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Can You Teach English in Japan without A Degree?

Are you looking for a way to experience the beauty and unique culture of Japan while earning a living? Teaching English in Japan may be just the opportunity you’re looking for.

While many potential teachers wonder if a degree is necessary to secure a job, there are options available for those without one. In this article, we will explore the benefits of teaching English in Japan, the requirements for obtaining a working visa, and alternative options for teaching English in Japan without a degree.

Japan offers a high standard of living, stunning scenery, and a culture that is both ancient and modern. As a teacher, you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in this rich culture while helping others improve their language skills.

And while a bachelor’s degree is required for a working visa, there are still options for those without one. Whether you have a degree or not, teaching English in Japan can be a rewarding and fulfilling experience, and we are here to guide you through the process.

Key Takeaways

  • A bachelor’s degree is required for foreign English teachers to receive a working visa in Japan.
  • For those without a degree working on a tourist, student, spousal, working holiday visa, or Japanese passport allows for working in Japan without a degree.
  • Some schools may hire teachers without a degree if they are smart and likable, but it is not common.
  • Working on a Working Holiday Visa is a great option for those who want to try teaching in Japan without committing long-term.

Benefits of Teaching in Japan

You’ll love the high standard of living, beautiful Zen gardens, and access to some of the best food on the planet when teaching English in Japan. The country has a unique culture that is both fascinating and immersive. You’ll have the chance to experience the Japanese way of life, learn the language, and indulge in their delicious cuisine.

Japanese culture immersion is one of the biggest benefits of teaching English in Japan. You’ll have the opportunity to learn about their customs, beliefs, and traditions. Additionally, you’ll be surrounded by the language and have plenty of chances to practice speaking. This is a great way to improve your language skills and gain a deeper understanding of the culture.

Overall, teaching English in Japan is an experience of a lifetime that will expand your horizons and open doors to new opportunities.

Requirements for Working Visa (Degree Needed)

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution is required
  • Degree must be in a relevant field such as English, education, or linguistics
  • Native or near-native proficiency in English
  • TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) or TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) certification
  • Some schools may require previous teaching experience
  • Possibility of temporary or part-time positions for those without a degree, but less common

So f you want to work in Japan as an English teacher, having a bachelor’s degree is a requirement to obtain a working visa. This is because the Japanese government requires foreign English teachers to have a degree in order to qualify for a working visa.

This degree must be from an accredited institution and must be in a relevant field. English, education, and linguistics are all relevant fields of study that will be considered.

In addition to the degree requirement, there are also other qualifications that must be met. Teachers must be native or near-native speakers of English, and they must have a TEFL or TESOL certification. Some schools may also require previous teaching experience.

An Alternative Route to Teaching in Japan without A Degree

Teaching English in Japan without a degree can be challenging due to visa requirements. However, there are a few alternatives:

  1. Working Holiday Visa: This is the most viable option for teaching English in Japan without a degree. This visa allows you to work part-time while primarily funding your travels.
  2. Student Visa: If you’re studying in Japan, you can teach English part-time.
  3. Spousal Visa: If you’re married to a Japanese national, you can work in Japan, although employers usually prefer degree holders.
  4. Japanese Citizenship: If you have Japanese family or were born there, you might be able to apply for Japanese Citizenship. In which case you can work in Japan regardless of your degree status.

For most people, the working holiday visa will be the most realistic option. Let’s look at the requirements in more detail.

Japan Working Holiday Visa

The Working Holiday Visa is suitable for individuals aged 18-30 from partner countries who are in good health and have not previously been issued a working holiday visa.

The application process involves submitting a valid passport, a visa application form, a passport-sized photograph, a CV, an itinerary for your time in Japan, a written reason for applying, and proof of sufficient funds (£2,500 or £1,500 with a return ticket).

However, there are restrictions on the types of jobs you can do, and you cannot bring children or spouses unless they also have a similar visa. Violating the terms can result in legal consequences.

Here are the requirements for a Working Holiday Visa in Japan in full:

  • Age between 18 and 30.
  • Possession of a valid passport from a partner country (Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Korea, France, Germany, UK, Ireland, Denmark, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Norway, Portugal, Poland, Slovakia, Austria, Hungary, Spain, Argentina, Chile, Iceland, Czech Republic, Lithuania).
  • Good health.
  • No previous issuance of a working holiday visa.
  • A completed visa application form.
  • A passport-sized photograph (45mm x 35mm / 2in x 1.4in) taken within the past six months.
  • A CV or resume detailing qualifications and employment history.
  • An itinerary for your time in Japan, including any pre-arranged employment.
  • A written statement explaining why you want to obtain a Working Holiday Visa for Japan.
  • Proof of sufficient funds: £2,500 in cleared funds or £1,500 and a return ticket. Bank statements for the previous three months are required.
  • No accompanying children, and any spouses or partners must also have a Working Holiday Visa or a similar visa.
  • Compliance with job restrictions, which exclude work in bars, cabarets, nightclubs, and gambling establishments.

Working Options and Tips

Looking for English teaching jobs in Japan without a degree? It’ll be tough as most of the well-established programs (like JET) require a degree.

But check out resources like Gaijinpot, Jobs In Japan, Teast, and Teflnet. These websites offer a variety of job postings for English teaching positions in Japan. You can narrow down your search by location, salary, and type of school you want to work in.

If you’re interested in gaining experience before committing to a full-time teaching job, online teaching is a great option and may not require a degree. Many companies offer online English teaching to students in Japan, and it allows you to work from anywhere in the world.

However, if you do decide to work in Japan, it’s important to adapt to the culture – even if your chosen career is not related to English teaching. Punctuality is highly valued in Japan, so make sure to always arrive on time for your classes and meetings. Additionally, be open to learning about Japanese customs and traditions, as it’ll make your experience all the more enjoyable.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average salary for English teachers in Japan?

As an English teacher in Japan, you can expect an average salary of ¥250,000-¥300,000 ($2,200-$2,700) per month. Job benefits include health insurance, paid vacation, and sometimes housing allowances. The demand for English teachers is high, so opportunities abound.

Are there any age restrictions for teaching English in Japan?

There are no age restrictions for teaching English in Japan. However, a bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience is required for a working visa. Experience and networking can help secure a position without a degree.

What are some common challenges faced by English teachers in Japan?

Classroom management can be a challenge for English teachers in Japan due to cultural differences. Adapting to teaching styles and navigating hierarchy can also be difficult. However, with patience and flexibility, these challenges can be overcome.

Do English teachers need to speak Japanese fluently?

To teach English in Japan, it’s not necessary to be fluent in Japanese. However, having some proficiency can enhance your teaching methods and communication with students. Don’t let language barriers hold you back from pursuing this unique opportunity.

Are there any cultural differences that English teachers should be aware of before starting their job in Japan?

Cultural sensitivity is crucial when teaching English in Japan. Communication barriers may arise due to differences in language and customs, so it’s important to learn about Japanese etiquette and behavior to create a positive classroom environment and build relationships with students.