Opportunities in Teaching English as a Foreign Language

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For more information on the work that TEFL scholars do, please visit this blog post.

Awards in TEFL will focus on English language teacher training in any of over 30 areas of specialization. Opportunities are open to a wide range of scholars and, in many countries, professionals as well. Applicants may apply to awards which are titled "Teaching English as Foreign Langauge," awards which identify TEFL as a preferred discipline, or any All Disciplines award. Some awards are open to applicants with a Master's degree and a stated number of years of university level teaching experience while others require a PhD in TEFL, applied linguistics or a closely related field.

Applications will be evaluated by a TEFL-specific review committee in the United States, and if recommended, sent for consideration in a country or countries of interest. This streamlined review process and the ability to apply to more than one country make this an ideal time for scholars with experience training English teachers to consider participating in the Fulbright Scholar Program.





Estonia: TEFL/Applied Linguistics - Award #7187
Teach undergraduate or graduate courses, or both, in English language teacher training at Narva College. Narva College is part of the University of Tartu and is among the top three percent of world's best universities. Scholars also have the opportunity to conduct daily life in a town composed of 96 percent native Russian speakers.

Kuwait: Multiple Disciplines - Award #7404
American History, American Literature, American Studies, Communications, Education, and Journalism are some of the preferred disciplines in Kuwait, where scholars may teach, conduct research or do both. This award is available as a flex award, making it a good option for applicants who would like to complete a grant in multiple visits.

Mexico: Teaching English as  Foreign Language - Award #7509
Mexico offers a unique opportunity to TEFL specialists to improve English-language teaching at Mexican public institutions. The TEFL award supports student and faculty training, as well as BA and MA TEFL continuing program development.

Mozambique: All Disciplines - Award #7040
Mozambique is a rapidly developing and multinational country; Portugese being it's official language. The Fulbright Scholar Program in Mozambique offers scholars a variety the opportunity to improve literacy rates and  quality of education nationally across all disciplines.

Tajikistan: Multiple Disciplines - Award #7440
Tajikistan is the smallest and most mountainous country of the Central Asian nations, rich with culture and history. Interested candidates have the opportunity to teach TEFL. Fulbright Scholars will have the opportunity to be pioneers as they will likely be the first American that many Tajik students have ever met and will have a tremendous opportunity to expand cultural understanding. Special features include the South and Central Asia (SCA) Fulbright Regional Travel Grant, which allows Fulbright Scholars in the SCA region to travel to give lectures in other eligible countries.

Turkey: Teaching English as a Foreign Language - Award #7330 (TEFL)
Scholars with a Ph.D. are encouraged to apply to teach two graduate courses in an English language teacher-training program. Specializations of interest include English teaching pedagogies and techniques and History of English.

Vietnam: All Disciplines - Award #7130
Vietnam is looking for Fulbright Scholars to aid in their mission of advancing education. They are aiming to produce over 20,000 Ph.D. holders as well as join the ranks of developed nations by 2020. Award-winners can be part of history by teaching and/or conducting research in Vietnam in all appropriate disciplines including TEFL.

  • More awards in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) can be found in our Awards Catalog.


Quotes from Scholars


East Asia and the Pacific
"The new course I developed for the graduate program at the National Taiwan Normal University went very well and students really enjoyed the new learning experience. Many of them told me that their understanding of ELT field and working with English learners would never be the same as before... I also felt much honored to have the opportunity to share my experience and knowledge and to exchange teaching and research ideas with ELT educators and scholars at local, national and international levels. I would not trade anything for this valuable experience as a Fulbright scholar. Thank you all!" (Teaching, Taiwan, 2011-12)

"Perhaps the most important outcome of my Fulbright experience, for me as a scholar, was the extent to which I came to understand the Spanish (and less directly, the European) university system, the roles for and approaches to higher education and research within society, and the nature of my own scholarly domain (applied linguistics and specifically language education) within Spain and Europe. We are, quite literally, a world apart in U.S. higher education, with distinct assumptions, values, trajectories, and possibilities in virtually every aspect of the academe." (Teaching, Spain, 2010-11)

Middle East and North Africa
"My experience in Tunisia has indelibly shaped my teaching, my interactions with students and colleagues, and my heightened interest in the progress of the so-called Arab spring. Given the relative success to date in Tunisia, I am optimistic about the future there. This is largely due to the high value that Tunisians place on education." (Teaching, Tunisia, 2010-11)

South and Central Asia
"Contrary to general perception that reforms in education in India are either slow or dormant, I discovered just the opposite.  For example, there are more universities allowed to function under both public and private undertakings now than ever before.  Several leading colleges are granted to function as autonomous institutions.  Lastly, the universities have greater flexibilities in terms of offering programs and collaborating with public and private industries in research and development." (Teaching, India, 2011-12)

Western Hemisphere Region
"My Fulbright experience was overwhelmingly positive. My colleagues from my host university went out of their way to make me feel welcomed and supported.  The students I taught and advised were very gracious and appreciative. Through this Fulbright experience, I was able to directly influence 30 students and improve their teaching...  I believe they will be better teachers because of my help and future generations of Chilean children will benefit." (Teaching, Chile, 2010-11)

"The most tangible benefit of the Fulbright experience (and there were many) is the opportunity to fully immerse myself in the host culture and experience the complexities of the culture from the inside. It helped me to develop intercultural competence; appreciate my own and the host culture; constantly re-examine my worldviews; and reflect on different views of, and approaches to, education, including best practices. It was also a singularly privileged opportunity to engage deeply in my research and to adapt my teaching to a different environment. Jamaica is extremely rich culturally, so there was a tremendous amount to learn."(Lecturing/Research, Jamaica, 2011-12)

  • Complete information on past Fulbright recipients in TEFL can be found in the Scholar Directory.


Examples of Successful Projects


Contemporary Approaches to Second Language Teaching, Research and Evaluation
SPAIN, University of Alicante, Alicante

Corpus-based Linguistics and the Empirical Approach in Morocco
MOROCCO, Mohamed V University, Rabat

Critical Thinking and How to Avoid Plagiarism in a TEFL Setting
TAJIKISTAN, Khujand State University, Khujand  

Dialects, Creoles and Education; Language Education Policy Implementation and Academic Performance in Jamaican Schools
JAMAICA, University of the West Indies, Mona, Kingston

Principled Eclecticism in Post-Methods Era in English Language Teaching Instruction: Curriculum Development and Assessment in an English as a Foreign Language Context
TAIWAN, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei

  • Complete information on past Fulbright recipients in TEFL can be found in the Scholar Directory.




CIES offers a series of resources providing detailed information on many aspects of the Fulbright Scholar Program opportunities. Depending on your interests, you can find a wealth of answers to your specific questions in our upcoming and archived webinars.

  • Webinar | Archive - TEFL Teacher Training and Program Development (April 27, 2016 - 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm EDT)
  • Presentation and Workshop Schedule - CIES program staff continue to visit university and college campuses countrywide, as well as participate in a range of conferences in the sciences. Please check the schedule to find out when program staff will be at an event near you. If you are interested in having CIES staff visit your campus and speak with department faculty about opportunities in your field, contact us at outreach@iie.org.




Caitlin McNamara English, Recruitment and Marketing Officer, scholars@iie.org