Never went to university? Don’t worry! You can still teach English abroad. With a worldwide demand for English teachers, there are loads of employers in many countries that will be happy to offer you a TEFL job without having a degree.
Due to pesky visa restrictions in certain countries, you cannot teach there without having a degree. Places like Japan, Thailand and South Korea are unfortunately out of bounds if you don’t have a degree. However, there are lots of countries which don’t have such strict restrictions, so you’ll be able to obtain a visa without having a degree. Here’s our pick of the best places to teach abroad without a degree:
China offers the most opportunities for TEFL teachers, with over 400million English learners. With such a big demand for teachers, China will welcome anyone who speaks English and has a TEFL qualification with open arms. It’s not just a great place to go due to the huge demand though, oh no. China is an incredible place to live, particularly if you’re wanting to experience a brand new and exciting culture.
It’s important to note that even though some employers may state that a degree is required on their adverts, you’ll find that many are willing to compromise for the right person (like you!).
If you’re new to the TEFL world and are feeling a little overwhelmed and could do with some extra support, you might want to take a look at our Teach in China Internship: you’ll get full training, 24/7 support, free accommodation & food, plus a fantastic opportunity to make lots of new friends.
If you like the laid-back lifestyle, then Ecuador could be just what you’re looking for. You won’t become a millionaire teaching in Ecuador, the wages aren’t the highest in the world. However, the cost of living is really cheap so you’re wages will get you alot further. Plus, you’ll be living in one of the most beautiful countries on earth. There is a good demand for TEFL teachers too, so with a TEFL certificate you’ll be in a good position to find work there. There are also lots of opportunities to teach privately so you can earn some extra money.
If you’d like to give teaching in Ecuador a try, we have opportunities there with reputable employers through our free job placement service: https://www.i-to-i.com/tefl-jobs-abroad/tefl-ecuador.html
A note on Latin America: There are lots of other countries in Latin America that will hire teachers without degrees, however this will often be on a tourist visa. While this is widespread, you do need to be aware that you risk lower wages, poorer working conditions and in the worst cases, deportation.
3) The European Union
If you’re from the UK or Ireland you can legally work across the EU without a degree. Think of it as a nifty little bonus from Brussels. However, bear in mind that competition for jobs in many Western European countries (such as Spain and France) can be pretty high, so you may find yourself losing our to your degree-educated brethren.
For better chances of success, look east to countries like the Czech Republic, where demand for teachers is high and employers have less applicants to pick from.
If you’re keen on the Czech Republic, try applying for work through our free job placement service in Prague: https://www.i-to-i.com/tefl-jobs-abroad/tefl-czech-republic.html
Talk to people who’ve done it!
It’s all very well me saying that you can teach abroad without a degree, but if you want proof, have a chat with these guys. None of them went to uni, but they’re all now happily teaching English abroad: