Guide to TEFL in India
India is a land where the old world charm co-exists with the glamour of the modern world. It is a country of rich and diverse culture, so you can find warm and welcoming people everywhere. You can make the most of your time in India by listening to the interesting stories that these people have to share. Along with the numerous unpaid volunteering positions, which give you a chance to make a difference in people’s lives, you can also find some which pay enough to cover expenses.
Why teach English in India?
In addition to the reasons just mentioned, another perk of living and working in India is that everything is cheap here, from food to accommodation. But things don’t always sail smoothly in India. You need to be prepared for last minute changes and delays. At the end of your stay, you will leave India stronger and more resilient than before.
What types of English teaching jobs are there in India?
There is a great need for English teachers in India, but most paid positions are only for Indian passport holders. Indians with the Trinity Cert TESOL or CELTA are in high demand, especially in the private sector schools and colleges. There are also opportunities for them as IELTS examiners and Trinity College exam moderators when they meet the professional requirements for those jobs.
For foreigners, most teaching positions are voluntary, wherein you pay a fee which covers your accommodation, food and airport transfers. The accommodation is usually with locals. Most of these organisations also work for public welfare in the fields of healthcare and women empowerment in rural areas. So you may also get to work not only in education, but other fields too.
Teaching Tibetan Buddhist monks in Dharamsala (Himachal Pradesh) and the higher reaches of the Himalayas is another very fulfilling and enriching option. Responsibilities range from simple conversational classes to actually teaching in a classroom setting.
With the technological revolution, online classes are also gaining ground in India. There are a few websites and apps where you can create an account and start looking for students. An Indian bank account may be required for this.
Some paid teaching jobs are also available.
Where are the most English teaching jobs in India?
As English is one of the official languages of India, a good level in English is required for better employment opportunities. This means good English speakers and teachers are necessary all over India. Since the market for foreign English teachers is nonexistent in schools in India, it is better to look for opportunities that involve teaching underprivileged children in slums or socially deprived communities (volunteering).
What are the requirements to teach English in India?
A degree in teaching is usually not required. However, an accredited TEFL certificate such as the Trinity CertTESOL is desired but it’s not always necessary.
Do I need to have teaching experience on my resume for India?
Experience in teaching is not required as most positions are voluntary and they need English speakers whether or not you have teaching experience. Although in the case of a language school, you may be required to have at least a little teaching experience.
What are the visa requirements to teach English in India?
If you are interning or volunteering with a non-governmental organisation, you may be eligible for an employment visa. Also, the organisation you are going to be working with may assist you in getting a visa. It is recommended to always check with your nearest Indian Consulate about the visa you require when considering any opportunity in India.
What’s the best way to find teaching work in India?
There are various websites that list different volunteering positions from time to time. Oxford TEFL in Kerala offers a very good internship program to graduates of their Trinity CertTESOL course. You can also subscribe to their mailing lists and get updates about English teacher requirements in India. For online classes, mobile apps like Urban Pro can help you find students.
When is the best time of year to look for teaching jobs in India?
You can apply any time because most organisations work with the socially deprived sections of the society and need volunteers throughout the year.
How much money can I make teaching English in India?
Most often, the benefits are not monetary. For volunteering positions, you pay fees to the organisation and your food, lodging and transport are taken care of. Some places may not ask for a fee but you still pay for everything yourself. Opportunities like this are ideal if you want to be sure that you have an organisation behind you to help at all times. You can find opportunities like this on many websites, and if you dig deep enough, you may find paid positions as well.
A few positions with reputable organisations in India that offer accommodation and living expenses:
- Edify School, Hyderabad
This is one of the best opportunities for foreigners wanting to teach English in India. It is a year-long program in the city of Hyderabad. A shared, semi-furnished apartment is provided. Amenities include wifi, kitchen dishes, a TV and a maid to clean the apartment. Breakfast and lunch on working days is provided as well. A monthly allowance of INR 20,000 (about USD 310) is given to the teachers. Airfare and visa need to be paid for by the teacher.
- Oxford TEFL, Kerala
If you don’t have a teaching certificate, you can get the Trinity Certificate TESOL from the Oxford TEFL branch in Kerala. After the 5 week course, you can stay back for between one and ten months and get a Certificate in Teaching Experience. You pay for your own airfare and visa, and accommodation for the duration of the Trinity CertTESOL. After that you will be given a monthly allowance of about GBP 150, accommodation and health insurance. It is open to people from native speaker countries. Indians taking the course can also be hired as teachers and benefit from the same level of support offered.
- British Council “Teach in India” programme
If you are a citizen of the UK looking for a short term (5 months) paid position as an English teacher, this is the ideal program for you. The program entails teaching mainly English, but you can also teach other subjects depending on your skills. You get accommodation with at least one meal everyday and INR 20,000 for other expenses. You pay for your flights, visa, vaccinations and a placement fee of GBP 200.
Finally, live and work in India for a unique cultural and spiritual experience. If that doesn’t attract you, then the prospect of encountering charming Indian English sure will!