Friday 04 July 2014


New graduates struggling to find work in Northern Ireland are being invited to pursue a career teaching English abroad.

The British Council is offering applicants from Northern Ireland the chance to participate in the English Teaching Graduate Scheme, which aims to help give them the qualifications necessary to teach overseas, while also giving them insight into other cultures and communities.

Through the scheme, the British Council will subsidise successful applicants with a grant of up to £600 to study a one-month Trinity CertTESOL or Cambridge CELTA course at either the Belfast Metropolitan College or at the International House Belfast, both British Council Accredited Centres.

After the one-month course, successful applicants will also be provided with one day of additional training at the British Council, which will give them guidance about starting a career as an English teacher overseas or in the UK.

According to Jonathan Stewart, Deputy Director of the British Council, such an initiative has never been timelier.

He said: “With graduations taking place across Northern Ireland this week, many will be unsure of what direction to take. It’s an exciting time for graduates, but some are only starting to think about their career options now.”

“The English Teaching Graduate Scheme gives these individuals a chance to learn a new skill and improve their education and employment opportunities. Teaching English abroad is also a great way to see the world and experience living in completely new cultures”.

“With the English Teaching Graduate Scheme the world really is your oyster — many jobs are available in China, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, Taiwan, Vietnam and Korea, while closer to home Spain, Italy and Portugal are popular destinations. For successful applicants, this scheme will be a life-changing, invaluable experience, which any employer should look on favourably.” 

Mr Stewart said the scheme was particularly important for recently graduated teachers.

He said: “Even though this is a great initiative for all graduates, it’s especially important for newly qualified teachers having a hard time finding a permanent position.”

The scheme is open to graduates who are currently unemployed or work less than 16 hours per week, hold a British or Irish passport and have graduated from a UK university in the last three years. Additionally, applicants must not currently be in full-time Higher Education or have any intention of enrolling in a course during the coming academic year. 

Applications are now open for the next recruitment round. The deadline for applications is Friday, August 1.

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations.  To apply, or for more details on the English Teaching Graduate Scheme and other opportunities through the British Council visit or email

Notes to Editor

For further information contact at the British Council or please visit You can also keep in touch with the British Council via

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. We work in over 100 countries worldwide to build engagement and trust for the UK through the exchange of knowledge and ideas between people. We work in the arts, education, English, science, sport and governance and last year we engaged face to face with 18.4 million people and reached 652 million. We are a non-political organisation which operates at arm’s length from government. Our total turnover in 2009/10 was £705 million, of which our grant-in-aid from the British government was £211 million. For every £1 of government grant we receive, we earn £2.50 from other sources. For more information, please visit: