Applications for the English Language Assistants programme for 2019-20 have now closed.
Applications for 2020-21 are likely to open in November 2019.
Please make sure you have read the relevant country page and English Language Assistant guidance notes (PDF 282KB) before applying.
Potential earlier deadline for university students
If you are a university student applying to be a language assistant as part of your year abroad, your university may set a separate internal deadline. The deadline may be considerably earlier than the British Council deadline. Please check with your university before applying.
Laws and customs
We strongly advise you to research laws in your country of interest relating to matters that may be of personal relevance, such as outward displays of religion, and specifically in the education sector. Please note the British Council has no control over these laws.
More details and sources of further information can be found on the country-specific pages, which you must read before applying.
Please read the following statements to understand the British Council's role in the English Language Assistants programme, and your responsibilities should you choose to apply.
Completing the application form
Code of conduct
During the application process, you will be asked to confirm that you have read and understood the English Language Assistant code of conduct. Please download it below.
You will first be asked to register online. Use a permanent email address to register, because this cannot be changed once you have registered. We advise against using a university email address as you may not have regular access to this during your time abroad.
Please complete the start and end dates as this is our way of piecing together a candidate’s educational background. If you are not certain of the day your course began or ended, enter the first of the month.
- Under Higher Education, list university-level studies only.
- Under Secondary/Further Education, list GCSE and A-level studies or equivalent.
Remember that this is a job application for a competitive process. Your application may be read not only by the British Council but also by our overseas partner agency, local authorities and host schools abroad.
Treat it as you would any job application and make sure that your answers are suitable for a job working with children. Use examples and evidence to convince us of your suitability for the programme.
If your application does not meet the required standard or the answers provided are too brief, it will not be accepted.
Applications are assessed initially by the British Council using the following criteria:
- target country cultural awareness
- teaching experience
- expression and presentation.
You will be asked to provide the email address of someone who can act as a referee.
- If you are a current or recent student, your referee should be one of your tutors or a year-abroad coordinator.
- If you graduated before 1 January 2018, your referee should be a recent employer.
Once you submit your application form, the system sends an email to your referee requesting the reference. You must allow time before the deadline for your referee to do this. If your reference is not completed in time, your application will not be taken forward.
It is your responsibility to make sure that your referee's details are correct and that they are happy to provide you with a reference before the deadline. You cannot change your referee’s details once you have submitted your application.
You should ensure that your referee is able to complete the reference request form that we provide. Many large corporations will only provide references that confirm your employment with them. We are unable to accept these.
Applicants studying at the Open University should not provide details of a referee from this institution. Due to the distance learning nature of their courses, tutors are unable to provide bespoke references.
Provide your current passport number, ensuring it is valid until 6 months after the end of your assistantship.
If your passport has expired or will expire during your assistantship, please provide your old/current passport number. Once your new passport arrives, let us know the number.
Changes and updates
Once you have pressed ‘submit’ you can no longer make any changes to your details online.
Email us to let us know any changes to your passport number, address or contact details.
Current British Council language assistants
You can be a language assistant with the British Council up to four times.
If you are currently working as a language assistant through this programme or have done so in the past, and want to spend a further year in the same country, check the relevant country page to find out:
- whether you are eligible to apply - this varies from country to country
- how to complete the application form.
If you wish to apply to a different country, please complete the application form in the standard way.
Back to the main English Language Assistants page.