Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Resources for Finding an ESL Job in Japan

Pretty similar to my post on "How Much Will I Get Paid Teaching in Japan?", here are some resources for finding yourself some employment on this radical island.

All of my experience has been in finding teaching positions, so most of the information is geared towards that. However, you can use the links at the end of this post to find a great variety of different careers, some with no language requirements at all. Check them out.

In the future we'll go into more detail of how exactly to approach applying for a job, give a rundown of the different companies and advise on other career choices.

Teaching English:
Use these links to find Instructor positions in Japan. Some are in school, such as JET and Interac, but most are eikaiwa (English conversation schools).

iShareJapan has a great list of Eikaiwa schools in Japan.

Local government jobs are very desirable and will pay about the same or a bit more than the JET program. They are pretty hard to find, though, and competition can be tough. Most successful applicants already live/are in Japan, and more often than not speak a decent level of Japanese. Use the job websites listed below to find this kind of job.

Many smaller schools advertise online for English teachers. Beware that a lot of the part-time or pay-by-hour options can lack security or may not pay a livable wage if you're living alone. Here are some links to investigate by yourself:
The above links also have many other types of jobs in various sectors. Beware: don't look if you aren't qualified, because they pay a lot more than us lowly teachers get!

And that's about all we have for you for now. If you have any experience using these job sites, or know anything we've missed here (or would just like more information), post us a comment in the box below the related posts.


  1. So basically.. teaching English. Got it.

  2. Thanks for your comment. We also strive to provide job tips outside of the English teaching market. Check out some of our other posts, like:

    Bear in mind, anything outside of ESL is liable to require near-fluent Japanese skills, including proper keigo.

  3. How would you rank the ALT programs? I'm mostly interested in teaching in public schools so would that only leave me JET and Interac? I'm thinking about just applying for Interac since I would have to wait awhile for JET applications to open again, but i've heard some pretty shady things about Interac...

    Input? If it's alright to ask, what program (if any) did you start off with when you first started teaching in Japan?

  4. I was lucky enough to come straight here with a direct hire from the Board of Education, so I have no personal experience of dispatch conpanies. However, I have many friends who are or have been JETs, Geos and Interac. All these companies are slightly shakey - proved by Geos selling up and firing all it's staff last year - but I have friends with Interac who say it's alright. The wage is about average, and most importantly there is a lot of support within the company. Someone will introduce you to the city/area and always be on hand to help you with stuff. That's a very valuable element for this kind of job, especially outside of the cities.

    There are plenty of other companies, however. Check out the links above and/or Google for an extensive list. First you should decide if you have a particular age-range or style of teaching in mind. Some companies are only in state schools, some exclusively in language schools, private schools etc.

  5. "The above links also have many other types of jobs in various sectors. Beware: don't look if you aren't qualified, because they pay a lot more than us lowly teachers get!"


  6. Hello,
    This is Peter.
    I just arrived in Tokyo.
    This is a great source of useful information on English teaching jobs in Japan.
    Thank you so much!