Teaching English in China Requirements [Updated in 2019]

teach in China requirements

What are the requirements to teach English in China? 

Teaching English in China has become more and more popular resulting in increasing competition.

If you’re also seriously considering teaching in China as your next adventure, you might be wondering:

“What are the requirements do I need to meet?”

Check out this guide and you will get all your questions answered.

teaching english in China requirements

Q1: Is Bachelor Degree Required? 

If you want to apply for a work visa and teach in China legally, the answer is yes.

The process of getting a work visa is quite straightforward, and a bachelor degree is needed for this to be approved.

Q2: Are Teaching Experiences Required?  

Not necessarily, but if you, you will be in a more favorable position during the interview, and more likely to land on a better package.

However, this is not a “must-have” for you to teach in China. In fact, there are a lot of programs offering training for graduates without any teaching experiences. A university graduate without any teaching experience can also land a good position and transition smoothly to teaching English in China life.

Q3: Do I Need To Be a Native English Speaker?  

Yes, due to China’s recent visa regulations, candidates need to be native speakers, meaning they have to be passport holders of United Kingdom, United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand or South Africa in order to meet China’s visa regulations. 

Q4: Do I Need a TEFL Certificate?  

For those who don’t know, TEFL is the certificate to teach English as a foreign language which usually takes serious training for you to complete.

You do need a TEFL certificate in order to complete your work visa application, but you can also obtain it after you’ve secured a position. In fact, some positions Panda Buddy offers can offer you TEFL course at a much cheaper price. So if you don’t have one already, don’t worry, you’ll be fine.

P.S. There are also many different kinds that are equivalent to TEFL, such as TESOL certificate, CELTA, Cert TESOL, Dip TESOL, those are big ones. 

Q5: Can I Teach in China Without a Degree?  

As mentioned above, it’s imposed as a law by the Chinese government that a Bachelor degree is required for a legal work visa.

There might be some positions available for people without a degree due to the high demand, however, it’s not recommended to take the risk to teach in China without a legal visa.

The good news is, there are countries hiring English teachers that don’t require you to have a Bachelor degree. For more detailed information, please check out our summaries of teaching abroad requirements. 

Q6: Other Requirement?

In order to obtain a legal work visa, you need to have a clean background check, meaning no criminal record. 


To recap, here are the answers to your burning questions:

• Yes, you need a Bachelor degree

• No, you don’t need teaching experiences

• Yes, you need to be a native speaker in English (passport holder of one of the 7 countries mentioned above) 

• Yes, you need TEFL certificate (can apply first then obtain the certificate via online course)

Panda Buddy is currently hiring for more than 300 positions in China. We carefully select our education partners to make sure they are well recognised in the industry, provide great local support (airport pickup, visa, and accommodation support) so that you can have a smooth transition to your new life in China. Apply today with Panda Buddy to get your journey started.

Recommended Posts