What Online Tutors Need to Know

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

The following are a few popular questions regarding becoming an online tutor.

Q: How does a tutor find students?

A: Tutors are usually provided with students from the online tutoring company in which they work for. Based on the subject matter and hours required by the student, tutors and students are coordinated through the company. Based on the company some tutors are required for finding their own students.

Q: How many students does a tutor have?

A: Tutors have a varying number of students depending on the amount of hours they work as well as the number of students requesting help in their particular subject. It also varies from company to company. Most tutoring jobs are one on one with a student with any one tutor having several students.

Q: Can a tutor advise on more than one subject?

A: Yes. If a tutor is qualified in more than one subject they can usually find work tutoring on different subjects.

Q: How do students and teachers communicate? How is the work facilitated?

A: This also varies from company to company. Most online tutoring companies use a server that acts as a home base for students, parents and tutors to log into. Many of them have drawing boards that act like a chalkboard for tutors that the students and teachers can access at the same time. This takes care of the very important visual aspect of learning and teaching that is essential for many children. Phone headsets or emails are a common way for teachers and students to communicate about work, ask questions and give feedback. Sometimes video demonstrations are offered as well. These tools can be hard to obtain or organize as an independent tutor and is one of the perks to working through an online company.

Q: Do teachers need to provide lesson plans?

A: This too depends on the company you work for.

Q: Does it cost money to sign up?

A: Most companies charge tutors to sign up and to gain access to students through the company’s forum. Others charge a portion of what tutors earn from students. Others combine these two methods. This will be clearly outlined for each company.

Q: How much does a teacher make?

A: How much a tutor makes depends on the number of students they have and the number of hours they work. Most tutors earn a portion of the registration fee for students in their ‘course’ in addition to an hourly wage. Most teachers charge hourly at rates higher than $12 an hour, based on experience, company and grade level. Some tutors can make as much as $25/$30 an hour. The online companies usually have a very clear system of keeping track of hours and how much they suggest for teachers to charge.

Q: How are teachers paid?

A: Most companies pay through a mailed check on specific due dates.

Q: What subjects and grades are in the highest demand?

A: Grades K-9 are of the highest demand. However, older student demographics are making a move toward online tutoring for courses such as foreign language, math and English. The areas in highest demand are early high school courses such as physics, science and math in addition to English and reading courses for lower grades. Foreign language is also seeing a sharp increase at all levels. Another area of high demand for tutors is for help with tests such as the SAT, GDE and GRE programs.

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