Teaching Jobs in Korea with Footprints

Video and Photos

Sunset volleyball
Me on Jeju, about to catch a ferry
I made the mistake of showing them a clip of Mr Bean, now break time has become British comedy hour!
Super Hero mask lesson!
Children never lie! I am handsome!
My kids in their traditional Hanbok.
Visiting the temples is a great experience and you can even do a temple stay at some.
Korea has various ski resorts to enjoy during winter.


Around since 2001, Footprints is one of the longest-running recruiters working in Korea. With several former teachers on staff, we are among the most experienced agencies in South Korea - for both public and private school jobs.

We do not recruit for just any school though. Footprints only partners with a small number of reputable organizations that we know we can trust. We have great options for you to work with schools in locations all around the country, but we aim for quality over quantity!

Applying for a visa for Korea will take time and patience, and Footprints knows like no other how to turn this seemingly daunting process into smooth sailing.

Seasoned teacher? Fresh out of college and looking for your first overseas teaching experience? Either way, we can help you find the position you are looking for. Take your career on a field trip! Apply today!

  • Footprints partners works with a select number of private schools who have a proven, positive track record with past teachers!
  • Competitive salaries with housing and airfare reimbursement always included!
  • Teachers can live well and save up to half their salary, or travel, or pay down student loans, or... who knows?
  • Enjoy the unique language, culture, and cuisine of Korea!
  • Add professional experience to your resume while earning a professional salary!

Questions & Answers


based on 18 reviews
  • Benefits 9.3
  • Support 8.4
  • Fun 8.9
  • Facilities 9.2
  • Safety 9.2
Showing 1 - 15 of 18
Yes, I recommend this program

3 years and counting!

Recently I started my 3rd contract with EPIK! My original plan was to stay for 1 year but that has turned into 3. Needless to say things have been pretty good here! EPIK is a good company to work for, but I have seen a little bit of a decline in new EPIK recruits lately, part of the reason is the Korean Public Education system are beginning to cut down on the amount of TEFL Public school teachers in Jeju and other regions, so I have seen many EPIK teachers take the leap to private academy's that seem to offer better housing and benefits. For me I prefer big classes over smaller private ones (I like the chaos of having 30 kids in a class haha) so I am content at the moment! I do feel however that after my current contract has finished I will be moving on to another country to teach and the first place I will start my search is with Footprints! From start to finish you guys helped me all the way to Korea! Without Footprints watching over me, this whole adventure would have been ever more scary. Your help with the application and visa process was invaluable! Not only that but once I arrived at the EPIK orientation in Seoul I was lucky enough to meet other Footprint recruits. It was also great that while in Korea footprint linked us with other recruits who had already been here for some time. Your continued support has been greatly appreciated!

Yes, I recommend this program

Great experience with Footprints

My experience with Footprints was great. They provided ample resources and assistance in navigating the complicated application process. Even after I arrived in South Korea, they were there to help me get on my way. I think the best compliment I can give is that the recruitment process was so smooth, the details of it practically disappeared. Everything was easy and straightforward.

Teaching abroad was unlike anything I've ever done in my life. To attempt to describe it in fewer than tens of thousands of words would not be doing the experience justice, so I will say this instead: if you have the opportunity and the means to go aboard, do it. At least once in your life. I may never live aboard again, but I will always be glad that I did. I learned things about myself and about the world that I couldn't have imagined learning before I left, and I'm sure you'll feel the same if you teach aboard.

Yes, I recommend this program

My splendid Footprints experience

I went to South Korea in 2013, so it was a while ago, but I still remember to this day that I had such a pleasant experience working with Footprints Recruiting. The whole application process went really smoothly and I've since recommended Footprints to many friends who wanted to go teach abroad.

The team I worked with was very helpful before my departure as well as during my time in Korea. Their professionalism were reassuring, they had excellent knowledge of the whole process to answer all of my questions and I felt like I was in good hands the whole time. The information brochures/booklets supplied by Footprints with regards to forms and visas were also very thorough and they were wonderful guidelines to ensure that one complete all application forms thoroughly.

I taught at a Hagwon in Wonju, Gangwon-do. It was a small setup with only 2 foreign teachers, but our director looked after us really well. The work environment and housing was all up to standard and we had nothing to complain about. You read of so many people on the internet who've had bad experiences at Hagwons, so it's good to know that Footprints screens their schools properly.

Working abroad is such a great experience and Footprints is a free and reliable service to help you through the process. They will make sure that your work abroad experience is a stress free and memorable one!

Yes, I recommend this program

Teaching in Seoul via EPIK

"I had an amazing experience, teaching English in Seoul for 2 years. The preparation and application process was made far easier thanks to Footprints. Considering the application process is lengthy and pretty complicated, it was made far more simple, being guided through, step by step (especially as some of the documents are expensive to obtain, and I wouldn’t want to make any mistakes!!)

As for teaching in Korea, it was brilliant! I’d taught around Europe previously but this was a really different experience. The teaching itself was straight forward, some of the easiest lessons I’d prepared actually. The staff were friendly and helpful and I got a great reception from the students too. Korea was fascinating but utterly mad in many ways, I loved it! I learnt a vast amount and grew in myself as a result- I couldn’t have asked for a better teaching experience overseas."

Yes, I recommend this program

Helpful and friendly

It was a few years ago, but I remember Footprints being extremely helpful in assisting me with my application and looking over everything to make sure I was good to go. The step-by-step process they led me through before I finally applied definitely took a lot of stress off of me as far as time management and making sure I had everything ready to send to EPIK. Also, everyone I spoke on the phone with (I'm sorry I don't remember names this far on) was really friendly and pleasant to speak with.

Yes, I recommend this program

Footprints helped me get to Korea

From the beginning of the teaching application, and all the way up to landing your job and afterwards as well, Footprints has always been most professional with me. They have people you can directly talk to, that will indeed help you. Going with this recruiting agency, as opposed to chancing it on your own, will definitely give you an easier peace of mind in the life-changing process of becoming an English teacher overseas. I have been working in Korea for the last three years as an elementary school English teacher, and it's all in debt to them for helping me get here.

Yes, I recommend this program

Highly recommended!

I am so glad that I decided to apply to EPiK through Footprints. They made the whole process much, much easier and gave me the peace of mind to know that I was sending a completed, error-free application to the hiring staff at EPiK! They also put me in touch with The Arrival Store, which was a great way to ensure that some essential items like bedsheets and towels would be at my school when I arrived at my placement!

Yes, I recommend this program

An Excellent Decision

So far, I'm having a great experience teaching in a public school in South Korea.

First the bad:
Although a bit of the information provided in Footprints' Word documents were out of date (for example, Gangwon province no longer has 5 weeks of vacation; now it has only 4 weeks, like everywhere else). In addition, I noticed that many other recruiters had provided care packages and other support upon arrival at the airport, which is a really nice idea.

And now the good:
Otherwise, it was really great working with Footprints. The guides for filling out forms and getting hold of documents were incredibly helpful, as was the feedback during the interview process

Korea is a really amazing place, and I wish more North Americans knew about it as a tourist destination, or even just as an interesting country. Every weekend, I see a new place, learn a new activity, have a new adventure, and during the week I have a very stimulating experience teaching high school in the north of South Korea.

It seems my placement is a bit different from most of the other August 2014 EPIK intakes (English Program in Korea - the public school English program). Most people I met are teaching middle/elementary school, have smaller classes and fewer coteachers than I do, and sometimes need to work on weekends, which I do not. However, there are as many upsides as there are downs to my different situation, and I'm really happy with my decision to do this, and pleased with my choice of Footprints to help me through it.

What would you improve about this program?
As I mentioned, keeping the documents up to date, providing some sort of care/welcome on arrival, and some continuing support once actually in the country are my suggestions.
Yes, I recommend this program

Thorough and Easy to Work With!

The Footprints team was easy to work with, and very supportive during my entire application process. Even though they had many applications to keep up with, I felt like I was always kept up to speed on what was going, and my application was of utmost importance. It was easy to communicate with the team, and my emails were usually answered right away or sometimes even by phone. It was extremely helpful to have someone on my side who knew the process inside and out, and could help keep me on top of deadlines and expectations. I highly recommend Footprints if you are looking for a recruiter to teach abroad.

Yes, I recommend this program

I would recommend Footprints

I contacted Footprints after doing quite a bit of research about recruiters placing teachers in South Korea. I was very happy with the information provided in terms of paperwork required and availability of jobs meeting my requirements.

I was offered three interviews and three jobs in South Korea. I chose the job in Ulsan after reading some good reviews of that city and the foreign community. I was incredibly happy with my placement at my hagwon. It was professionally ran, and I did not have any problems with pay or work hours. My director spoke fluent English and was incredibly helpful. That wasn't the case for many of the people I knew! Those of us who used Footprints were all happy with our placements.

South Korea was an amazing place to work, if you are willing to work. It is a job and you have to approach it that way. You will be teaching children and that can be difficult if you don't have any experience with kids. I found the people that had the most problems came to Korea for a vacation or didn't like or want to teach children.

If you have an opportunity to teach I highly suggest Ulsan. It is an amazing city with a vibrant foreigner community. You are immersed in Korean culture, but with some amenities from home.

I am now a teacher in the USA and I credit that to my experience teaching in South Korea.

Yes, I recommend this program

An EPIK Experience

Life as an ESL teacher in Korea is not a perfect life, there I said it. However, let's be honest, life will never be perfect no matter where you live. What a job through Footprints Recruiting CAN do is change your life and help you ACHIEVE your goals.

I had three major goals when I arrived:
1. Pay off my student loans
2. Travel and experience a variety of cultures
3. Grow personally and professionally.

Upon the recommendation of a friend, I thoroughly researched Footprints and quickly found the option of teaching in Korea to be the best way for me to reach all three of my goals.

Footprints was incredibly helpful with the application process (a dizzying amount of paperwork), and even now (one year later), I still receive check-in emails once in a while making sure that everything is well. I know that if I ever run into a problem, Footprints will help me.

As I said before, life here is not perfect and you will experience frustrations, but I have found that with the support of Footprints, along with remembering a few pieces of wisdom, life here can be a fulfilling adventure.

Words of advice:

- It's important to be aware of your expectations and assumptions, and even more importantly, be able to modify and adjust them when necessary.
-Be flexible and try and understand the cultural differences.

- Life as an expatriate is about thriving, not simply surviving.
- Soak up the new and weird experiences, try something different!

- Perhaps the most important thing I have realized, the concept that has taken root and blossomed is: Life as an expatriate is all about the people.
- Make friends that will last a lifetime, and enjoy the happy faces of inspired children.

My students make me smile everyday, they also make me mad several times a week. Its my choice to look over the frustrating moments and hold on to memories like this one:

(after a fun class period of being silly)

Me: "Ok, class time is over, good job today!"

Philip: As he plops down beside me with a beautiful smile and contented sigh, "Teacher......"

Me: "Yes, Philip?"

Philip: "Teacher, today was wonderful!"

Me: "Yes, I think so too."

My advice for anyone thinking of teaching in Korea through Footprints Recruiting: Just do it!

What would you improve about this program?
Any program will have its imperfections, I would suggest providing a survey to alumni asking them what things they wished they had been told at orientation. I think the orientation week could be revamped in a way that would make it much more helpful.
Yes, I recommend this program

Overall Good Experience

Footprints Recruiting did a great job with assisting me with obtaining a reputable teaching position in South Korea. I work in the capital city of Gangwon-do, perhaps the most beautiful province in South Korea.

While I love Seoul and go there often via the ITX, which connects my city to Seoul super fast (70 mins), I love living here in Chuncheon and could not have asked for a better placement. The locals are welcoming, friendly, and very hospitable.

I teach at an all-boys high school. With the exception of large classes, which can be challenging, my school (e.g. principal, assistant principal, faculty and staff) are great and make me feel very welcome here and they provided me with a very nice and spacious apartment (2BR/2BA). I was so shocked.

I have just one co-teacher and I teach 21 hours per week and my average class size is 40 students. Most of my students are good, but with such large class sizes it can be challenging. Yet, I'm thankful that I only teach at one school in lieu of more than one.

I've been here for seven months and I can truly say that coming to South Korea was one of the best decisions I have made and I intend to stay longer than a year. When I first got here, I was certain that I would only be here for one year, but life is good and I'm not ready to leave. I have made with friends with people from many different places who have become like family to me here and I get to experience Korean culture and do something I greatly enjoy.

What would you improve about this program?
Class sizes are too large and often times, are mixed-level. This poses challenges with class management and being an effective teacher. But this isn't necessarily a program issue, as your situation will vary depending on your school. You could be responsible for teaching 500+ students per week or less than 100. It just depends on your placement, but most high schools are very large.

Also with high school students, they take a lot of exams and are extremely stressed and you may find that many are unmotivated to speak English and maybe even apathetic. Also, your school may or may not have a curriculum, particularly if you are teaching in a high school. This has its advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage, you have freedom to teach whatever you like in your English Conversation classes. The disadvantage is that if you have never taught before, I could see how a new teacher would feel lost, maybe even clueless, especially if his/her co-teacher is hands-off.
Yes, I recommend this program

A great gig

I had a very positive experience with EPIK (through Footprints). The school I was placed at was a reputable public school in a very nice neighbourhood. There was one co-teacher who was personally responsible for helping me with both work and non-work related affairs (such as how to open a bank account, how to set up internet at my home etc.). I formed very close friendships with my coteachers and still keep in touch with them to this day. They really helped me understand more about not only Korean culture, but about the work culture there. If I could do it all over again, I definitely wouldn't think twice.

What would you improve about this program?
It takes a bit of time for information to trickle down from the administration. The foreign teachers are usually the last to find out about schedule changes and the like. I often wished I had found out about cancelled classes etc. sooner.
Yes, I recommend this program

Come teach in Korea

Coming to Korea is certainly one of the best decisions I've made and I thank Footprints Recruiting for being so helpful in the process. I've been asked by several people that are intrigued in teaching abroad and I always mention Footprints because you all really made it as simple as possible and walked me through step by step. I always recommend going through a recruiter, especially Footprints.

I'd like to share my experience with EPIK. English Program in Korea provides teachers with a 9 day orientation that made adjusting to Korea incredibly easy. We learned about Korean culture, language, the school system, food, and teaching strategies to prepare us for the classroom. Everyone is so friendly and down to earth, you meet so many people that are in the same exact situation as you and sharing that experience is already one way to connect.

Groups are split depending on what area in Korea they'll be teaching, so I met friends who now live in my town and province. My group was for Gangwon province, there were about 30 of us. Around 15-20 of us meet up at least once a month, or we visit each other during the weekends. It's really like nothing else I've experienced. I met people that I know I will friends with for a very long time. Orientation really did help me since I had no teaching experience aside from the TESL certificate.

Life in Korea is amazing. I live in a smaller town called Taebaek in the mountains of Gangwon province. The town used to be known for its coal mining and is the highest city in South Korea. I teach at an all boys middle school, a five minute walk from my apartment. Teaching has its ups and downs. Boys can be difficult to manage in the classroom, but overall my experience has been very pleasant. I recently had my six months mark and am considering renewing my contract another year.

I'm lucky in ways I didn't realize when I first arrived. Although I live in a rural area, we have a decent city center and main trains and buses that travel to larger cities within three hours. Also, the foreigners in my town are now like family to me. We have a real tight community and gather once or twice a week to eat out and sometimes take weekend trips.

The majority of foreign teachers I know feel a similar way, some haven't found a reason to leave and have been here for many years. Our jobs are not that absorbing, the benefits are great. We don't worry about rent too many bills. We are paid well enough that we can afford to eat out a couple times a week, take weekend trips, visit nearby countries on vacation and still be able to save. The consensus is: for anyone who is thinking about coming to Korea, don't make it a maybe just do it. You won't regret it.

No, I don't recommend this program

GETs are not the problem

EPIK has the potential to be a great program, but can never be under the current culture of Korean education. From my two years of experience under EPIK, the failings of Korean students when it comes to English education are placed largely on the GETs, which is the last place it should be. As a GET, I had no means of authority or discipline in the classroom, so students ran rampant and co-teachers, when in class, rarely did anything to control the students. Slaps on the head or hands with rulers did nothing to discourage troublemakers or improve classroom morale.

When it comes to co-teachers, they NEED to be able to speak English, not only to effectively teach the language but to be able to communicate with the GET. Too many of my friends were little more than tape recorders or robots in the classroom, and had no means of improving their situation because the co-teacher couldn't understand them. In the US, if a teacher is instructing on a foreign language, they are required to be fluent in it, in reading, writing, grammar, AND speech. My English Dept. head could BARELY speak English and had no passion as a teacher, whereas my co-teacher in my last school was fluent and passionate but always cut down by her superiors. That is not right and an all-to-common example of the failure of Korean culture when it comes to education. The older teacher is NOT always right.

If EPIK wants to be a viable program, one that effectively instructs students on how to use English, there needs to be a nationwide curriculum, one that is taught by every teacher across the country. It's no wonder that Korean students are learning English at different paces and levels when every GET is forced to go it alone. Both years, I arrived to NO curriculum, having to scramble to create my own lessons with NO basis to follow. It's certainly expected to have to do lesson-planning, but without a base curriculum, what are we to teach that gives ALL students an equal chance to learn?

There's only so much whitewash one can use before the dirt shows thru, and that's what is happening with the Korean education system. I regularly saw Korean teachers faking important documents to hide the truth of their students' grades; I was told point-blank that all our high school seniors would graduate REGARDLESS of their grades. What's the point in teaching if everyone passes anyway? My Korean co-workers regularly commended my diligence in lesson-planning and teaching, but it's because it's a diligence they don't have! Too many times my KT told me she didn't care about the high school students because of their attitudes and behaviour, and so would not teach them. The growing ignorance of this generation of Korean students will surely show through the whitewash the longer the truth is covered up.

By cancelling the EPIK program, as is rumoured to be happening, you are not fixing the problem. The GETs are not the problem; they want to be the solution, to be the driving force in English education, but we are not given the tools, only the blame. And so, South Korea will isolate itself from the Western world by removing the thousands of Westerners who are eager to share their culture and experiences, allowing Korea to dive deeper into the homogeneity it so prizes. Maybe North and South will someday reunify, but in my view, the isolation caused by dismissing waygook teachers will create in the South a culture akin to that of the North, and they can be alone together.