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Requirements You Need to Satisfy to Teach English Online
Written By: Nicola Rae | Updated: June 28, 2022
Written By: Nicola Rae
Updated: June 28, 2022
By now you’ve probably heard about teaching English online as a way to boost your income, get English teaching experience, or jump start your teaching career while you’re still at home.
Teaching English online is an awesome option for pretty much anyone who likes flexibility and working from home in pajamas pants.
But what are the actual requirements to teach English online? Though they vary somewhat from company to company, the following credentials are universally desirable.
Most companies require
- A native english speaker (some companies also have a preference for North American accents)
- A Bachelor’s Degree or higher (but there are a handful that don’t require a Bachelor’s - check out the ITA Online Teaching Job Comparison Chart to find out which ones)
- Some kind of experience working with kids
Most companies prefer but don’t require
- A TEFL Certification
- Experiences specific to teaching like classroom teaching, tutoring, mentoring, volunteering, etc.
- Here’s where getting certified with ITA gives you a strong advantage. Not only will you have a TEFL certificate, you will also have hands on experience from your practicum.
- A laptop that can handle streaming video and audio (most modern ones can, but if you’re still rocking, say, a early 2009 Mac that weighs 10 pounds like I was at the beginning, you might have a hard time)
- An internet speed of at least 20mbps
- A wired internet connection (think ethernet cord) is preferred to WiFi, but usually WiFi works just fine.
- Headset with microphone piece (this prevents an annoying echo for you and the student).
Your Teaching Persona
There is no right or wrong way to be a teacher.
I’ve heard people say they didn’t apply to teach English online because they didn’t think they were “bubbly” enough or “energetic” enough. You don’t have to be jumping around with thousands of puppets to be a good online English teacher, though you certainly can be if that’s your jam.
Good teachers can be silly and loud with tons of props. Good teachers can be warm and calm, always reassuring. Good teachers can be serious and studious, pushing their pupils to be their very best. Whatever your teaching style, you can be successful as long as you are focused on the student, patient, engaged, and friendly.
Posted In: Teach English Online
Nicola is an Atlanta native who loves teaching, budget travel, and guacamole. She holds BA’s in Anthropology and Sociology from the University of Georgia and a Masters in Education from Francis Marion University. Nicola has spent the last couple of years teaching English online while house-sitting her way through Europe, Asia, and Latin America. When she's not busy teaching or drinking coffee in cozy cafes, Nicola enjoys writing about her travels on her blog.
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