English Education Curriculum and Materials Design Specialist

Before You Apply

Peace Corps Response positions are open to returned Volunteers or U.S. citizens with significant professional and technical experience.

Don't meet these requirements? View our Peace Corps Volunteer openings.

Project Description

Two Peace Corps Response Volunteers (PCRVs) are needed to serve as English Education Curriculum and Materials Design Specialists with the Costa Rican Ministry of Public Education. The Volunteers will be supporting the implementation of the current English curriculum reform through material design and curriculum development for public primary and secondary schools. The new English curriculum was launched because Costa Rican students needed an updated learning model that reflected the knowledge, skills, and abilities required to succeed as a citizen in the 21st Century. Students were not reaching the expected English proficiency level after eleven or twelve years of instruction. As a result, MEP (alongside PCVs/PCRVs) developed an updated English curriculum that focused on using an action-oriented approach/communicative approach to language learning. In 2016, a cohort of Response Volunteers spearheaded this initiative by collaborating with MEP officials. The assigned MEP counterparts have multiple years of experience working with Peace Corps Volunteers.

Volunteers with a Master’s Degree in Education, at least 5 years of public school teaching experience, and experience working with high school curriculum design are needed to work with the ministry to further develop the English education curriculum. The Volunteers will coordinate with the small groups of 3-10 PCVs and Costa Rican English teachers that will be working with national English advisors from secondary education on two main projects. First, the Volunteers will help produce supplementary materials and develop resources including audio, videos, teacher tool kits, student resource kits and dialogue scripts. Secondly, the Volunteers will support a variety of curriculum development initiatives through document revision and provide additional support to the national English advisors as they create a science curriculum for bilingual elementary schools. The goal of this assignment is to continue to strengthen the secondary education curriculum and further the implementation of the curriculum throughout Costa Rican secondary public schools.

Please note that departure dates and other details of this project could change because of the uncertainties as Peace Corps and local partners resume volunteer operations. Candidates selected for this position will be arriving in Costa Rica together as a group, so while the departure dates for the whole group could change, dates cannot be changed for individual candidates.

Partner Information

Ministry of Public Education (MEP)

Required Skills

• High tolerance for ambiguity and high level of flexibility – some details of this project could change because of the uncertainties as Peace Corps and local partners resume volunteer operations
• Master’s Degree in Education- preferably related to curriculum and instruction.
• 5 -10 years of public school teaching experience.
• Experience working with high school/primary school curriculum design.
• Intermediate Spanish. Most professional interactions will occur in English but Spanish is needed to communicate with other staff who are not English professionals as well as for daily life interactions (getting to work, buying groceries, developing local relationships, etc.).
• Proactive, solution-oriented approach to professionalism. Be able to work well with tight timelines and very little supervision.
• Willingness to approach the position through the Peace Corps’ philosophy on development.

The Peace Corps embraces and leverages the diversity of its volunteers as a reflection of America's diversity. Peace Corps Response is committed to reflecting the diversity of the United States in the professionals we send into the field to support the mission of world peace and friendship. Applicants with diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Serving in Costa Rica

Learn more about the Volunteer experience in Costa Rica: Get detailed information on culture, communications, housing, and safety — including crime statistics [PDF] — in order to make a well-informed decision about serving.

Medical Considerations

Before you apply, please review Medical Information for Applicants to learn about the medical clearance process.

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