English Tutor Jobs Summary
When you apply for English tutor jobs, your main task is to teach English as a secondary language to non-native speakers. To be an effective tutor, you need to have a strong grasp of the English language and you need to have good teaching skills. Employers will give more importance to your teaching experience than your age. China, Japan, South Korea and Vietnam are only a few of the countries where most of the students are from.
Learning English online has been quite the fad among non-native English-speaking people who want to be more fluent conversing in English. Thus, applying to online English teaching jobs has also become a worthwhile activity for individuals who need and prefer to work from home. Learning English online is cheaper and more convenient than enrolling to a physical school and attending sessions in a classroom.
These refer to the tools of the trade when teaching English online. Perhaps you already have a working desktop computer or laptop that you plan on using to work on these jobs. You are probably thinking of buying a new computer system for this purpose. Whichever your situation is, you first need to look at the technical requirements for English tutor jobs.
Job ads such as one captured in Figure 1 contain these details.
o Hardware - The computer you will use when teaching online should meet the minimum requirements of the employer. These include the operating system, CPU and memory. You also need to have a noise-canceling headset and a high definition webcam.
o Internet Connection – Your internet connection should be fast and not intermittent. Thus, companies hiring English tutors usually require wired or fiber internet connections. Wireless internet such as LTE is rarely reliable.
o Quiet and Clean Home Office – When you work at home, it means you have various distractions and noise sources like TV audio or dogs barking. When you go online for your teaching sessions, your environment must have limited noise and distraction. The background that the student will see on your end should be clutter free.
o Software – This refers to the video platform to be used. Figure 1 does not include this because the company hiring English tutors already uses its own video platform. When you have gained experience in teaching and decided to just work as a freelancer, you will need your own video platform and the most commonly used free platform for video calling is Skype.
o Power Source – Some companies also require that an applicant lives in urban locations where there are fewer chances of blackouts. Otherwise, you will need to have a standby power source like a UPS power supply.
o Online Payment Account – Just like with other online jobs, you need to set up an account for receiving your salary. PayPal is the most frequently used payment method. Some employers also use remittance services and bank transfers.
Home or Office
There are job offers for remote English teaching positions and there are also those for office-based teaching. When you teach from home, you will set up all the tools, but will enjoy working in the comfort of your home. When you work in an office, you will not worry about any gadgets or internet connection because the office has these set up in advance. Yet, you will travel daily to and from the office so enduring the traffic is just one hassle to bear with.
Education and Certification
Job advertisements may also indicate the educational background for English tutors, such as in Figure 2. If you apply for this job, you are at an advantage if you have taken up and completed an English or Education college course. This is only a fair requirement, since the job involves what either course had taught you. However, there are English teaching companies that welcome high school graduates.
Another important entry in Figure 2 is the certification requirement
It is your decision whether you want to get certified first before applying for an online English teaching job or not. Yet, getting certified will help pave your way to more success not only in teaching English online. English teaching certifications will also prove to be useful if you ever work abroad. Certifications will help you market your skills even if you are not a native English speaker.
If you choose not to, you may filter your search by choosing job ads from companies that provide training and certification. Figure 3 has an example.
While the job ad in Figure 3 does not require certification, you will need to meet the basic requirements, which include a bachelor’s degree, diploma, and government-issued ID.
Watch this video below to know relevant details like qualifications, hours and pay of teaching English online.
These details include the number of students you will handle per session. There is a private session where you will teach only one student. There is also a small group session where you will handle multiple (2 to 6) students at a time. The job ad in Figure 4 is for a private English lesson.
When a particular online English teaching company hires you, it is highly likely that you will not worry about preparing any lesson plan for your students. You will use the already prepared curriculum, lesson plans, and teaching materials.
However, online English classes can be of different forms. The employer will probably inform you what type of classes you will provide or you could infer this from your teaching materials.
o Conversational or general English aims to help students to be more fluent in speaking English. You will introduce them to new English terms and words and correct their mistakes.
o Business English is one that focuses on using English in business practices like emails, proposals and presentations. You will need to cater to a student in his specific business or niche.
o Examination Preparation English is for students who need help in their upcoming English proficiency examinations.
o Job Interview English will help a student in his upcoming job interview. The session will include discussions on topics such as his personal strengths and weaknesses and about his qualifications.
o Trial English lessons are for those who want to first feel what it is like to study English online before finally signing up for a class.
If you are passionate enough to thrive in English tutor jobs, there are things that you could do to improve your teaching efficiency. An ardent home transcriber may practice his transcription skills by watching and transcribing YouTube videos. If a classroom teacher could make use of some teaching paraphernalia, so could you when you teach English online.
You could prepare your whiteboard or magnet board, markers, and flashcards to help facilitate your English classes. You will find great resources online to help in your teaching. There are activities and games you could use. A little creativity can help make your classes lively, and this will also help you gain the trust and approval of your students.
How To Apply/Join
There could be many ways to find online English teaching jobs. You could make use of search engines like Google and type your keyword like “English tutor jobs.” Your search results will contain job listings from online job portals and websites. You may need to sign up and become a member of these portals to apply for any job there.
Figures 2 and 4 are screenshots from the same job ad (online English tutor for ABC360Philippines) found when searching through Google. From Google’s job search results, there were two options for sending an application (via the company’s website and via another online job directory).
When you choose the option of applying through the company’s website, they will direct you to a web page for application form where you may also upload your resume and add your cover letter. Upon hitting the submit button, remember to follow the application procedure in Figure 1 about checking your email inbox within 24 hours.
Another scenario is when you are browsing through social media and your feeds contain a post that will direct you to the website of a certain company that specifically offers online English classes. You will likewise need to join that company website first to send your application to become an online English tutor. Be careful when signing up for websites that require a fee so you are safe from scammers.
You need to read reviews not from the website of that company but from external sources and sites. There are online sources of information where people who have previously worked there upload their feedback and work experience.
Before you settle on any job position to send your application to, look around first to see what other companies offer in terms of payment, schedule and benefits.
Different companies and employers offer different salary rates, but you may look at some estimates on the average salary so you have a basis for comparison. At Glassdoor, for example, the average monthly pay for online English teachers in the Philippines is Php 14,750/month (based only on 18 anonymous salary rate submissions).
Your earnings will depend on how many classes you could complete and how many hours you could dedicate for teaching English online. From Figure 3, the hourly rate is Php 108-180. For 8 hours of work, you could earn Php 864-1,440 a day. If you will teach 5 days a week for 4 weeks, you could earn Php 17,280 to 28,800. The ad says that this rate is higher than other platforms.
Meanwhile, Figure 5 shows the Php 30,000 salary rate for the full-time teaching profession for another company and this is higher than the computed earnings from Figure 3.
The company that hired you will determine your work schedule. Some will require a minimum number of teaching hours, and you could choose from given schedules. Others have more flexible schedules.
Our previous examples show that each company provides different schedules and options. In Figure 5, the company provides 3 sets of schedules to choose from. Figure 3 shows 2 sets of schedules. Figure 4 says that you can choose the time you wish to work.
Benefits / Bonus/ Increase/ Training Provided
Benefits, bonuses, perks and training are different for each company. As mentioned earlier, some companies do not require certification because they will provide training and certification to successful applicants.
In Figure 6, you will get monthly incentives, referral incentives, and annual pay increase as benefits. When you research different English teaching companies to compare their offered salaries, look at what employee benefits each organization offers. In this field and also in other online careers, you find that office-based English teachers seem to get more incentives than home-based tutors. There seems to be no laws or policies on wages and benefits to protect home-based online professionals (in the Philippines), at least as of writing this post.
For me, I think the main challenge in applying for English tutor jobs is internet connection. No internet is perfect, especially if you are from a third world country where the internet connection is slow. If you live in an area where no wired internet service is available, it is hard to apply for a teaching job. Even if you get hired, intermittent connections will disrupt your classes and a not too understanding student could complain about this to your company and could lead to your dismissal.