would at other places? That is magic. Simply amazing.

To the O.P.: It's getting easier and easier to get university jobs here in Korea. The problem is that there aren't many jobs people really want over the long term. The salaries are going down, the contact hours are going up, and to boot, they are dropping the necessary qualifications for application. Have B.A.? You're in. Your Master's will look great. If you are of Korean ancestry, apply for your F-series visa and come on over.
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the_beaver



Joined: 15 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2006 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PRagic wrote:
I have to ask about this SWELL program. Strictly from a management perspecitve, how do you go about creating a program like that that attracts seemingly highly dedicated instructors. More importantly, how do you sucker these people into making less money than they could at other places, while working more contact hours than they normally would at other places? That is magic. Simply amazing.


SWELL is the minor leagues. People go there to get experience and move up to better contracts after a year or two.

The overall quality of teachers there goes up and down (as it does anywhere).
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Tiger Beer



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2007 7:34 am    Post subject: Re: 5 questions about getting a job at a Korean university Reply with quote

dminn wrote:
I have applied to over 30 openings at Korean universities that I have seen on this site. However, I have not received a favorable response yet. On paper, I think I meet the required qualifications.

- Native English speaker from the US
- MA in Linguistics from a Japanese university
- BA in International Studies from a American university
- 4 years teaching experience part-time in Japan
- Fluent in Japanese; beginner in Korean

I have lived in Tokyo for the past four years. In my opinion, that shows that I can successfully live overseas and adapt to a different culture (I don't know how the universities view it). Here are some questions I have for fellow forum members:

1. Is my experience in Japan a positive or a negative in my job search?
2. Is the fact that my MA is from a Japanese university a negative?
3. Is being married a factor?
4. Is being Korean-American/non-white a factor?
5. Without connections or introductions from friends, is my job search near impossible?

I would appreciate any advice. Thank you.

-dminn

Why Korea? Why not Japan?
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cdninkorea



Joined: 27 Jan 2006
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 3:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I apply at universities that haven't advertised (yet?), who does one address their cover letter to? Just "To whom it may concern"?
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Tiger Beer



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

cdninkorea wrote:
If I apply at universities that haven't advertised (yet?), who does one address their cover letter to? Just "To whom it may concern"?

You should research who receives the resumes/cover letters and address it to that person.
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dminn



Joined: 28 Jun 2003

PostPosted: Tue Dec 16, 2008 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for all of the replies. I guess it's been about five years since the original post. My apologies for not coming back for so long. I'm trying to recall what happened. I visited Seoul, had a good time with friends and relatives, but I didn't get a positive vibe about working there. I focused my energy on Japan. If I was single, I might have tried to work up the hagwon, part-time, uni. ladder in Korea. Anyway, I found a good uni job in Japan half a year after my first post. Maybe someday I'll try again.

Thanks again!
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MoonArisa



Joined: 13 Jan 2011

PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bringing this back to life, a few years later again Smile

Although visiting the universities is recommended, from what I read, is it feasible to obtain a university job if applying from abroad?

This said, does one also need to add the portfolio if sending things by e-mail (may fill their inboxes)?

And though it was said that one does not need experience in teaching nor anything more than a BA to obtain a university job, how does one go upon applying as they would not have the knowledge/background to build such a portfolio?

Any other pointers/suggestions? Thank you in advance!
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PatrickGHBusan



Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Location: Busan (1997-2008) Canada 2008 -

PostPosted: Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MoonArisa wrote:
Bringing this back to life, a few years later again Smile

Although visiting the universities is recommended, from what I read, is it feasible to obtain a university job if applying from abroad?

This said, does one also need to add the portfolio if sending things by e-mail (may fill their inboxes)?

And though it was said that one does not need experience in teaching nor anything more than a BA to obtain a university job, how does one go upon applying as they would not have the knowledge/background to build such a portfolio?

Any other pointers/suggestions? Thank you in advance!


1- Getting a University job from abroad is possible but not easy and unlikely. It is dowright near impossible if you do not have a MA and all the qualifications they require.

2- You NEED experience for the vast majority of University jobs, not having any likely means the rejection pile. The responses you may get will be from third tier institutions.


Bascially what was said in this thread remains true, if you want a University job you need to:

Be in Korea
Have the qualifications
Have some experience (in Korea is better)


You also should try to network a bit and make some contacts as referals are the prefered way to fill job vacancies for many Universities.

Good luck.
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