For some teachers, the main reason for becoming TEFL qualified is to open the door to adventures living and working overseas. However, there are many circumstances where teaching over the internet could also be a great option. For recently qualified teachers it can be a convenient way to gain experience while earning money to fund a trip abroad. It can also be a good way to supplement your income from another job. Whether you are in your home country or already living and working abroad, teaching English as a foreign language online might be worth considering.
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Setting yourself up as an online language teacher can be surprisingly straightforward and inexpensive. Your biggest expense is likely to be completing a TEFL/TESOL qualification. While completing an internationally recognized course does require a significant investment, it should prove to be money well spent. As well as learning all the skills and knowledge required to be a productive teacher, earning your qualification will also show potential clients that you are a serious professional who can help them to improve their language skills. Once qualified, all you require is access to a computer that is equipped with a webcam, microphone, and some form of communication application such as Skype. The only other necessity is an easy way for your clients to pay you. PayPal is a popular choice.
If you want to be completely independent and free to set your own hours, then you might consider working on a freelance basis. You will probably need to set up your own website and you will also need to be patient as it could take time to grow your client list. Alternatively, you could choose to work for an agency that provides you with clients and a set schedule. You can also sign up to online databases that advertise your services for you.
This figure will vary considerably depending on your qualifications, experience, and the level of service provided. The typical hourly rate is generally between $15 and $30 per hour, although if you sign up to an agency that provides your clients they will probably take a cut of your fee as payment. Before choosing an agency it is recommended that you thoroughly research their reputation, and avoid companies who demand any form of payment up-front.