Teaching English in Taiwan - options for Australian without a Bachelor's degree

Hey guys, I’m looking to move to Taiwan in a few years once the whole Covid-19 thing blows over.

I’m a 36 year old male from Australia who’s highest qualification has been a TAFE diploma.

I know there are illegal avenues I could take to teach, but since my plan is to go for the long-haul I’d like to do it on the up and up.

Do I have any other options apart from getting a bachelors degree? If not, can someone from Australia suggest the quickest, cheapest and easiest one I could do in the next few years to get the tick.

Also, would getting married to someone there and getting a visa to work allow me to teach English, or is it still reliant on education?

I have seen Taiwan is making a recruitment push for English teachers, and I wouldn’t mind doing one of the English teaching courses, but having to have a Bachelors in ANYTHING seems arbitrary. Any chance in the future for this to change…

Thanks for the help

If you plan on a moving here in a few years why not get a uni degree. You could get an arts degree easily.

What degree would qualify me? Are those online degrees enough…

One issue for me is I’m working full time and would like to make as much money as I can to give me a nice buffer

Any degree.

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Check the ‘online uni’ is recognized in Taiwan.

If you were married to a local, you could work in a buxiban legally as you wouldn’t need a work permit, and the majority won’t care or even ask about your degree.

I’m not from Australia, but I believe you can use a two year degree plus a ‘teaching English as a foreign language’ qualification to get a work visa. You should look into this, your TAFE diploma might already qualify, and if not you may be able to put it towards a two year degree to graduate earlier.

Unlikely in my opinion. If anything, I would say the rules will get stricter in the future, when more foreign teachers come and Taiwan has more choice.

You could study for your degree in Taiwan, and work legally at the same time. That is what I would do.


As @meshijia points out you need to check if your TAFE diploma is considered by the Ministry of Education to be equivalent to a US Associate’s Degree. If it is then you can combine it with a recognised TEFL qualification.

If you decide to take a bachelor’s then you might as well do it in Education or Applied Linguistics if teaching is going to be your career choice. Have you ever taught before? It not it might be worth trying teaching to see if it’s right for you.


Is there any easy way to do this or do you have to call them?

Is there a link for the list on which accreditation is accepted, or a number to call?


He could try an email, but emails tend to not get responded to in Taiwan:


Another thought is the OP could apply to do a bachelor’s in a Taiwanese university. Linguistics or business would probably be taught in English and, if successful, he’d get his fees paid for him. He would also be permitted to teach English on the side.


Nobody responds to emails in Taiwan. You have to call. If you call from a cell phone it will cost money. Especially if that email is @msa.hinet.net

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Welcome to the club friend. I have not one but TWO associates from the states which, believe it or not, do not equal a bachelor’s. Also have TEFL/TESOL certificate from online school.

What I did is started returning to uni online in the states (I lived in Australia the last couple years working holiday) before moving here. I plan to show that I’m graduating soon and hope that helps, just got to Taiwan this month.
My partner is Taiwanese we’re going the marriage route, so if you took that route you could likely still teach, just not at the best schools. Someone do correct me if I’m wrong.

Anyway from an American also in their early 30s who lived in Australia until very recently, wish you the best of luck.

Careful with online degrees. My public school contract said explicitly that at least half of all courses needed to be attended in person for the degree to count towards salary rise. If you’re doing undergrad explicitly online, I imagine that means some schools consider that to mean not having an undergrad degree at all. Not sure what COVID and courses that were supposed to be in person but moved online means for that.