A Short Guide on Teaching Mathematics Abroad

Andrew Lynch

If you are looking to broaden your horizons by teaching mathematics abroad, you will be pleased to know that the opportunities are plentiful. However, this is on the proviso that you meet a set of minimum requirements. 

In a nutshell, this will require you to hold at least a Bachelor's Degree in Mathematics, as well as a postgraduate teaching diploma such as the UK’s PGCE. Moreover, you will likely need to have at least 1-3 years’ worth of in-class experience for international schools to consider taking you on board. 

If you think you have what it takes to succeed overseas, be sure to check out the Mathematics Teaching Jobs Abroad page that we have listed on our site. Alternatively, if you feel that you need more information on what it takes to teach Mathematics in a foreign country, please feel free to read on. 

Qualifications to teach Mathematics Abroad

The easiest way to think about the requirements of teaching Mathematics abroad is to evaluate what is required in your home nation. For example, if you are based in the UK, then you will know that you will initially be required to undergo a Bachelor’s Degree at a recognized university. 

Most importantly, this will need to be in the target discipline - Mathematics. While you won’t necessarily get turned away if you majored in another subject per-say, failing to graduate in Mathematics will likely mean that you are not currently in a Mathematics-based teaching role, meaning that you won’t meet the minimum criteria when it comes to experience.

On top of majoring in Mathematics at Bachelor’s Degree level, you will also need to hold a postgraduate teaching certificate to be considered at the most prestigious international schools. However, if you are looking to teach in a remote or third-world location, schools will likely consider your credentials as long as you hold a Degree in Mathematics.

Do I need experience to teach Mathematics abroad?

Once again, there is no hard and fast rule on whether or not you need experience, as it all boils down to the institution in question. However, if you are looking for a solid career teaching abroad with a reputable school or academic institution - then you will all-but certainly need to have some experience.

In fact, the most prestigious schools will ask for relevant experience - not only in Mathematics, but in the specific classroom setting that you wish to undertake. For example, if you are looking to teach Mathematics abroad in a secondary school classroom, then it is likely that you will need to have previously taught a similar age group.

When it comes to the fundamentals, some schools will ask for a minimum of three years’ worth of teaching experience, while others might settle for one. This further highlights the disparity in academic standards, insofar that it really depends on the country you wish to teach in, as well as the type of institution.

What is the best location to teach Mathematics abroad?

The best location to teach Mathematics abroad is ultimately down to you. By this, we mean that you need to make some considerations as to what you are looking to achieve. For example, if you are purely looking to broaden your horizons and thus - experience a completely new culture and way of thinking, then your options will be plentiful. 

For example, we regularly list Mathematics teaching jobs in locations such as China, Qatar, Dubai, and even Vietnam. While the aforementioned locations might offer you a great chance to experience a new way of life, the number of well-paid jobs in circulation is likely to be less prevalent. 

In fact, the best-paid teaching jobs in less developed countries are likely to be in prestigious private international schools. To stand a chance of landing a job in one of these academic institutions, you will need to be fully qualified, certified, and most likely hold at least 3-5 years' worth of relevant, in-class experience. 

On the other hand, if your main motivation to teach Mathematics abroad is for the financial rewards, there is nothing wrong with that at all. If so, then certain countries will be more conducive for this objective. For example, we receive a lot of teaching requirements from schools based in Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the Middle East, and Hong Kong and Singapore in Asia. 

Source: Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office: Hong Kong is often regarded as having the highest teaching standards globally when it comes to Mathematics.

These jurisdictions have a significantly high demand for qualified foreign teachers. As the underlying economy of these countries is super-strong, schools are willing to pay handsomely for your services. This is especially true with private international schools, who will not only offer you a high salary, but your teaching package will consist of other benefits too. This includes return airfares, accommodation, and fully-paid days off.

How does the visa process work when teaching Mathematics abroad?

Much like in the case of the minimum expectations demanded on a location-by-location basis, the specific visa process will depend on your chosen country. The most important thing to remember is that you will need to obtain the correct work permit to teach in your chosen destination. While the likes of casual TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) will often see teachers work on a standard tourist visa, this won’t be possible if you are looking for a serious career move.

You will likely be teaching at a solid academic institution that has a stringent curriculum in place. As a result, you will typically be asked to sign a teaching contract that covers at least one academic year - sometimes more (Dubai is usually two years). With that being said, irrespective of where you decide to teach, obtaining a work permit is no easy feat. Some countries are more bureaucratic than others, meaning that you will need to get the school or academic institution in question to arrange the visa on your behalf. 

On the other hand, some nations allow you to apply for a teaching work permit based on your current credentials. In other words, you can apply for a conventional work permit based on your current qualifications and previous experience. Once you obtain a work permit that allows you to teach, you can then begin applying for roles.

Teaching Mathematics abroad: How do I find a job?

If you’ve got your heart set on teaching the subject that you love abroad, then we would suggest checking out our latest Mathematics Teaching Jobs abroad. We frequently post new Mathematics jobs of all kinds and across many areas of the globe. While some require years’ worth of experience, others are happy to take candidates on if they have the required academic profile. 

Ultimately, your best bet is to spend the required time browsing through our current job listings to assess what type of teaching role is best suited for your individual needs.

If you have a specific country in mind, you can also filter the job board down by location.

Browse the latest Mathematics teaching jobs here