Teach English in South Korea with CIEE

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About

South Korea offers you the opportunity to gain teaching experience and see the world while earning a competitive salary and enjoying rent-free housing. This is a great choice for someone getting ready for a teaching career, or someone who wants to work abroad while paying off student loans, for example. Placements are available in major urban areas throughout Korea, including greater Seoul!

CIEE's Teach Abroad program will get you ready with our 150 hour TEFL Certification and Teacher Preparation course, as well as assistance with applications and job interviews. Before you go, you'll discuss cultural considerations as well as practicalities so you know what to expect, and you'll have a safety net of support from our in-country team.

Questions & Answers

That question is a little complicated to answer. Yes, you can bring a pet overseas with you. However, the process can be very hard on the pet. If They change too much between their physical and when they go through immigration they might not be allowed in, or they will be held for observation (which is not in the best conditions for your pet). On top of that if the school is supplying the housing...
Hi Courtney, If you already hold a TEFL certification you can apply to the CIEE Teach in South Korea Basics program which has a lower cost as the certification course is not included. All the best, CIEE Teach Abroad Team
Yes, Filipinos are allowed to take TEFL courses in South Korea. However, only citizens from English speaking countries (1st language) as stipulated by Korean Immigration laws for E2 visas are allowed to obtain an E2 teaching visa. Many Filipinos teach English in South Korea, but most are on F5 or F6 (spousal visas) visas.

Reviews

84%
based on 42 reviews
  • Benefits 8.2
  • Support 8.2
  • Fun 8.2
  • Facilities 7.8
  • Safety 8.7
  • Instruction 9.7
  • Support 10
  • Value 9.7
  • Academic Rigor 8
  • Job Assistance 10
Showing 16 - 30 of 42
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Alexandria
7/10

Good program but pricey

This program is a bit pricey, BUT if you are willing to pay there is some peace of mind that you will be placed and that there are a team of people dedicated to getting you a job in korea. I didn't have a certificate and I was a fresh grad and they still assured me they would find me a placement and they did! They even do an orientation so you connect with other foreigners right away and are good qt pointing you in the right direction if you need it.

How can this program be improved?
I feel like I don't exactly get a whole lot for the price but thats about it
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Kevin
9/10

Exploring While Teaching in Korea

Connecting with CIEE after graduating was a decision I will forever be grateful for. Being uncertain about teaching abroad is common and with the help from this organization, I was able to begin feeling more comfortable with the idea of traveling to a foreign country to teach English. I've been given amazing in-country support here in Korea and that has proven to be the most valuable because there's so much to learn. Having their email has been a luxury that other teachers here simply do not have because they chose other routes to get here.

My advice to anyone reading this is to be patient. Whether you're fresh out of college or well past your collegiate years, please understand that making a move to a different country to teach is a process. It is 100% attainable if you are dedicated to the idea of working with children and sharing your knowledge of the English language. Additionally, come prepared with questions that may be lingering in the back of your head. CIEE is dedicated to doing their best, so why not ask great questions?! There are so many and after reading a great deal of information, it can be easy to even forget stuff that's already been provided along the way. Additionally, I advise getting your TEFL Certification if you want to teach more than one year. It translates cross-culturally and is a great addition to your resume. All in all, so happy I chose CIEE.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Alexis
10/10

Great Experience

Teaching in South Korea was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I love teaching my wonderful students, and travelling all over every chance I get. Choosing CIEE to help me get here was another great choice. From the beginning everyone was super helpful. Once I got to Korea the support was AMAZING. Orientation was a chance for me to meet other teachers (new and old) and have lots of my questions about teaching and general life in Korea answered. I still meet up with and talk to people I met at my orientation. The support system that CIEE has created for their teachers in Korea is just great! It definitly helped make my transition to living in a new country a lot easier.

How can this program be improved?
I do know the price can be a turn off for a lot of people, espcially since you can just go through a recruiter yourself. If you are comfortable that way, then awesome :). But, if you're like me and this is your first time going abroad or you just want extra assurence that you're doing everything right this program is definitly worth it. I know orientation weekend itself is worth most of it. And while the program technically only is for a year, if you choose to stay the contacts that you made in the country are more than willing to continue to help you.
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Yolanda
10/10

Teach Abroad - South Korea

Overall, I've had a superb experience with CIEE. After comparing multiple programs, I decided on CIEE and have never regretted it. From your TEFL certification to job placement, they've got you covered. In addition to the TEFL course (that includes an abundant amount of resources), they also provide a pre-departure mini-course to prepare you for the big move (focusing on work place and societal cultural differences).

For me, the personal support has been the best part of the program. They have gone above and beyond to provide guidance and support for me throughout my experience. When I was stressing over getting all of my documents in time, I remember just bombarding Luke and Brad with emails. Without fail, they'd respond within 24 hours and solve any issues I was having. During the interview process, I once called Brad on a weekend asking for advice. He was very patient and helped me through it even though I had abruptly called him without prior warning. (Seriously, Luke and Brad are the MVPs.)

Ultimately, CIEE will provide you with everything you need to start your journey. However, there are also many components that are up to you to figure out - such as what offers to accept and what you make of your time. As people have mentioned, do not settle on a job. If a position does not seem like a right fit, you don't have to say yes to the dress. CIEE will help you find another interview. I wish I was more sure of this before coming (but that's a different story). I definitely recommend CIEE to anyone that is looking for a program to set you up with the basics for your first year teaching abroad.

How can this program be improved?
Having to communicate between CIEE and the specific in country recruiter that was setting up my interviews was a bit difficult and honestly added more stress to the process.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Lindsey
9/10

Teach in Korea- 12 months

CIEE is amazing and worked hard to help me find the perfect job. I went through 4 interviews before I decided on a school and I am so happy that I did not settle. There are some scary reviews about hagwons online but I can now say with confidence that there are many good ones out there. Be patient and ask as many questions as possible before accepting any offers!
Once you move to Korea, the in-country supporters are fabulous and always willing to help! They get you in contact with people your age who have experience living in Korea which I loved. I feel supported and very happy with my life in Korea. I can't recommend this program enough!

How can this program be improved?
Update powerpoint regarding what to expect when moving to Korea- example- you CAN find toothpaste anywhere
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Connie
9/10

Placement for South Korea

CIEE is incredibly organized and supportive. The staff is quick to respond and works efficiently and effectively to assure your placement is the best fit for you. (Thank you Luke Beland, Sagan Pope, and Brad and Yumi!) They take care of the tedious paperwork and very assistive of any hiccups that may occur along the application and hiring process. The entire program is very organized and efficient. I really felt that I had an entire team working for me the whole way.

I really enjoyed meeting the rest of the CIEE staff and team members here in Korea (especially Brad!!!). They are a great support system and even made great friendships and connections through our orientation and meet ups.

Personally from my experience in South Korea, a TEFL is not necessary at most hagwons (private schools) nor do they even ask. However, if you plan on applying for EPIK (public schools), it is necessary. This is important to keep in mind when paying for the course. The TEFL certification opens up a lot of opportunities for me to expand my teaching career, however, if you plan on teaching in Korea for a year at a hagwon, I would not recommend taking the course. It is not necessary.

Overall, I had a great experience with CIEE.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Samantha
9/10

CIEE

CIEE really helped me with the application process. Of course, with EPIK you can apply directly to the program, however, it can be a bit overwhelming at first. CIEE helped throughout the whole process of applying and sending all of my materials necessary for applying. They really do all of the hard parts for you. Sagan was able to help me through the whole process of finding a job and predeparture logistics. Having the TEFL class in addition to the program made it a lot easier because all of your materials were through the same program and they were there for you throughout the whole process. Especially in application of public schools and if this is your first time teaching abroad, I would highly recommend CIEE as your recruiter. The in country orientation weekend was also amazing and you get to meet some other CIEE teachers as well as hear and swap stories from teaching abroad in Korea. Thank you to CIEE!

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
shaunda
8/10

South Korea-CIEE

My experience has been very positive. I started about a month ago teaching in Seocheon. My apartment is descent a little dirty when I moved in. I teach at two schools with amazing teachers. The other teachers have been helpful. Sagan with CIEE was amazing. Sagan was was who I worked with back in USA. She assisted me throughout the processed and answered any questions that I had. She has been very helpful and is still there to help me out when needed. I met many new friends at CIEE orientation. The orientation was fun and very well organized. So far I am very happy with my experience in South Korea and with CIEE.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Alberto
10/10

CIEE

My overall experience with CIEE has been phenomenal. The recruiters were able to place me in South Korea just as I was about to finish my course. They were understanding of my situation to complete my hours for tefl so they allowed me to finish them after I arrived in South Korea. Once I got to Korea, CIEE and their wonderful people have provided me with so much aid to help me get situated not only in Korea but with my school. If you're ever considering applying anywhere in Korea. I would recommend CIEE to anyone.

How can this program be improved?
More helpful links for new teachers and list of all available staff in Korea in case of additional help.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Todd
10/10

Great Job at CIEE

I could not give a higher recommendation to Alexandra (Sagan) Pope and to Luke Beland at CIEE. They did an outstanding job in helping me navigate the difficult process involved with the EPIK application. Their consistently good advice saved me along the way and guided me to a successful application. The CIEE TEFL Certificate was outstanding and provided me with the necessary background to begin teaching English in South Korea.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Pamela
10/10

A great advocate

I found CIEE after a disappointing incident.
My goal was to return to South Korea as a guest English teacher.
My purpose was to re-enter the workforce over the age of 50.

It was not an easy goal to attain and I needed an advocate and I found that in Luke Beland. He knows how to penetrate bureaucracy, i.e leave no stone unturned.

He was honest about the endless hurdles. His presence during the 13 months was systematic.

I understood the last hurdle. I could jump it but Korea could decide differently.

Korea was concerned about my health and stamina. I, now, find this to be an accurate concern. This experience could be likened to the World Senior Games.

I could not have done this without CIEE and specifically, Luke Beland.

How can this program be improved?
Give Luke Beland a raise.
Yes, I recommend this program
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John
9/10

First Year Teaching

This is my first year teaching, which is already daunting by itself, let alone doing it in a foreign country. I chose CIEE because I had already studied abroad with them in Korea and knew it was a program with a lot of support and benefits like cultural excursions among other things. The support system has been great both in Korea and during the application process back home. When I looked at the EPIK application, I knew I wanted a methodical and organized way of tackling all the paperwork which was exactly what the CIEE study abroad course was. They take you through each step of the process and set deadlines to make sure you stay on top of everything.

I feel the TEFL class was also extremely useful in preparing me for the real classroom, and I use a ton of what I learned in my lessons. The in-country orientation was also a ton of fun. I can't believe how much they managed to squeeze into a short weekend. I'm sure there are other great programs out there, but I really like the organization of CIEE and the support they provide in and outside the country.

I'm doing a YouTube vlog of my journey which will include some episodes of CIEE's orientation. However, I haven't edited that part of the trip yet, so I can't share a direct link, but the first episode of my vlog is below. By the time you're reading this, the CIEE orientation videos should be up (they will likely be Episodes 12 & 13) Enjoy :)

How can this program be improved?
Really the only improvement I can think of is that the deadline to apply for CIEE's program and the deadline to send in the EPIK application were too close making me push off applying to EPIK until the next school semester. The application and acceptance into the CIEE program should come sooner so that there isn't a crunch for the hefty EPIK packet. Other than that, great program!
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Bianca
10/10

CIEE is a great support

I am so glad I used CIEE as a recruiting agency. They were there for me since the begining, every step of the way. I had many questions about the application process and always had a fast response time. CIEE is also a great way to network and to meet new people. This is the first time I have been a teacher and I think the TEFL program really prepared me for it.

The school and location I am at are perfect. I am having a great experience, thanks to CIEE! I recommend for anyone to use them to teach English in South Korea.

How can this program be improved?
When taking the classes for TEFL, there should be more in class scenario videos. There were some videos, but it was teaching adults. I think there should be more elementary and middle school scenarios.
Yes, I recommend this program
Addison
9/10

Waygook

I have been teaching in South Korea for about 3 months now and have enjoyed my time here so far. Every day is like waking up in paradise not because its perfect, but because of the vitality that I feel when I wake up. I am living in a country that is almost on the other side of the Earth compared to where I lived in United States. Experience the world before you get caught thinking about what you should have done or where you should have gone.

**UPDATE**

I am still currently teaching in Korea, but every day here seems like a new experience in Mokpo, from within the classroom to the city itself. Not saying that it has all been great or that it has all been bad, but instead that it has been a new adventure. Mopko has a great community and I feel that I have been able to grow with during my time here so far. I have gone on a Temple Stay visit, hiked a few mountains, and experienced the big cities like Busan and Seoul. Teaching abroad is an experience, it isn't just a job.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Christopher
8/10

CIEE TEFL and The Mission Abroad

From when I started the TEFL online course, to when I was searching/waiting for a job, to when I was placed and started my job here in Korea, the CIEE and it's staff have been right there with me every step of the way with the patience of a Buddhist monk. I never once felt like I was alone in the dark with no direction and no guidance.

Now that I am here, my job has been very difficult, but the CIEE have continued to give me other options and support to deal with my struggle with the new school. This has allowed this job to seem more like a healthy challenge than an unfair predicament. The CIEE in addition to providing online support also allows us (foriegn CIEE teachers) plenty of opportunities to meet with CIEE staff in person in Seoul to have healthy discussions and to have a good time unwinding and relaxing.

Ultimately, I'm glad I joined the CIEE teaching abroad crew in South Korea.

How can this program be improved?
I feel as the staff members here in Korea could be in better contact with the school's staff they communicate with.
Yes, I recommend this program

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About CIEE Teach Abroad

CIEE offers paid teaching positions in Chile, China, Czech Republic, Morocco, South Korea, Spain, Thailand, and Vietnam, and volunteer programs in Spain and Portugal, for university graduates looking to teach English abroad and immerse themselves in...