I have been teaching online for various companies for the past five years and love the flexibility. Teaching online has enabled me to work from home while homeschooling my children and caring for elderly parents.
How do you get started?
You also need to make sure you have the right tech and internet access. Eslbase has a tab for TEFL jobs where you can browse through various job posts or you can do a google search for the various ESL companies (VIP, NeuAbc, Magic Ears, Gogo kids, etc…) They will have a page on their websites that will list tech and internet requirements. It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the various company requirements and look around at the various company websites.
When checking out the job requirements, you will find that most require a Bachelor’s degree and TEFL certification. Many job searchers already have a bachelor’s degree, but don’t know how to get TEFL certification. There are many online schools that offer courses that lead to certification and prices vary from $20 to $3,000. ESLbase has a tab titled “TEFL Courses”. Click that tab for a list of courses. The lower priced courses through online educators, are usually only accepted by Chinese ESL companies. Again, you can find more information on this specific requirement on the various company websites. If you want a degree that is accredited and accepted by schools in the US and most ESL companies, you will need to look into US accredited programs, and they cost a lot more.
While working on your TEFL certification, you can gain online teaching experience through companies that do not require certification. Cambly and Palfish are two companies that have lower requirements. The pay is low, but you will gain the experience needed to meet requirements for the higher paying companies. Most higher paying companies require six months to a year of online ESL teaching experience, so while you work on your education, gain experience with the companies that have lower educational requirements. Also, work on your own teaching presentation by finding tips and tricks on Youtube. There are many videos with great teaching advice, tips, TPR instruction, and ideas for props. Start collecting props and making reward systems. Use them in your lessons while you are gaining experience.
Once you have the educational requirements, the TEFL certification, and at least six months experience, start looking for a better paying ESL job. ESLbase has a TEFL jobs tab where you can find a long list of job openings. Browse those and take note of the various requirements and benefits. Also, check out the forums on ESLbase for tips from other teachers. And, it is a great idea to search for ESL teaching groups and pages on facebook. Read through the posts on those groups and see what the posters say about the various companies. You will find positive and negative comments about various companies. You want to be sure to avoid companies who have a lot of negative reviews. Be picky and find the company that is a right fit for you. In those facebook groups, you will see advertisements for ESL jobs that are posted by recruiters. Most recruiters will coach you through the job application and mock trials. Definitely find a coach, so that you can pass those interviews.