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Abbreviations & Acronyms
ESL - English as a Second Language | TESL - Teaching English as a Second Language | EFL - English as a Foreign Language | TEFL - Teaching English as a Foreign Language | ESOL - English for Speakers of Other Languages | TESOL - Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages | ELT - English Language Teaching | ELL - English Language Learning | CALL - Computer Assisted Language Learning | TOEFL - Test of English as a Foreign Language | TOEIC - Test of English for International Communication
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When considering where in the world you want to teach English, the big 3 for ESL/EFL/TEFL jobs are:
Asia: Japan, South Korea, China, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia are the popular spots because they have so many ESL/EFL/TEFL jobs available. In addition, there are always positions coming up infrequently in places like Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia though you must be a qualified teacher to obtain these. You may even find positions for Cambodia and Laos but you should look at the reputation of ESL/EFL/TEFL schools carefully due to lack of a solid legal system for recourse.
Europe: Everyone dreams of teaching English in Greece, Italy, France or Spain but unless you are an European Union (EU) citizen it is difficult to obtain these teaching positions. The more frequent ESL/EFL/TEFL jobs are available in Eastern Europe in places like Romania, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Ukraine and Russia. These positions don\'t pay very well by western standards but they provide a lot of opportunity for travel while not teaching.
The Middle East: Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates (UAE) are the most common with Bahrain, Yemen and Qatar occasionally having ESL/EFL/TEFL job openings. Now there are also more teaching positions available in Iraq. The Middle East is popular for the money paid for teaching positions but don\'t expect much of a social life due to cultural restraints.
If you would like more tips on how to find your ESL/EFL/TEFL job, please visit Evaluating Teaching ESL/EFL/TEFL Job Offers for advice to English Teachers considering teaching English abroad. Characteristics of a Sought After ESL/EFL/TEFL Teacher & Interviewing for ESL/EFL/TEFL Teaching Jobs are good to show you what ESL/EFL/TEFL schools want. Before starting search for an ESL/EFL/TEFL job, see Preparing Your ESL/EFL/TEFL Teacher Resume. Best of luck on your new career teaching English!