ENGLISH PROGRAM IN KOREA

APPLY TO EPIK

EPIK stands for English Program in Korea and is a subsidiary organization of the Korean Ministry of Education.

EPIK is in charge of foreign language education in public schools, and recruits native English speaking teachers.

EPIK’s two intakes are March (the beginning of the year) and September (the beginning of the second semester). Thousands of teachers apply every year, making it the largest program for native English teachers in Korea.

This competitive program is highly recommended for those who are looking to work in public schools. EPIK places all over Korea, and applicants have the ability to select a metropolitan city or a province as their preference (EPIK treats preferences just the same as applicants overall, i.e. via a first-come-first-serve basis).

Therefore, HandSKorea recommends to native speakers to choose the EPIK program, because it has well-structured recruitment and management, as well as comprehensive contract conditions, so native speakers can choose various positions on the EPIK program.

HandS Korea is an authorized partner for EPIK and will be with you every step of the way to guide you through every point in the process and answer any questions you may have.

Contract period
All EPIK contracts are for 12 months.

Work Hours
9 a.m to 5 p.m / Eight (8) hours per day for five (5) calendar days per week from Monday to Friday.

Class Instruction Hours / Teaching Hours
Shall not exceed 22 teaching hours per week, EPIK Teacher shall be entitled to 20,000 won per overtime work (beyond the 22 standard hours).

National and school holiday(s)
Shall not work on Saturdays, Sundays, and any national holidays of the Republic of Korea. Any other standard days off recognized by the school are not considered as part of your paid leave.

Sick days
Shall not exceed 11 working days during the Term of employment, for the first 3 days of sick leave taken, doctor’s medical report required.

Special Leave

Paid special leave for a number of days as set forth below for each of the following events stated herein only with the express consent of the Employer. The duration of the special leave excluding maternity leave shall not include Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays of the Republic of Korea. Paid special leave amounts to the following:

  • 1. 5 days for the teacher’s marriage
  • 1 day for the marriage of the teacher’s child
  • 5 days for paternity leave
  • 5 days for the death of the teacher’s  parents or spouse or spouse’s parents or siblings
  • 2 days for the death of the teacher’s or spouse’s grandparents
  • 2 days for the death of the teacher’s child or child’s spouse
  • 90 continuous calendar days shall be granted for a maternity leave (female teacher)
  • Female teacher with a child aged less than one year shall be entitled to 30-minute-nursing time twice a day.

Duties and Responsibility

① Prepare teaching materials and lesson plans for English class(es) and also assist with and/or lead the development and creation of teaching materials related to English language education. Furthermore, assist with and/or lead activities related to English language education and other extracurricular activities such as but not limited to editing or creating English documents, judging contests, conducting teacher training, working at English camps, etc
② Conduct English conversational class(es)/course(s) for Korean teachers and students and perform other duties as designated by the Employer including various English programs during the school vacation period.
③ School becomes aware of any illegal action( Narcotics, etc…) by the teacher.
④ The teacher shall not behave in any manner including the orientation period occurring after entering Korea. Also the teacher shall observe and comply with any codes of conduct and dress applicable to Korean teachers.
⑤ The teacher shall not engage in any other employment during the Term of Employment
⑥ The teacher shall not be involved in any activity which could cause harm to the students or be of detriment to the reputation of the school

Be a citizen of a country where English is the primary language:
USA/ Canada/ Australia/ New Zealand/ England/ Ireland/ South Africa

Educational background
① In order to be eligible, studying 7th grade until Univ. in one of 7th designated countries for a minimum of 10 years.
② Any degree or diploma of Bachelor’s level and above.
Clean Criminal Record Check
Criminal record check must be clean and properly processed (depending on the country this will differ).
TESOL / CELTA / TEFL certificate
A certificate with at least 100 hours is the minimum requirement. Some locations require a certain amount of in-class hours (from your certificate)

  • Busan: 50 hours
  • Gyeongsangnam: 20 hours

Physical and psychological Health test
Upon the arrival in Korea, applicant will be required to do with the general medical check-up including with a drug test at the designated hospital.
Age
① Applicants over 50 years old are required to have teaching experience.
② The maximum age limit is 62 yrs at the time of application (teacher’s retirement)

Step 1. Apply to HandSKorea.

Applicants must send their resume to main.hsk@hotmail.com. If the applicant is suitable, one of our recruiters will contact the applicant about an individual interview session to help decide which positions are best for the candidate.

Step 2. Submit EPIK application + Initial Documents (2 LoRs (Letter of References) & Introduction video)

Applicants must complete the EPIK application and then get two letter of references (LoRs). LoRs can be obtained from a superior from any previous employment or a professor from your university. Letters  must contain company’s logo, company’s address, company’s phone number, referee’s email address/ phone number/ referee’s position and ink signature (not electronic signature).

Step 3. Mock interview with HandSKorea

When applicants send their application and essential documents, HandSKorea will contact the applicants to schedule a mock interview to prepare for the actual interview with EPIK down the line.

Step 4. EPIK interview

EPIK will schedule an interview time for acceptedapplicants. The entire interview may take anywhere from 10-30 minutes.

Step 5. Job Offer

If the interview is successful EPIK will notify us shortly after (typically 1-3 days) which we, as soon as we find out, will let you know just the same.

Step 6. Submit Extra or Final Documents

Applicants must get ready to send in all their required final documents to HandSKorea during the specified submission timeline. When HandSKorea receives said documents, we will do a double check for each document and then send them to EPIK for review.

Step 7. Get NOA & Apply for VISA

After the applicant is confirmed with EPIK, EPIK will send out a Notice Of Appointment (NOA) and contract. After that, the applicant must bring the original contract after signing on each page & NOA, application form, consular’s checklist, original passport, and application fee to their closest Korean Embassy/Consulate.

Step 8. Booking a one-way ticket

Once the applicant obtains his/her VISA, he/she must book a one-way plane ticket to South Korea. While the ticket’s cost must be paid upfront by the applicant, the school will provide the teacher an entrance allowance amounting to 1.3 million won (more than enough to pay for any flight) within 30 days upon arrival to Korea.

Step 9. EPIK Orientation

When the teacher arrives at Incheon airport, he/she will check in with EPIK at the designated counter where teachers will load onto regularly scheduled buses to go to the EPIK orientation location. The orientation lasts about 1 week, and from there teachers will be assisted to get to their placement locations.

Step 10. Start to work.

Wow! Finally, YOU are officially an EPIK teacher! Congratulations! You will gain great experiences from teaching in Korea!

Just as with all teaching opportunities in Korea, EPIK provides terrific benefits:

Housing 

① Semi-furnished housing is provided. Rent is covered by the school, but the teacher must cover all utilities. More often than not the accommodation is whats called a “one room” in Korea (usually referred to as a studio in the west). Typically includes a bed, bathroom with shower, cooking range, refrigeratorE unit, and wardrobe. Extra amenities may be provided, but this will depend on the exact accommodation.

② The teacher may opt out of the provided housing and receive a 400,000 won stipend instead. If this is the case then the teacher must find their own accommodation and pay rent as well.

③ The employer shall provide couples housing only to married couples jointly employed by the employer.

Entrance / Exit Allowance 

①Teacher shall receive a 1,300,000 won Entrance.  The Entrance Allowance is not offered to teacher who are renewing their contract.

② In case of the termination of this Contract within the first 6 months, the Employee shall immediately pay this amount back to the employer.

Renewal Allowance 

① The Employer shall provide the teacher with 1,300,000 Korea Won which shall be paid within one month. An additional 700,000 won will be given as a Contract Renewal Allowance after the successful completion of the renewed contract.

② In case of termination of the Renewal Contract within the first 6 months, the remaining 700,000 won of the Contract Renewal Allowance will be forfeited.

Paid Vacation

① A vacation period of a total of 18 working days during the term . The teacher shall take their vacation for 8 working days during the summer recess and 10 working days during the winter recess respectively.

② Regardless of the number of days over which the paid leave falls, 8 accumulated hours of paid leave shall be counted as one day. This includes tardiness, early leave, other absences during the work day and/or half-days of paid leave.

Sick Day

① EPIK teachers are allowed up to 11 sick days. If the teacher uses more than 11 days, they must provide a doctor’s note to their school. Any working days beyond the 11-day limit will be unpaid. Sick days are not able to be “rolled-over” to a renewing contract.

Special Leave 

① Paid Special Leave for a number of days as set forth below for each of the following events stated herein only with the express consent of the employer. The duration of the special leave excluding maternity leave shall not include Saturdays, Sundays, or national holidays of the Republic of Korea. The amounts are laid out as follows:

  • 1. 5 days for the teacher’s marriage
  • 1 day for the marriage of the teacher’s child
  • 5 days for paternity leave
  • 5 days for the death of the teacher’s parents or spouse or spouse’s parents or siblings
  • 2 days for the death of the teacher’s or spouse’s grandparents
  • 2 days for the death of the teacher’s child or child’s spouse
  • 90 continuous calendar days shall be granted for a maternity leave (female teacher)
  • Female teacher with a child aged less than one year shall be entitled to 30-minute-nursing time twice a day.

Medical Insurance Premium 

① On behalf of the teacher, the employer shall provide 50% of the teacher’s medical insurance premium (including spouse and/or children) -live with him or her in Korea- pursuant to the National Medical Insurance Act of Korea. Medical insurance is full-coverage and include health, vision, & dental. Enrolling will be automatically enrolled upon the start of the contract.

① The teacher shall be paid the amount set via the EPIK pay scale (see chart below) minus Korean income tax, residence tax, medical insurance premium, the national pension contribution, and etc.
② Salary shall be paid on the 25th of the month. If the 25th of the month falls on a Saturday, Sunday or a national holiday, the salary shall be paid on the immediately preceding business day.
③ If the teacher should be absent from work, the Employee’s salary for that month shall be prorated according to the corresponding number of unauthorized absent days.

Level Requirements Monthly Pay (million KRW)
Metropolitan City Province
Busan
Incheon
Daegu
Gyeonggi
Other
Cities
Jeju Other
Provinces
1+

After 2 consecutive years as Level 1 with the renewing province

2.5 2.6 2.6 2.7
1

2 years of full-time teaching experience + one of the following:

        -Bachelor’s degree in Education / major in Teaching, TESOL, Second Language Studies, or Education

-Master’s degree in Education / major in Teaching, TESOL, Second Language Studies, or Education

-Teacher’s license

-TEFL/TESOL or CELTA certificate

OR

After 1 year as a Level 2+ with the renewing province

2.3 2.4 2.4 2.5
2+

1 year of full-time teaching experience + one of the following:

        -Bachelor’s degree in Education / major in Teaching, TESOL, Second Language Studies, or Education

-Teacher’s license

-TEFL/TESOL or CELTA certificate

OR

Master’s degree in any discipline with a Bachelor’s degree in Education / major in Teaching, TESOL, Second Language Studies, or Education

OR

Master’s degree in Education / major in Teaching, TESOL, Second Language Studies, or Education with a Bachelor’s degree in any discipline

OR

After 1 year as a Level 2 with the renewing province

2.1 2.2 2.2 2.3
2

Bachelor’s degree in Education / major in Teaching, TESOL, Second Language Studies, or Education

OR

Bachelor’s degree in any discipline + TEFL/TESOL/CELTA certificate

OR

Bachelor’s degree in any discipline + Teacher’s License

OR

Bachelor’s degree in any discipline + 1 year TaLK scholar experience

2.0 2.1 2.1 2.2
3

Bachelor’s degree in any discipline

1.8 1.9 2.0 2.1

EPIK places teachers in both metropolitan and provincial areas. Applicants are able to specify their preference for a particular city or province. The faster you submit your documents the better chance you have of landing a position in the location you set as your preference. If the location has already had its positions filled you will be placed in a different area (with no guarantee that it will be close to your original preference).

The two types of locations are as follows:

Metropolitan – Individual cities with high population densities. These will be some of the more known locations (as we are talking about the major cities of the nation). Examples are Seoul, Busan, Daegu, and Ulsan.
Provincial – Regions with multiple cities and towns within. These are the actual provinces of Korea. Examples are Gyeonggi, Gyeongnam, Gyeongbuk, and Gangwon.

Preferences cannot be guaranteed because of a number of factors; The major factors being date of application, number of positions available in said area, and how many applicants are putting down said area as their preference.