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Finding Jobs in Japan – Common Paths Taken For Recent Graduates

Finding Jobs in Japan – Common Paths Taken For Recent Graduates

With the recent economic downturn that is becoming a global phenomenon, especially in the U.S. or Canada, more and more graduates are looking for work abroad. When considering where to work, really the sky is the limit. Many look for greener pastures in Korea or China while others prefer to focus on fully developed countries like Japan. This article will focus on what a recent graduate might expect in terms of salary and working conditions if he or she wishes to get an entry level job teaching English in Japan.

What to Expect

Firstly, disregard the stuff you read on the internet about teaching in Japan being an absolute cake walk. Being objective, it’s not the hell you read about nor is it a breeze, at least for most people.

Those who work for large chain schools like Geos, Nova or ECC can expect roughly 20-23 actual teaching hours with an additional 10 to 15 hours doing prep for lessons or doing things to promote the school – read handing out fliers, giving trial lessons to new students and attending staff meetings. So all in all you’ll be working roughly 40 hours a week. Pretty much the same as if you remained in your home country. Salary wise you’ll receive on average 250,000 yen per month. Which is about 25,000 per year U.S.D. Most teachers get 2 days off per week, most national holidays which is about 10 per year. You can also expect a week off in May and another week off in December.

These same conditions apply to those who chose their first job in Empregos as an ALT. ALT’s or assistant language teachers, teach in public high schools and assist the Japanese teacher in teaching English. Hours will be different though. ALT’s work pretty much what one might call “normal” working hours or 8 a.m to 4 p.m. or so. Whereas those who work for large chain schools will work later hours ranging from around 1 p.m to 9 p.m or so. Working for large chain schools pretty much is a late night gig.

Is there a difference?

Is there a different in these two roads? Salary wise they are pretty much the same. Working time is pretty much the same. But ALT’s are employed by a B.O.E or board of education whereas those working for chain schools are directly employed by the school that hires you.

One difference is that if you are teaching in a large chain school you will more than likely be teaching both children and adults whereas ALT’s only teach junior high school students.


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