This form of TEFL has quickly become one of the most popular ways to earn a living teaching English as it is highly flexible and exceptionally convenient for many people. It is usually possible to fit your working hours around any other commitments you have such as work, study or family, and it can be either a full-time job or a part-time way to earn some extra cash. Probably the most attractive quality of teaching online is that it can be done from almost any location worldwide, as long as you have a stable internet connection and a suitable device. Although the requirements stated for online teaching jobs will vary greatly from one employer to the next, it should not be hard for those with a TEFL qualification to find a suitable position.
What are the typical requirements for an online English teacher?
The main qualification necessary for most online teaching jobs is a reputable TEFL certification of at least 120-hours duration. Completing an internationally recognized TEFL certificate such as ITTT’s 120-hour TEFL certification course will not only give you the qualification that employers are looking for, it will also ensure you have all the skills and knowledge you need to plan and deliver good quality lessons for your students from day one.
If you really want to stand out from the competition and give yourself the very best start to your online teaching career, adding a specialized course to your portfolio might be a great idea. At ITTT we have a very popular 170-hour course in teaching English with online specialization. With this option you first complete the standard 120-hour online TEFL course and then complete a 50-hour specialized course that focuses on all the unique skills required by an online teacher. With this extra qualification in the bag you will have an even better chance of landing the online teaching jobs you really want.
Do I need a degree to teach English online?
Although it is true that some online teaching platforms specify that a degree in any subject is required in order to get hired, it is not true of all platforms. Due to the huge worldwide demand for online English lessons there are plenty of options out there for those without a degree. If you have a degree in any English related field you will be in a great position when looking for online teaching jobs. However, those without a degree who have a TEFL qualification that includes an online teaching component have no need to worry as there are more than enough jobs to go around.
Can non-native English speakers teach English online?
As with the degree situation, there are some online teaching platforms that only hire native English speakers, but due to the strong demand across the world there are plenty that are happy to also take on non-native speakers with suitable TEFL qualifications. Some employers will ask to see proof of your English fluency via English proficiency exam results or other documentation.
Do I need previous experience to teach English online?
Once again, some online platforms will expect their teachers to have some amount of previous teaching experience, either online or in a traditional classroom. However, these are certainly in the minority as most will not expect experience, just a willingness to learn and grow from the offset.
What equipment will I need to teach English online?
When applying for online teaching jobs the employer should specify exactly what they expect in terms of equipment. However, the minimum standard is typically a PC or laptop, a good quality headset with microphone, and a high-quality webcam. You will also need a stable internet connection that is capable of running at a certain speed. Many online employers will run a test on your internet connection during the recruitment process to ensure yours is suitable for the job. Another requirement is some form of video conferencing software such as Zoom or Skype. Some platforms operate their own conferencing software which you will be introduced to during the recruitment process. Finally, you need to ensure you have a suitable quiet space available in which to complete your lessons. No employer will be impressed if they get complaints about a noisy or chaotic environment during your lessons.