How does one find a university teaching position in Taiwan?

Very vague approximations:

Full time: you’re looking at 10 hours teaching per week, monthly salary in the 60-90,000 range depending on position and seniority. Plus 6 weeks salary at Chinese New Year: 800,000 to 1.2 million per year. (Lecturers start at a bit under 60,000 per month, but I don’t think many people are hired into that position these days; assistant professors start around 70,000. Full professors max out around 115,000 per month. As @afterspivak said, schools seem to be doing more to get around this ceiling.)

Part-time: you’re looking at around 600-800 per teaching hour (again, varying by school and seniority). Assuming 10 teaching hours just for the sake of making numbers match, let’s say 7,000 a week, so 126,000 per 18-week semester, so about 260,000 for the year. But that’s to some extent “fake” since I don’t think teaching ten part-time hours at one school is very common; people are likely teaching a few hours here, a few hours there, and doing whatever else they can to survive.

I have absolutely no idea what percentage of teaching hours at a typical university are done by part-time vs full-time faculty.

Note as well that university teaching hours are, in my experience anyway, very different from cram school hours. There’s syllabus preparation, marking for assignments and exams, and so on.

Full-time, it’s a good gig. Part-time, it’s not, but teaching a few hours of university here and there can certainly be good for sanity because it can be a heck of a lot more rewarding than a lot of cram school teaching.


I work part-time at a private uni, and I get 1k/hour. But there’s a heck of a lot of prep, marking and grading.


what’s the difference between marking and grading?

A good assessment. Yah, full-time is quite a bit better when you factor in the syllabus requirement. You basically can you use and tweak the same basic syllabus for several years. Finding content and laying out activities is extremely time consuming upfront but the payoff is in subsequent years of re-use as your uni will tend to lock you in to a particular course. If you are part-time only, then it’s hard to say if the next year you will be around or teaching the same course to a similar level of students.

Moreover, if you are a bit tech savvy, there are a myriad of ways to lessen your work load, too. Gone are the days of even needing a whiteboard marker or even paper.

Despite admin claiming teachers are a dime a dozen, my feeling is that universities find it difficult to hire suitable teachers. Not just academically qualified but people who are going to accept and work within all funny and sometimes infuriating policies of departments. Department heads are primarily looking for people that are not going to cause them trouble laterally and also people who are not going to attract unwanted attention from the higher ups. Simple skills like smiling, not raising your voice too much in meetings, see a problem which is unthreatening to anyone and fixing it, all go a long way.

The pay is low but if you have other side gigs, then you can do very well each month with a ton security. Comparing university teacher salaries in my home country, including all their extra responsibilities and time, Taiwan is pound-for-pound better in my opinion. Taxes are lower here, required hours are less and from my experience admin responsibilities quite a bit less, too. The money for what you work here isn’t bad!


Well, marking is making corrections to written things, and returning them with comments. Grading is putting grades into the university internet system.
Sorry, British English.


no need to apologize. but yeah, I usually hear Canadians and Brits say “marking” while Americans would say “grading.” I thought of them as the same thing. I suppose for “grading” Americans would say “entering grades.” But yeah, that’s gotta be a pain in the ass, but you only have to do that like once a semester, right? If you can read Chinese, I’m sure it’s not so bad, but if you can’t…

Luckily, my computer translates the Chinese. :smiley:

Some assignments are just there to torment the students and don’t require grades (but of course, you don’t tell them that). So when you correct and return them, I wouldn’t call the process “grading”. That would be “marking”.


It’s a shit ton of work for not a lot of money, but I still wouldn’t swap it for a different kind of teaching job here. And we do get summers off and no desk-warming, so that takes the sting off all the extra work/prep.


Here’s a job ad for Tunghai University, in the Taichung area. The university’s English Language Center is looking for someone with a Master’s degree OR Ph.D. The job will begin in Fall 2021.

1 Like

58,135NT a month? Ouch!


I work part-time at a private university. The most I am allowed to teach is 6 hours (3 classes) a week as a part timer and I get $800 an hour (no raises). I was offered (indirectly) a full time position. With my MA the salary would have been in the high 50s or low 60s with certain job experience. I declined because I make double that with my several part time gigs.

A full time gig would have been pretty easy in some ways. Teaching about 7 classes and some other tasks around campus with little to do during the summer except prep work. Fairly low stress levels as well. But, the money is painfully inadequate.


Wow. Why does anyone do it? I doubt it would mean much on a resume and it’s definitely not for the money. I know of education gigs in Taiwan that start at 150,000/mo plus profit sharing for 4~6 hours a day.

If you have open work rights a 14 hour a week uni job can work out nicely. Teaching hours are 8-5pm and of course you won’t be teaching every day, making it easy to fit in other gigs. 58k is still really low end, though.

150k a month for a single full time job sounds tidy. Is that at one of these hard core foreign owned buxiban places?

Yes. It’s set up and run similar to how corporate trainers help set up new restaurant franchises, and the teacher basically becomes part owner. Think lots of small branches instead of really large ones. The 7-11 approach.

1 Like

No desk-warming, 3-4 months paid vacation a year, mature classroom environment with a variety of content based subjects for you to choose from, working at a chill campus environment, autonomy in how you want to teach and what you want to teach, having students that specifically choose your courses and want to learn, ability to conduct research and get papers published, networking with others in academia, university being much better on CV than working at a buxiban, yeah… why would anyone want to do it??? :man_shrugging:


I wonder how stable this all is. Never heard of this type of school working in Taiwan. Any name examples I might recognise? My feeling towards something like this would be they flourish in the beginning, step on some locals toes, then discover some administrative office from the government finding an obscure law to shut it all down. Building code violations was always a classic one with more traditional cram schools when competition got fierce.


Yeah, I’ve got the same concerns. OK, I’m pretty out of touch, but I’ve never heard of teaching jobs that pay that high here. Hourly gigs for a day or two a week that theoretically work out to that kind of monthly salary, sure, or hustling like mad for every hour you can get, but enough work at that rate at one job to fill a schedule? I’m not sure there’s the demand here to support that.


I saw one of these many years ago, but it was more like a work at home thing. Haven’t heard a whisper since. Who is doing this? There are a lot of regulations to setting up your own school, and a lot of work to finding students. It doesn’t seem profitable in the end.


It’s a rare mix to find a passionate teacher who is equally passionate about business. The two often step on each others’ toes. Doing business is hard and truthfully, unless you have a Taiwanese face to front the operation, most Taiwanese won’t entrust their child’s English grade to a foreign teacher beyond elementary school. It’s all about test taking and not necessarily communication. I personally like walking in and getting paid less but with limited responsibilities. Makes me free to pursue my hobbies. :slight_smile: