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Posts: 129

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Q: What has your experience with WEB International English been?

Can those of you who worked for this company share your positive and negative experience with it?

11 years 48 weeks ago in  Teaching & Learning - China

 
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@earlybird49 Most real teachers in the west have regular classes, and the same students at the same time each day of the week for a full semester at least. Often, you will follow a class through for several years, if you stay at the same school. Constantly changing teachers is seen as a negative strategy.

 

There is no such thing as Business English; it is usually just an advanced English class teaching business terms. Thirteen year olds with reasonable English are just as capable as anybody else of learning new words. Try to think back to your first year of university, when you learnt the basics of teaching...

bigasspanda:

I don't know if you have experience with WEB but there are two Business levels, Intermediate and Advanced and they do teach Business, not on an advanced level though. Anyway, every kid has no interest in it even if you try to only teach new vocabulary, as you said. It is not easy at all to deal with a class where there is a kid and an adult, where the former doesn't care at all and the latter is very motivated and interested.

When you teach a regular class as you said you don't teach the same class day after day, maybe over a week if you have more than one class but not day after day and week after week. In WEB it often happens especially lower levels to repeat the same class over and over again until you want to eat the whole folder just to avoid doing it again...

 

11 years 43 weeks ago
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Traveler:

Teaching vocabulary alone is the reason why students have no interest, as a real teacher would know. The underlying principle of language teaching is to teach also the Discourse in which the language is used. This is not a strategy that WEB subscribe to, nor a strategy that can be achieved by an unskilled person masquerading as a teacher.

 

I don't know where you went to school, but the schools I attended in Australia, as both a student and a teacher, had weekly timetables set, with classes regularly at the same time each week and weekday, and a set number of classes in each subject each week, and the same teacher teaching the same class each time. Even in Chinese schools, this is the accepted norm. But again, it is not a strategy WEB use, because WEB does not really teach.

11 years 43 weeks ago
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11 years 46 weeks ago
 
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Posts: 1090

Shifu

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Ugh, not so good. :( I was paid on time and miss some of the students who I still keep in touch with. I was very unhappy with the housing situation (same old thing..loud,inconsiderate Chinese neighbors! :()..and didn't care for some of my co-workers, and everything was about keeping the students happy. :(

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11 years 48 weeks ago
 
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Shifu

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As above,they are shit getting down too basics

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11 years 48 weeks ago
 
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Is that the same as Websters international school. they are absolute crap, screw you every way they can.

LAR:

I never heard of Websters. ???

11 years 48 weeks ago
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11 years 48 weeks ago
 
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Shifu

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lmao good luck i never woorked their bt had friends that have and they could not wait till their contract was up

bigasspanda:

Well, I'm one of those who are waiting for it to be over...Just want other people to know about it!!! Thought it could be useful.

11 years 47 weeks ago
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11 years 48 weeks ago
 
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I spent two years working there. There is usually an initial honeymoon period where the job is enjoyable because students/staff don't know you so you become a new and exciting novelty in their lives. Also, as Web seems to attract a lot of female students, that can also be nice, particularly during the summer. Wink.

But, it all wears thin very quickly when ALL of your free evening and weekend time is sucked up due to having to be in the office for 8 hours a day and only being paid for 5 of those hours, having to do constant (unpaid) demo classes to make the marketing people happy and if students are unhappy and complain, then you are labeled a "bad teacher" by the marketing staff because there is a risk that they won't make any more money out of you.
The teaching material is over 15 years old and incredibly boring and repetitive. This is fine if you just want to make some easy cash, but it will suck the life out of you. They have a habit of sticking 13 year old students into business classes. English corners are compulsory and although they are the one creative outlet you have, good luck keeping up the momentum with the same bored students for a year.
Holidays? Forget about it! You WILL work on Christmas Day, Thanksgiving (for Americans), Easter and any other important holidays to native speakers. During Chinese holidays, you will have less time off than the students who will, of course, come and make you miserable by attending classes. Five days of leave is all you will get for the year. Sick? After spending a whole morning trying to get the doctor's note to apply for sick leave, you may as well just go work.

The one thing that Web do manage to do right is, as mentioned above, pay teachers on time. Everything else is a mess from top to bottom and I wouldn't recommend anyone who has ANY prior teaching experience to work there.

 

RandomGuy:

You will also work on Chinese national holidays even though China's labor laws strictly forbids it. You will be in the office during Chinese New Year while all of the Chinese managers and 99% of the staff (including local teachers), but one grumpy receptionist who was the unlucky draw, are gone to their hometown having good time with their family. If you raise a storm about it, the answer you will get is that you don't have any family in China, therefore you don't need holidays... wtf? It does not matter if there are only a handful of students coming during said holidays, you will be in the office all day waiting for them to show up. They might as well close the center during holidays if you ask me.

6 years 36 weeks ago
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11 years 48 weeks ago
 
Posts: 660

Shifu

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I think it depends on which branch your are at, and the staff you are working with. I spent over a year at a Web that was extremely laid back. It wasn't a very large branch, so the students liked that style and atmosphere.

 

Because they are centralized and everyone is paid thru headquarters, its not up to the whim of some dickish boss to pay your on time and in full.

 

And as LAR said "and everything was about keeping the students happy." Its very true. Its a business, and in the end that is all they care about. They won't put out any effort to make improvements, esp if money is needed, and therefore just keep status quo.

 

I enjoyed my time there, but from what I've heard about other branches in larger cities, not everyone shares a similar experience.

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11 years 48 weeks ago
 
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I have worked there for a total of 2 years as the previous posters have previous said it sucks the life out of you.  They will try to cheat you anyway they can .  The person who is the human resource person is horrible to deal with.  Teaching the same classes day after day when you have 6 teachers? The classes are never rotated at all.  Teaching a 13 year old student business English is a joke!  The material as the previous poster stated is at least 15 years old.  The students will complain to their tutors about you not come to you directly.  Don't ever work for this organization!  It is garbage!

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11 years 46 weeks ago
 
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@earlybird49 Most real teachers in the west have regular classes, and the same students at the same time each day of the week for a full semester at least. Often, you will follow a class through for several years, if you stay at the same school. Constantly changing teachers is seen as a negative strategy.

 

There is no such thing as Business English; it is usually just an advanced English class teaching business terms. Thirteen year olds with reasonable English are just as capable as anybody else of learning new words. Try to think back to your first year of university, when you learnt the basics of teaching...

bigasspanda:

I don't know if you have experience with WEB but there are two Business levels, Intermediate and Advanced and they do teach Business, not on an advanced level though. Anyway, every kid has no interest in it even if you try to only teach new vocabulary, as you said. It is not easy at all to deal with a class where there is a kid and an adult, where the former doesn't care at all and the latter is very motivated and interested.

When you teach a regular class as you said you don't teach the same class day after day, maybe over a week if you have more than one class but not day after day and week after week. In WEB it often happens especially lower levels to repeat the same class over and over again until you want to eat the whole folder just to avoid doing it again...

 

11 years 43 weeks ago
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Traveler:

Teaching vocabulary alone is the reason why students have no interest, as a real teacher would know. The underlying principle of language teaching is to teach also the Discourse in which the language is used. This is not a strategy that WEB subscribe to, nor a strategy that can be achieved by an unskilled person masquerading as a teacher.

 

I don't know where you went to school, but the schools I attended in Australia, as both a student and a teacher, had weekly timetables set, with classes regularly at the same time each week and weekday, and a set number of classes in each subject each week, and the same teacher teaching the same class each time. Even in Chinese schools, this is the accepted norm. But again, it is not a strategy WEB use, because WEB does not really teach.

11 years 43 weeks ago
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11 years 46 weeks ago
 
Posts: 83

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Sorry to disagree, However I teach, tutor and lecture in, Cambridge Business English and Development. Try reading the books to see just how difficult it can be, even for native English speakers. Business English does exist.

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11 years 43 weeks ago
 
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I taught at Web for 6 months in a Jiangsu city, not a franchise but a branch run by Shanghai

 

good points

1) no worries about getting paid and on time

2) paid overtime if you do more classes than 5 in a day

3) pre-done lesson plans

4) English Corners that give you free choice to cover pretty well what you like, I started with song lyrics and then played the song

5) good equipment and rooms

6) older students are motivated  (but see bad point 3 below)

7) once a month events

8) easy to make contacts and pickup your own private students and company work

9) students really can learn to speak English well which fixes the main problem of English in the school system being non-conversational

 

bad points

1) pre-done lesson plans can get boring after a while (Dyned city map)

2) working nights and weekends

3) the definition of an adult goes down to 12-13

4) only 1 week's paid holiday (you can work extra days or swap days)

5) being in the office for 8 hours

6) "strange" (to foreigners) management decisions - this applies to nearly all Chinese teaching jobs

7) salary is taxed in China

 

Overall, I enjoyed my time but I went back to business teaching

 

 

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11 years 43 weeks ago
 
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I worked there for 2 years and loved it. The people were great, never once scammed.

Its like anywhere else you work. Make money for the company, they treat you well. If you suck, or cause problems and bitch and moan about everything, good luck  getting what you want.  The materials get boring, but if you show Web you know what your doing your free to do what you like. Regardless if the materials are boring, they kinda follow the same format of any english book on the shelf.  They paid for me to have classes in a water slide park for crying out loud.

I have seen the complaints above happen numerous times at Web, so they are definatly true. But 90% of the time  they were happining to an endless cycle of creepy old boring men who were always complaining that, " this isnt how we do it at my primary school in Hunan! "

Its easy. Prove yourself valuable and irreplaceable and youll be free to do what you like, if you suck.... well you better just keep your head down...

Side note* I loved the hours, you just miss dinner at home.. whats so bad about that? Sleep as late as you want every day, and your off in time for any night action.   These people will just always find something to complain about.  WEB is definatly alright.

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11 years 43 weeks ago
 
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To be honest I hated my last months at web international Ningbo.

 

There is one guy there (a foreigner) who complains about everything. He threatens the other teachers and verbally abuses them. Then when they say something to anyone about it he runs to the boss and complains. I know that three teachers still there have received written warnings over the issues with him.

 

I'm glad I no longer work there! Even thought I no longer work there that idiot is still complaining about me to the boss. I talked to the boss there when she called me and asked me to go back as they really need teachers and I said I would never go back while he was working there..

 

To all who think about working in Ningbo Web. GOOD LUCK! I would recommend another school. Literally hell in China!

 

In saying that I know many people who have worked for other web schools and loved it. but i agree with enemyofreality Only work there for one year and leave while everyone still likes you or they WILL make your working life hell..

 

JungleLife:

Hah, I just about took a job there. They gave me a good offer, took a lesser paid job to be closer to my gf at the time.

11 years 23 weeks ago
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11 years 28 weeks ago
 
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Has anyone worked at a Beijing branch for Web International? If anyone could give me advice (especially on the sanyuanqiao location), that would be great since I might be going soon.

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11 years 23 weeks ago
 
Posts: 369

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Are there any more updates about this Company as of 2014? Please let me know. As far as I see, it sucks a lot and it doesn't worth the risk, but are they still the same? Are there any changes, positive or it's just getting worst? I see they pretend to offer an up to 17K rmb per month. But what's true and what not?

 

mike695ca:

Which city? For that salary im guessing Beijing Shanghai or Guangdong? I still know people that work there and its still the same. Safe decent paying work. But boring and repetitive. You will get tired of the fact that its much more a business than a school. But its offset by the fact that the students really learn english. If i could give you advice and you actually took it, you will be very happy there. Ebrace the fact that its a business. Fully understand what it is and help them make money. If you do that, and students like you and you do a 15 minute demo once i a while. All the above complaints will disapear. You can get weekends off. Or normal 10 to 5 hours. You dont need office hours. Help them and they will happily help you.

10 years 1 day ago
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JacobJohn:

Thanks, Mike! That's a constructive insight. Indeed, what's boring it's discouraging unless they pay too good. It looks to be in Shanghai, as far as I understand. I will ponder several offers and will have to go for the best. Yes, it looks you've done well with them and if it is possible unlike the above odds, then they are not this bad. 

You see, there is a contradiction as to how you're exactly evaluated. The lady who wants to invite me for an interview, she simply doesn't speak nor writes a correct basic English. Let me post in here, the replying I had from a lady at this Company:

"And our HR work from 9:00 to 18:00 (in Shanghai local time)during working day.

Shall we have the interview on skype today or tomorrow ?And what are you available to talk?

"

I understand that in the end is the income that matters based on a teacher teaching method, the student's feedback and so forth,  but isn't that contradictory, that somebody like the lady above be part of the staff of an English school? Are these to tell who is good and who is not?

 

Anyway, I understand your point, as a result of your experience and I will think about it. Thanks a lot.

10 years 1 day ago
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Shining_brow:

JacobJohn... you're really not in a position to be so severely criticising someone else's English... especially when the person replying is in admin, yet you're going to be teaching!

 

You have 2 grammatically correct sentences in your comment (not including "Thanks, Mike!" All the others have at least 1 error.

10 years 23 hours ago
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Eorthisio:

Better take a low hours teaching job then find your own students and give private lessons, you will end up making more money while working half the time that you would at WEB.

10 years 12 hours ago
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JacobJohn:

That's an option too. Thanks Eorthisio!

10 years 10 hours ago
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10 years 1 day ago
 
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Shining, you've earned my respect once, I will keep it that way. Good luck with your (im)pertinent observations. Have a good evening.

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10 years 16 hours ago
 
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Web is blacklisted in a few places so it should not come as any surprise they have "problems", just like every big chain that requires Chinese JV partners who care only about $ and never about people.

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9 years 52 weeks ago
 
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In Shenzhen, I've only seen them getting cracked down on by police every year.. Their probation period is partly to blame.

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9 years 52 weeks ago
 
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I've applied for position in Web (Shenzhen)... They replied, and I was very happy to arrange an interview with them, but after reading your comments I am not sure if to go for it or not...

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9 years 50 weeks ago
 
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I've applied for position in Web (Shenzhen)... They replied, and I was very happy to arrange an interview with them, but after reading your comments I am not sure if to go for it or not...

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9 years 50 weeks ago
 
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I've applied for position in Web (Shenzhen)... They replied, and I was very happy to arrange an interview with them, but after reading your comments I am not sure if to go for it or not...

beninchina:

Jovanka, I read your post with interest, since I'm currently in the process of applying for a teaching job at Web English in Shenzhen.

Did you take the job? And are you working there now? I'd be interested to hear about your experiences so far.

9 years 44 weeks ago
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9 years 50 weeks ago
 
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DON'T WORK FOR WEB.

 

Rather than just turning this into a long rant, I'll just bullet point:

 

Pros:

-I love my students. I have a great relationship with them

-My apartment is OKAY. Not very good, but ok.  

 

Cons:

-To get me to sign a work here, they told me the VISA was covered. When I got to China, it suddenly wasn't.

-I was told I would get Chinese lessons. I didn't. 

-They told me I would be working in Nantong. I'm actually working in Rugao, over an hour away. 

-The refuse to give me my foreign expert certificate

-They cheated me out of a week of pay on my first paycheck.

-The "overtime" rate is the same as the regular class rate, so they always want lots of OT classes.

-I am a marketing tool: tiny classrooms with glass walls. Sometimes have to do "class" as a promotion at a local business or park, which never works. 

-Web has made no attempt to make me feel welcome or like part of the team. They ignore me or talk about me in Chinese. 

-Communication and leadership is terrible here. 

-They don't inform me about special classes I'll be teaching in advance and then just expect me to have some sort of plan to keep students entertained for 2 hours. 

-I do a lot of lesson planning in my free time, so my 25 teaching hours don't really reflect how hard I work. 

-They are constantly trying to cheat me.  For example: on the upcoming holiday, Web is paying for the staff to go to Hong Kong, but the foreign teachers have to pay thousands of RMB in unspecified fees. It's a win either way for them: if I don't go, they save money. If I do go, I end up basically paying a huge % of their costs. 

-Repetitive lessons that I teach over and over. Dyned City 

-Very young kids in Business English classes. 

 

Look, before you write this review off as some lazy angry teacher who couldn't adapt or something, you should know this: I had a great time in China. I love my students. I had a good experience at Web. I made it work-- but I would never recommend it to anyone, and I wouldn't work here again.  

JacobJohn:

Hi Fojam12, it is very helpful your insight. It doesn't matter whether you are able o adapt or not, the point is that there are such abuses as stated in your comments, that nobody should adapt to them. All the contrary they should point them out and make them public, name-and-shame for the sake of others whom, like myself are seeking simple, honest and transparent employers.

I appreciate your insight on this and it saves me a lot of headaches i would have had, hadn't you posted it on this forum. I have received some interesting offer from Web, but like others posts, I was suspicious.

You are not the only one to finger point it that way. So, that's the cherry on the cake to never work for them. Thanks a lot!

9 years 43 weeks ago
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xinjiangren:

I work for Web in nantong, and I have no complaints. The lesson plans are boring, but ur free to improvise as u see fit. Salary is decent and most classes are with adults except weekends. However, as with most things in China, some extremely simple things can be very frustrating to get through. If they aren't giving u Chinese lessons, ask them about it everyday until they do. 

9 years 43 weeks ago
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RobertZimmerman:

This is weird I also worked at WEB in Nantong for two years and I have to say the school is not that bad. Feel sorry for anyone working in Rugao there's nothing to do out there. I'm working for WEB in Fujian and its not bad sure the lessons get old but as someone already said you can change them if you like and the salary is decent. WEB has its drawbacks but as far training schools go it's a better place to work than Wall Street from the people I've talked to who worked for both.

9 years 43 weeks ago
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9 years 43 weeks ago
 
Posts: 17

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I work at web now and i'm regretting my decision.  Took a job because I was just pleased to be offered one and after a few months here i've come to realise (as I was told I would by other employees) that it's pretty shocking. 

 

I can think of only 2 good points and those are that you will always be paid on time and you will get paid even if you have no classes. 

 

Everything else is bad.  I know of 4 teachers who were refused their leaving documents.  You get zero notice for anything.  I could go in tomorrow and be expected to teach a class a lesson i've never seen with less than 5 minutes of prep.  I could also go in tomorrow and be told that I need to teach at a different school for the day.

 

A previous poster mentioned the decent pay and he's right but if you wait a while and look around you will find much better offers.  I've been offered a job for half the hours but only 1,500rmb less pay per month, which I realise i'll almost definitely not be able to take due to them refusing to give people their leaving documents.

 

If you're only staying for a year then it will be fine, longer and i'd say to wait for a better offer.

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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