- What is EPIK?
- Where in South Korea can you be placed?
- Types of EPIK schools
- Age of learners
- When to apply
- Pay scale
- Requirements for EPIK
- EPIK application process
What is EPIK?
EPIK (English Programme in Korea) are affiliated with the Korean Ministry of Education and their aim is to improve the English-speaking abilities of Korean students and teachers. EPIK place native English speakers on one year teaching contracts (52 weeks) in Korean public schools throughout the country to share their knowledge and language with both students and teachers.
Where in South Korea can you be placed?
EPIK provides teaching opportunities in all metropolitan cities and provinces in Korea including cities such as Seoul and Busan as well as towns and rural areas. Specific locations vary each term.
Find out more about the country in our South Korea Country Guide.
Types of EPIK Schools
You will be placed in Government schools throughout Korea. The contract period will last for one year (52 weeks) with weekends off and 14 days of national Korean holidays. 22 hours per week teaching maximum.
Age of learners
You will be placed in Elementary schools, Middle schools and High schools, teaching children aged between 6 and 18 years old. Class sizes will depend on the location of the school however can range between 10 and 40 students.
When to apply
The application process can be quite lengthy and those who apply early will have an advantage over those applying later. For the Spring term, you should apply in August. For the Fall term, applications should be sent in February.
Salaries range from 1.8 million KRW (approx £1100 GBP) to 2.5 million KRW (approx £1500 GBP), rising up to 2.7 million KRW (approx £1650 GBP) after 2 years depending on qualifications, experience and the location of where you are teaching.
A one off payment of 300,000 KRW (approx £184 GBP) is given within the first month of the first contract only.
Free furnished housing
A leased house/studio/room and basic household goods will be provided. Utilities and maintenance fees are not provided. If housing is unavailable you will be given a monthly rent of 400,000 KRW (approx £245 GBP), in lieu of free furnished housing.
All EPIK teachers who successfully complete their contract will be entitled to receive severance pay which is equal to approximately one month’s salary.
Entrance Allowance and Exit Allowance
All EPIK teachers will be provided with an Entrance Allowance payment of 1,300,000 KRW (approx £800 GBP) at the end of their first contract month. (To prevent early termination of contracts, this is issued as a form of loan from the employer to the EPIK teacher. If the contract is terminated within the first 6 months, the EPIK teacher will be required to repay the aforementioned loan to the school immediately). After the end of the contract, should the EPIK teacher decide to leave Korea and not immediately gain employment here, they will be entitled to an Exit Allowance of 1,300,000 KRW (approx £800 GBP).
2,000,000 KRW (approx £1230 GBP) will be provided upon successful completion and renewal of your contract with the same MOE/POE (Metropolitan Provincial Office of Education.) In this case, the other allowances (settlement, entrance and exit) do not apply.
Compulsory Medical Insurance
Your MOE/POE will pay 50% of your medical insurance premiums.
All EPIK teachers will receive orientation and training related to living and teaching in Korea with lodging and meals provided free of charge.
Requirements for EPIK
- Native English speaker – passport holder from Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom, United States or South Africa.
- Degree educated – bachelor’s or equivalent in any subject (applicants with a two year associate degree or who have completed a minimum of two years in university can apply to the TaLK program – https://www.talk.go.kr/talk/talk_new/intro.jsp )
- TEFL qualified – although not compulsory a TEFL qualification that includes a 20 hour in-class component is recommended. Qualified teachers are not required to have a TEFL qualification.
- Upper age limit – 62 years
For more information of EPIK eligibility requirements visit – https://www.epik.go.kr/contents.do?contentsNo=48&menuNo=275.
EPIK application process
- Send EPIK application
- Interview with the EPIK
- Documents received by the EPIK Office in Seoul, Korea
- Documents received by a Metropolitan Provincial Office of Education (MOE/POE)
- Contracts sent from MOE/POE to EPIK Office
- Contracts sent from EPIK Office to Applicant
- Apply for E2 Visa at a Korean Consulate/Embassy
You can also apply to the EPIK program via an agency such as ‘Korean Horizons’ (https://www.koreanhorizons.com/) by submitting an application form.
If, once you have completed the EPIK program, you wish to stay in the country, check out our Job Centre for the latest jobs in South Korea.