Iraq has never been a popular TEFL destination but opportunities are growing rapidly, especially for the training of local teachers and in private language institutes. Those without experience or knowledge of Iraq would be wise to volunteer in the country in the short-term and make contacts and assess the situation in the meantime. Most local Iraqis are very pleasant people but the dangers associated with being a foreigner in Iraq are considerable so be aware of this before making a decision to accept the offer of a contract. It helps enormously if you already have contacts in Iraq and bear in mind that Kurdistan is the only vaguely-safe area in which to live and work. The country has some fascinating historical sites but the country remains in a state of war-ravaged turmoil.
|Type of Institution||Typical salary (USD/month)||Typical hours||Typical annual leave|
|Language centres||500 – 2,000||Various shifts||2 weeks plus national holidays|
|International schools||3,000 upwards||8am – 4pm Monday to Friday plus some weekend work||10 weeks plus national holidays|
Main places for jobs
Degree, TEFL certificate, 1-2 yrs exp.
1. Stay abreast of political developments and register with your embassy to notify them of your address in Iraq. Try contacting the US Embassy in Baghdad regarding job opportunities.
2. American English and pronunciation seems to be favoured here so Americans and Canadians are probably more likely to find the positions with the best salaries. Britons should consider contacting the British Council who do operate in Iraq on a limited basis.
3. Those with a knowledge of Arabic are at a great advantage and it would be advisable for anyone considering working here to start learning before arriving in Iraq.
Work permits must be arranged to work legally. This can take several weeks and must be done in conjunction with your employer. All of this must be done before you arrive in the country.
Cost of living
The cost of living in Iraq is low but security is a major issue. Clearly, security is worth spending money on but speak to your prospective employer regarding accommodation as part of the contract package.
Tax and salary information
You should receive your salary on a monthly basis unless otherwise stated in your contract.
|Growing demand for English tuition||An unstable and dangerous nation at present|
|Friendly, eager students||Poor pay for those without considerable previous teaching experience|
|Certainly an ‘interesting’ place in which to live and work||The cultural differences associated with living in a Muslim-majority nation may be a shock to the inexperienced|
Directory of Recommended Schools, Language Centres and Recruitment Agencies
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