|Teaching in a Korean University|
1. Your students will not be as high of level as you think. While they may have an impressive range of vocabulary, they're often extremely weak in actually using it. And basic grammar points will need to be reviewed. I have plenty of other posts about handling low level students in Korean Universities.
2. University is a party-time for Korean students, between Sooneung Hell and selling their souls to Samsung or Hyundai or Kia. Adjust your classes accordingly. If you make them too hard with too much homework, the students will be unhappy. Give a little bit or homework and a few tests so you can have some self-respect but don't stress too much about making it like a university class is "back home."
3. Don't trust the students to "check" the box for their own attendance. They will lie and cheat for their friends. You need to personally do it. And carefully. It's the only fair way.
4. Don't accept Kyeol-gung-wons (absence excuse papers) for minor things like colds. Reserve it for the serious such as a car accident/brain trauma/close family member's death.
5. Chill out. Korea is a Bali-Bali (fast-fast) last minute kind of culture. Lots of decisions will happen just in time with regard to classes and schedules and housing. Don't worry about it and just go with the flow. If you stress out about it, something terrible might happen to you by the end of your year, like all your hair falling out. I guarantee it.
6. Cheating (cunning) is not such a serious offense in Korea as it is in the Western World. Most students think nothing of plagiarizing something off the Internet for a written assignment. Or copying off their friend in the few minutes before class starts. Or bringing a cheating paper to the test. So give assignments and tests that minimize this and you won't have to deal with it. I do exclusively speaking tests, with groups of 2-4 students in my office. There is no possible way for them to cheat. And I simply don't assign the "workbook" as homework. Check out Culture Shock Korea for some more insight into Korean Culture.
7. Class sizes really do matter. Before accepting a job, perhaps the most important question to ask would be, "What are the class sizes?" I'm not sure I would ever take a job with very large, multi-level classes. This was the reality in my first semester and it was extremely difficult. Now, some of my classes are down to 10 students and the difference is astounding. I can actually get to know my students as individuals and see them actually improve their English skills. It's far more rewarding.
8. Simple is better. Syllabi, tests, activities, grammar points. Everything really.
9. Keep on top of the paperwork. Input attendance into the computer each week. Enter grades into your spreadsheets as you get them. Have at least a couple of weeks lessons planned ahead of time.
10. Your teaching impact does not equal your self-worth. You'll have some bad classes and students that don't like you. It doesn't mean that you're a bad person, or a terrible teacher. Get some hobbies and friends and learn to leave your teaching behind you at the end of the day.
For the best tips on how to get one of these prime university jobs in South Korea, check out this fabulous book (by me!): How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams.