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Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (TEA)

Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (TEA)

Michelle Morales, Fulbright TEA Fellow, September 2021

Michelle Morales, Fulbright TEA Fellow, September 2021

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 (EFL), math, science, and social studies, including special education teachers of those subjects.

Important note for all potential applicants to U.S. exchange programs:

As of November 8, 2021, all non-U.S. citizens seeking to enter the United States by air are required to comply with new requirements related to COVID-19 testing and vaccination status. In order to be eligible for consideration at this time, you must be able to meet these new requirements.

Please review the information available here: https://gt.usembassy.gov/updated-requeriments-for-air-travelers-to-the-u-s-due-to-covid-19/.

For further details and guidance, we refer you to the U.S. CDC website: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/noncitizens-US-air-travel.html https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/proof-of-vaccination.html

The 2023 call for applications in Guatemala is open
from January 5, 2022, to March 5, 2022

About the program

The program consists of general academic seminars focused on new teaching methodologies, student-centered learning, content-based instruction, lesson planning, and instructional technology training for teachers. Intensive English language instruction will be offered to those teachers in need of additional practice. The program also includes a practicum of a minimum of 40 hours with a U.S. partner teacher in a secondary school near the host university, to actively engage participants in the U.S. classroom environment. Cultural enrichment, mentoring, and support is provided to participants throughout the program. TEA provides participants with practical resources they can use in their teaching as well as skills to train trainers.

Selected participants will travel to the United States in January or September 2023. (Applicants should indicate their preference.)

Who can apply?

Applicants must fulfill all the following requirements: 

  • 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 of those subjects.  Teachers from public institutions receive priority consideration. Applicants do not need to teach the subjects in English but must be fluent in English.
  • Candidates must be able to demonstrate sufficient oral and written English language proficiency to participate in professional seminars and give presentations in U.S. schools. This will be tested. If you have a recent TOEFL exam, please provide the scores in your application.
  • Applicants must hold at least a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent.

Note:  The Profesorado de Enseñanza Media (PEM) is the equivalent of a technical, not a bachelor’s, degree and is not accepted.

  • Applicants must have completed at least five years of full-time teaching by March 2022
  • Teachers who can demonstrate evidence of leadership in their schools or communities.

Note:  Secondary-level teachers include both middle and high school teachers who work with students approximately 12 to 18 years of age.  Teachers responsible for teaching additional grade levels must teach middle or high school students more than 50 percent (50%) of their work time to be eligible.

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

How do I apply?

  1. First, review the above carefully to confirm you meet all preliminary program requirements. If so, we invite you to apply by March 5, 2022, at this link: https://www.irex.org/project/fulbright-teaching-excellence-and-achievement-program-fulbright-tea.
  2. Begin preparing to take the TOEFL exam. If selected, you should expect to take it in March 2022.
  3. Interviews: A shortlist of candidates will be selected to be interviewed in late March 2022.  Interviews are approximately 20 minutes in length and conducted in English.

Note:  If you are not contacted to schedule an interview by April 15, 2022, you have not been selected to continue to the next stage of the selection process.  Applicants not selected for interviews will not receive a notice of non-selection.

  1. Pre-selected fellows must take the TOEFL exam. The cost of the exam is covered by the program.
  2. Final selection of Fulbright TEA teachers is made by the William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FFSB), an independent, Presidentially appointed board with oversight responsibility for all Fulbright academic exchange programs.

Program Components

Teachers 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
  • Take part in other educational and cultural activities during the program in the United States.
  • Upon returning home, teachers are expected to share the knowledge and experience gained in the program with teachers and students in their home schools and within their communities.


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 minimum required scores represent an intermediate level. Applicants do not need to have an existing TOEFL score to apply, but they should prepare to take the test. Again, finalists will be scheduled to take the test in March 2022.

Relevant Dates

Fellows will travel as part of one of two cohorts per the following timeline:

  1. January 5, 2022– March 5, 2022, 16:00 hours: Call for applications opens in Guatemala.
  2. Mid-March 2022:Interviews take place. Pre-selected fellows take TOEFL test.
  3. September 2022:William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FFSB) confirms selection or non-selection of fellows.
  4. January – March 2023:Cohort 1 of Fulbright teachers participate in their program in the United States.
  5. September – October 2023:Cohort 2 of Fulbright teachers participate in their program in the United States.


Participants will live on or near the host university campus in assigned housing.  Dependents are not permitted to accompany participants in the program.


Each Fulbright teacher receives 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.

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