ESL Teacher Resumes & Writing Guide

Scouting for a new ESL (English Second Language) Teacher role? Then first check out top-notch ESL Teacher resume samples before starting to write a professional resume yourself. with our resume guide.

Teachers who specialize in Second Language English teaching are also referred to as TESL (Teaching English as Second Language), TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) or TOEFL (Teaching Online English as a Foreign Language).

27 ESL Teacher Resume Downloads

See the complete overview of the 27 downloadable examples at the bottom of this page.

See also guides & samples for:

The ESL Teacher Resume Writing Guide

Resume Sections

1. Contact Information

2. Profile Summary
View this as the introduction to your resume and include 1-3 sentences giving a broad overview of your background, years of teaching experience and also the education environment (public or private school, university, college, learning center).

3. Qualifications Summary 
Provide accurate details about the certifications and qualifications you have completed with the institution, qualification name, and dates. Don’t forget to include the qualifications you are currently completing too.

4. Relevant Teaching Experience
Clearly state your employment history from providing details regarding the last ten years of experience up until your current position.

Use brief sentences with bullet points to list the most important instructional and teaching duties under each role you have had.

5. Other Employment Experience
This will include projects or work history which shows your career progression into the ESL Teacher position you may occupy at present, but only elaborate on these with job descriptions if you have less than years of experience in an ESL Teacher role.

Otherwise, just list job title company and duration as to make sure there are no gaps in your employment history. This section is especially important if you are on a level slightly more junior than ESL Teacher.

You need to reveal your teaching and tutoring experience gained unofficially while for instance in a vocational or temporary job to showcase your abilities to instruct school children.

6. Skills Summary/Key Skills 
Incorporates keywords from the job posting and your specific skill set. This adds much-needed credibility to your resume.

7. Education/Licenses/Certifications/Relevant Coursework/Training
Start with your formal degrees and post-school diploma.

Obtaining the relevant licensing and certifications is not compulsory before you can apply for a job as an ESL Teacher but, will count to your advantage.

Alternatives are available, and you may be employed having an education diploma or just an Associate’s degree in English for example.

What to Highlight in an ESL Teacher Resume

Regardless of your experience as an ESL Teacher, there are a few vital things that employers (educational institutions) and recruiters need to know about you to ensure that you are the right fit for their team.

ESL Teachers are usually found working in countries other than their home country where English is not the official language. Examples include China, the Middle East, Eastern Europe or South America.

You as an ESL Teachers can also work in American public, and private schools where the pupils cannot speak English and their native language could be Spanish or Chinese.

The first aspect to highlight is the scope of your teaching experience in regard to foreign countries and whether you were teaching at elementary school, middle school, high schools or post-secondary institutions such as colleges or universities. Some ESL Teaching jobs can be done online which takes quite a bit of getting used to, therefore any online training you have experience in will count in your favor.

Next, define the purpose of your role. ESL Teachers are responsible for instructing students of various ages on grammar, writing, reading, punctuation and even literature. It would help if you mentioned the average age ranges that you are comfortable to teach for example kindergarten, teenagers or even adult learners.

Then, describe the typical goals, tasks or KPIs allocated to you by the school or educational institution such as preparing lesson plans, teaching students language pronunciation and comprehension, enforcing school rules, preparing students for standardized tests, monitoring progress and scheduling parent-teacher meetings.

Another important part of an ESL Teachers responsibility is the off-site class trips that need to be organized like visits to a museum, park, shopping center, going to watch plays and theatre productions related to English literature.

Finally, although an Education degree and specific classroom experience is the norm, there are many situations where you might have displayed the skills required as a teacher. These are especially important if you are applying for your first job as an ESL Teacher, consider including the following examples in your resume if they apply to you: coaching, babysitting, teaching swimming lessons, skiing, tutoring, and music lessons.

*Cool Tip for a stellar resume

You can really create an excellent first impression by including concrete examples of your teaching abilities:

For starters, include work experience where you have taught students in the age range of the advertised position.

If all of it is not relevant to the formal classroom experience, don’t worry, noting that you have tutored fellow classmates, been a summer camp counselor, or did babysitting for the neighbors all serve as proof of your familiarity with children or youth.

Leadership skills are crucial to any teaching role therefor demonstrate these with factual examples if you do not have any ESL teaching experience yet, for instance:

Were you president of a school club? Have you served song leader in your high school choir? Held captaincy of the sports team? Have you organized a community outreach day for residents of your dorm? Led a class debate team to victory?

Considering that you are applying for a position teaching English, including any English language experiences as well, such as writing for a school newspaper, involvement in the debate club, or taking journalism or literature courses as part of your Bachelor's degree.

Make sure to include the following details

  • Your GPA score if you have completed a Bachelor or Associates degree. (if higher than 3.5)
  • The number of students in your class
  • Also, mention whether you are familiar with digital teaching tools and platforms which are increasingly used in the schooling environment nowadays. Examples include: interactive whiteboards, iPads or tablets, smart projectors, tables and noticeboards, digital textbooks, cameras, and audio enhancements
  • Remember to include communication and collaboration tools, for instance, cloud-based systems like Slack, Trello, Asana or even Skype which you are currently using to facilitate communication between your fellow teachers, parents and external stakeholders involved in the school operation.
  • If you are going to be teaching abroad, you need to include your valid passport details
  • Should you have conversation skills in another language, remember to add these too

ESL Teacher Career Summary Examples

Hiring managers have large volumes of resumes to screen and limited time to read them all in detail. Keep your career summary concise and to the point.

Put the most relevant information first to capture their attention while they’re quickly scanning your resume.

Start your career summary with your years of experience in the industry and the main duties you performed. When deciding what duties to add, use the job description as your guide.

For instance, if the job you are applying to highlights leading and inspiring learners use those same words and phrases. The more your resume resonates with the job description of keywords, the better fit you will seem.

Next, add a line that showcases any outstanding qualities that will add value to the school. A hiring manager would be interested to know if you have “strong coordination skills, creative instruction abilities and a passion for kids education.”

It’s important to note that these qualities should be proven with examples in the professional experience section to re-enforce your message.

Finally, end your summary with your educational degrees/diplomas and any certified courses or professional memberships you may have that are pertinent to the job.

Two Examples

Summary Example 1
Professional ESL Teacher with a passion or student learning and eight years of experience in a high school education environment. Exemplary teaching skills substantiated by a 100% pass rate streak for the last eight years. Currently completing a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction.

Summary Example 2
ESL Teacher with ten years’ post-schooling experience at prestigious academic institutions providing an innovative, stimulating learning environment for students. Proven success in raising standardized test scores to list in the top 10 in the region. Holds a Bachelor’s of Education degree and a Master’s in Business Administration.

ESL Teacher Resume Job Descriptions, Responsibilities and duty Examples

A school principal or education board would expect to see the following proven foundational duties and skill sets within an applicant’s resume, depending on educational level and career stage. Below we have provided examples of ESL Teacher roles in various educational settings

An ESL Teacher in Elementary School:

  • Instrumental in series of tuition broadcasts shown at affiliated schools for grade four learners in other parts of the country
  • Created and implemented lesson plans focused on improving overall English proficiency
  • Collaborated in the design of Grade 5 English proficiency curriculums
  • Assisted Japanese speaking teachers transition to their new roles as English teachers
  • Facilitated regional discussions with multiple school boards to discover innovative and effective ways to enhance English language education in rural areas of Japan
  • Translated official school documents and correspondence

An ESL Teacher in Middle and High School may

  • Plan English literature lessons for high school students in Korea
  • Educated diverse student groups from 12 years to 18 years old
  • Combined students' personal interest with lesson objectives to create student specific activities like shopping trips, park visits, and bus trips
  • Design lessons that provide Korean students with exposure to western culture (i.e., food, music, and holiday traditions)
  • Incorporate role-play exercises to improve students' English speaking abilities
  • Collaborated with the Korean teachers to explain structures and targeted outcomes of lesson plans
  • Prepared High School students for English interview and competency assessments
  • Generated monthly progress reports for parents

An ESL Teacher in Adult or Remedial Education may:

  • Facilitated regional discussions with multiple school boards to discover innovative and effective ways to enhance English language education in rural areas of Japan
  • Taught beginner to advanced conversational English to adults for 30 hours a week
  • Planned grammar and introduction to literature lessons
  • Conducted new student interviews and did counseling with students to assess progress and development of conversational ability
  • Conducted various training sessions with Korean teachers to show them how to evaluate students’ strengths and weaknesses
  • Connect students to other resources in their community, to help them find appropriate jobs

An Online ESL Teacher may:

  • Planning, preparing and delivering lessons via online methods
  • Prepare presentation teaching materials like slides, short videos, and podcasts for students in Eastern Europe
  • Use online teaching platforms like Moodle, Whizkids, and Off2Class
  • Helping pupils improve their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills via individual and group sessions
  • Monitoring and assessing pupils' work that they upload onto the BlackBoard platform
  • Organizing and running specialist courses for teachers to use in the class environment and supplement the online training provided
  • Reinforce lessons presented by teachers by reviewing material with students one-on-one or in small groups

Highlight Your Accomplishments

Under your experience section, you may be tempted to copy and paste the list of duties you performed as detailed in your job description. The drawback to doing this, though, is that you won’t stand out from the other applicants with similar experience.

Your goal is to think about what sets you apart, what you are most proud of, or what you accomplished in your previous roles, and communicate these through action-packed statements that are compelling.


Flat, Simple Duty:

  • Teach English subject matter to high school students

Achievement Statement:

  • Planned and conducted English language lessons for elementary grades 1 to 4 with classes averaging between 15 and 20 students

Quantify your Resume and Accomplishments

When writing your resume, if you need to answer questions like, “How much?” or “How many?” For instance:

  • By how many percentage points were overall grade performance increased?
  • How many different grades have you taught?
  • How many hours do you teach in a week?

Example 1
Planned and conducted English language lessons for elementary grades 1 to 4 with classes averaging between 15 and 20 students.
Example 2
Taught beginner to advanced conversational English to adults for 25 hours a week.

ESL Teacher Education Section & Examples

The education section forms an integral part of your resume. In short, indicate What, Where and When regarding your qualifications, certifications or industry licenses obtained.

The name of your qualification, institution, and date of completion is more than sufficient.

Remember to include current qualifications you are in the process of completing. Regarding courses and certifications, discretion and relevance must be considered.

ESL Teachers for public school need to completed bachelor degrees and also obtain licenses from the specific state they are teaching in.

Completed Secondary and Tertiary Education must be listed as follows:

Start with the commencement date and completion date for diplomas, associate degrees, and bachelor degrees. For courses, you can list the date of completion.

Next comes the full name of the qualification, then the full name of the institution and then the City or abbreviated State name.

List your high school diploma details similarly, but only include this when you have less than five years of working experience.

Here you may also add your majors, minors, GPA scores and accolades, and honors awards

Here is an example of an ESL Teacher Resume for someone in a public school setting:

2006-2008 TESOL Masters Degree, Cambridge University, Online
Curriculum: Literature, Reading, Pedagogy, Curriculum, Instruction Design,
Instructional Technology

2006 – CertTesol, Trinity College London, Online
Theory: 100 hours

2005 – CELTA Certification, Teaching House, Los Angeles, CA

2002-2005 Bachelors Degree in English, University of Arizona, AR
Majors: English Language, Literature
Minors: Spanish, Education Management

Below is an example of an ESL Teacher resume within a private school or college setting:

2016-2018 Bachelor Degree in Creative Writing, University of Ohio, OH
GPA: 3.8
Majors: Creative Writing, Communication Sciences
Accolades: Deans Honors List

2009 – 2010 TEFL Certificate, Ashford University, CO
Theory: 150 hours
Practical: 25 hours

2006 – 2008 Student Teacher Practicum, Miami Secondary School, Florida

What to Write in an ESL Teacher Resume Skills Section

Although the teaching field requires specific technical skills, principals also look for other skills, called soft skills. These are the main types of skills that indicate to your fit as a manager who will add value, has adequate knowledge, sufficient experience, and who will motivate and inspire learners. Incorporate these into your summary, or profile, and into your accomplishment statements.

Technical Skills Examples

  • Educational Attainment
    A university degree is required to become an ESL Teacher. Recommended Bachelor's degrees include Elementary Education, Curriculum and Instruction, Special Needs Education, Adult Literacy, Elementary Education, or English Second Language.

    If you are planning to progress to a Principal or Education Director level, a Master’s In Business Administration is highly desirable.
  • Technical Aptitude
    ESL Teachers need the following technical job skills: planning, instructing, classroom management active listening, psychology, grammar, spelling, and sentence construction rules, time management, public speaking, reading, communication, coaching, writing, creativity, and patience.
  • Other Technical Skills
    Lesson planning, leadership, childcare, curriculum design, test compilation, assessment design, report writing, group presentation, collaboration tools like instant messaging (Whatsapp, Skype), Spreadsheets (Excel), Presentation Software (PowerPoint), Instructional Software (Power School SIS, Blabber, Blackboard)

Soft Skill Examples

  • Patience
  • Tolerance
  • Decision-making
  • Critical thinking
  • Organization and planning
  • Advanced verbal communication skills
  • Self-motivation
  • High levels of energy
  • Creative
  • Dedicated
  • Realistic
  • Problem-Solving
  • Organization
  • Counseling
  • Coaching
  • Supervising
  • Passionate
  • Communication

Qualifications/Certifications associated with ESL Teachers

Bachelor of CommunicationTEFL CertificateTESOL Masters Degree
Bachelor of Special Needs EducationESL Advanced CertificateBlackBoard Super User
Certificate in Curriculum DesignBachelor of Arts in English LiteratureAssociates Degree in Elementary Education

Download ESL Teacher Resume Examples

Keywords & Action Verbs for an ESL Teacher Resume

ControllingProblem SolvingImproving

Professional information of ESL Teachers

Sectors: Education, Training, Childcare
Career Type: Teacher, Trainer, Counsellor, Supervisor
Person type: Leader, Motivator, Coach, Trainer, Helper
Education levels: Post School Diploma to Masters’ Degree
Salary indication:
As with most professions, a Master's degree will help you significantly raise your salary, as will experience and certifications.

  • USA – $41k, – $65k plus accommodation and travel
  • The U.A.E. – $3,500-$5,500 per Month (tax-free)
  • Saudi Arabia – $3,000-$4,000 per Month (tax-free)
  • Kuwait – $2,600-$4,000 per Month (tax-free)
  • Japan – $2,200-$5,000 per Month
  • Oman – $2,000-$3,500 per Month
  • Taiwan – $2,000-$2,400 per Month
  • South Korea – $1,600-$2,000 per Month
  • China – $1,500-$2,000 per Month
  • Vietnam – $1,000-$2,000 per Month

Labor market: Estimated 7% from 2014 to 2024
Organizations: Private Schools, Public Schools, High School, Elementary Schools, Colleges, Universities, Adult Education Centers