It’s no secret that starting an English tutoring business has become one of the most in demand career or self-employment options in recent years. For one, it comes with a great number of benefits not just just for the teachers themselves, but also for the students. In fact, studies have shown that learning a second language in general is linked to greater brain function.
That said, online English teaching jobs remain an uncharted territory for many individuals, especially non-teachers. And if you are one of those who want to take advantage of this opportunity, this might be a good time for you to start an English tutoring business. However, if you are still on the fence about it, here are the answers you need to know to help you get started:
Why teach English?
English is a universal language. It is the most spoken language in the world as of today and is used globally by many people to converse with others who do not share the same native tongue. Because of that, knowing how to speak the language is considered a huge advantage by many in building international connections, whether it be for personal or business purposes.
In addition, English is also becoming a requirement for employment and education. Each year, more and more students are becoming interested in increasing their proficiency in said language. This is why it comes as no surprise that many people around the world want to learn it and seek tutors who teach English online.
With English being an in demand job, people who want to engage in this career have a lot of opportunities, especially since this practice is unlikely to wane down anytime in the future.
How much can you make from an English tutoring business online?
English online tutoring pays reasonably well. But what you earn would ultimately still depend on the kind of arrangement that you plan to set–the number of tutors, work hours, and arrangement. On average, the rate of English tutors are between $12 – $25 USD per hour as a starting rate but depending on their level of qualification, the fee per hour can reach up to around $40 USD per hour. That should give you a benchmark of how much you can pay and earn from starting a tutoring business.
But all in all, with the right qualifications and regular working hours, you can make it a thriving business especially as the entire world transitions to the remote working space.
What do you need to start your English tutoring business?
Online English teaching jobs would often require online tutors to have their own resources as they will be going to work remotely. A laptop or a desktop computer, a web camera, and a pair of earphones with decent quality audio and built-in microphone are the basic things you need to set up. A stable internet connection is also a must. Other than that, you need your tutors to have a place in their homes where they can conduct lessons without interruptions and distractions.
Now, depending on how you plan to allocate your resources, you can either provide this to your teachers by having some of the equipment shipped to their locations or directly allocate a cash budget for these tools. If you’re a little cash-strapped, you can also add this as a requirement as you screen your applicants.
Do you need a license to become an online English teacher?
It’s true that getting a license to teach English is always recommended as there are better chances of attracting more customers and securing higher rates. Nonetheless, license is currently not a prerequisite to teaching online. Even several platforms today do not demand English online tutors to have a license and certification. The general requirements are proper equipment, a stable internet connection, and the fluency to speak and write well in English.
What certificate courses should you or your tutors take?
If you do decide to get a license and certification, you should enroll in either a TEFL or a TESOL program. TEFL stands for Teaching English as a Foreign Language. It is best to apply for TEFL if you are aiming to teach students who are living in a county where English is not the primary language like Japan and China.
On the other hand, TESOL is fit and recommended for teachers who want to teach foreign students residing in an English-speaking country like the U.S.
Enrolling in either programs and getting a certification could instantly qualify you or your tutors to be an English teacher online.
Who are your students?
The good and amazing thing about online tutoring is that it is made accessible to anyone in the world given the plethora of digital and virtual platforms for it. This means that you should expect students to come from different places, and we are not simply talking about various nearby cities here. Students for your English tutoring business can come from different countries and continents.
Besides their location, students who are enrolling in online English courses also vary in age, career, and gender. You might be able to encounter children in primary school who are just beginning to learn their first English vocabulary, and you can also meet college students who are in need of your help to apply to an English-speaking school abroad.
The kind of students that you would meet is unpredictable. However, there are also choices where you can select which specific age group you would want to teach. There are online tutors who are dedicated solely on teaching children ages 8-years-old and below while there are others who prefer to teach students that come from certain countries.
Is teaching English online difficult?
Teaching English online is not hard, especially if you have the right team and setup that you need to conduct seamless online English classes. First time English tutors may need a bit of time to get used to the workflow but since almost everybody now has some experience with working remotely, it would be quite easy to adjust.
Perhaps the only difficulty you might experience when conducting online English classes are problems with the equipment and internet connection as it can lead to trouble with communication and some countries have poor internet quality. This is why we emphasize the need for you to consider all tools and resources first and ensure that your teachers are well-equipped to conduct their classes.
Some more advice
With the transition to online classes and remote work, this is the perfect opportunity for you to explore different online businesses. Admittedly, starting an online English tutoring business is one of the easiest ventures to begin, especially post-pandemic. And considering the low capital and minimal barriers to entry, it’s definitely an industry worth trying.