Teaching English in Japan: Associations you can Join

When teaching English in Japan, you might be interested in joining one of the many associations available for teachers.

What about Teacher`s Unions in Japan?

Do teaching unions do more harm than good?

E-Quality Japan Association

E-Quality Japan is the association of quality schools in this country. There have been some disquieting circumstances regarding the closure of certain English schools and the mistreatment of teachers, E-Quality Japan is striving to end this.

Teaching English in Japan - ETJ: English Teachers in Japan

The ETJ does its best to help out teachers in Japan with seminars, lectures and a support network of local groups. It is more of a grass-roots organization than some of the others, which many teachers like. Plus ETJ focuses on a lot of the teaching situations you may face in an eikaiwa school (an English school)in Japan. (JALT -see below- I feel tends to focus more on the university teaching situation in Japan.) Join ETJ and take part in a seminar on English teaching near you.



Pictured: Ebina Shopping Mall by Richard Baladad

JALT: Japan Association of Language Teachers

What is JALT?

The Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT) is a nonprofit organisation dedicated to the improvement of language teaching and learning with nearly 3,000 members in chapters and affiliates across Japan as well as members abroad.

Over 800 JALT members belong to some Special Interest Groups or SIGs, where they study, meet and discuss some aspect of English teaching.


There are SIGs on a variety of research topics and they add a lot of value to your JALT membership. Often there is a local JALT chapter near you. Join JALT and receive their informative and helpful publications about language teaching in Japan.

The only drawback to JALT is the price! The price of membership, their publications, and their conferences is expensive. But their lectures are top notch usually.

Some of the other associations listed here are MUCH cheaper and still great value.

ACTJ: Association of Canadian Teachers in Japan

The Association of Canadian Teachers in Japan (ACTJ) not only serves Canadian teachers who live (or used to live) in Japan but is open to anybody else in Japan with a strong connection to, or interest in, matters Canadian.

As a member you receive our newsletter "Canadian Content" (3-4 times a year) and have the option of joining our electronic mailing list.


Learn more about this lively group of Canadian teachers at their website.

JACET: The Japan Association of College English Teachers

The primary objectives of JACET today are consistent with those of the past: the development of English language education in Japan.

JACET also offers its members opportunities to exchange information on topics relevant to its goals and supports a variety of academic activities.

JACET holds an annual conference in Japan. Visit the JACET homepage for more information.

TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of other Languages)

An international teaching organization for professional ESL/EFL teachers.

Learn more about TESOL



Join TESOL

IATEFL (International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language)

Organization similar to TESOL. Learn more about IATEFL IATEFL (International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language)Organization similar to TESOL.

Teaching English in Japan & Abroad with i-to-i Travel

i-to-i is probably the best online course you can take in myopinion.Learn More at the i-to-i Travel Homepage

Independent Schools in Japan

JINES is Japan’s Independent Network of English Schools

Long time Japanophile Brian Dentry, owner of News on Japan and English teaching professional Peter Carter set up JINES to helpwith English education in Japan.

Learn more about Jines and how it is dedicated to and controlled by independent schools themselves.

The General Union

Teaching English in Japan: What is the General Union?

The General Union is a legally registered labour/trade union, part of the Japanese labour union movement, and we are open to workers of any category or nationality.

Since it was founded in 1991, our union has established a solid reputation for protecting its members' rights and improving their working conditions. We are workers like you who have joined together to protect our livelihoods and rights as workers. As a union, we are able to provide our members advice on workplace issues, and we actively help our members to organize and negotiate in their workplaces.

The general union does its best to protect the rights of Englishteachers in Japan. Recently they have gone to bat for manyof the ALTs (Assistant Language Teachers) who have faced terribleworking conditions in many cases. They also did their best tohelp the Nova teachers when the original school went bankrupt. Learn more about the General Union

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