VietnamMiscellaneousHow to Get a University Teaching Job in Vietnam

How to Get a University Teaching Job in Vietnam

Instructors with a Ph.D. or with a master’s and three years of post-secondary teaching experience can get a university teaching job in Vietnam.
University instructors in Vietnam work long hours during the two semesters of the academic year (April-July and September-January). They often juggle two or three part-time jobs and face long commutes between campuses. However, emphasizes that the students are great, and the long, paid breaks between semesters leave plenty of time to recuperate.

Experience and Qualifications for University Teaching in Vietnam

  • A Ph.D., or a Master’s degree and three years of experience teaching college or university courses, ars required
  • Academic publications and conference presentations are required
  • Candidates already residing in Vietnam are often preferred
  • Vietnamese language proficiency is recommended

Find out more about Getting a Vietnam Visa

Contracts and Salary Expectations for Foreign Instructors at Vietnamese Universities

Initially, most instructors will be hired on a part-time basis. The average pay is about $27-$30 per hour. At Vietnamese universities, a teaching session is 90 minutes long. For every 90-minute lesson, an instructor usually gets paid for the entire two hours. This means that an instructor can make about $54-$60 per lesson. This fee includes preparation and travel time. In addition, all employers in Vietnam reimburse travel expenses. For reference, you can also check out Living Costs in Vietnam.

Most contracts are for one year. Part-time instructors are paid their full salary for twelve months, from April to March. After submitting their grades at the end of the semester, part-time instructors are not expected to do any work during the six-week summer vacation and the eight-week winter break.

Read more about How to Get a Work Permit in Vietnam.

Full-time contracts are available but are usually reserved for candidates with PhDs or extensive teaching, research, and publishing experience. The salary for these contracts is much higher than for part-timers. Full-time instructors may be required to do research, committee, and administrative work during the breaks between semesters.

There is one significant drawback to full-time positions for foreigners: an increasing number of Vietnamese universities place a limit on the number of times a full-time contract may be renewed. Instructors are allowed to stay at those universities for a maximum of 5 years.

Types of Classes for Foreign Instructors at Vietnamese Universities

English oral communication is the main subject taught by foreign instructors. Other courses include writing and reading, test preparation (TOEFL or TOEIC), business English, and academic skills.

Some Vietnamese universities ask foreign instructors to teach specialty non-ESL courses, particularly those related to International Relations or the culture and literature of various countries. Instructors wishing to teach these classes should have a relevant post-graduate degree. Mandarin, Korean, Spanish, French, and German are some other popular second languages in Vietnam taught by foreigners in Vietnam.

How to Find and Apply for Positions at Vietnamese Universities

One of the most comprehensive sites about teaching at Vietnamese colleges and universities is the Association for Language Teaching job board. Networking opportunities abound at the annual symposium.

Instructors who do not have post-graduate degrees or enough post-secondary teaching experience can start by exploring recruitment agencies. Many of these intermediary employers have contracts with colleges and universities. Getting a university teaching job in Vietnam requires a lot of leg work, but it’s a fulfilling experience for foreigners who wish to spend two or more years in Vietnam.

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