Effortless English Archives

Automatic English For The People

Friday, March 10, 2006

Tip of The Iceberg

by AJ

"Any job that is English-based in markets such as the US, the UK, and Australia can be done in India. The only limit is your imagination. "

Think that over, TESOL teachers. Indians are moving into customer service, law, computer programming, financial services, call centers, engineering. How long before they move into TESOL? The country is full of fluent English speakers.... many who have studied in the UK or North America.. with corresponding accents. Many Filipinos, likewise, speak excellent English.

In much of the world, for the moment, there's a rascist/cultural bias for white TESOL teachers... this seems particularly true in Asian countries (Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan). Its kind of a folklore belief, in fact, that students in these countries demand white faces. But, as Ive mentioned many times, Wisdom21 has destroyed this illusion. They purposely employ "people of color" from a wide variety of countries outside the UK/American/Australian zones. If they can do it... so can others.

Internet based TESOL instruction will also increase in the future. For now, its in its infancy. But Tutopia, The Linguist, and the like are the cutting edge future. Eventually, why wouldnt these services use excellent English speakers from India... teachers with supurb mastery of English grammar and pronunciation? Or equally proficient teachers from Malaysia, The Phillipines, etc...?

Software is another cutting-edge arena. As Rosetta Stone proves... basic grammar/vocab can be taught VERY effectively using a computer. No need for an expensive teacher at all.

Ive just re-started Spanish study... and have found no need for a school or teacher. Im learning from audiobooks, mini-novels, videos. At the moment, at my (low) level... I have absolutely no need for a teacher. Why pay someone to run through the same drills and explanations that a computer can?

Like it or not... the textbook-centric teacher has a rather dim future. Yes, there will still be openings for such people... but they will increasingly pay less... and be harder to get.

No, this wont happen overnight. But it is happening. What will things be like in 10 years? 15? Does anyone imagine an easier, higher paying, less competitive environment for "same-old" teachers & schools? Is it likely that textbook-teachers will be making more in Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan? That good jobs will be EASIER to find for Brits, Canadians, Americans, and Aussies?

Who will get the great teaching jobs? The top pay? The best working conditions? Teachers who blend in... or those that stand out... who have a "dramatic difference"?

San Francisco, CA