Document Requirements

There are numerous documents to organize and submit before you can begin teaching English in Korea. These materials are necessary for landing a job (with an employer/school) and acquiring a work visa (with Korean Immigration). The requirements are mandatory for all candidates regardless of your country of citizenship or credentials. Therefore, even if you decide to accept a position through another recruiting agency, or you land a job independently without recruiter assistance, the documentation you require is the same.

Document Requirements For Teaching English in Korea


You can apply before you’ve acquired the documents: Having all of the documents at your disposal is not necessary in order to begin the application process, meaning you can apply before you’ve managed to acquire all the paperwork. Our coordinators simply need to know when (roughly) you can expect to have them in your possession.


It’s not complicated but it is time consuming: It generally takes 4-6 weeks to order the required paperwork and have it authenticated by the proper authorities in your country of citizenship. If you’re serious about teaching in Korea relatively soon (within the next 3-6 months) then making preparations to begin acquiring the materials is recommended.


Required documents that teachers need to acquire on their own

Document Description
Valid Passport
You must have a valid passport from one of the following countries: US, CA, UK, IR, AS, NZ, SA
Your passport must be valid for 12 months upon your date of entry for private school jobs and 18 months for public school jobs.
You will need at least 1 free/blank passport page.
Bachelors Degree Certificate (Diploma)
1.) You must have graduated from a western college or university that resides within 1 of the 7 designated English speaking countries (US, CA, UK, IR, AS, NZ or SA).
2.) You must have your bachelors diploma (the physical certificate) available.
NOTE: Current university students who are expecting to graduate shortly may submit a ‘Letter of Expected Graduation’ as a temporary alternative for jobs in the public school sector.
NOTE: Recent graduates who have not received their physical diploma yet may present a ‘Certificate of Graduation Stating Attainment of Degree’ as an alternative for jobs in the private school sector.
Please speak with a G2K representative for more details regarding diploma alternatives.
3.) Your diploma must be notarized and authenticated with an Apostille for Korean visa processing purposes.
Sealed Transcripts (Academic Records)
2 sets are required for jobs in the public sector. Korean Immigration no longer requests sealed transcripts from private school teachers; however, schools and consulate sometimes request them so having 1-2 sets available is advised.Transcripts must be sealed properly – make sure your school seals your transcripts with a stamp, or sticker, signature, embossment, etc. on top of the overlapping crease of the envelope. Gone2Korea recommends ordering extra sets of sealed transcripts when possible (having 3 sets in total is recommended if possible)
Criminal Record Check
Background checks may also be referred to as: Criminal History Reports, Police Checks, CPIC Searches, Subject Access Forms, Criminal Background Searches, Criminal Clearance Letters, other. All teachers must secure checks at the federal level – no exceptions.All nationalities (excluding Canadians) must have their background check authenticated with an Apostille Certificate. Canadian teachers must secure a verification stamp from the Korean consulate in their jurisdiction as an alternative to the Apostille certificate. BEFORE you order your check make sure to review our related pages – Background Check Requirements and Apostille information (USA Apostille Info or International Apostille Info).
Official Passport Photos
It’s in your interest to obtain 7 passport photos (3.5cm or 1.38 inches wide by 4.5cm or 1.77 inches tall). 4 photos will be sent to Korean Immigration, 1 will be offered to the Korean consulate and 2 will be required for your health examination and alien card in Korea. All photos should be the same shot (duplicates of the same photo) and full color (no black and white photos).
Updated Resume
Make sure to include any work related experience on your resume. Please visit our application tips page for resume tips and advice.
Legible Photocopies
Many Korean consulates will request photocopies of the documents you have forwarded to the Korean immigration office in South Korea. Remember to photocopy all of your documents (originals and notarized copies) before you send them to Korea.
Recommendation Letters
(Public sector only)
Recommendation letters are only required for jobs in the public school sector. Those applying for private school positions do not require reference letters unless the school requests it.
Recommendation letters for public school jobs must come from academic or professional sources only (i.e. former professor, employer, manager, supervisor, etc.). Both letters must include the person’s name, status, address, contact number and an ink signature (letterheads are advised).


Required forms that Gone2Korea will provide during your job and visa application

Document Description
E2 Health Statement
The health statement is a self assessment questionnaire form only, meaning you can complete the form yourself without a doctor’s note or signature. All teachers will be required to complete a health check at a designated medical clinic in Korea within their first month of arrival. The test results in Korea must match the answers you provided on the form.
School Contract
School contracts will be issued once you have decided on a sector (private or public) and school to work for.
Visa Application Form
You can download the current version of the visa application form our document downloads page; however, completing the form is not required until you have secured a sponsor (Korean school) and obtained a visa issuance number or notice of appointment from your Gone2Korea representative (Issued by Korean Immigration).
Korean Consulate Checklist
This is a basic checklist which outlines the documents you will need to provide the Korean consulate with during the final stage of our your visa application.
Your Gone2Korea representative will offer you this document at the appropriate stage of your application, or you can download it from our document downloads page.
EPIK Application Form
(Public Sector Only)
Only applicable to those who pursue jobs within the public school sector. Your Gone2Korea representative will email you this document after the initial interview.


Optional document requirements for public school candidates

Document Description
Teaching Certificate
Teachers must submit a photocopy of their teaching certificate (teaching license or PGCE) for the second stage of the process and they must bring the original certificate to Korea for verification. Failing to provide the original certificate for verification will result in a lower monthly salary.
Please Note: Lifelong education teaching certificates or expired teaching licenses are not accepted as a credential.
TEFL, TESOL or CELTA Certificate
TEFL certificates MUST consist of 100 course hours or more – anything less than 100 hours is not accepted as a credential. In order to qualify for a pay-level increase the certificate MUST clearly state the number of course hours.
If the number of hours is not clearly stated on the certificate then sufficient supporting documentation such as: transcripts, website information or correspondence from the issuing organizing, will be required. Teachers must provide a photocopy of their certificate 1 month prior to their respective contract starting date and bring the original certificate to Korea for verification during the EPIK orientation period. Note: CELTA certificates do not require proof of hours.
GET TEFL CERTIFIED: Gone2Korea recommends using TEFL Source to get certified. They have a wide selection of accredited courses from many different internationally recognized course providers.
Proof Of Full Time Teaching Experience
Must include the name of the school and/or institute, address, proper letterhead, signature or official school stamp and a contact number in the header of the document.
Proof of employment letters must have been issued by the administrational office of the school, letters from co-workers are not accepted.Must state that you were a full-time teacher.
Dates of employment must be provided (example: September 2007 to August 2008).
Teaching experience must show 1 full year (12 months) in order to qualify for the next pay-level, anything less than 12 months is not accepted (10 – 11 months does not qualify unless it was for one full academic year).If you are currently teaching but have not yet completed a full 12 month term then you are NOT allowed to state that you have 1 year of teaching experience, the proof of full-time teaching experience must be dated after your contract completion date.


Other Requirements

What Description
Name Verification
Your name details on all documents NEED to match the name (spelling and middle name if applicable) as it appears on your passport. Meaning, the name on your criminal background check, diploma, etc. should match the name that’s on your passport.
If your name details don’t match then please notify your Gone2Korea representative for more information.