English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher Salary

The average ESL Teacher in the United States can expect to rake in roughly $41K annually. This group's pay is mainly influenced by location, followed by career length and the particular employer. Work is enjoyable for ESL Teachers, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. Not all workers are lucky enough to have benefits; in fact, a little less than half are without coverage. Medical insurance is claimed by over one-half and dental insurance is reported by over a third. Most ESL Teachers survey respondents are women (78 percent). This report is based on responses to the PayScale salary survey.
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$26,403 - $61,424
$26K
$41K
$61K
MEDIAN: $41,132
10%
50%
90%

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$12.89 - $41.19
$13
$20
$41
MEDIAN: $20.41
10%
50%
90%

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$0$71K
Salary $26,403 - $61,424
Bonus $542 - $10,137
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$26,665 - $71,181
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 25 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 446
Hourly Data $0$41
Hourly Rate $12.89 - $41.19
Overtime $14.79 - $30.14
Annual Data $0$71K
Bonus $542 - $10,137
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$26,665 - $71,181
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 25 Jul 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 277

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

Job Description for English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher

An ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher’s primary function is to teach English to students who are not native speakers. They help students to understand common customs and expectations within American culture In addition, depending on a student's English-language skills and the teacher's institution, the ESL teacher’s job may extend into helping students understand their coursework in other subjects (such as math and science) or even teaching those subjects directly.

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English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher Tasks

  • Teach individuals who are not native English speakers to speak, read, write, and comprehend English.
  • Utilize rote pronunciation, quizzes, textbooks, videos, and multimedia education to solidify skills.
  • Develop curriculums to suit both individuals who need overall education or education in specific skills.

Common Career Paths for English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher


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There are some ESL Teachers — though it's uncommon — that transition into Academic Directors, where earnings are an average $59K annually. ESL Teachers go on to become Elementary School Teachers more often than anything even though median pay for the role is $40K. ESL Teachers who move into a High School Teacher role, another well-traveled path for those in this field, tend to find salaries of $44K.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher


Pay by Experience Level for English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher

Pay by Experience for an English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher has a positive trend. An entry-level English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $39,000 based on 416 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. An English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $40,000 based on 272 salaries. An experienced English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $45,000 based on 184 salaries. An English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $52,000 based on 74 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $41,779

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

For ESL Teachers, San Francisco provides a pay rate that is 30 percent greater than the national average. ESL Teachers can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Houston (+20 percent), San Antonio (+17 percent), Austin (+13 percent), and Irvine (+5 percent). Compared to the national average, Chicago ESL Teachers have considerably lower salaries, 23 percent below the national average to be exact. Location appears to be a major driving force in pay for those in this profession. Employers in Miami and Honolulu also lean toward paying below-median salaries (16 percent lower and 13 percent lower, respectively).

English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher Reviews

Q: What is it like working as an English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher?

English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher in Louisville:
"Rewarding."
Pros: Working with a diverse group of students allows me to learn something new each day. The job allows for flexibility and creativity within the curriculum.
Cons: The job is not full time and offers little to no chance of being full time in the future.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher in Seoul:
"Hard Work."
Pros: Kids can be sweet. Teaching is often rewarding. Sometimes it can be fun. Sometimes makes you feel young. Housing paid for.
Cons: Long hours. Exhausting. Frustrating. A lot of extra work. Often feel unappreciated. Bad kids can drive you crazy. Feels like a dead-end job. Salary is low. Crappy apartment.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher in Fort Worth:
"Work Conditions."
Pros: The ability to teach, encourage and educate adults in a supportive environment.
Cons: The lack of input and influence over course curriculum, choice of classes taught and class levels, changes regarding class structure such as how often and length of time classes meet.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher in Medfield:
Pros:
Cons: I work at a private ESL school. I should have asked to see the curriculum before taking the job. If I had done that, I would have known that the curriculum was a very rough outline with no lesson plans. I should have asked to see the teacher resource room. Turns out: it's a stack of movies. I should have gotten more information about the exams. I am being paid one hour per class for producing and grading the exams. That means a lot of mandatory unpaid hours. There are cameras in every classroom. It is very big brother. There is a lot of reporting and very little guidance. The owners just want to see a profit: I've never met them.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher

Gender

Female
78 %
Male
22 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 63 votes.
Less than 1 year
6%
1-4 years
36%
5-9 years
28%
10-19 years
20%
20 years or more
10%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher Salaries

▲25%

▲9%

National Average
$42,000

▼3%

▼6%

Skills That Affect English as a Second Language (ESL) Teacher Salaries

Japanese Language
▲12%

National Average
$42,000

English Language
▼1%


French Language
▼15%

Teaching
▼15%

Chinese, Mandarin Language
▼18%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 63 votes.

Gender

Female
78 %
Male
22 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
6%
1-4 years
36%
5-9 years
28%
10-19 years
20%
20 years or more
10%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 53%
dental benefits
Dental: 37%
vision benefits
Vision: 25%
no benefits
None: 46%
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