Paperwork in Korea Part 5 – Getting a teaching job in Korea while in the US

Luther University, Chapel Building

Luther University, Chapel Building

And just a few notes are left on the topic of Paperwork in Korea that I started 4 months ago, specifically “a job application in Korea.” I know it can be a nerve-racking experience applying overseas online and providing sensitive information about your identity and background to people you have never met, and may never meet. So, here is a list of typically asked papers. Something beyond this may (or may not) be suspicious. In general, if you feel uncomfortable with the request – it is OK to say that to the potential employer.

If you ever decide to apply to a teaching position in Korea, be prepared to provide the following documents:

  1. Diplomas to confirm your degree – notarized copies with the Apostil stamp. (In some states it takes up to a month to receive Apostil.)
  2. Some schools will want a teaching certificate. In Korea, unlike Hong Kong or Taiwan, many schools will not care if you are a certified teacher, as long as you have a BA.
  3. “Work passport” – a list of all places and dates you worked to gain your teaching experience. Resume can suffice here.
  4. TESOL certificate is a major boost to your possible salary and job placement. So, invest into one before applying for a job. It will have to be a notarized copy with the Apostil stamp.
  5. Transcripts.
  6. References.
  7. And a photo. Why? To see what color you are and if you look good. I kid you not, so smile on your photo!

If you go through the application and get offered a position, the school will require the same papers for the immigration clearance and a few more. Here is the list of additional things.

  1. FBI background check certified in Washington DC! (Takes about 3 months to obtain this)
  2. US Passport
  3. Visa related papers.

Be prepared that the Korean side will ask you to mail these documents tomorrow ASAP. It is very common to wait until the last minute before proceeding to the next step. So, be proactive and prepare these yourself.


Luther University, May 2012

Luther University, Rose Festival, May 2012

Luther University, Rose Festival, May 2012


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