English Instructor - (Beijing, China; Zaragoza, Spain)

School Year Abroad, North Andover, MA

Accredited by NEASC

“SYA guides students through a challenging curriculum focused on developing skills for an increasingly interdependent world. Central to the SYA experience is the adventure of fully engaging with different languages, cultures and peoples.” 

English instruction at SYA is a collaborative process that involves working closely with a department head and colleagues from all SYA campuses on a predetermined curriculum. Teachers are expected to use SYA’s mission statement as a guide to teach courses focusing on improving student skills in SYA’s four main areas of curricular focus: language acquisition, creative and critical thinking, intercultural competence and independence and interdependence.

The SYA English curriculum provides a home base for student intellectual and intercultural growth abroad and is specifically designed to complement the immersion experience presented by the host country. This does not typically mean teaching works in translation from the host country or works written about the host country per se, but rather working with a series of works exploring the idea of intercultural awareness, supported by regular guided reflection on each student’s own experience abroad. Teachers guide students through their individual experience with an emphasis on crafting effective critical essays, developing personal voice in writing, developing intercultural competence and learning how to effectively communicate ideas to others. Teachers must follow a clearly outlined curricular structure geared specifically to the study abroad experience. The course corresponds with the flow of a study abroad year with an emphasis on the various stages of the student experience. Readings and assignments have been designed with these various stages in mind.

Duties and expectations at SYA 


  • Set clearly articulated standards for student academic performance.
  • Set reasonable and defensible standards for student behavior.

●      Enforce school rules justly, fairly and consistently.

●      Demonstrate high levels of enthusiasm for teaching and learning.

●      Demonstrate genuine commitment to school, purposes, leadership and peers.

●      Portray a positive image of the school, its faculty and its programs when working with students at all times.


●      Work with other faculty in a way that demonstrates respect, openness and an ability to focus on the school’s mission at all times.

●      Maintain proper boundaries with students and engage students in a way that is encouraging, positive and respects the educative process.

●      Use the Slack communication tool to communicate with students, faculty and the SYA administration.

●      Maintain and regularly check an SYA.org email.

●      Serve on the school’s discipline committee.

●      Proctor standardized tests as needed.

●      Fulfill other duties as assigned by the Resident Director.



●      Teach four or five sections of a course or courses based on a predetermined and shared curriculum.

●      Provide outside-of-class help to students on a regular and predictable basis.

●      Provide consistent adherence to school rules and community norms while in class at all times.

●      Provide additional support for sophomore students.

●      Create predictable assessments and offer reliable preparation for assessments.

●      Provide fair, reliable, understandable and clear grading structures.

●      Provide a course syllabus that meets expectations provided by the SYA academic office.

●      Write teacher comments four times per year.

●      Provide letters of recommendation in English for students who request them and who were in good standing.

●      Use the Canvas Learning Management System to provide students with access to the course syllabus, post all work for the course and to grade all student work.



●      Serve as academic advisor for a number of advisees determined by the Resident Director.

●      Deliver the advisory curriculum using guidelines outlined by the Resident Director.

●      Take attendance at all advisory meetings and events.

●      Write advisor comments 3-4 times per year.



●      Participate in the chaperoning of student travel (as determined by the Resident Director).



●      Contribute to planning and shared interdisciplinary projects with other faculty.

●      Promote and collaborate around the Capstone Project in a way that focuses on a mission-driven interpretation of the project.

●      Participate in school committees as requested by the Resident Director.

●      Actively participate in curriculum development with faculty colleagues - both local and at other SYA campuses.

●      Attend faculty meetings and school events as requested by the Resident Director.


Professional Development:

●      Engage in professional development as organized by SYA around topics of teaching methodology, assessment, lesson and unit planning, interdisciplinary projects and other topics regarding professional teaching abroad.

●      Meet with the Resident Director regarding formal and informal class observations and provide a lesson plan in advance for any formal class observations.

●      Participate in frequent, virtual, English Department meetings and an online English Department Slack channel