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Arriving in Feb - Getting a job with a Post Grad Degree

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  • Arriving in Feb - Getting a job with a Post Grad Degree

    Hi All!

    My first ever post on GaijinPot but I've been a long time stalker. I really hope that I could get some genuine ideas as to what would be realistic in terms of job opportunities when I land in Tokyo.

    I'm coming from Melbourne, Australia and hold a masters in psychology (which probably means absolutely nothing at all since I'm not really looking for a career in that area at the moment and no person with a sane mind would employ me to do work in that area anyway without the appropriate local registration and credentials).

    I speak fluent English but do not hold any qualifications with regards to teaching English, nor do I have any experience in the area of teaching.

    For the past 5 years I've worked at a bank in Research and Analytics.

    I studied Japanese for 5 years. That was a while ago so my Japanese skills are at a daily conversation level now but is generally better when it comes to reading and writing. I speak, read and write Chinese at a native level - if that helps.

    So....with that in mind.....

    I would love to work in an area other than teaching English further down the track but think that sounds quite unrealistic particularly for the first few months, and for someone who has not had any experience working in Japan. So I'm prepared to do the teaching thing to see how it works out for me but here are my question(s).

    1. With what I have described above, how likely is it that a potential employer would be interested in interviewing me?
    2. Will my lack of experience and qualifications in teaching work hinder my chances of an interview or a good remuneration?
    2. Is the entire recruitment process in English or will I am required to be interviewed in Japanese or submit a resume in Japanese?
    3. There seems to be different types of 'teaching English' in Japan - Eigaiwa Schools, One-to-One Lessons, Teaching Aids (e.g., primary schools), Business English Schools. What are the differences and structure-wise, is there always a set curriculum to follow? Or are there conversation lessons that are not structured? What are the pros and cons for each?

    Apologise for the long-winded post and many questions but I really hope some of the experienced can enlighten me!

  • #2
    Pretty good chances of getting a teaching job if you're quick and manage to catchh the spring hires.
    'Good renumeration' tends not to exist in the teaching game but even the bottom level really terribly paid jobs give well above minimum wage, enough to live on quite comfortably, though you won't be saving the large amounts some teachers do.

    Even between different teaching jobs there's a lot of differences.
    For instance in my ALT job I work standard school hours, teach only around 10 lessons a week but have to prepare them all myself. A friend teaches practically every working hour but he's just reading from books. And everything in between.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks heaps for your advice )

      Originally posted by original-username View Post
      'Good renumeration' tends not to exist in the teaching game but even the bottom level really terribly paid jobs give well above minimum wage, enough to live on quite comfortably, though you won't be saving the large amounts some teachers do.
      Purely out of curiosity, why is this the case? Are you referring to the more experienced and hence higher paid teachers?

      Originally posted by original-username View Post
      For instance in my ALT job I work standard school hours, teach only around 10 lessons a week but have to prepare them all myself. A friend teaches practically every working hour but he's just reading from books. And everything in between.
      Hmm...the latter sounds like my kind of job....guess I just need to learn how to read job ads and figure out who's hiring for what? Or are there avenues outside of formal advertising where people score these gigs?

      Comment


      • #4
        Anyone else have advice for my other questions...?

        Comment


        • #5
          Welcome to the forum.
          Off-topic, but with native Chinese and 5 years of experience in banking I'd rather be looking for a job in finance.
          Anyway,
          1. With what I have described above, how likely is it that a potential employer would be interested in interviewing me?
          >> High, but it would depend on your actual skills, personality, age, etc.
          2. Will my lack of experience and qualifications in teaching work hinder my chances of an interview or a good remuneration?
          >> No, but pay is rather unified anyway, no matter what your qualifications are.
          2. Is the entire recruitment process in English or will I am required to be interviewed in Japanese or submit a resume in Japanese?
          >> It is in English
          3. There seems to be different types of 'teaching English' in Japan - Eigaiwa Schools, One-to-One Lessons, Teaching Aids (e.g., primary schools), Business English Schools. What are the differences and structure-wise, is there always a set curriculum to follow? Or are there conversation lessons that are not structured? What are the pros and cons for each?
          >> The large two areas are
          + private-run English language schools that would offer group and individual lessons for adult learning and
          + working as an 'Assistant Language Teacher' (ALT) at local schools
          There are many threads about this on this forum...

          Comment


          • #6
            Thanks ttokyo

            I guess it all comes down to what's possible when I get there. Without knowing anything about the job market it's hard to tell what's realistic and what's not....but it is good to know I probably won't starve and end up on the streets. I'm not counting on a paycheck to feed myself day in day out but don't want to get too picky either when I first start out. I also have this image in my head that any job other than teaching English would require me to do a full interview in Japanese which I'm not quite up for yet :S

            Thanks for your advice anyways )

            Comment


            • #7
              Dear Aliceisfreakingout,

              I just thought I would add me little bit for you to consider.
              1) Being a degree holder you should have no problem obtaining a teaching English position at all. However it is in my experience that if you have a teaching degree like I do, Bed, you may not get paid as much as someone who does although the difference will not be something worth jumping up and down about.
              2) You should find nothing to hinder you at all, as I stated you may not get as much as someone who has an education degree or even a TESOL cert but the difference will be f all. Nothing to worry about. If you play hard and party hard then your cash may vanish quickly each month but if your smart you should have no problems. Also ensure that when you come here bring a minimum of, in my opinion, $3000. The more you bring the better position you will be in. Is is a little expensive getting settled in Japan.
              3) In the case of the English teaching jobs your interview will be in English you will have nothing to worry about.
              4) It all depends on what you like and dislike. Personally I prefer the current style of job I have that is an ALT (Assistant Language Teacher). I work in the public school system as an English Teachers Assistant, Eikaiwa then the lessons tend to be more smaller insize and can vary from children to Adult it just depends on the Eikaiwa you work for. Either way you will most definitely be working with some form of curriculum or guideline.
              5) 1 extra hing is that if you are coming to JApan and want to get a job in the teaching field I suggest you jump on to it fast as the companies are hiring now because the school year in Japan starts here in April so if your not quick you may have to find a job in an Eikaiwa or something else.

              Also I would like to give you my opinion of obtaining any other form of work outside the English Teaching field for a foreigner. Basically if you don't speak, read and write fluent Japanese in all it's forms, Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji then you will most likely find it difficult to get a job you truly desire. Japan is a modern country but it still holds a few out dated opinions and ideas. Foreigners are not often hired unless the company is specifically looking for English speaking persons. Non Japanese Companies are based here in Japan but it seems that they do not offer out jobs in a hurry. I suggest that you look at Gaijin Pot's job section page and see for yourself. I have lived here for 3 years and love the country but feel that things could change for it to be a little better for non Japanese.

              I hope some of this helps....good luck

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by aliceisfreakingout View Post
                I also have this image in my head that any job other than teaching English would require me to do a full interview in Japanese which I'm not quite up for yet
                Sure, most companies are obviously Japanese, but we (foreign company) have hired some Indian programmers in the past who could not speak a word of Japanese. Of course, speaking Japanese is a large advantage if working in Japan but not always necessary at foreign companies. E.g. a Chinese/Taiwanese company might even more appreciate your skills of communicating in Chinese with Head Office and in English with their foreign customers here rather than Japanese.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for the advice AussieinJapan.

                  Good to know that the teaching certification isn't that crucial in getting a job in the field. I've heard of places that does the whole 'get certification to teach the more expensive classes' sort of thing and to be honest, I don't really want to get into that. I don't aspire to be a teaching professional and thus would not want to take the time and money to get such a qualification.

                  I'm not a drinker or even a big foodie so expenditure should be minimal for me in that regard.

                  I have a feeling I'll probably prefer the eikaiwa style but we'll see about that once I get into it....I'll try to start my job searching within the first week of landing. Just need to make sure I at least know which part of town I'm actually in, how I get to places, get a bank account and maybe a phone before I rush into things :S Oh and godforbid let's hope the internet connection is working!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ttokyo View Post
                    Sure, most companies are obviously Japanese, but we (foreign company) have hired some Indian programmers in the past who could not speak a word of Japanese. Of course, speaking Japanese is a large advantage if working in Japan but not always necessary at foreign companies. E.g. a Chinese/Taiwanese company might even more appreciate your skills of communicating in Chinese with Head Office and in English with their foreign customers here rather than Japanese.
                    I'll keep at the back of my mind that such opportunity does exist although these are rare. Won't get my hopes up too high for now. The thing about me speaking Japanese is not only that my skills are very basic and conversational but I'm no good at keigo at all so I'm probably still good for nothing. LOL.

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