Chinese visa and the legal framework behind-the most important thing to solve before coming to China


Since I wrote this answer, I have received more than 200 emails asking me about

“Can I teach English in China without a Bachelor degree?”.


Here I write the solution for everyone who has the same concern :

Can I teach English in China without a Bachelor degree — YES

You may have seen a lot on the internet, business visa, tourist visa, etc. But as you know, it’s illegal to work with a business visa or tourist visa. Yes, numbers of the schools have the local government protection, which can keep their teachers stay safely in China, but working illegally just make people don’t feel comfortable to come.


2. Can I teach English in China “LEGALLY” without a Bachelor degree

My answer is still YES. Both technically and practically.

( Some people may want to give comments on this answer when reading this part and paste the links of how foreign teachers are deported, how foreign teachers are arrested without a work visa, etc.

Since I have been in this industry for over 5 years, I have read those posts on the internet much more than you and has experienced several cases in my career. Police stations, State Administration Foreign Expert Affairs Bureaus, Exit-Entry Administration Bureau of Public Security Bureaus, even the court for the labor dispute, I don’t remember how many times I have been in those government institutions and how nervous I was when I was solving the legal issues.


Technically - Legal Basis

Why can you teach English in China “LEGALLY” without a Bachelor degree?

Here I mention an important notion: “Internship”

Foreigners with a work visa can “WORK” legally in China

Foreigners with an X1 student visa can do “Internship” legally in China

Here I paste the Article 22 and the Article 6-(11) of << Regulations of the People’s Republic of China on Administration of the Entry and Exit of Foreigners >>

Reference: 《中华人民共和国外国人入境出境管理条例》(中英文)

(The English version is after the Chinese version, at the end of page)

Article 22 Where a foreigner holding a residence permit for study intends to engage in off-campus work-study or internship, he or she shall, upon the approval of the school, apply to the exit and entry administration authority of the public security organ to have such information as the location and duration of the work-study program or internship placement specified in his or her residence permit.

A foreigner holding a residence permit for study shall not engage in any off-campus work-study or internship unless the information prescribed in the preceding paragraph is specified in his or her residence permit.

Article 6 - (11) The X1 visa is issued to persons who apply for long-term study in China; the X2 visa is for persons who apply for short-term study in China.

The X1 visa is generally issued by the Universities, you can do the “internship” legally in China.

You don’t need a Bachelor degree to apply for a University.

The tuition fee of the Universities in China is 10 to 20 times less expensive than the Universities in America.

“But how can I take an English teaching job if I need to attend classes?”

No hurry, I will explain this part at “HOW”.

What’s the notion of the “internship” in China?

Paid (no payment limit) Allow working 8 hours per day, 5 days per weekTeaching English is a type of internship

By having an X1 visa, with the cooperation of the university, you can teach English legally in China without a Bachelor degree.


Practically - Process/Details

How can you teach English in China “LEGALLY” without a Bachelor degree?

Since it’s hard to find the universities who have the willingness to cooperate, here I write the details of the service/visa solution which we can offer (and have offered) to our candidates. And the terms of the University who cooperate with us, which can offer the legal visa for you to do “internship” legally in China.

Since the University is in Beijing, this solution can only apply to Beijing, which means you can only do the “internship” in Beijing.After getting the X1 visa and the stay permit, the student/candidate shall have the full rights to stay in China and do the “internship” in BeijingThe University shall cooperate in all the process, including sending the “internship approvement letter” to the exit-entry bureau in Beijing.Your salary as an “intern” will be paid normally just as the other English teachers get in your school (employer).The major of the student/candidate shall be “Chinese language”.Student/Candidate shall attend the class at the University twice per week, 1.5 hours lesson per week, at the other time, student/candidate is free to travel or do the internship.The University will offer unlimited “online Chinese lesson”, it depends on the student/candidate if he/she wants to attend the online lessons or not.After two semesters, the University will provide a CATTI(China accreditation test for translators and interpreters) examination, it depends on the student/candidate if he/she wants to attend the examination or not. The student/candidate who passes the examination shall get the CATTI certification, which can be legalized the embassies of the different nations in Beijing, and would be recognized worldwide. (Which do help you for your future career)The tuition fee per year is 18,000 RMB (2600 USD)If the student/candidate can’t afford the tuition fee in the beginning (before coming to China), he/she can come to China first with a tourist visa and pay the tuition fee after getting the first month’s salary. (the monthly salary as an English teacher in China would be around 3000 USD if you come from a native English speaking country. Generally, the first month would be the paid training in the headquarter of the school, which means the candidate won’t teach in a class, and won’t be considered as “working”)If the student/candidate come to China first with a tourist visa, he/she can switch his/her tourist visa directly into an X1 student visa in the exit-entry bureau in Beijing without going abroad (not need to apply in HK/ South Korea etc.)



Can we match your passport with the Chinese visa? Yes, we can.


Some supplementary aspects:

If you think it’s unfair to pay almost one month of your salary for the tuition fee per year, think about the English teachers working in China with work(Z) visa who are paying their student loan back to the US per month. If you think this process is too complex, well, the way of work visa is more complex.Our agency won’t get any benefits from the X1 tuition fee for the University because it’s a favor that we asked the admissions director of the University to help to give legal status and convenient life for our candidates in China.

Good luck with the job searching and the visa process.


Best regards

Fanchen MENG

Visa Specialist @WOOK Talent

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