How to get started teaching English online. With or without a degree.

So one of the main reasons I was hooked on working from home was the fact that I was hired to teach English online through a Taiwan-based English school that I can’t disclose at this point because I wasn’t sure if they’re still hiring.


They use a very unique platform to teach students so teachers won’t encounter any Skype problems. But, today there are many online English schools that use different platforms to teach, so you will have the convenience to open books, write lessons and correct written homework easily.


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I fell in love with this kind of teaching environment, the convenience, the continuous learning experience, new friends etc. Although I have to be honest that it’s not always a walk in the park teaching from home, there are some cons as well. But, It’s a very good way to earn online. Teaching English online is easy if you have the following:


  1. Degree holder in Education major in English
  2. ESL Certificates
  3. Started earlier (Online schools are now bombarded with new applicants)
  4. Experienced offline and online
  5. Connections with students.


What if you only have 1 of these? Or, let’s say you don’t have any of these? What now?


Before you start in the freelancing world of teaching English. You “MUST” have experience. And when you’re experienced, You can go independent and students will start pouring in. How are you going to get that? What to teach? Where to teach?


I have been receiving emails lately about these questions, and so I decided to give you all the information you need. It’s not much but I hope it will somehow help you to start.


English schools for experienced/inexperienced degree holders:


VIP Kid – I’ve mentioned this company many times before. Because it’s a good place to start. The pay starts from $14 up to $22 per hour. English lessons are also provided giving you less headache. Students are Chinese kids ages 5 to 14. And you don’t need to speak Chinese to get accepted.


TUTOR ABC – This Taiwan based company accepts applicants with a degree and with TESOL (or it’s equivalent) Certificate. And has at least a year of teaching experience.


ITALKI- This company not only focus with the English language, if you know any foreign language and has a bachelor’s degree of teaching that language this is also a good place to build your profile and start teaching.


Two Sigmas– This is a good place to start if you have certification but no experience. However, it won’t hurt if you do. The company does require you have the availability to teach during their peak hours. They focus on teaching Chinese students. Pays $30/hour. They hire native speakers only, from UK, US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.



English schools for NEWBIE teachers:


Real Talk– This school has been around for years although I haven’t tried teaching with them, Their basic requirements for applicants doesn’t include experience. They just need fluent/native speakers. They provide all the teaching lessons you need. Pay rate starts at $17/per 55 minute lesson.


Qkids– Although they accept US and Canadian residents only. This company is more relaxed than other programs. You can apply if you’re a college student. Pay is $20/hour. They focus mainly on kids 6-12 years old. They accept any formal or informal teaching experience like coaching, mentoring or alternative education as long as you have the passion to teach. Perfect for online teachers, stay-at-home parents, and college students.


SayABC– Here’s another China-based online ESL school that would fit non-degree holder applicants. Although a bachelor degree is a requirement they still accept applicants who don’t have one. They believe that training the new generation of teachers is best done through hands-on practice. And they offer applicants with relevant teaching experience a chance to show their skills even if they don’t have a bachelor’s degree. Pay rate starts at $21/40 minute class, means you can have up to $28/hour. They accept native and non-native applicants.


Magic Ears– Now this company helps their applicants pass their own application process. How’s that sound? You can add this to your list. You will teach mostly kids and 4 students per class. They hire native speakers and fluent English Speakers. Although experience is a requirement, having a degree is not. Basic pay starts at $22/per hour up to $ 26/hour. This is the highest base pay rate so far.


Eigox- This Japanese-based company pays teachers with no experience as long as you have good communication skills, Punctuality, Friendly and has a PayPal account. They hire native speakers from US, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the Philippines. Students have the freedom to choose if they want text-book based lessons, Free talk, and online lessons. Rates start at $5.50 up to $11.00 /25 minutes of lessons. So it’s up to $22/hour. If you’re a native speaker you can apply here. If you are non-native (Filipin0) rates are different and you can apply here.


Cambly– Although the pay may not be as high as the other schools ($10.20/ hour). You can gain experience with Cambly. As well as the freedom to choose your time. You can teach as much or as little as you want. Students are mostly from Korea, Turkey, Brazil and Saudi Arabia.


Palfish– This teaching app is one of my top picks before. But, recently they are now loaded with applicants and screening for new teachers may take some time. Still, I suggest you should try it as I once enjoyed teaching using this app. Pay starts $15 up to $45/ hour. It’s a very convenient way to gain teaching experience. If you want to learn more you can check my full review here.


DADA ABC– Dada is looking for native speakers only. They prefer those who have teaching degrees and experience but it is not a requirement. The company teaches Chinese students and have all the necessary teaching tools you need. the pay starts at $20 up to $25/ hour


These are just a few of the schools that you can apply for. I’m currently organizing a long list of online English schools that I will be writing in my next post. For the meantime Let’s focus first on how you can start with this online teaching career.


While some of the schools I’ve mentioned provided their own English lessons, Some don’t. I will give you links that will help you with your teaching materials as well as lesson plans.


Free English Resources


1. Elllo– This is one of the sites that I first used when I went independent. It was introduced to me by my own student. And you can use it too. This English listening library is free to use. It has Audio, video lessons, games as well as worksheets. What I like about this site is they provide quiz right after each audio lessons.


Each audio lessons indicates which type of learner is appropriate to it (beginner, intermediate, advanced etc). They are downloadable too so if you’re using a teaching app this could be very useful as well. It also has a script of the audio so students can easily read while listening. Each lesson also indicates what nationality of the speaker. Making it easier for students to learn accents.


2. Real English– This website is another online video library that is very useful. Just like Elllo they provide exercises right after you watch a video. They also indicate which the appropriate level for each of their video. Real English also provides how you can maximize the use of their videos to teach students. Aside from the video the site also provides interactive lessons


3.Using English– Too lazy to create lesson plans? Here’s a very good site to navigate. Not only do they provide English lessons. They also have a list of downloadable lesson plans to each and every level of students. If you have students who are planning to take IELTS, This provides prep lessons for IELTS students. They even have test-prep materials that you’ll hardly see on other resource sites.


4. BBC Learning English– This awesome websites provides tons of grammar lessons, worksheets, quizzes, lesson plans that are all based on current events.  Perfect for adult learners. It has categories like English at work, English at University. As well as pronunciation and vocabularies. It’s actually a fun site to use for students who want to learn more about the Everyday English.


5. English Page- This site provides all the English grammar lessons you need. It provides everything you need in a topic. For example, you need to review your student about simple present tense. The website provides all the uses of the tense. It’s different forms, a visual image of how it is used, a number of examples and exercises with key answers. This site is beneficial to both teachers and students.


The Internet is a large pool of Online English Lessons for every kind of students. I just gave you a few of those that I used and enjoyed sharing with my students.  I wish you all guys luck on finding your first school. Remember that once you gain experience you can always take courses so you can get certified. thus, making it a lot easier for you to transfer to high-paying online English schools. As well as creating a better portfolio to your freelancing profile if you wish to go independent.


11 thoughts on “How to get started teaching English online. With or without a degree.

  1. Hi Ivy!
    I found your article most comprehensive and informative. Thanks so much
    I live in India and I am a retired teacher of English. I’m keen on online teaching. I certainly will try your suggested options and hope it works for me
    Thanks once again

    1. Hello Reena,

      Thank you so much. I will soon post more articles about online teaching. I found that many readers are looking for it. God bless!

  2. Hello,Ivy…
    I am so pleased to have read your lovely blog, I’m in need of some internet based income, Im a UK chap living in Thailand , this could be a possibility, although I’m fairy literate I don’t have any teaching experience or qualifications. However I love the way you have complied this blog . 🙏🏼

  3. Hello, Ms. Ivy!
    Thank you very much for your generosity. The information that I have read is the answer that I am looking for. God bless you with good healthe and may you continue to write more.

  4. Hello Ivy!

    I actually meant to also you do you have an article with recommendations for TEFL or ESL Schools for online certifications? Thank you so much!

    Best Regards and God Bless!

    1. Oh, I see. I would love to write an article on that very soon. I just need to post the articles I’ve scheduled in advance. You are very much welcome Annie! God bless!

  5. Hello Ivy, your post has been really helpful. I am a Nigerian, and I do not have any certification but a bachelor’s degree in Agriculture. I’m hoping to teach English I’m wondering if any of these companies will give me a chance. I speak fluently and have undergone various trainings online.

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