Teaching online is an excellent way of earning money while working at home on your own schedule. In fact, it has been said by one to be one of the best jobs you can get if you absolutely must work from home but still want to earn a respectable living.
This guide will teach you how to become an online teacher despite not having a teaching degree. We will discuss what online teachers do, how much they get paid, what platforms they use, and, more importantly, how you can get started yourself.
We’ll also share some of the best companies you can work for as an online teacher and some jobs that are available right now!
If you’re ready to learn how to become an online teacher without a degree, this beginner’s blog post will steer you in the right direction.
Can You Really Teach Online Without a Degree?
Most people wonder how you can possibly make money online without going to college and getting your degree. The answer lies in tutoring. While some companies require their tutors to hold at least a bachelor’s degree (and in some cases, a master’s degree), there are also plenty of places with less strict requirements. Typically, if you want to start tutoring for a company that does not require you to have a degree, you’ll need to:
- Hold a high school diploma or GED.
- Reside in and be eligible to work in the US.
- Have a valid Social Security Number.
- Possess a strong command of the English language, including good oral and written communication skills.
- Meet the technology requirements for the platform you want to work on. (Usually, this means you’ll need a high-speed internet connection, a headset, webcam, speakers, and a laptop or computer with certain technical specifications. Each company’s requirements can vary)
- Have kindness, patience, and a desire to help others learn.
What Does an Online Tutor Do?
Like the students they teach, tutors can come from various backgrounds, and all will possess different strengths and capabilities. Online Tutors use their particular academic strengths to help students learn in a one-on-one virtual environment outside of the usual classroom.
In some cases, a tutor will specialize in one specific subject, such as math. Depending on the tutor’s skills in math, they may help students who are behind in math to catch up in school, or they may teach students who desire a higher level of math skills than what they are getting in their regular classroom.
A lot depends on the age of the student as well. For example, online tutors may choose to work with children in the elementary grades or work with high school students. In some cases, they might even work with adult learners.
Some other things an online tutor might do include helping students with test preparations, note-taking and study skills, homework help, or learning new concepts. The goal, of course, is to help students improve or increase their academic performance.
As a tutor, you may find yourself helping preschool and kindergarten students learn to read, assisting elementary school students with history, teaching calculus to high schoolers, teaching English as a second language to adult learners, or something entirely different. Aspiring tutors have many niches to choose from, and what you teach will depend on your own skills and areas of expertise.
Where Can I Work as a Tutor With No Degree?
If you don’t have a degree but still want to do online tutoring, you have a couple of options. The first option is to set up your own tutoring business. This option allows you a lot of flexibility, and you don’t need to go through any application or approval process. However, on the flip side, you will need to generate your own clients, which can take time.
The second option is to work for a tutoring company. The advantages of going this route are that the company finds the clients for you, and you can depend on regular paychecks for the work you do. You’ll also be able to take advantage of any training or growth opportunities to help you improve as a tutor, and you might be able to connect with other educators too.
What Companies Hire Tutors Who Don’t Have a College Degree?
This section will discuss a few companies that are hiring right now and what to expect from each of them when you’re searching for a role as an online tutor.
Preply works more like a job-board type of platform for students looking to learn specific skills. A vast majority of the clients are high school-aged and up and are searching for a tutor specializing in a particular language. In many cases, they are trying to improve their English skills, but they may also be trying to learn a foreign language. There are no certifications needed to become a tutor at Preply. All you need is a desire and willingness to teach. According to the site, the average English tutor makes between $15 to $25 an hour on Preply.
At Tutors.com, you can teach nearly any subject, skill level, and age. You create a free profile on the platform listing your expertise, skills, and areas of interest. This site has a lot of flexibility. You can teach the usual subjects, but you can also teach fine arts, business, computer skills, health, and a host of other topics. Then, you get matched up with people who want to learn those skills. For example, if you want to teach math to 5-10-year-old kids, families looking for a math tutor in this age group can see your profile and consider you as a potential tutor. You do not need a college degree to work with Tutors.com. According to the site, the average tutor charges $30 per hour.
Wyzant is a site for those who want to start their own tutoring business but still want the structure of an online platform. Much like Tutors.com, aspiring tutors at Wyzant fill out a profile to get connected to those who need tutors. Instead of searching for your own clients, Wyzant does the legwork for you. They also handle all the payments, so you never need to chase down your money. The company does charge a fee for their services, however. Tutors receive 75% of the payment, and Wyzant keeps 25% as a service fee.
Teaching ESL (English as a Second Language) Online
ESL tutors are probably the most in-demand tutors right now. As a result, there are several tutoring platforms where you can teach English without a degree. While the tutoring platforms we listed above are also looking for ESL teachers, the following sites are looking specifically for those who want to help children and adults learn English as a second language. Here are a few of them:
On Cambly, you get paid to chat with people all over the world and help them build their language skills. If you like to talk and meet new people, this is the ideal tutoring job for you. Cambly pays its tutors by the minute. You’ll earn $0.17 a minute chatting with adults and $0.20 a minute talking to kids.
Similar to Cambly, Skimatalk does not require you to hold a degree to teach English on the platform. Additionally, you don’t need to be an American English speaker to sign up. They accept applicants with Canadian, British, Australian, Irish, and New Zealand English dialects. You’ll need to conduct three free lessons to learn the ropes. After that, you can start earning $8 per 25-minute session.
Pro Tip: Obtaining TEFL Certification Can Significantly Increase Your Earnings
Prospective English tutors who want to earn even more money should consider getting TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) certified. There are many places online to get this certification. You may even be able to go through your town or city’s adult education department to earn your TEFL certificate.
Notably, several companies hire English tutors with TEFL certification, including:
What if I Can’t Afford To Get My TEFL Certificate?
This is a familiar issue that many people run across—sometimes, you have to have money to make money. Unfortunately, TEFL certification is typically not free. So what if you are trying to live on a budget, but you want to further your education?
There are a few options here. One option is to keep working at an online tutoring company that does not require certification. Then pursue the certificate when you’ve saved up enough money.
Alternatively, you could pick up an additional part time-gig, like paid online surveys, Uber driving, food delivery, or another side hustle. There’s always a way to reach your goals with a bit of creativity.
Teaching or tutoring online is one of the top ways to make money at home these days. It’s a fairly lucrative opportunity. Plus, it can also be gratifying knowing that you are helping someone else learn valuable skills that can help them get better grades, pass a test, or even learn to speak English.
There are plenty of options for teaching online without a college degree. You just need to explore them and see what is available to you. And remember, if one platform doesn’t work for you, try another. Don’t give up on your goals if you really want to make money as an online tutor. Keep trying out different sites until you find something that fits.