Teach English In Africa

a world of opportunities

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Kirsten Colquhoun
January 4, 2024

Contents

Why teach in Africa
Where to teach
How to qualify
Types of teaching jobs
How to get a job
Average salary
Cost of living

Teaching English in Africa is a life-changing experience! With over 1 billion people living on the continent and more than 2,000 languages spoken, English has become a vital tool for all. As a result, the demand for English teachers in Africa has steadily been on the rise for a number of years now.

How can you get involved? Let’s talk about what you need to know to start your career as an English teacher in Africa. We’ll look at the best places to teach English, how to get a teaching job in Africa and everything from average salaries to the cost of living.

Why start teaching English in Africa?

Want to see lions walking in the street? Fancy a shark in your swimming pool? Keen for a run with a rhino? Come to Africa!

Just kidding! But Africa is certainly a continent with experiences like nowhere else.

From bustling cities to rural villages to beautiful beach towns to the desert, Africa offers a range of different experiences for the intrepid traveller. There are many reasons you may want to start teaching English in Africa:

  • Make a difference: By helping people learn English, you are equipping them with valuable skills that can improve their career prospects and overall quality of life.
  • Cultural immersion: Africa is a continent rich in history, culture, and diversity. You have the opportunity to immerse yourself in a new culture, learn about local customs, and make meaningful connections with people from all walks of life.
  • Personal growth: Teaching English in Africa can be a challenging and rewarding experience. It requires adaptability, patience, and a willingness to step outside of your comfort zone.
  • Travel: Africa is a vast and beautiful continent with many incredible destinations to explore. By teaching English in Africa, you can travel to new places, experience different landscapes and wildlife, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Overall, teaching English in Africa is an incredibly fulfilling and life-changing experience that allows you to make a positive impact on others while also growing personally and professionally by gaining good teaching experience.

Best places to teach English in Africa

There are many great places to teach English in Africa, each with its own unique culture, history, and beauty. Your choice of teaching location depends on whether you’re nature lover, a culture vulture, or a city slicker.

Morocco

Best for travellers looking for spirituality and tradition

Known for its vibrant culture, delicious food, and stunning architecture. With a growing demand for English language education, there are many opportunities to teach in cities like Casablanca, Rabat, and Marrakech.

Namibia

Best for the thrill-seeking African traveller

With its breathtaking landscapes and diverse wildlife, Namibia is a popular destination for adventure-seekers and nature lovers. English is one of the official languages of Namibia, so there are many opportunities to teach in government schools and language centres throughout the country.

Kenya

Best for the nature-lovers

Home to some of Africa’s most iconic wildlife, Kenya is a popular destination for tourists and English teachers alike. Nairobi, the capital city, is a hub for education and business, making it an ideal place to teach English.

Ghana

Best for foodies and immersing yourself in an authentic African culture

Known for its friendly people, colourful festivals, and beautiful beaches, Ghana is a popular TEFL destination. The demand for English language education is high in Ghana, so there are many opportunities to teach in schools and language centres.

South Africa

Best for those who want a bit of everything!

With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and diverse population, South Africa is a popular destination for travellers and English teachers. It’s easy to find teaching opportunities in cities like Johannesburg, Cape Town, and Gqeberha.

Other popular destinations for teaching English in Africa include Tanzania, Uganda, Egypt, and Ethiopia. Ultimately, the best place to teach English in Africa depends on your personal preferences, goals, and interests.

Read more: Teaching Off The Beaten Track: 9 Alternative TEFL Destinations

How do I qualify to teach English in Africa?

As you can imagine, the qualifications required to teach English in Africa vary depending on the country and institution you plan to work for. However, there are some general qualifications that are often required or preferred:

  • A Bachelor’s degree: Most institutions require a Bachelor’s degree in any field, although some may prefer a degree in education, linguistics, or a related field.
  • A TEFL/TESOL certification: TEFL or TESOL certification is often required or preferred by employers.
  • Prior teaching experience: While not always required, prior teaching experience can be an asset when applying for English teaching jobs in Africa.
  • Native or near-native proficiency in English: As an English teacher, you will be expected to have a high level of proficiency in the English language.
  • Visa requirements: To legally work as an English teacher in Africa, you will typically need a work visa. The requirements and application process for a work visa vary by country, so be sure to research the specific requirements for your country.

Health care: It is a good idea to apply for personal health care in African countries.

Types of English teaching jobs in Africa

Because of the vast size of the continent, you are sure to find a range of types of TEFL teaching positions. Teaching in schools, volunteering and tutoring are all viable options.

Classroom teacher: Many English teachers in Africa work as classroom teachers in primary or secondary schools. In this role, you teach English language and literature to students of various ages and skill levels.

  • Tutor: Private tutoring is in high demand for English language education. Tutors will work one-on-one with students to improve their English language skills.
  • Volunteer: Many organisations offer volunteer teaching opportunities in Africa, particularly in rural or underserved communities. In this role, you will work with local schools or community organisations to provide English language instruction to students.
  • Corporate trainer: Some English teachers in Africa work as corporate trainers, delivering English language instruction to employees of local or international businesses.

Ultimately, the type of English teaching job you pursue in Africa depends on your qualifications, interests, and career goals.

How to get teaching jobs in Africa

Africa might seem like a bit of an unknown if you’re not from the continent, but rest assured the process of applying for a TEFL job is similar to the rest of the world. 

  1. Research: Start by researching English teaching opportunities in the countries and regions that interest you. You can search job boards, networking sites, and online directories.
  2. Prepare your application: Prepare a strong CV, cover letter, and any other required application materials. Highlight your relevant education, experience, and skills, and tailor your application to the specific job and institution you’re applying to.
  3. Apply: Submit your application materials. Follow up with the employer if you haven’t heard back within a reasonable amount of time.
  4. Obtain necessary visas and work permits: Check the specific requirements for the country you plan to work in and allow plenty of time to complete the application process.

Remember that finding a job in Africa, as in any location, can take time and effort. Be persistent, flexible, and open to new opportunities.

Our Level 5 – 168-hour TEFL course is the perfect resource for helping you get the skills and qualifications you need to begin your teaching career in Africa!

What is the average teacher salary in Africa?

The average teacher salary in Africa varies widely depending on the country, level of education, and experience. In general, salaries for English teachers in Africa are lower than in many other regions of the world. However, the cost of living is also generally lower in many African countries.

Here are some rough estimates of average English teacher salaries per month in various African countries:

  • Morocco: $600 – 1,000 (USD)
  • Namibia: $800 – 1,200
  • Kenya: $500 – 1,000
  • Ghana: $500 – 1,000
  • South Africa: $800 – 1,500

Volunteering: No salary but the company usually covers the visa cost and at times accommodation and food. There may be a cost involved in applying for a volunteer program.

What is the cost of living in African countries?

The cost of living in African countries varies widely depending on the country, region, and city. The cost of living is lower in Africa compared to many other parts of the world, but it can still vary significantly across the continent.

Here are some rough estimates of monthly living expenses (rent, utilities, food, transportation and health care) in various African countries:

  • Morocco: $500-800 (USD)
  • Namibia: $500-1,000
  • Kenya: $400-800 
  • Ghana: $400-800 
  • South Africa: $500-1,000

It’s important to do thorough research on the cost of living in the specific region and city you plan to live and work in before moving to Africa. Be sure to factor in any additional expenses, such as visa fees, health insurance, and travel costs. 

Contents

Teaching English in Africa is a life-changing experience! With over 1 billion people living on the continent and more than 2,000 languages spoken, English has become a vital tool for all. As a result, the demand for English teachers in Africa has steadily been on the rise for a number of years now.

How can you get involved? Let’s talk about what you need to know to start your career as an English teacher in Africa. We’ll look at the best places to teach English, how to get a teaching job in Africa and everything from average salaries to the cost of living.

Why start teaching English in Africa?

Want to see lions walking in the street? Fancy a shark in your swimming pool? Keen for a run with a rhino? Come to Africa!

Just kidding! But Africa is certainly a continent with experiences like nowhere else.

From bustling cities to rural villages to beautiful beach towns to the desert, Africa offers a range of different experiences for the intrepid traveller. There are many reasons you may want to start teaching English in Africa:

  • Make a difference: By helping people learn English, you are equipping them with valuable skills that can improve their career prospects and overall quality of life.
  • Cultural immersion: Africa is a continent rich in history, culture, and diversity. You have the opportunity to immerse yourself in a new culture, learn about local customs, and make meaningful connections with people from all walks of life.
  • Personal growth: Teaching English in Africa can be a challenging and rewarding experience. It requires adaptability, patience, and a willingness to step outside of your comfort zone.
  • Travel: Africa is a vast and beautiful continent with many incredible destinations to explore. By teaching English in Africa, you can travel to new places, experience different landscapes and wildlife, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Overall, teaching English in Africa is an incredibly fulfilling and life-changing experience that allows you to make a positive impact on others while also growing personally and professionally by gaining good teaching experience.

Best places to teach English in Africa

There are many great places to teach English in Africa, each with its own unique culture, history, and beauty. Your choice of teaching location depends on whether you’re nature lover, a culture vulture, or a city slicker.

Morocco

Best for travellers looking for spirituality and tradition

Known for its vibrant culture, delicious food, and stunning architecture. With a growing demand for English language education, there are many opportunities to teach in cities like Casablanca, Rabat, and Marrakech.

Namibia

Best for the thrill-seeking African traveller

With its breathtaking landscapes and diverse wildlife, Namibia is a popular destination for adventure-seekers and nature lovers. English is one of the official languages of Namibia, so there are many opportunities to teach in government schools and language centres throughout the country.

Kenya

Best for the nature-lovers

Home to some of Africa’s most iconic wildlife, Kenya is a popular destination for tourists and English teachers alike. Nairobi, the capital city, is a hub for education and business, making it an ideal place to teach English.

Ghana

Best for foodies and immersing yourself in an authentic African culture

Known for its friendly people, colourful festivals, and beautiful beaches, Ghana is a popular TEFL destination. The demand for English language education is high in Ghana, so there are many opportunities to teach in schools and language centres.

South Africa

Best for those who want a bit of everything!

With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and diverse population, South Africa is a popular destination for travellers and English teachers. It’s easy to find teaching opportunities in cities like Johannesburg, Cape Town, and Gqeberha.

Other popular destinations for teaching English in Africa include Tanzania, Uganda, Egypt, and Ethiopia. Ultimately, the best place to teach English in Africa depends on your personal preferences, goals, and interests.

Read more: Teaching Off The Beaten Track: 9 Alternative TEFL Destinations

How do I qualify to teach English in Africa?

As you can imagine, the qualifications required to teach English in Africa vary depending on the country and institution you plan to work for. However, there are some general qualifications that are often required or preferred:

  • A Bachelor’s degree: Most institutions require a Bachelor’s degree in any field, although some may prefer a degree in education, linguistics, or a related field.
  • A TEFL/TESOL certification: TEFL or TESOL certification is often required or preferred by employers.
  • Prior teaching experience: While not always required, prior teaching experience can be an asset when applying for English teaching jobs in Africa.
  • Native or near-native proficiency in English: As an English teacher, you will be expected to have a high level of proficiency in the English language.
  • Visa requirements: To legally work as an English teacher in Africa, you will typically need a work visa. The requirements and application process for a work visa vary by country, so be sure to research the specific requirements for your country.

Health care: It is a good idea to apply for personal health care in African countries.

Types of English teaching jobs in Africa

Because of the vast size of the continent, you are sure to find a range of types of TEFL teaching positions. Teaching in schools, volunteering and tutoring are all viable options.

Classroom teacher: Many English teachers in Africa work as classroom teachers in primary or secondary schools. In this role, you teach English language and literature to students of various ages and skill levels.

  • Tutor: Private tutoring is in high demand for English language education. Tutors will work one-on-one with students to improve their English language skills.
  • Volunteer: Many organisations offer volunteer teaching opportunities in Africa, particularly in rural or underserved communities. In this role, you will work with local schools or community organisations to provide English language instruction to students.
  • Corporate trainer: Some English teachers in Africa work as corporate trainers, delivering English language instruction to employees of local or international businesses.

Ultimately, the type of English teaching job you pursue in Africa depends on your qualifications, interests, and career goals.

How to get teaching jobs in Africa

Africa might seem like a bit of an unknown if you’re not from the continent, but rest assured the process of applying for a TEFL job is similar to the rest of the world. 

  1. Research: Start by researching English teaching opportunities in the countries and regions that interest you. You can search job boards, networking sites, and online directories.
  2. Prepare your application: Prepare a strong CV, cover letter, and any other required application materials. Highlight your relevant education, experience, and skills, and tailor your application to the specific job and institution you’re applying to.
  3. Apply: Submit your application materials. Follow up with the employer if you haven’t heard back within a reasonable amount of time.
  4. Obtain necessary visas and work permits: Check the specific requirements for the country you plan to work in and allow plenty of time to complete the application process.

Remember that finding a job in Africa, as in any location, can take time and effort. Be persistent, flexible, and open to new opportunities.

Our Level 5 – 168-hour TEFL course is the perfect resource for helping you get the skills and qualifications you need to begin your teaching career in Africa!

What is the average teacher salary in Africa?

The average teacher salary in Africa varies widely depending on the country, level of education, and experience. In general, salaries for English teachers in Africa are lower than in many other regions of the world. However, the cost of living is also generally lower in many African countries.

Here are some rough estimates of average English teacher salaries per month in various African countries:

  • Morocco: $600 – 1,000 (USD)
  • Namibia: $800 – 1,200
  • Kenya: $500 – 1,000
  • Ghana: $500 – 1,000
  • South Africa: $800 – 1,500

Volunteering: No salary but the company usually covers the visa cost and at times accommodation and food. There may be a cost involved in applying for a volunteer program.

What is the cost of living in African countries?

The cost of living in African countries varies widely depending on the country, region, and city. The cost of living is lower in Africa compared to many other parts of the world, but it can still vary significantly across the continent.

Here are some rough estimates of monthly living expenses (rent, utilities, food, transportation and health care) in various African countries:

  • Morocco: $500-800 (USD)
  • Namibia: $500-1,000
  • Kenya: $400-800 
  • Ghana: $400-800 
  • South Africa: $500-1,000

It’s important to do thorough research on the cost of living in the specific region and city you plan to live and work in before moving to Africa. Be sure to factor in any additional expenses, such as visa fees, health insurance, and travel costs. 

Download the World TEFL Factbook

We have created a unique TEFL World Factbook of teaching abroad guides in over 100 countries to help TEFL teachers decide where in the world to teach English. Each country profile outlines everything a TEFL teacher would need to know including average pay, living costs, working environments and even the weather!

Download TEFL Factbook
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