What is the EPIK program for teaching English in South Korea?

EPIK stands for the English Program in Korea, a scheme run by the South Korean government that places foreign teachers into schools across the country to work as English language instructors. EPIK is one of the largest and most popular schemes of its kind as it offers a competitive salary, a good range of extra benefits, and the chance to experience living and working in a unique cultural environment. If you meet the specified criteria then you could be one of the thousand plus teachers heading to South Korea this year to join the program.

If you are interested in the EPIK program, we recommend reaching out to our TEFL recruitment partner Reach To Teach. Reach To Teach is an official partner of the EPIK program (English Program in Korea) and works with the Korean Ministry of Education to place English Language Instructors (ELIs) in Korean public schools throughout the country.

What are the requirements for the EPIK Program?

To be eligible to join the EPIK program you must be a native English speaker with a passport from one of the following countries: Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, the U.K, or the U.S. Applicants must also hold a university degree and be able to prove a clean criminal record. In addition, you also require at least one of the following:

  • TEFL/TESOL certification of 100 hours or more (preference is given to those with a teaching practice component)
  • BA or MA Degree in Education with a major in teaching, TESOL, second language studies, or education
  • Teaching license gained in your home country
  • One year of full time teaching experience

What does the EPIK Program involve?

If successful you will be required to sign a one year contract that runs from one of two start dates, either the end of February or the end of August. A typical working schedule is Monday to Friday from 8:40 a.m. to 4:40 p.m., with weekends off. Actual teaching time equates to approximately 22 hours per week.

Where will I be placed on the EPIK Program?

Placements on the program can be in almost any province in the country, with any individual preferences dealt with on a first-come, first-served basis. During your stay you might be expected to work in a variety of primary and secondary schools within your designated area. If you have a preference for one particular area then it is recommended that you submit your application as early as possible. For further information please visit the official EPIK website.

What are the benefits of the EPIK Program?

  • The overall package offered by the EPIK scheme includes a wide range of benefits, including:
  • Salary based on qualifications and experience ranging from 1.8 to 2.7 million KRW (currently 1,500 to 2,300 USD) per month
  • Fully furnished accommodation (not including utilities)
  • Paid airfare in an out of the country
  • 300,000 KRW settlement allowance
  • 18 days paid leave plus all national holidays
  • One month salary bonus on completion of contract

What is the EPIK program for teaching English in South Korea?