Home » Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

 

  • 1. How is the salary paid?

    For all international staff half of the salary is quoted in US Dollars (USD) and the other half in Turkish Liras (TL). The TL portion of the salary is paid into a TL account and the portion quoted in USD is deposited in a Dollar account in Ankara.

  • 2. Is there a tax deduction?

    All income tax, social security and other charges are paid by the University.

  • 3. When is the first salary paid?

    All salaries are paid at the end of each month. First payment will be calculated from the starting date of the contract.

  • 4. How is the salary worked out? Is the salary negotiable?

    The salary scale placement is done according to qualifications / years of teaching experience outside Bilkent and years of service in Bilkent. The salary offered is not negotiable. Salaries are reviewed on a yearly basis according to experience gained and qualifications obtained at the end of each year.

  • 5. How does the medical insurance work?

    Once employed by the University, instructors are entitled to receive health services in state hospitals after a working period of 90 days, under the state medical insurance scheme. In addition, they can consult the University doctors on campus; however, there is a charge for certain services and prescriptions.

    The University will also arrange a private medical insurance scheme for you subject to being acceptable to the insurance company. Insurance premiums will be paid by the University. Please visit the Personnel Office’s website for more information. This private policy’s start date is approximately two weeks before the instructors’ arrival in Turkey, which will enable them to utilize certain private hospitals and clinics, in accordance with the scope of the policy.

    It should be noted that “the expenses for the disabilities experienced before becoming insured and the treatment required for such, surgery and transplantation, anomalies and diseases acquired from birth” are not included in the insurance coverage. More information about the scope of the private insurance policy will be provided at later stages of the recruitment process.

    Regardless of the policy expiration date on the insurance agreement, the private medical insurance coverage expires when the instructor’s contract ends.

  • 6. Are there any retirement options?

    There is a University savings trust available for Bilkent University personnel who work at Bilkent for more than 5 years.  More information about the retirement scheme can be obtained upon arrival.

  • 7. Can I see a copy of the contract?

    Yes, you are welcome to view the contract after you are shortlisted for an interview. Please send an email to intrec@bilkent.edu.tr to obtain the password to view the contract.

  • 8. Will I sign any documents in Turkish?

    Yes, you will need to sign the Turkish version of the contract and the residence permit as they are sent to government offices.

  • 9. What happens if I break my contract?

    Please read the relevant clauses in your contract. If you have any questions please write to teacher@bilkent.edu.tr.

  • 10. What happens if I fail the probation period?

    Please send an email to intrec@bilkent.edu.tr to obtain the password to view the Probation Handbook.

  • 11. What do I need to do prior to my departure?

    We will send you a password which will allow you to have access to the Employment Procedures website.  Information on this website will assist you with your preparation.

  • 12. Will I apply for the visa? Will I pay for the visa fee?

    Yes, you will apply for the visa in your home country. We will carry out all the necessary procedures in Turkey and send the necessary documents to you. We will cover the visa expenses.

  • 13. Flight booking: How does this work? Will I buy my plane ticket?

    BUSEL will make flight reservations through a local travel agency and either courier your ticket or send an e-ticket.

  • 14. How much is the extra baggage allowance?

    The University will provide an extra baggage allowance to the value of 200 US dollars provided a receipt is presented upon arrival and within 15 days of the end of contract.

  • 15. Is somebody going to meet me at the airport?

    A member of University staff will meet you at the airport and take you to your flat on the University campus.

  • 16. What is going to happen the next day?

    A BUSEL member will meet you and give a brief tour of the environs.

  • 17. Is there going to be an induction?

    Yes, there is a comprehensive induction at the beginning of the academic year.

  • 18. Is there going to be a social program for new comers?

    Yes, there is. The program will be subsidized by the school, but instructors will be expected to contribute to the costs.

  • 19. Do instructors have access to the University sports facilities and fitness courts?

    The University has several facilities including gymnasiums, indoor swimming pool, indoor and outdoor tennis courts, volleyball and basketball courts, football fields, aerobic/step studios and fitness/conditioning rooms on East Campus where Preparatory program classes are held. In addition, there is a seven thousand square meter multi purpose sports complex (fitness center, basketball, volleyball, team handball courts, squash courts) on Main Campus where FAE program classes are held. Several on-campus activities like training sessions, tournaments and competitions are also available. If you wish, you may also have a discount membership to a five star gym (Sports International – please see photo gallery) 20 minutes walk from the housing area.

  • 20. What kind of accommodation do you offer?

    We offer rent-free (a fee is charged for utilities), private and furnished apartments on campus: studio-type, one or two bedrooms.  There are shared laundry facilities in every apartment building. Currently, the fee for utilities is around 130 US dollars (paid in Turkish Liras), which covers electricity, heating, garbage collection and general maintenance.  Bottled drinking water and propane gas costs (for cooking) are paid by the instructors.

  • 21. Does the University provide a computer with high speed internet access in the flats?

    The university does not provide computers, but provides limited free internet access via the University server.  All campus flats are wired for the Ethernet (ADSL), allowing direct connection to the university network.

  • 22. Can I bring my pet with me?

    Small pets are allowed in on-campus faculty housing, with the only exception of Building #106 on Middle Campus.  If you do have a pet that you would like to bring with you, please inform us (teacher@bilkent.edu.tr) as soon as you receive the provisional offer letter.

    Please note that if you decide to bring your pet, you will need to take care of all expenses, present a health certificate to the Housing Office and follow the housing rules and regulations for keeping pets. You should also be aware that some countries require a 6-month quarantine period before allowing a pet to re-enter the home country.

  • 23. Return air fare to home country on contract renewal every two years; how is this different from air fares given at the beginning and end of the contract?

    This is a return air ticket without baggage allowance and it is given to those instructors whose contracts are extended at the end of two years employment and every subsequent two years.

  • 24. Can I express a preference as to the place of embarkation for the arrival flight?

    Flights to Ankara are provided according to school’s general contractual terms.  You may inquire about your particular preferences during the interview.

  • 25. How many lunches do luncheon vouchers cover?

    Luncheon vouchers are worth between 70-75 US dollars (in TL) are given every month except August. The vouchers can be used in lieu of money in all eateries on campus and other restaurants that accept them throughout the country. How much you spend will depend on the lunch you buy.

  • 26. How many international staff are there in BUSEL?

    There are 220 instructors one forth of whom are international.

  • 27. What are the hours of work (teaching and admin-English Lang. Prep. Program)?

    The instructors are required to work a forty-hour week. Regular daily working hours are 8:30 to 17:30 with a one hour lunch break. The course load for Preparatory Program instructors is set at 680 hours of classroom teaching over an academic year (Fall and Spring semesters and the Summer School) in accordance with the needs of the program. Weekly classroom teaching hours may vary throughout the academic year, between 15 and 25 depending on the need of the program in that specific period.

  • 28. What will the class size be and how old will the students be (English Lang. Prep. Program)?

    The class sizes vary from semester to semester.  Fall semester class sizes are between 20-23 students and spring semester between 18-20 students.  You will be teaching students who have just graduated from high school (18/19 years old) and have been admitted to Bilkent University through a central university placement exam.

  • 29. Where will I teach? Will I have a partner (English Lang. Prep. Program)?

    You will teach in one of three BUSEL buildings within a Teaching Unit consisting of local and international instructors. A Teaching Unit has approximately 15  instructors and literally teaches a medium size school of around 200 students. Operations of the Teaching Unit are managed by a Head of Teaching Unit and there is a very good team spirit within a Teaching Unit. You will teach with one or two other partner(s).

  • 30. What are the syllabus and teaching materials like (English Lang. Prep. Program)?

    We have been following a skills-based and objective driven syllabus since 1993. Teaching and learning are quite structured, with each Teaching Unit deciding on how to go about running its course. The school writes its own textbooks and makes use of commercially prepared materials as well as a large collection of software. We try to ensure that all learners receive high quality education and therefore we endeavor to structure our curriculum and the teaching in the best way possible. This structure provides guidance and direction for less experienced instructors while at the same time allowing for flexibility and creativity for more experienced instructors.

  • 31. To what extent can I do my own thing in the classroom?

    It is important that you work with your colleagues toward common goals and achieve the objectives of a particular course. In doing so, you will have flexibility over materials used and methodology followed. We are all accountable to students and their parents for the tuition we are providing therefore we have to account for the time spent in the classroom.

  • 32. What are the students like?

    The student body is a mixture of scholarship and non-scholarship students most of whom have just left high school and are used to a fairly rigid style of education. This is a challenging transition period for them intellectually, academically and socially. For many it is the first time they have lived away from home. Some are highly motivated, have good study habits and are already responsible young people. Others are more focused on passing exams than on learning and they require more guidance to become responsible and autonomous learners, which for some of them is a challenge.

  • 33. What do you do for students who are struggling or are not willing to put in the necessary effort?

    We believe that all learners have the right to receive the necessary support and guidance in order to help them realize their full potential. Our job is to provide a whole person education regardless of the background of the students and to help them become more motivated and responsible. Head of Teaching Units and the Student Services Unit as well as the learners’ own teachers themselves all offer individual support to struggling students.

  • 34. Why do you put so much emphasis on training and development?

    In any given year a substantial number of instructors are engaged in formal training courses in addition to in-house mentoring support. This represents a large investment of time and energy by the school. We believe all learning is a life-long process and learning how to teach is also a career long process. We aim to support this by providing opportunities for instructors at all levels to improve themselves professionally in order to realize their own full potential.

  • 35. Are there any professional development opportunities apart from training courses (English Lang. Prep. Program)?

    Yes, the school has an ‘open door policy’ where Heads of Teaching Unit and peer instructors observe classes regularly and give constructive feedback on the lesson observed. In addition, Teaching Units and instructors have their yearly development plans where they decide on areas to work on throughout the year. Interested teachers also have a chance to work on projects such as curriculum development and item writing.

  • 36. Is there a separate appraisal system?

    Yes, there is and the focal point is on how the instructors have felt about their profession, performance and development throughout an academic year.

  • 37. Do you have policies for absenteeism, compassionate leave and other areas of professional conduct?

    Yes, please write to teacher@bilkent.edu.tr to view the Staff Handbook.

  • 38. Is there a dress code?

    Instructors are expected to appear well presented. They should bear in mind that they are representing the professional community and the University.

  • 39. Am I going to have an opportunity to learn Turkish while teaching at B.U.S.E.L?

    Weekly Turkish language classes are offered to B.U.S.E.L. instructors free of charge throughout the year.

  • 40. Can I write to an instructor to find out more about the school?

    Yes, please write to intrec@bilkent.edu.tr to receive a contact e-mail.

  • 41. When can I take paid leave?

    The relevant clause of the Labor Law No. 4857 states that “the employee is granted annual paid leave after having worked for at least one year, including the probationary period”.  Please also refer to the international instructor contract.

  • 42. What kind of assistance do you offer to my spouse/partner and my children?

    While our international instructors are certainly most welcome to bring their families, we offer single-status contracts.  In other words, we assist only our instructors with their work permit and visa procedures and pay only their airfare.  Please refer to question no. 20 for accommodation arrangements.  Please send an email to intrec@bilkent.edu.tr, if you have questions about pre-school, as well as elementary, middle and high school options on campus for instructors’ children.