Online tutoring is still in its infancy stage, yet many students from various levels and age are taking advantage of this industry. It is said that more than 70,000 students are enrolled online, and this number speaks highly of a growing market for online tutors. But what’s behind the job? What does it mean to be working online as a tutor?
Online tutors either assist students with their assignments and researches or teach people, usually aged individuals who take on a hobby, about a specific non-school subject like music or foreign language. The tutor meets his student one-on-one in an online classroom and teaches through a virtual whiteboard. All communication is done via live chat session.
Tutoring is purely done online, which makes it a viable work-at-home job. This is a good opportunity for stay-at-home moms, fresh college graduates, retired teachers, and everyone else who is on the lookout for a potential work outside the confines of an office cubicle.
Most tutoring jobs also offer flexible hours, which means a tutor can make his own work schedule. He can either work early in the morning, late at night, or at the time of the day he is most productive. This kind of flexibility can be beneficial to those who have jobs other than online tutoring.
Tutoring service companies usually require online tutors to have a Bachelor’s degree. But in the absence of a college education, some firms require a teaching certification. Online tutors also need to have some teaching experience and an expansive knowledge of the subject they are going to teach.
Aside from the educational and expertise requirements, online teachers are expected to have excellent interaction and management skills. Compared to the face-to-face setup, online tutoring can be more challenging since communication is done virtually and some information can be best presented in a physical setting. The job then of the online tutor is to present information in the most interesting ways using the available tools and minimize the potential limitations in the online setup.
How to look for work
There are two ways to land on an online tutoring job. One is to work for a tutoring service company. With the growth of the online tutoring industry, more and more companies are opening and hiring online tutors. Visit their websites and carefully study their programs and policies. Do their requirements fit your skills? Do you think you can measure up with their standards? Is the pay good enough? If you take interest in a company, research well about it and find out if it is legitimate. Keep in mind that there are bogus companies penetrating the web and the last thing you would want is to work for one.
You can also work independent of a tutoring service company and look for potential students on your own. You can ask for referrals and work your way from there. See as well students’ ads that are looking for an online tutor. Working independently is also so much like having a business, and like any other business you need to advertise. Advertise your service in campus bulletin boards and papers, online classifieds, and online forums. Make use of other avenues as well such as flyers. To start working online as a tutor, you need to get attention and promote your service.