A traditional mongolian school building with a globe and some teaching tools like a chalkboard

How To Become An International School Teacher in Mongolia?

Mongolia, with its breathtaking landscapes and rich cultural heritage, has become an increasingly popular destination for international school teachers. If you’re intrigued by the idea of teaching abroad in this unique country, then this article is for you. In this guide, we will walk you through the pathway to becoming an international school teacher in Mongolia, the qualifications you need, the hiring process, and the experiences of living and teaching in the land of the blue sky. So let’s dive in!

iPGCE or iQTS – Pathways and Benefits in Mongolia

Before we delve into the nuts and bolts of teaching in Mongolia, it’s crucial to understand the different pathways available to aspiring international teachers. Two qualifications that you might come across are the International Postgraduate Certificate in Education (iPGCE) and the International Qualified Teacher Status (iQTS). Both of these qualifications can enhance your employability and provide a solid foundation for teaching in Mongolia.

When considering the iPGCE, it’s important to note that this qualification is designed for educators who already hold a bachelor’s degree and are looking to specialise in teaching. The iPGCE offers a comprehensive curriculum that covers pedagogy, assessment strategies, and classroom management techniques. This in-depth training equips teachers with the necessary skills to create engaging and effective learning environments for students in Mongolia.

On the other hand, the iQTS is ideal for individuals who have experience in the field of education but may not have a formal teaching qualification. Attaining iQTS demonstrates a commitment to professional development and can open doors to exciting teaching opportunities in Mongolia. With a focus on practical teaching skills and educational theory, the iQTS programme prepares educators to navigate the unique challenges and rewards of teaching in a diverse cultural setting like Mongolia.

Why become a teacher in Mongolia?

Teaching in Mongolia offers a truly unique and immersive experience. Not only will you have the chance to explore the vast Mongolian landscape, but you’ll also have the opportunity to make a meaningful impact on the lives of your students. Mongolia’s education system is rapidly evolving, and there is a high demand for qualified international teachers who can bring fresh perspectives and pedagogical approaches to the classroom.

Furthermore, by becoming a teacher in Mongolia, you will have the chance to immerse yourself in the rich and diverse Mongolian culture. From traditional music and dance to nomadic traditions and ancient rituals, Mongolia offers a fascinating tapestry of customs and practices that you can experience firsthand. By engaging with the local community and participating in cultural events, you can gain a deeper understanding of the country’s heritage and history.

Moreover, teaching in Mongolia provides a platform for personal and professional growth. As you navigate the challenges and rewards of teaching in a foreign country, you will develop valuable skills such as adaptability, cross-cultural communication, and resilience. These experiences can not only enhance your teaching practice but also broaden your perspective and enrich your life in ways you never imagined.

What qualifications do I need to teach in Mongolia?

To teach in Mongolia, you typically need a bachelor’s degree in education or a related field, along with a teaching certification. Many international schools also prefer candidates with experience in teaching the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. Additionally, having a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification can give you an added advantage, especially if you’re interested in teaching English in Mongolia.

It’s worth noting that Mongolia has a unique educational system that combines traditional Mongolian teaching methods with modern educational practices. Teachers in Mongolia are highly respected in society, and the profession is considered noble and prestigious. The country places a strong emphasis on the importance of education in shaping the future of its youth and the development of the nation as a whole.

Furthermore, teaching in Mongolia offers a rich cultural experience, as you’ll have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the vibrant Mongolian culture and learn about the country’s fascinating history and traditions. From the vast steppes to the bustling city of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia offers a diverse landscape that provides a unique backdrop for teaching and learning. By teaching in Mongolia, you’ll not only be making a difference in the lives of your students but also expanding your own horizons and gaining valuable international teaching experience.

What’s the hiring process for becoming an international teacher in Mongolia?

The hiring process for international teachers in Mongolia can vary from school to school. Typically, you’ll need to submit a detailed application, including your CV, cover letter, and references. If shortlisted, you may be invited for an interview, which can be conducted in person or via video call. Some schools may also require you to provide lesson plans or conduct a demonstration lesson. Once you’re offered a teaching position, you’ll need to go through the visa application process, which can be facilitated by the school.

Moreover, it is essential for prospective international teachers in Mongolia to familiarise themselves with the local culture and customs. Understanding the traditions and values of the Mongolian people can greatly enhance your teaching experience and help you build strong relationships with students, parents, and colleagues. Embracing the nomadic heritage and rich history of Mongolia can also enrich your lessons and create a more immersive learning environment for your students.

Furthermore, language proficiency can play a significant role in your success as an international teacher in Mongolia. While English is widely used in international schools, having a basic understanding of Mongolian language can be advantageous in communicating with local staff and students outside the school environment. Engaging with the Mongolian language can also demonstrate your commitment to integrating into the community and gaining a deeper insight into the country’s culture.

Living as an international teacher in Mongolia

Living in Mongolia as an international teacher offers a plethora of adventures and new experiences. The cost of living is generally lower than in many Western countries, allowing you to save money or indulge in travel and exploration. However, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the local customs and traditions to ensure a smooth transition. Embrace the nomadic spirit, learn some basic Mongolian phrases, and be open to trying traditional Mongolian food.

One of the most fascinating aspects of living in Mongolia is the rich cultural heritage that dates back centuries. From the iconic Mongolian throat singing to the colourful traditional clothing worn by locals, you’ll be immersed in a world unlike any other. Don’t miss the opportunity to witness the annual Naadam Festival, where you can experience the thrill of traditional Mongolian sports such as wrestling, horse racing, and archery.

Furthermore, Mongolia’s stunning landscapes offer a paradise for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Explore the vast Gobi Desert, home to unique wildlife and breathtaking sand dunes. Or venture into the picturesque Mongolian countryside, dotted with nomadic yurts and herds of grazing livestock. Whether you’re hiking in the rugged mountains or camping under the starlit sky, Mongolia’s natural beauty will leave you awe-struck and inspired.

Cultural Insights for International Teachers in Mongolia

When teaching in Mongolia, cultural sensitivity plays a vital role in building relationships with students, colleagues, and the local community. Mongolian culture places great importance on respect, hospitality, and communal harmony. Taking the time to learn about and appreciate the local traditions and customs will not only make you a better teacher but also enrich your overall experience in Mongolia.

Mongolia, a landlocked country in East Asia, is known for its vast steppes, nomadic way of life, and rich cultural heritage. The traditional Mongolian diet consists mainly of meat and dairy products, reflecting the country’s pastoral economy. Dairy products such as airag (fermented mare’s milk) and aaruul (dried curd cheese) are staples in the Mongolian diet and are often shared as a sign of hospitality.

Furthermore, Mongolians have a deep reverence for nature, with many traditional customs and beliefs rooted in shamanism and animism. The landscape of Mongolia, with its rugged mountains, expansive grasslands, and pristine lakes, holds spiritual significance for many Mongolians. It is common to see offerings such as blue silk scarves tied to sacred trees or rocks as a way of showing respect to the spirits believed to inhabit these natural spaces.

Cost of Living in Mongolia

Compared to many Western countries, the cost of living in Mongolia is relatively affordable. Accommodation prices can vary depending on the location, with Ulaanbaatar, the capital city, typically being more expensive. Basic groceries and transportation are reasonably priced, although imported goods can be more costly. It’s important to budget wisely and make use of local markets for fresh produce to stretch your money further.

When considering the cost of living in Mongolia, it’s worth noting that the country’s nomadic heritage still influences certain aspects of daily life. For example, traditional nomadic dwellings known as “gers” are still prevalent in rural areas and offer a unique living experience. While these may not be commonly rented by expatriates or tourists, they provide insight into Mongolia’s rich cultural history.

Furthermore, the cost of dining out in Mongolia can vary significantly depending on the type of establishment. Local eateries and street food stalls offer delicious and budget-friendly options, allowing you to sample traditional Mongolian cuisine without breaking the bank. On the other hand, upscale restaurants in urban centres cater to a more refined dining experience, complete with international dishes and higher price points.

Popular International Schools in Mongolia

If you’re considering teaching in Mongolia, you might be curious about the schools available. Here are a few popular international schools in Mongolia:

  • Mongolia International School (MIS)
  • International School of Ulaanbaatar (ISU)
  • British School of Ulaanbaatar (BSU)
  • UBIS International School (UBIS)

These schools offer a diverse range of educational programs and a welcoming international community.

Mongolia International School (MIS) is known for its strong emphasis on bilingual education, offering students the opportunity to become fluent in both Mongolian and English. The school’s curriculum is designed to foster cultural exchange and understanding, preparing students to thrive in a globalised world.

The International School of Ulaanbaatar (ISU) boasts state-of-the-art facilities, including science laboratories, a performing arts centre, and a sports complex. With a focus on holistic education, ISU provides students with opportunities for personal growth through extracurricular activities such as Model United Nations, community service projects, and sports teams.

Challenges for International Teachers and How to Overcome Them in Mongolia

Teaching abroad comes with its own set of challenges, and Mongolia is no exception. Language barriers, cultural adjustment, and navigating the unfamiliar education system can be daunting at first. However, with an open mind, resilience, and a willingness to learn, you can overcome these challenges and thrive as an international teacher in Mongolia. Connect with other expat teachers, attend professional development workshops, and seek support from your school’s administration.

Teaching in Mongolia offers an extraordinary opportunity to immerse yourself in a vibrant culture while shaping the future of young minds. By understanding the necessary qualifications, navigating the hiring process, and embracing the unique challenges and rewards that come with teaching in Mongolia, you’ll be well on your way to embarking on an unforgettable adventure as an international school teacher in the land of the blue sky.

Take the Next Step with IPGCE

Ready to transform your teaching career and embrace the adventure of international education in Mongolia? IPGCE is here to help you overcome the qualification barriers and set you on a path to success. Our International Postgraduate Certificate in Education (iPGCE) program is tailored for educators aiming to achieve or who have already obtained Qualified Teacher Status. With our Level 7 program, you can expect a 50% increase in interview callbacks, a 45% boost in promotion rates, and a significant 30% salary increase. Join a global network of professionals, gain a deep understanding of international curricula, and benefit from flexible online study options that fit your busy schedule. Don’t let inadequate credentials or isolation hold you back. Join the UK’s #1 Teacher Training Course today and start your journey to becoming an international school teacher in the land of the blue sky.

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