When discussing people’s reasons for TEFL, the most common motivation would probably be something along the lines of experiencing life in far-off lands and cultures. Whilst this sounds great, there can be a whole host of problems that come along with such an endeavour e.g. homesickness, job insecurity, and poor pay. Without putting it down too much – teaching abroad is fantastic and should definitely be considered – going overseas may not be for everyone.
It may come as a surprise, but teaching English as a foreign language in Ireland is a very feasible idea and is more popular than you might think. With generally favourable salaries (compared to other TEFL destinations) and good job welfare, Ireland is a prime choice for those hoping to teach. You should note that, since our courses are not ACELS (Accreditation and Coordination of English Language Services) accredited, the types of jobs open to you will be eligible for are limited to volunteering, summer camp roles, and one-to-one tutoring – no school teaching, unfortunately.
Hiring periods: August to early September are the best due to the start of term
Average salary: Around €1,500 a month. This can vary depending on experience, employer, and location.
Types of contract: Summer camps, volunteering, and private tutoring.
Unsurprisingly, the best places to find jobs are in the larger towns and cities. This doesn’t mean it’s impossible to find employment in more rural areas, just that is a lot easier to try the larger population centres.
As the capital of the Republic of Ireland, as well as the biggest city in the country, Dublin is probably the best choice for job-seekers. Home to over 500,000 people within its limits and a large, multicultural urban centre, this city is a fantastic TEFL destination. With a world-renowned nightlife, from the touristy Temple Bar to the surrounding streets of the city centre, a constantly improving food scene, and historical delights ranging from the Normans to 19th-century architecture there’s something for everyone here.
Nestled in the south of the island, Cork is a pretty city with coffee shops, pubs, and historic street galore. As a university town, there is a very prominent youthful and cosmopolitan feel which makes it a superb base to start your TEFL career in. You might find life in Cork is a little less expensive than its northern neighbour, but also with slightly fewer opportunities purely due to the size difference of both.
As it’s part of the UK, Belfast isn’t affected by ACELS which makes it the only place in Ireland EFL tutors can teach at language schools.
Similar to both Dublin and Cork in that it boasts its own sizable student population which can be used to your benefit as a TEFL teacher. For culture buffs, Belfast’s rocky past is remembered through the city’s vibrant, politically-charged murals that decorate some of the city’s streets. Nature lovers can take advantage of the proximity of the city to the nearby Giant’s Causeway and Black Mountain for interesting walks and sightseeing. Oh, and more recently, Belfast has been blessed with being the main base of production for the giant of a show Game of Thrones. A fan? Then wander through some of the sets used by the crew and cast to film many of the scenes of the show.
Types of Classes
Summer camps are the closest you will get to teaching at a language school here. Expect to be teaching young learners on short-term contracts (usually around 8 weeks). Camps rely on holidaymakers and their children to run their business so you should search in tourist-heavy areas for vacancies.
Online tutoring is a very popular method of teaching, not only in TEFL but for all manners of education and learning. Instead of going to the students, they come to you. It’s perfect if moving overseas, or to another part of the country, is out of the question. However, there’s more to teaching online than simply opening up your laptop and opening Skype. You need to market yourself, create an online presence, figure out which platforms to use, and more! Don’t worry, we have a course designed to help you land on your feet and get you started in the right direction. Additionally, there are blog-posts highlighting various aspects of online teaching you might find interesting.
Similar to online teaching, private tutoring provides a sense of freedom in that you have a large amount of control over your schedule, wages, and who you want to teach. Also similar to online teaching is that there’s more to it than might initially appear. Getting your name out there, without the assistance of a larger company, can be difficult. Word of mouth, newspapers, and, of course, the Internet will be of much use to you as start-up tutor.
Due to the nature of teaching in the Republic of Ireland, it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what you should expect in terms of requirements. Summer camps are most likely to look for teachers with a TEFL certificate, with the occasional preference for past teaching experience. Degrees usually aren’t necessary but don’t count on that.
As online and private tutoring tends to be a lot more freelance than standard teaching, there’s no real standard for qualification nor experience, unless you decide to work for a tutoring agency. If you go freelance, then it’s still very much recommended that you have some level of certification and/or experience so as to prove to potential students that you are an expert in the field.
To teach in schools, a course that is accredited by ACELS is necessary.
TEFL Course Locations
For those wanting the training required to become a good teacher, we offer weekend courses at a number of venues in both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Below are all the locations:
- Dublin – Jurys Inn, Parnell Street, Dublin
- Belfast – Europa Hotel, Great Victoria Street, Belfast
- Cork – Clayton Hotel Cork City, Lapps Quay, Cork
- Sligo – The Glasshouse, Swan Point, Sligo
- Galway – Connacht Hotel, Old Dublin Road, Galway
Keep in mind that as our courses are not ACELS approved, only summer camp, volunteer, and one-to-one teaching will be available to you as teachers (in ROI).