Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (TEA)

Yasmin Orozco, 2019 Fulbright TEA Fellow in the U.S. February, 2020.
Yasmin Orozco, 2019 Fulbright TEA Fellow in the U.S. February, 2020.

The Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (TEA) is a six-week exchange program at a U.S. university for secondary school teachers who teach English, English as a Foreign Language, math, science, and social studies, including special education teachers in those subjects.

The Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (Fulbright TEA) is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The Fulbright program was established in 1946 under legislation introduced by former United States Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas. Fulbright grants are awarded to students, scholars, teachers and other professionals from the United States and to foreign nationals to study, teach, or conduct research. Since its inception in 1946, more than 370,000 “Fulbrighters” have participated in the Fulbright program.

Teachers are nominated to participate in the Fulbright TEA Program based on their educational experience, academic training, leadership and professional experience. Final selection of Fulbright TEA teachers is made by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FFSB). The FFSB is an independent, presidentially appointed board that has oversight responsibility for all Fulbright academic exchange programs.

 Program Components

Teachers who are selected to participate in the Fulbright TEA Program will:

  • Participate in advanced undergraduate or graduate level classes at a U.S. host university.
  • Observe classes, co-teach, and share their expertise with U.S. colleagues in U.S. secondary schools.
  • Participate in an online professional learning community with other participants to share best practices and other elements of host and home country educational systems; and
  • Take part in other educational and cultural activities during the program in the United States.
  • Upon returning home, teachers will be expected to share the knowledge and experience gained in the program with teachers and students in their home schools and within their communities.

Who can apply? 

  • Guatemalan citizens who currently live and work in Guatemala. Candidates from rural areas will receive priority consideration.
  • Current secondary-level, full-time teachers of English, English as a Foreign Language (EFL), math, science, or social studies, including special education teachers in those subjects. Teachers from public institutions will receive priority consideration. Applicants do not need to teach the subjects in English but must be fluent in English.
  • Applicants must hold at least a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent.
  • Applicants must have completed at least five years of full-time teaching by the start of the program.
  • Teachers who can demonstrate evidence of leadership in their schools or communities.
  • Candidates must have oral and written English language proficiency to participate in professional seminars and give presentations in U.S. schools.

Noe: Secondary-level teachers include both middle and high school teachers serving students approximately 12 – 18 years of age.  Teachers responsible for teaching additional grade levels must teach middle or high school students more than 50% of their work time in order to be eligible.

Applications that do not fulfill all requirements will not be reviewed.


Participation in the Fulbright TEA program is primarily open to teachers who demonstrate English language proficiency by scoring at least 450 on the paper-based TOEFL or 45 on the internet-based TOEFL. The required scores represent an intermediate level. Applicants do not need to have an existing TOEFL score in order to apply but should prepare for the test. Finalists will be scheduled to take the test at no cost.

How to apply?

Register and apply at this link: https://www.irex.org/fulbright-tea. Be sure to Save & Return to the main application page when you are finished with each section. When you have completed all sections, click “Download Application PDF” to save a copy of your application for your records. Finally click “Submit Application.” The screen will show a preview of your application. Review the information. If you have no further changes, click “Submit Application” a second time and your application will be submitted. 

Applications close on April 1, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. Guatemalan Time.


A shortlist of candidates will be interviewed in April 2020.  Interviews take place in English and last about 20 minutes per candidate. Selected finalists will take the TOEFL in May 2020.

If you are not contacted to schedule an interview by May 1, 2020 you are were not selected to continue to the next stage of the application. Applicants who are not selected for interviews will not receive a notice of non-selection.

Relevant Dates

Fellows will travel on one of two cohorts:

  1. Late-January-mid-March 2021: Fulbright teachers take part in the program in the United States.
  2. September-late October 2021: Fulbright teachers take part in their program in the United States.


Participants will live on or near the host university campus in housing that is arranged for them. Dependents are not permitted to accompany the teachers on the program.


Each Fulbright teacher will receive a maintenance allowance during the program to cover expenses such as supplies for classes, household items, personal items, medical co-payments, and cultural and other activities. Also included in this total is a daily stipend to purchase groceries, meals at local restaurants, or food from on-campus dining services. Costs associated with housing, required program activities, and other program-related expenses are paid in advance by the Fulbright TEA Program and may vary by host university.

Have more questions?

Contact our local EducationUSA office located in Guatemala City at: educationusa@iga.edu or attend one of their monthly conferences, as advertised on their social media.