Verbena field in Guizhou province, China
Verbena field in Guizhou province, China. Photo ©

lin2015, licensed under CC0 1.0 and adapted from the original.

Why choose China?

You will have the chance to experience first-hand one of the world’s fastest-growing superpowers. Not only will experience in China stand out on your CV, but working directly with Chinese students and staff will give you a closer understanding of a rich, distinct culture.

You don't need to speak any languages to apply, but you must have graduated from university by the time you start your assistantship.

As part of the programme offer, assistants will receive:

  • Return flights to China (reimbursed up to 10,000RMB)
  • Accommodation provided and paid for*
  • A contribution of 3,000RMB towards visa costs*
  • A pre-departure briefing by the British Council in the UK (attendance compulsory)
  • Training in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL), includes a 60-hour online course and a two-week training course in Beijing (also compulsory)
  • Year round support from the British Council in the UK and Chinese partner organisation, CEAIE.

*Please see the FAQs and country notes below for more information on visas and accommodation.

Am I eligible?

To become a language assistant in China, you must:

fulfil the general eligibility criteria (EU citizenship, native-level English, etc.) and

  • be 55 or under
  • hold a valid UK or Irish passport
  • be available from 14 August 2018 to 30 June 2019
  • have graduated from university with at least a bachelor’s degree and have your certificate by 14 August 2018

Applications from candidates who have a criminal record of any nature will not be considered by the Chinese Immigration Authorities.

If offered a post, you will be asked to provide copies of the following for the visa process: 

  • Your passport (valid for the entire duration of the assistantship)
  • Your CV
  • Your degree certificate (or student status letter for 2018 graduates*)
  • A signed tutor or employer reference letter

*The student status letter must be hand signed by a university official, on university letter headed paper and contain your full name (as shown on your passport) date of birth, course title, course start date, course end date, and your graduation date (dd/mm/yyyy or mm/yyyy).

All candidates are encouraged to prepare these documents in advance of hearing the final outcome of their application in March 2018.

How much will I be paid?

You can expect to earn 5,000 RMB - 9,000 RMB a month and work 16- 25 hours a week (salary dependent on your experience, region and working hours).

Assistants in Shanghai will receive a higher salary (around 13,000RMB) including a living allowance to cover the costs for accommodation, which will not be provided.

Where can I go?

For 2018/19, we expect to have posts available in Beijing, Chongqing, Hunan, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Hebei, Shanghai, Guizhou and Guangdong. 

If you would like to be considered for Shanghai, Guangdong and Guizhou, please state the region and a reason for your choice in the textbox provided on the preferences section of the application form. 

When will I hear back?

The dates given below are rough guidelines and may be subject to change.

  • November – February: Applications open
  • February – March: Applications assessment
  • Late March: Successful candidates offered a post
  • Early April: Assistants receive their school allocations
  • April – July: Assistants complete online TEFL course and visa process
  • Early July: Assistants attend a pre-departure briefing day at the British Council
  • 14 – 29 August: Assistants attend TEFL training course in Beijing.
  • 1 September – 30 June: Assistants in post

Will I be interviewed?

If you pass the first stage of online assessment, you will be invited to complete a video interview. If successful, you will then receive an offer of a post.

Back to the main English Language Assistants page.