Types Of English Teaching Jobs In Korea

English Education In South Korea

Considering how largely education is valued in South Korea, it comes with no surprise that it’s become a central hub for many current and aspiring educators. There are many different types of English teaching jobs in Korea. Below are a few pros and cons to consider when thinking about teaching in the peninsula.


Korean students learning English at Chungdahm Institute in South Korea

Public Schools

A native English language teacher in a classroom for EPIK


The English Program in Korea (also known as EPIK) is the best way to get your foot into Korea’s public school system. EPIK offers some flexibility regarding curriculum and teaching methods, as they typically cater to bigger class sizes. 


There’s some limitations regarding location preferences—one could end up in a very rural area. It’s common for one instructor to be assigned to each school so there will likely not be any foreign colleagues. Also, the pay may be less competitive—as pay caps within the public school system are precisely set.


Private Academies (Hagwons)


For those preferring a more lucrative salary, hagwons or private academies might be the better route—as private academies tend to have more structured curriculums that allow educators to engage closely with students or on a more individualized level. The plus side of working in the afternoons frees up time in the morning for personal activities.


As hagwons are prominent nationwide, different reputations may vary—especially within the small, privately owned academies.


A group of English language teachers posing with awards in South Korea

International Schools


International schools cater to a diverse student body including both local and expatriate learners. There might be some reassurance with the familiarities of teaching a Western curriculum.


Since they follow international curricula such as the International Baccalaureate (IB), international schools only hire certified teachers.




For those with a masters or a doctorate, teaching positions at universities might be an option. These roles often involve conducting specific research topics alongside teaching responsibilities. It is a combination of contributing to the academic community while enjoying a higher level of autonomy in the classroom.


University positions tend to be extremely competitive—many require, at the very least, a master’s degree in a specialized field.


South Korea’s vibrant education landscape offers a multitude of teaching positions to suit various preferences and skill sets. Whether you’re drawn to the flexibility of public schools, the structure of hagwons, the global environment of international schools, or the academic rigor of universities, there’s a teaching role in South Korea waiting to be embraced. If you want help navigating the different types of teaching jobs in Korea, apply to Aclipse now!

Joe Achacoso first embarked on his ESL journey in 2010 to satiate his longing desire for travel. An opportunity intended to be a 1-year contract turned into a 10-year tenure—as an English teacher, faculty manager, instructor trainer and curriculum developer. His adventures in global education continued with a master’s, and it came full circle when he joined Aclipse’s recruiting team—hoping to help the like-minded achieve the same transformative experience!