Teach English Abroad in North America

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Teaching Abroad in North America

North America can be a highly competitive teaching market, and that is exactly why you should not shy away from the challenge. While Mexico, the United States, and Canada all boast large and powerful economies, it is no secret that they also suffer from their fair share of educational inequality within. Deciding to teach abroad in North America will bring your educational career to a dynamic region of immense diversity and innovation. Think you’re up to it?


North America is commonly thought of as the region which encompasses Mexico, the United States, and Canada. Combined, North America is home to a population of nearly 500 million citizens.

Canada, while the second largest country on earth by land area, is home to just 33 million of these citizens. Ranking highly in measures of equality, human development, and per capita income, Canada also boasts one of the best education systems in the world, and can provide a great model to learn from for aspiring global educators who teach abroad in North America.

On the southern end of the continent lays Mexico, a nation of over 125 million people, making it officially the largest Spanish speaking country on the planet. Mexico will provide a much different experience teaching abroad in North America than will Canada and the United States, as it is both classified as a Less Developed Country and also forms the northernmost part of Latin America.

Last but not least, it is also possible to teach abroad in North America in the United States. While outsiders often view the United States in the context of its popular culture and geopolitics, coming to the country to teach abroad will expose you to a whole different side of the world superpower. Preview: its education system needs a lot of help!

Teaching Jobs in North America

There are a diversity of positions you can seek out in order to teach abroad in North America. Teaching English is the most common position that international educators tend to pursue abroad; however because Mexico is the only country on the continent where English is not the native language, your TEFL options will be somewhat confined to this region. Many educators do, however, enroll in TEFL training programs in either Canada or the USA before seeking employment elsewhere.

Another option by which to teach abroad in North America is to look for job openings at international or bilingual schools where you can teach additional subjects such as science, math, and art. Visa considerations and labor laws can unfortunately make long term-employment as a teacher abroad in North America quite difficult. However temporary programs are a good way to teach abroad in North America for up to two years, and you never know what further opportunity lays down the road!

Whatever teaching job in North America you ultimately land, private tutoring is another means by which international educators often pick up extra income in the region. Families hire tutors for all different types of academic subjects, and often your teach abroad program in North America can help you seek out these opportunities.

Salaries & Costs

Teaching salaries and living expenses vary significantly throughout the North American continent. Because it is a developing country, Mexico is typically the most affordable destination for international educators. On the flip side, costs of living in Canada and the United States can be quite expensive, with majorly popular cities such as New York and San Francisco laying significantly above the mean.

You will almost always earn more money teaching at a private school in North America than at a public school, as these academic institutions are much better funded. Still, you will earn enough to get by in either market, so don’t worry too much; teaching isn’t about the money anyway!

Accommodation & Visas

Educators are often expected to find their own apartment while teaching abroad in North America, though some programs are also willing to help organize accommodation for you. Living with roommates is generally much more affordable than living in an individual apartment while on a teacher’s salary in North America. Your housing options may also differ significantly depending on whether you are teaching in a city or a smaller town.

You will usually need to be sponsored by your local employer or teach abroad program in North America in order to qualify for a work visa. Visas can be competitive in the region, but it is usually possible to work for at least one or two years and then assess your options from there. For more information regarding your specific goals as an educator abroad in North America, you can check out our Embassy Directory.

Benefits & Challenges

Diversity. Part of what makes North America such an enriching continent to teach abroad in is the tremendous diversity of people and viewpoints within. As an international educator you could not ask for a more stimulating environment.

Competition. Lot’s of people want to teach abroad in North America, so use this opportunity to fuel your ambition as an educator abroad and bring your teaching skill-set to new heights.

Adventure. Let’s not forget that teaching abroad is just a great adventure, plain and simple. You will meet new people, see new things, and return a better-experienced and wiser person.

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A Guide To

Teaching Abroad in North America


62 Teach Abroad Programs in North America


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Each year, thousands of people of all ages from a variety of educational backgrounds become TEFL TESOL certified. In a few months, you could be an International TEFL Academy graduate telling your friends how great it is to live and teach English abroad!


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Where the world is your classroom ITTT offers a wide variety of high quality, internationally recognized TEFL and TESOL courses. Courses are available in-class, online or through a combination of both formats. Our teacher training courses enable graduates to obtain teaching jobs in nearly any location worldwide. No previous experience or qualifications are required. ITTT offers certificat...


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If you're looking for the perfect teaching abroad opportunity, then take an i-to-i TEFL qualification. With our range of online TEFL courses based in Canada, you'll be able to start teaching and travelling quicker than you thought possible! As an established TEFL course provider in Canada, we've qualified thousands of teachers in TEFL and helped send these graduates overseas to start their T...


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Earn extra money with your computer skills with Skooli online tutoring! Skooli is now accepting applications for university-level computer literacy tutors. More about this position and Skooli: We’re starting a brand new computer literacy-specific initiative; you'll be working as an online tutor for university students with a Skooli partner school to teach introductory computer literacy st...


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If you're longing to live abroad and get paid to travel, take the next best step and learn to teach English! Our internationally recognized, accredited 120 hour TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course will prepare you to teach English to anyone, anywhere. In fact, you could be on your way to living abroad in just 3 short months. We’re fully accredited with the ACDL (Accredit...


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Land an amazing job an an American/international school through The International Educator (TIE).  Participants can work at international schools around the world including the U.S.  K-12 Teachers must be able to teach their subject in English and should have 2 years experience in order to take advantage of these incredible opportunities.


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Our TEFL program by the beach in beautiful Puerto Vallarta offers a 4-week face-to-face training course that will provide you with the skills necessary to teach English. With this qualification you are able to teach English worldwide, or we will guarantee you a paid position upon completion of the training. TEFL training in Puerto Vallarta means you get the combination of learning how to te...


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Teach English in a language institute Program Includes: • API advisor to assist you with all pre-departure needs, including visa assistance, and liaise with partner throughout program • Airport pick-up / arrival assistance • Medical, Life, and Travel Insurance • On-site program orientation • On-site support from partner and host school


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Maximo Nivel’s TEFL Certification is the most highly reviewed TEFL course on GoAbroad. Our internationally recognized TEFL course is now available online and can be completed in 2-4 weeks. The Maximo Nivel online TEFL is very unique because you are coached one-on-one with a live TEFL Trainer and you get real practical teaching experience teaching English learners via Skype. The TEFL ...


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UNI-Prep Institute's TEFL certification course is online, accredited and internationally recognized to qualify trainees to work as an English/ESL/EFL teacher anywhere in the world. The 120-hour TESOL/TEFL certification course offers videos, tutor support, free shipping, and many other benefits. The institute also provides job support and exclusive placement opportunities. With offices in USA an...


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Our highly trained, dynamic instructors focus on providing you with the practical classroom skills you need to become an effective ESL teacher. We cover a wide range of ESL teaching strategies. During the 60-hour in-class course, you will be exposed to a variety of concepts which include: interactive language teaching; principles of second language acquisition; multiple intelligence theory; cla...


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Get certified in 4 weeks and start traveling abroad. Apply today to begin your adventure with the premier school for TESOL teacher training: Teaching House. With over 300 courses annually and more than 20 global locations, Teaching House is the best place to get your CELTA, the most widely-recognized TEFL certificate in the world. All of our courses are accredited by Cambridge University.


Founded in 1963, this K-13 school follows the British National Curriculum at Key Stage 1,2 and 3 and then IGCSE at Key Stage 4 and the IB DP at Key Stage 5. There are about 1100 students in total and 90% of students are Mexican, though many also have other passports. The school offer extensive and generous Professional Development opportunities and they are continually seeking excellence. Ex...


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Experience Mexico as a "non-tourist." You'll practice English conversation and pronunciation skills in small groups with university students. The focus is on English conversation, not grammar, so you don't need previous teaching experience. Each class follows a syllabus and uses texts which guide you through daily lessons. Team members often add examples from their personal lives to liven up th...


Our course focuses on French language development and increasing awareness of social, environmental and cultural issues in the communities we explore. The course combines classroom learning, practical application of skills, home stays, cultural activities, and service learning. On this program, instructors will also participate in adventure activities from surfing to hiking. Broadreach prog...