Employment...

The TESOL/TEFL programme at each of AVSE’s 3 premier locations – Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Phnom Penh – comes with ‘hands-on’ job help immediately after you’ve completed the course related requirements. With the In-class TESOL programme, this typically occurs in week 4. Students who are enrolled in our Virtual or Self-paced TESOL programme can access ‘hands-on’ job help as an optional extra (fee involved).

There’s no doubt about it, teaching English in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Phnom Penh or elsewhere in Southeast Asia is a wise career choice. It’s possible to make a western-type salary in countries where the cost of living is substantially less than in western countries. Putting money to one side, teaching English in Hanoi or some other exotic location in Southeast Asia also offers an ‘expat lifestyle’ that most people only dream about. Moreover, for those people with a kind heart or a fully-fledged egalitarian streak, teaching English in a developing country constitutes tangible action directed at improving the lives of others and making our world a better place.

The demand for dynamic, qualified English language teachers in Vietnam and Cambodia is extremely high. So high, there is every reason to believe that you’ll be in a paid job within days of completing the Australian Government accredited TESOL programme at AVSE in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City or Phnom Penh. Certainly that’s our experience over the past 10+ years as the market leader in Vietnam and Cambodia for TESOL training.

We are often asked how graduates of the TESOL/TEFL programme at AVSE consistently land the best jobs teaching English in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Phnom Penh. Our response is:

  1. Every application for the TESOL/TEFL programme at AVSE is thoroughly vetted;
  2. We offer a quality product that comes with ‘top shelf’ accreditation and international recognition;
  3. We have an established network of partner schools and language centres built up over many years working in the TESOL/TEFL sector;
  4. Trainees are made aware before they join our programme that they have obligations that must be fulfilled – successfully completing the necessary assessment tasks and conducting themselves in a professional manner are just two of these obligations;
  5. AVSE has specialist staff based at each of our training locations who work with our TESOL graduates, side-by-side, to land that all-important first teaching job;
  6. All TESOL/TEFL trainers and tutors at AVSE are qualified, professional educators, who hold specialist Vocational Training qualifications mandated by the Australian Government. It is not enough to be a qualified teacher, to work as a teacher-trainer; and
  7. Every trainer employed by AVSE to deliver a TESOL course has worked as an ESL teacher in both Vietnam and Cambodia at one time or another during their career. They’ve been ‘on the other side of the desk’ and are therefore well-placed to guide people who are just starting out teaching English in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City or Phnom Penh.

You can be assured that job opportunities teaching English in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City or Phnom Penh outstrip the number of suitably qualified people many times over. With Australian Government accredited TESOL certification from AVSE, you’ll certainly be in a strong position for the best teaching jobs that are available regardless of your destination. While the job market in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Phnom Penh for TESOL certified teachers is equally strong, the teaching experience in each of these three cities is unique. Let’s explore this notion a bit further.

Teaching English in Hanoi

Teaching opportunities in Hanoi largely come in 6 forms (in order of job volume): 1. privately owned English Language Centres; 2. Government Schools; 3. International Schools; 4. Company classes; 5. Universities and Colleges; and 6. private tutoring. Conservatively, around 90% of foreigners who are new to teaching English in Hanoi find their first job at an English Language Centre or at a Government School, with the former accounting for around 60% (of the 90%) of placements. While the net income and the number of hours on offer in Language Centres and Government Schools are similar (around US $1,700.00 +/- a month x 100 hours +/-), the work conditions can differ markedly. Here’s some feedback from AVSE alumni:

  • Language Centre hours are typically available in the evening and over the weekend whereas Government School hours are exclusively during the day, Monday to Friday.
  • Class sizes tend to be substantially larger at Government Schools with 50+ students being commonplace. On average, a Language Centre class will have 15 (+/-) students.
  • Working in Government Schools mostly involves doing your hours and going home with minimal interaction with other foreign teachers and local staff. In contrast, privately owned Language Centres are more of a team environment where people take a genuine interest in how each other is doing.

Teaching English in Ho Chi Minh City

Ho Chi Minh City is ‘English Teaching Central’, not just in Vietnam, but worldwide. The job opportunities in Ho Chi Minh City for people who have the skills, knowledge and credentials to teach English are substantial. With key variables such as where jobs are located, pay, hours, class sizes and work environment the difference between teaching English in Ho Chi Minh City and teaching English in Hanoi is not especially noteworthy. What is noteworthy though, is the sheer number of job opportunities in Ho Chi Minh City. You could give yourself a serious headache scrolling through adverts for teaching jobs in Ho Chi Minh City in the multitude of Facebook groups and other online platforms. With so many jobs available and not enough people to fill them, you’re bound to find a teaching position that will meet your personal needs. Keep in mind, the TESOL/TEFL programme at AVSE, regardless of your destination, comes with ‘hands-on’ job support, a commitment we take very seriously.

 Teaching English in Phnom Penh

Teaching jobs in Phnom Penh are almost exclusively found in privately owned schools and kindergartens catering for students from 4 years of age through to the end of High School. AVSE works very closely with three of the largest privately owned schools in Phnom Penh, Westline International School, Western International School and Worldwide International School. Occasionally ESL jobs pop up at Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) and at Universities and Colleges, but they tend to be the domain of people who have quite a bit of teaching experience.

ESL classes in Cambodia mostly take place Monday to Friday, during ‘office-type’ hours, with the occasional class at an NGO taking place early evening. This is a stark contrast to what occurs in Vietnam where the ‘lion’s share’ of teaching hours occur in the evening and over the weekend. Salaries for foreign teachers in Phnom Penh are comparable to what’s on offer for teaching English in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City, but almost certainly you’ll need to work more hours for the same money.

So, what is the bottom line?

Typically, jobs teaching English in Vietnam and Cambodia allow our TESOL/TEFL graduates to take home (net) somewhere between US $1,000.00 and US $2,000.00 per month, depending on where the teacher works, how many hours they work and the availability of non-income benefits such as accommodation, transport and free utilities. Most employers quote and pay a net salary and then deal with the local Taxation Department on the teacher’s behalf.

With the cost of living in Vietnam and Cambodia being a fraction of what it is in most developed countries, English language teachers in this part of the world can realistically expect to save at least half of their income without cutting corners. Teaching English abroad certainly provides stable, ongoing employment, pays a decent income and allows for an excellent lifestyle.

Case Study: Clear Student Debt

In the US student loan debt is now at an eye-watering average of $35,359 after a four-year college degree. This debt takes an average of 10 years to repay. What if it didn’t have to be that way? Could you clear student debts in less than half that amount of time? It’s possible and here’s a real life example.

Bailey from South Carolina trained as a TEFL teacher at AVSE in Ho Chi Minh City and began teaching in Danang (middle of Vietnam) after completing his training. He worked on average 22 hours a week and was able to clear student debt in his name within 2 – 3 years. Bailey didn’t have to scrimp and cut corners to make this happen. In fact, he was living a fantastic expat lifestyle in a warm tropical country, travelling back to the US once a year and having the time of his life.

So yes, teaching English in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Phnom Penh and in other cities in Southeast Asia can help you clear student debt far more quickly than you thought possible – and you’ll have fun doing it.


AVSE-TESOL has a record of achievement

At the end of the day, ‘the proof is in the pudding’. AVSE-TESOL can point to more than 5000 people who have successfully completed our training course and embarked on a rewarding career teaching English in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City or Phnom Penh – and in other cities around the world. The vast majority of these folks landed their first teaching job with support from AVSE-TESOL and they’re pleased to share their personal experience in the event you’d like to know more.

Exotic Vietnam