Are you looking for a teaching job in the Middle East? Are you still on the fence about taking the plunge and moving abroad? If this is you, then read this to find out some of my experiences with teaching jobs in the Middle East.
Teaching in the Middle East sounds exciting, doesn’t it? However, there are some important things you should know before you pack your bags and make teaching jobs in the Middle East your next career move.
I am writing this post because I believe that some of my friends are considering applying for positions abroad. They asked me if I could share everything I know about teaching jobs in the Middle East. For that reason, I decided to share my knowledge with others.
What qualifications are needed for teaching jobs in the Middle East?
One of the most common questions teachers ask is: what qualifications are needed for teaching jobs in the Middle East?
TEFL teachers working in the Middle East are often required to have at least a bachelor’s degree, and many schools will not consider applicants unless they have a minimum of two years of professional experience, too. Employers will also expect you to hold a TEFL certificate – preferably one with 120 hours or more.
Even if you do hold a teaching qualification (e.g. a PGCE or BEd), you may still need to have some form of recognised TEFL certificate before applying for any teaching jobs in the Middle East.
If you don’t have an undergraduate degree from a native English speaking country, you may need to take an academic IELTS test, which will prove your proficiency in English. Some employers will also want to see proof that your passport is valid for at least 12 months from the start date of your contract.
Are Middle East teaching jobs challenging?
Middle East teaching jobs are particularly attractive to new and experienced teachers because they offer a good salary and benefits package, tax free income, and the chance to experience a new country.
The Middle East is home to one of the world’s oldest civilizations, which has evolved into a region rich with culture and diversity. Most countries have an expatriate population from all over the world, so you will easily find a place to fit in.
Some schools in the Middle East follow a curriculum from the United States or from their home country. Other schools have their own curriculum based on the British system. Regardless of what kind of school you choose to work for, there are many different teaching jobs available.
Are Middle East teaching jobs lucrative?
The high salaries that foreign teachers can earn in the Middle East are often the main motivation for people considering teaching jobs in the region. But where else could you go to experience a whole new way of life, have the opportunity to save a large chunk of your salary and travel around the world at a fraction of the cost?
Most teaching jobs in the Middle East are located in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). If you take a look at job postings, you’ll find that salaries range from 12,000 USD to 55,000 USD per year.
Are there any other benefits of taking teaching jobs in the Middle East?
One of the main reasons people take Middle East teaching jobs is because of the money they can save. You’ll typically earn a tax free salary, which means you could save anywhere between 50 and 70 percent of your income. This makes it easier to pay off debts when you return home or even get a down payment on a house.
You can use your experience to travel the world. Teaching jobs in the Middle East are a great way to gain international teaching experience, something that’s always useful if you want to teach in other countries.
After completing your contract, you might decide to take up another teaching role in another country, such as China or South Korea. Alternatively, you could use your time overseas to help get into grad school and pursue other career options.
What are some things to consider before taking a Middle Eastern teaching job?
Teaching in the Middle East is an increasingly popular career move among native English speaking expats. In the past few years, I have taught in both Oman and Turkey, and I’ve gotten a lot of questions about what it’s like to teach there.
Paychecks vary wildly by country, but if you’re going to be teaching in the Middle East, you’ll probably make more money than you did in your home country. In Turkey, teachers can expect salaries to start around $1,400 a month, while in Oman they can expect around $1,700 per month. That might not seem like a lot compared to the paychecks many people get back home but remember that the cost of living is usually much cheaper where you will be living.
Many schools also offer generous benefits packages that include housing allowances and paid vacations. In general, it’s better to work for a school rather than for a company that specializes in language training. Schools are more likely to offer benefits and provide teacher support.