Teaching English abroad can be an exciting professional and cultural opportunity. If you are looking into teaching English in the beautiful country of Japan, you probably want to understand the requirements to do so.

Certain countries require English teachers to hold a four-year degree in order to teach there due to restrictions imposed by the government or visa requirements. However, some countries only require a two-year Associate’s degree to teach!

Is Japan considered to be one of these nations? You may ask, can I teach English in Japan with an Associate’s Degree? 

This article will explore the answer to this question and the requirements to teach English in Japan.

Can I Teach English In Japan With An Associates Degree?

The answer is often no. You cannot teach English in Japanese institutions with an associate’s degree. 

With that being said, there are ways you can teach English in Japanese schools with just an associate’s degree, but you will need to meet a specific set of requirements. 

How to Teach English in Japan with an Associate’s Degree?

If you have an associate’s degree and a TEFL certification, you will have the qualifications necessary to teach English in over 50 different countries, ranging from Costa Rica to Taiwan. 

However, in order to work in countries such as South Korea and Japan, you will need a degree that is the equivalent of four years of study.

If you want to teach English in Japan, you typically need to have a bachelor’s degree and be a native English speaker from one of the following countries: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, or South Africa. 

These are the fundamental requirements to meet in order to be eligible for a working visa to teach English. In a general sense, this visa is known as a humanities visa

Additional Qualifications to Teach English in Japan

You might also require additional qualifications, such as the following:

  • Schools might give teaching jobs preference to candidates who have relevant experience, degrees, or certifications, such as TEFL, CELTA, TESOL, or TEKA.
  • In Japan, a master’s degree is typically required in order to work as a professor at a university.
  • Although it’s not always necessary, having experience is almost always a plus.

What are the Teaching Options in Japan for those without a Degree?

If you want to teach English in Japan but don’t have a degree, your options are, unfortunately, quite restricted. 

The majority of English teaching jobs in Japan require a degree. You are unable to apply for a work visa to teach English as a foreign language (TEFL) in Japan if you do not possess a degree, regardless of the field in which it was earned.

If you want to teach English in Japan but don’t have a degree, you need to have one of the following options available to you:

The Working Holiday Visa 

Of these four choices, the Working Holiday Visa will most likely be your best bet.

The Student Visa

You can teach English on the side if you are trying to obtain a degree in Japan. It is possible to study in either English or Japanese at select Japanese universities, depending on your language ability.

The Spousal Visa

If you marry a Japanese national, you will be permitted to teach English in Japan on a spousal visa. 

Remember that most businesses prefer teachers to have a degree. Still, you will have the advantage of being an easy hire because your employer will not have to deal with the paperwork associated with sponsorship and hiring from abroad.

Japanese Citizenship

The final choice necessitates Japanese nationality. If you have a Japanese passport, you have the right to work in Japan and can find work teaching English without a degree. If not, there is little chance of obtaining one, as naturalization takes a minimum of five years of residence in the nation.

To sum it up, to be able to teach English in Japan without a bachelor’s degree, you will need to meet specific requirements. 

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