Teach in China Basics Program

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Information for term Teach in China Basics Program

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

July 1, 2023

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Program Fee: $1,300
  • Compensation: 8,000+ RMB per month, plus housing


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Sign up for the adventure of a lifetime – teaching English in China! There’s no better way to experience Chinese culture and heritage firsthand, or improve your Mandarin language skills.

Program Highlights:

  • Competitive salary and low cost of living make it easy to save money
  • Rent-Free Furnished Apartment
  • Personalized, step-by-step guidance with documents and visa
  • 24/7 support from CIEE staff

Teach in China Basics is designed for people who already have teaching credentials that meet Chinese visa requirements. Need to sign up for a TEFL certificate? CIEE has got you covered with our original Teach in China program package.

Have questions? Find answers on our Teach in China FAQ page.

Term Program dates Deadline Compensation
Fall 2023 Two semesters (Aug/Sept to July) January 1 (closed)

8,000+ RMB per month, plus housing

Spring 2024 Two semesters (Feb/Mar to Jan) July 1

8,000+ RMB per month, plus housing


About Our Program Fees

CIEE, a non-profit organization, relies on program fees to provide China Basics participants with a safety net of medical insurance, an in-country orientation, and a high level of support throughout your experience. The program fee of $1,300 is paid in two installments:

  • $500 commitment deposit due after acceptance
  • Remaining balance due when you receive your placement

CIEE alumni receive a 10% discount!

What's Included

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What's Included

  • ESL teaching placement with a reputable Chinese employer
  • Rent-Free Furnished Apartment
  • Completion bonus to offset the cost of airfare
  • Paid time off for Chinese national holidays and semester breaks
  • Pre-departure support, including an online pre-orientation course with lots of advice from alumni
  • Multi-day in-country orientation
  • Personalized, step-by-step guidance with document preparation for your visa
  • 24-hour in-country support by CIEE staff
  • iNext international travel and emergency medical insurance

The Destination

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CIEE’s placements are concentrated in the major metropolitan areas of Shanghai, on China’s eastern coast, and Chongqing, near the center of the country.

Chongqing is both a city and a region. The central city has 10 million residents, and the region, about the size of Maine, is home to 30 million. It’s an economic powerhouse with a brand-new metro and airport, and more shopping malls and movie theaters than you can count. Enjoy spicy Sichuan cooking, visit karst canyons or ancient Buddhist caves, or relax in the hot spring retreats in the mountains around the city. Universities, private schools, and kindergartens in Chongqing are always eager to hire teachers! Read more or watch videos about Chongqing.

Shanghai was once called “the Paris of the East,” and today you’ll find vintage European architecture alongside modern skyscrapers and offices. This city of 24 million is a global financial capital, and has been a hotspot for expat living for decades. CIEE’s partner employers in Shanghai are private schools and kindergartens serving children aged 2-16.

Placements in Guangzhou, Shandong, Nanchang, and Nanjing are occasionally available, but not every season.

CIEE wants all our participants to feel welcomed, supported, and empowered to succeed while teaching abroad. Local CIEE staff have provided details about conditions and cultural attitudes that teachers with specific identities might encounter in Shanghai, and these are generally applicable to other parts of the country where Teach Abroad participants are placed.

Please note: because of the Chinese visa process, it is not possible to plan other international travel in the two months before your program begins. Plan to be in your home country during that time.

The Take-Aways


    All teachers receive a competitive salary and rent-free furnished accommodations. Two-semester teachers receive up to 8000 CNY airfare reimbursement at end of contract.


    All participants receive personal guidance with complicated visa documents, detailed pre-departure information, and an in-country orientation.


    All participants receive 24/7 in-country support from CIEE staff in China, as well as international travel and emergency medical insurance with CIEE/iNext.

Job Description

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Job Description

Many Chinese students are more comfortable reading and writing in English than they are listening and speaking. Through creative classroom exercises and interactive games, you will give your Chinese students the confidence to use English in conversational settings.


You’ll earn a monthly salary of at least 8,000 RMB, plus rent-free housing. You will also be eligible for an end-of-contract bonus of 8000 RMB. Salaries tend to be higher at private schools and kindergartens where teachers work more hours. Universities are at the lower end of the pay scale but teachers enjoy a lighter workload and a generally more relaxed work environment.

Pay is competitive, far more than what local teachers make. Expenses are very low, and your income can go a long way, leaving you with savings or funds to explore all China has to offer!

  • Schools

    In the fast-growing Chinese economy, English is a pathway to success. Many students and young children enroll in private English centers outside their everyday public school classes, and college students are often expected to have strong English as well.

    CIEE’s partner employers in China can be grouped into three categories: Universities, Private Schools (ages 4-17), and Kindergarten/Pre-Ks (ages 1-5).

  • Workload

    Jobs with younger kids have higher salaries and tend to have longer working hours. Teachers at kindergartens typically have 25-35 contact teaching hours per week. At private schools, it’s normal to have 20-30 hours of teaching time, plus extra time for lesson prep. University jobs have 18-25 teaching hours per week.


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Breakfast (Typical Chinese breakfast: baozi [steamed bun filled with meat or vegetables], soy milk):

  • 1.5-5 CNY (25-80 cents)

Lunch & dinner (meat, vegetables, rice):

  • Shanghai & Beijing: 20-50 CNY/person ($3.25 - $8.00 US)
  • Midsize city: 15-25 CNY/person ($2.50 - $4.00 US)
  • Small city: 5-10 CNY/person (80 cents - $1.60 US)

What People are Saying

  • CIEE made what seemed like an impossible process very doable.

    Emilia T. | Teach in China
  • Very good/quick to respond to emails and the orientation was helpful and fun.

    Abbi P. | Teach in China
  • I think CIEE is a trustworthy company, that has my best interests in mind. I feel that I can ask them questions whenever I need help!

    Rubi W. | Teach in China
  • CIEE gave me all of the necessary resources for the move to another country.

    Kayson S. | Teach in China
  • CIEE teach abroad program is very organized and helps facilitate and support an out of the country experience.

    Mai S. | Teach in China


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You don’t need to speak Chinese to apply! You'll need a bachelor’s degree in any field, along with a few other qualifications. These, plus flexibility, patience, and a sense of adventure, will make you a great candidate.


  • Native-level English fluency
  • A bachelor’s degree in any field from the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom
  • Citizenship in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom
  • Passport validity must extend at least 6 months beyond end of program
  • Applicants must be 55 years of age or younger to get a Chinese work permit

To qualify for Teach in China Basics and get a Chinese Work Permit, you will also need ONE of the following:

  • A TEFL/TESOL/CELTA certificate of at least 120 hours
  • A Bachelor’s degree or higher in Education, TESOL or ESL
  • Signed letters documenting two years of full-time, lead-teaching experience

If you don’t have any of these teaching credentials, you should apply for our original Teach in China program package instead, which includes CIEE’s 150 hour online TEFL course.

TEFL Certification

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TEFL Certification

Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) certification gives you the skills, experience, and confidence to make teaching abroad even more rewarding – both for you and those you teach. The CIEE TEFL 150-hour certification course can easily be added on to your program to ensure that you:

  • Develop an awareness of the field and practices of TEFL
  • Understand the components of English related to teaching nonnative speakers
  • Get personalized feedback from an experienced TEFL tutor
  • Can design lessons for TEFL students at a variety of levels
  • Complete 20 hours of practice teaching experience to hone your skills

Discover the benefit of including a TEFL Course with your teach abroad program.

Learn more

Our Team

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Ready to change your life?

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