Teaching University Courses


About 15 years ago I was teaching at a university in southern Taiwan, with an MA. I applied directly to roughly a dozen universities in the Taipei area, and all rejected me, all saying they only hired PhDs. A year later I applied to the same schools, plus a few more, and one accepted me. So that was over a decade ago - I assume getting a job is tougher now.

I applied whether or not they had openings listed. If I recall correctly, the places that hired me didn’t even have posted openings.

Note that the part-time uni jobs are not good. You’re paid by the hour, roughly $600 - yet you’ve got to plan a course and do marking as well. Most cram school jobs pay roughly the same per hour in the classroom, and involve a lot less outside-the-class work.

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I don’t think you’ll find anything in Taipei. Maybe a decade ago, but not now. Most of the upper-tier universities require a PhD nowadays. I only have a Masters like you, and I got a contract full-time uni teaching job in Kaohsiung at a private uni. You’d have better luck down south in Kaohsiung, Tainan or Taichung.

How do you find a uni job? Well, unis don’t usually advertise on job boards (and don’t even bother with recruiters or headhunters…they’re scum of the Earth and will try to pass the worst cramschool jobs off on you, no matter who you are). Check the university websites. There’s usually a notice around February to April (so now!) advertising jobs for a fall semester start. It also helps to know people. Networking is easier said than done especially if you’re a natural introvert like me, but a lot of people get jobs based off of friends recommending them to the director. It’s not the easiest thing to land a sweet uni gig, even if you’re qualified. A lot of it boils down to timing, luck, and how many other applicants you’re competing against. Good luck!



There are still positions out there in Taipei for people with just an MA. The universities would prefer to hire someone with a PhD, but since the salaries are too low most of those people go elsewhere. Getting a job at a public university is probably harder but public universities are still hiring. I started part-time about 18 months ago after I saw an ad on a facebook english teaching jobs page. After a while they told me that they wanted me to come on board full-time. Not long after that the associate dean tried to hook me up with another position at a different university. And, I also just hooked up with a once a week teaching gig through another university that had posted on one of those FB pages.

Having connections and doing a good job make a huge difference. I want my students to learn something and I make an effort to engage with them in ways that most of their other teachers don’t. People notice this because, in my opinion, many teachers don’t do a very good job. I’m not saying that I’m perfect and I definitely could do better, but there is a tendency for many teachers (both local and foreign) to just stand in front of the class, lecture for 2 periods and that’s it. They don’t care if the students get it or not. One could argue though that the system here does sort of promote this style at times, but that’s a different story.

Anyhow, subsribe to all the FB english teaching pages, go to the different universities and apply. You never know.

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You’re very lucky. I haven’t heard of many people landing a full-time gig at a public university in Taipei with only an MA (even if it started out as part-time work).

As always, be the guide on the side, not the sage on the stage.

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Sorry, I meant I found a full-time position at a private university and not a public one. That said, I did meet a guy who got a part-time teaching job at NTU. A terrible teacher and how he managed to wiggle himself into it is a mystery. He taught one class at my current university and then was politely asked to go elsewhere.