Employment Tips for Non-Native Speakers

Time and time again we’re faced with questions from non-native English speakers who are really struggling to find work.  Many of you have impeccable English so we understand how frustrating it can be when it seems like no one will give you a chance.  Meet Teresa: one of our weekend tutors who teaches lots of courses in the Netherlands.  We have a HUGE number of Dutch graduates here at i-to-i, so they must be getting jobs… right?!

Here’s what Teresa had to say with regards to employment tips:

“The Dutch tutees DO get work and mostly, they make very wise and sympathetic teachers. Here’s my advice to NNS teachers: the job market is not always all about fair and equal opportunities.  Employers will take the best person for the job that they can get with the least effort, and that’s often the person standing in front of you when you have a class that needs a teacher.  So to be sure to get a job, get on the plane and go knock on doors!

If you can’t physically search in-country, the next best thing is to call up a school to show how amazing and clear your English is.  Omit your nationality from your CV too.  Also, take a look at which countries have visa rules that state only native speakers are eligible.  Remember that you’ll have a much better chance at finding a job in a private language school.

I have met NNS teachers in a number of places – invariably they got their jobs in-country.  Most have found jobs in not-so-central locations or suburbs in small, non-franchised private schools that have a limited recruitment budget.

Finally, forget the agencies: when I am recruiting I only ever download CVs of people who have put my target country first. I’m not going to pay money to view CVs of people who may consider my country if nothing comes up in the 6 other countries listed before.”

So, to sum up:

–  Go!

–  If you can’t go, give them a call so they can hear how good your English is

–  Remove your nationality from your CV (of course you will have to disclose this eventually, but it may help you get a foot in the door)

–  Go for private sector jobs

–  Be clear that the country you are applying to IS where you REALLY want to go

Find out more about landing your perfect TEFL job with our six step guide!

Related Articles

form girls discount


Simply pop your details below to receive your exclusive discount code.




  2. Fearnot

    Good.What about people from Nigeria.I’m from Nigeria and i’m interested in teaching English abroad.I have garnered more than 5 years of teaching experience

  3. Steven

    How do I get erolled

    • Rebecca Potts

      Hi Steven

      Thanks for getting in touch. Are you looking to do a TEFL course or join one of our TEFL trips? Our TEFL experts are waiting for your call and are ready to answer all your questions.

      Thank you
      Your i-to-i team

Comments are closed.

Follow Us

Find Us

i-to-i TEFL
4th Floor, Wilson House, Lorne Park Road,
Bournemouth, England, BH1 1JN,
United Kingdom

i-to-i TEFL is a part of Teach and Travel Group Ltd.
Registered Company No. 7935847.