English Teacher Employers in China
These small, privately run schools are not as common as in Taiwan, but they do exist. Teaching at a bushiban is a good option for someone who prefers not to secure a job through government channels before arriving in China. Regulations are sometimes less strict than at public institutions.
These provide the biggest source of jobs for Westerners.
Contracts usually run for the nine month school year, with a break during the New Year holiday. For more information on government-run university programs, contact the embassy at:
Embassy of the People's Republic of China
2300 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20008
The opportunities for teaching English in China are increasing every day with the opening of more and more privately run schools for paying students where genuine, English-speaking foreign teachers are a great draw.
As a native English-speaker you will find it easy to pick up private tutoring or other teaching jobs almost everywhere in China. You do not need to seek these out-they will find you. In the bigger cities, you may be approached by a company representative to teach business English to a class of businessmen, or by a hotel to teach English in a hotel. Don't worry if you feel you don't have any knowledge of these particular areas. Usually all these people want is to give their employees the chance to listen to a native speaker. You could make a tidy sum by gathering up a number of these smaller teaching jobs. In a big city, you could charge anything up to around Y100 per hour for private tutoring.
Your teaching experience will vary a lot depending on what department you are teaching in. If you are in the English or Foreign Language Department, you are obviously teaching students with a generally equal level of English language background, but they may have had exposure to foreign teachers before, and they may not be so motivated to better their English and look forward to a nice, steady job as an interpreter. In the business department, however, your students' English could be at vastly different levels. They may be wildly excited to have the first foreign teacher they've ever seen, and they might be super-motivated to improve their English so they can get a good job at a foreign company.
Generally, a foreign teacher at a university teaches twelve to sixteen hours a week. This teaching may consist exclusively of oral English teaching, or a combination of oral exercises, writing, reading, and listening.