Why most foreign English teachers tend to be American/CandianPosted: January 18, 2014
STRAIGHT INTO IT!
1.) Because America + North America is HUGE. It’s one of the top most influential countries in the world and therefore is a central source for both producing and receiving global media (such as music, film and art). Kpop, K dramas and Japanese media get played both on technical devices and live way more than in other non-asian countries for example. This means it is more likely that East Asian produce will be advertised there and thus results in a bigger amount of East Asian fans/interests.
2.) On top the fact that America + North America is massive, it’s also a primarily English speaking country. Yep, the UK, Australia, New Zealand etc are also native English speaking countries but America + Canada is bigger. Foreign English teachers need to be native English speaker so BOOM. You have a huge group of native English speakers that have been exposed to East Asian culture from all directions.
3.) Although it’s nowhere near necessary to be able to speak Japanese, Korean or Chinese to become an English teacher there it is sometimes seen as an advantage because it means living in the country will be much easier for you. This is not a decisive factor though as many schools will request that you don’t speak the Japnese or Korean language to students anyway in order for them to be exposed and speak English far more than they speak their own language just so they will be able to advance faster. Anyway back to the point. The USA and Canada provide a much bigger educational system for East Asian studies from a younger age. As young as 16 upwards. [I know a guy the same age as me now (17) and he could read and write in all 3 Japanese writing systems (Hirigana, Katakana and Kanji) and Korean script (Hangul) as well as being able to speak basic Japanese and basic Korean. PFFFT! In England if we want to achieve this we have to self study until we can afford private lessons or get a place on an East Asian uni course. This is most definitely not a rant…MERGHHH! Jelly jelly.]
These 3 elements do allow many American and Canadians to be successful in quickly securing jobs in Japan and Korea because of their exposure to the culture and language slightly more than the rest of us however this does not put us at a disadvantage at all. We’re all on the same level playing field because like I said, prior lessons to achieve near fluency in the language does not make you any less or more likely to gain a job in teaching English. What matters is that you are fluent in or a native English speaker – so basically population and therefore a higher likelihood of more people being interested in teaching in East Asia makes it more likely that most foreign English teachers will come from the USA or Canada.
So obvious anyway but oh well!
My deductions! Good day bottoms! 🙂