Is teaching English your first love? Would you prefer to concentrate on getting your students to improve their language skills rather than sit through interminable school administrative meetings? Are you bored with the endless and fixed routines that schools impose on you? Well, welcome to the club of teachers who teach English online.
It is perfectly understandable if you are jittery about throwing away a steady job at a school and plunging into unknown waters to teach English online. But the fact that several professional and experienced teachers have moved to the virtual world to teach English online should reassure you.
Today, the community of teachers committing themselves to teach English online to students across the globe includes an eclectic mix of freshers, young graduates, non-degree holders and experienced professional with teaching certificates.
Why Teach English online: The Advantages
So, why does a teacher with a decade of experience decide to teach English online? What motivates a young college graduate to teach English online rather than trod the beaten path of looking for a school job? The most obvious answer is freedom and flexibility. In a world which has been reduced to a rat race, the freedom to decide the amount of work you want to do and when to do it can be truly liberating.
When you teach English online, you have the flexibility to choose the times you want to work. For example, if you are a late riser, you no longer have to fret about sleeping through the alarm or getting your circadian rhythm to match with the rest of the world. Just opt to teach English online in the evening hours, when you are at your best!
We know that teaching English is your first love! But when you decide to teach English online, you get the chance to indulge in your other passions too. Want to travel around the world? Sure, you can do so, even as you fulfil your teaching commitments online.
It is no longer necessary to wait for the school holidays to move around the world. Think of the amount of money you can save travelling during non-peak season!!
If you want to teach English online as a full-time commitment, will this decision make you lose out monetarily? You may have a dip in your income in the initial days of your foray into the virtual world. However, once you get the hang of it, you will be able to take enough classes to ensure that your financial situation does not suffer in any way.
The General Qualifications & Requirements To Teach English Online
|Fluency in English||Yes, this non-negotiable|
|Preference for native English speakers||Yes. Most schools hire teachers from US, UK, Canada, Australia or New Zealand|
|Access to high speed broadband||Yes. Non-negotiable|
|TEFL certification||Preferred. But not essential|
|Degree||Preferred. But not essential|
Teach English Online: Selecting the Right Institution
If you are wondering how to take the first step into the virtual world of English lessons, read our comprehensive guide. It lists the 10 best companies hiring now to teach English online from home. We examine the company, pay scales, qualifications, contract periods and other vital information you require to make an informed decision.
If you are looking at opportunities to teach English online, a cursory search of the internet will lead you to the VIPKid landing page. This is not surprising. With a large student base built over several years, VIPKid is a popular choice for online teachers. Their reputation as good paymasters who provide teachers with flexible options has added to their credibility.
How do you apply to teach English online at VIPKid?
- Fill up the online application form on the company website
- The second step of the evaluation process is either an interview or a recorded demo lesson
- Attend an orientation session where you will be given information on VIPKid technology, standards and curriculum
- Conduct a mock class with a VIPKid teacher
- If you are selected post the mock class, upload required documents
- VIPKid will conduct a background check to ensure online safety and security
- Once the contract is signed, your profile is set up on the website
You are now ready to take bookings from students!
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at VIPKid?
- Bachelor’s degree is mandatory
- You must be a Canadian or US passport holder
- You must be committed to teach a minimum of six months
- Well-functioning equipment recommended by VIPKid and internet connection of at least 25 Mb/s
- A back up device to your laptop (a tablet will do)
As a teacher at VIPKid, you can earn between $8-$25 per hour, depending on your experience. Teachers are paid once or twice a month via bank deposit. Each class is of 25 minutes. In addition, teachers are provided with a participation incentive if they start and end their classes on time. You get an additional financial incentive if you take 40-45 classes per month.
More VIPKid Highlights
- Based in Beijing and San Francisco
- Mission is to teach English online to Chinese students
- Students in the age group of 4-12 years
- Focus is on one-to-one language instruction
- Present enrolment is 700,000 students
If you are venturing into the virtual world to teach English online, do take a look at QKids. One of the advantages of working here is that teachers are provided with the lesson plans in the app. All you are required to do is familiarize yourself with it before the class. Since teaching is done via interactive animated characters, games and stories, your 30-minute class will fly by in a jiffy!
How do you apply to teach English online at QKids?
- Apply online with the following details:
- Your resume
- Your availability
- Screenshot of your computer specs
- A short video to introduce yourself. You will also have to narrate/read a children’s story
- If your application is shortlisted, you will be asked to take two demo classes
- If you clear Step 2, you will be allotted a (paid) trial class
- A background check is conducted
- If satisfactory, you will be employed on a contractual basis.
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at QKids?
- You have to be a US/Canadian citizen OR have the right to work legally in the two countries
- Bachelor’s degree
- Teaching license or English teaching certificate (TESOL, TEFL, CELTA, ESL)
- Computer with accessories necessary for video calling/conferencing
- Stable, high speed internet connection
As a QKids teacher, you will be paid between $16-$20. This includes a base pay, a weekly performance fee based on your reviews, attendance bonus after every 15 lessons.
Lessons are of 30-minutes duration. QKids allows teachers to set their own teaching schedule, so you can build in a lot of flexibility if you require it. You are not expected to interact with parents. The company normally offers a 6-month, renewable contract.
More QKids Highlights
- Over 80,000 Chinese students in the age group of 4-12
- QKids was launched in 2015.
- It has offices in Shenzhen, Xiamen, Guangzhou and Beijing
- QKids identifies itself as a narrative game-based learning platform
- Classes can include up to 4 students
- Pre-set curricula taught with animated characters and games
Are you looking for an informal, fun way of teaching English? Would you like to teach a mix of students which may include children and adults including working professionals? Would you like as much flexibility in your work hours as possible? If your answer to these questions is yes, then perhaps Cambly is the perfect platform for you to teach English online.
How do you apply to teach English online at Cambly?
- Sign in and create an account
- Fill in the details required. Most of the information required is basic
- You will have to upload a short self-introduction video where you talk about your background and your objective in signing up with Cambly
- If you are accepted, you can sign up with Cambly and start teaching
- There are no contracts for tutors. You can log in when you like and work as per your preference
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at Cambly?
- Fluency in English/native English speaker
- A computer, accessories and a great internet connection
Yes, fluency in the language is the only requirement to teach English online using the Cambly platform. The company’s focus is more on providing conversational skills for its students. Teaching experience and a degree are, therefore, not required. However, native English speakers with no ‘foreign’ accent have an edge during the hiring process.
There is no scheduling of classes on the platform. You can log in whenever you want. If there is a student online demanding access to a teacher for a ‘class’ or a ‘conversation’, you are allotted the call. Of course, once a student is familiar with you, both of you may want to reserve time slots for each other. The platform does have this facility too. You therefore have the liberty to make your own hours and work as much – or as little – as you want. However, you need to have the ability to be flexible in your teaching style.
Some students may want a structured class, while others are content with a conversation in English to brush up their language skills. You need to be able to switch as per the student’s priority. Cambly pays tutors $10 per hour in weekly payments.
More Cambly Highlights
- Cambly was launched in 2012
- The company is based in San Francisco
- The focus is to teach English online via conversational video chats
- The company provides students with on-demand access to tutors
- The company caters to organizations, students and adults who want to learn English online
- It has students from 90 countries, with a significant proportion from Russia, Turkey and Brazil
italki is a great option if you plan to teach English online. It is one of the few online platforms that lets the teachers set the pay rate for their students. There are two categories of tutors on italki. If you have teaching experience, you can apply for the position of professional teacher. If not, you can apply for the position of a community tutor. The professional tutor is expected to have structured lesson plans and provide students with resources and prepared materials. The community tutor is expected to provide conversational practice to students.
How do you apply to teach English online at Italki?
- Fill in the online application form
- Upload documents including degree certificate, resume and references
- Upload a 1-3-minute introduction video
- The application is reviewed within 20 business days
- If accepted, you have to complete a survey provided by the company
- Schedule a video conference with the italki teacher service
- Once this is done, you are set to start your lessons
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at Italki?
- Bachelor’s degree or any higher university degree
- Language certification with native proficiency or advanced proficiency
- Teaching license
- Previous employment at language training/teaching institution
italki lets tutors set their own price. Professional teachers can charge a minimum lesson price of $8 per hour, while community teachers can charge a minimum of $4 per hour.
More Italki Highlights
- italki was launched in 2007 in Shanghai as a language learning community
- It evolved into an online teaching platform in 2010
- italki has over 5 million learners and 10,000 plus teachers
- The lessons are 1-on-1
- italki supports several languages including French, Polish, Japanese, Chinese, Russian, Dutch and Portuguese
- English accounts for more than 50 percent of the online lessons
A relatively new entrant to the teach English online market, GoGoKid has a very interactive platform which helps students and teachers communicate with ease. The pay scales are attractive with a credit score system where you gain points for good reviews, punctuality and regularity.
How do you apply to teach English online at GoGoKid?
- Fill the online application
- Once your application is reviewed, you have to schedule an interview. The interview duration is of 30 minutes where you get a chance to showcase your teaching skills
- Prospective candidates have to attend an orientation program which includes a quiz, one-to-many live training session and one-on-one mock class training session
- Submit all necessary documentation
- If selected, you will be invited to sign a six-month contract
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at GogoKid?
- Bachelor’s degree
- Stable internet connection with tech requirements specified by the company
- Native English speakers
GoGoKid offers between $14-$25 per hour depending on your experience and qualifications. You get ready made lesson plans to help you prepare for the class. You also have the freedom to fix your own hours and schedule.
More GoGoKid Highlights
- The company was launched in 2018
- GoGoKid is based in Beijing
- The platform offers one-to-one English classes for Chinese students
- Students are in the age group of 4-12 years
- Offers a curriculum that includes elementary and primary school English, phonics and English for beginners
EnglishHunt gives you the option to teach adults too. The curriculum is provided to the teachers and ranges from free conversations to test-prep instruction. You are expected to speak exclusively in English during the class. For classes with kids in the lower age group, there will be a bilingual co-teacher.
How do you apply to teach English online at Englishunt?
- Submit your application on the website.
- Once the application is reviewed, a member of the EnglishHunt recruitment team will contact you
- Upon successful completion of an interview, you will have a live training session
- There is an assessment to verify if your equipment meets the company’s technology requirements
- You are now ready to start!
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at Englishunt?
- The qualifications required vary for the Live Video Class instructors and the Live Phone Class instructors
- The video instructors are required to have a 4-year degree, teaching license and experience
- The phone instructors must have a two-year degree from an accredited institute. However, no teaching experience or certificate is required.
- You must be an American citizen
At EnglishHunt, your work schedule is built based on your availability. Teachers can choose between two shifts. Though you need not work for the entire shift, you must be available for a minimum block of two hours. The pay varies depending on your experience as well as the client with whom you are placed.
More Englishunt Highlights
- EnglishHunt is a Korean company set up in 2008
- The company is the largest provider of live video classes for English language education in South Korea
- EnglishHunt has centers in Japan and China too
- Classes are held for children and adults, individuals and organizations
- There are live video classes and live phone classes. The phone classes cater to government organizations and business corporations
51Talk provides personalized and group lessons for Chinese students across all age groups. The curriculum is designed in house and the company uses a cutting digital learning platform known as AirClass.
How do you apply to teach English online at 51Talk?
- Fill the online application form
- After the application is reviewed, you will have an interview or will be asked to hold a demo class
- The next step is to attend the orientation and training session
- You are now ready to start teaching!
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at 51Talk?
- Excellent command over English
- Bachelor’s degree
- TEFL or similar certifications is preferred
- Passion for teaching
51Talk describes their platform as a booking engine. Students can book their teacher and lesson. You will have to prepare for the class by using materials provided by the company. Each class is of 25 minutes duration. Classes are held in the weekends and evening hours. The company offers a base pay as well as performance-based incentives, peak hour-based incentives and referral incentives.
More 51Talk Highlights
- The Philippines based company caters to students in China
- The teachers are recruited from Philippines
- The company has around 15,000 teachers and 200,000 students
- There are more than 50,000 lessons conducted daily
- It claims to be the world’s largest online education platform
SayABC’s interactive platform has pre-loaded National Geographic lessons. It’s specially created study material, known as World Series and World Readers are unique. The company has a proprietary curriculum.
How do you apply to teach English online at SayABC?
- You can apply on the website by providing some basic information about yourself
- Book a 30-minute interview slot on the site. The interview gives you the chance to showcase your teaching skills and know more about SayABC
- Provide documentation to prove your credentials
- If selected, SayABC will set up your profile, enabling students and parents to book your classes
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at SayABC?
- Native level of English
- Necessary equipment including computers with fast internet connection and audio/video capability
- Bachelor degree or above is mandatory
- Minimum one-year teaching experience is preferred
- Certificated in TEFL, TESOL, CELTA or any other
- Teaching certificates is preferred.
Classes are held in the evenings from Monday to Friday. Weekend classes are held in two shifts, one each in the morning and evening. Classes are of 40-minute duration. Teachers are paid $13 for a 40-minute class with an additional $4 based on attendance and productivity.
More SayABC Highlights
- SayABC is based in Beijing
- Each class has a maximum of 4 children
- The company has a unique platform that offers children a mix of fun and education activities
- Students are in the age group of 5-12 years
If you want to teach English online in a company with ambitious growth plans, check out Tutlo. The company has charted out a dynamic path for the future, with plans to introduce more languages, a new app and website.
How do you apply to teach English online at Tutlo?
- Fill the online application form
- Upload the documents required
- Post a self-introduction video
- Press the submit button!
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at Tutlo?
- A native English speaker from US, the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and South Africa
- Non-native speakers with excellent fluency in English can apply
- At least 18 years of age
- 6 months teaching experience
- Teaching certificate
- At least 5 mbps internet speed both for upload and download
- Good conversationalist
The one-to-one classes are of 20-minute duration. Work hours are flexible. Log in at your convenience and the platform will connect you to a student. Tutlo pays between $5-$11 per hour, depending on your qualifications and experience.
More Tutlo Highlights
- Tutlo is based in Poland
- It is the country’s fastest growing learning platform
- The company has a base of 2000 users. This includes 100 active teachers.
- Tutlo logs in 2827 hours of activity each month with 500 active students and 500+ lessons
Established and popular tutors on Preply earn as much as $550 per week. The platform allows you to set your own hourly rate and the freedom to select the number of hours that you work. This could range from a few hours a week to full-time availability.
How do you apply to teach English online at Preply?
- Sign up using Facebook or your e-mail ID
- Create a tutor profile on the platform. This includes providing basic information, a video introduction, uploading your availability schedule and photograph.
- If your profile is approved, it is made visible to students searching the site
- The chances of getting a student are high if your profile has relevant information regarding availability, qualifications and experience
What are the qualifications/requirements to teach English online at Preply?
- Passion for teaching
- Language fluency
- Teaching certificate is preferred but not mandatory
- Bachelor’s degree is not mandatory
Preply allows teachers to set their own rates. However, you have to pay a commission to Preply for each lesson. The entire payment for your first lesson after signing up is taken as commission. Thereafter, you have to pay between 18 to 33 percent commission for each class you take. The more classes you take, the lesser the commission you have to pay Preply.
More Preply Highlights
- Preply was founded in the year 2013
- It is an online learning platform for several languages including English, German, Japanese, Italian, Arabic, French, Spanish, Russian and Chinese
- It has a current network of 10,000 teachers with students from across the globe
- The company’s special online teaching program for organizations is known as Preply Enterprise
Some more recent FAQ's about teach English online
This is quite a subjective question and it all depends on you as to which is the best online teaching company. In terms of highest pay VIPKids is one of the better online teaching companies. However a lot of people rate Cambly highly for their relaxed atmosphere and conversational delivery to the students
Yes you can really make money teaching English Online. If you identify one of the better paying online teaching companies such as VIPKids or GoGoKids. You control how much you work so the more you teach english online the more you will earn.
The top 5 paying online ESL companies which pays the most are:
If you negotiate you can earn the most being between $17 - $20USD per hour
As with any business you have some good and some bad. The good news is teaching English online has become a lot more legit. Make sure when you are search for jobs teaching English online that they have good reviews and testimonials to make sure they are a legitimate company.
So how did we fare on our 10 best companies hiring now to teach English online from home? Does a company not deserve to be on the list or should there be a company that should have made the list? Let us know in the comments below!