The online teaching job market is booming right now. You can find a surplus of online TEFL teaching jobs based all around the world that you can do from the comfort of your home. Online teaching has a lot of pros and cons to it. In this article, we’ll uncover some of these and tell you a few facts that you should be aware of while looking for an online teaching job and before accepting a position.
Best Way to Search for One
Doing a blind search for online teaching jobs can be extremely overwhelming. I just did a Google search. I entered “online TEFL teaching jobs” and the results were huge! Google gave me over 3 million results! How in the world am I supposed to proceed with this? Well, I could tediously go through each link that came up, or I could narrow my search down a bit by making it more specific.
Instead of doing a broad Google search, search on specific job databases like Indeed.com and Monster.com. Most of the job listings on these sites are legitimate, however, I would still advise you to do a little research before getting excited and applying.
Also, talk to other TEFL teachers who have online teaching jobs. There are lots of groups on Facebook that connect TEFL teachers, so it may be a good idea to hear how others went through the process of finding online TEFL work. They could have some valuable advice for you.
How to Know If A Job is Legitimate
There’s an option on some job sites where you can upload your resume to your profile. By doing this, employers will be able to find you. This is something to be wary of! Even though they tend to make it sound legitimate, most of these “employers” are scams. These recruiters will, most likely, reach out to you if you have that you are a TEFL teacher on your resume.
I have actually been approached a few times by online TEFL companies to see if I was interested in an online teaching job. They emailed me saying that I was the perfect candidate and wanted to schedule a Skype interview ASAP! At first, it seemed like an amazing job opportunity, but after doing a bit of research, I realized it was too good to be true. I just ignored the emails from there on out, and I would suggest the same to you!
Another clear clue that a job listing is probably a scam is if the job description and job requirements are vague. A job listing that has the job requirements, of which just about anyone can fill, it’s a sam. These include things such as: “Must be 18 years old” or “Must have Internet”. These are obvious things. However, real, legitimate job listing will include aspects such as educational background, experience, letters of reference, etc.
Lastly, emails can be a dead giveaway if a job listing is a scam. If any email correspondence from a school seems unprofessional then the likelihood of it being fake is high. By this, I mean errors in punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and grammar. No professional institute would send out an email with an error. So, if you see these within the email that is a huge red flag! Additionally, any emails coming from a personal email account is going to be a scam!
Some Facts to Be Aware Of
Teaching online is a great option for TEFL teachers. If you’re not sure whether you’re ready to move abroad and teach in a new country, online teaching may be the right choice for you. Additionally, if you do want to move abroad and can only find part-time work at a school or private tutoring, online teaching would be a great gig for a supplemental income. With online teaching, you can typically choose how many hours per day or per week that you want to work, so you can arrange for it to work with your schedule.
However, one negative aspect of online teaching is that it can be during not-so-great hours. Depending on where you are located in the world, your hours could be in the middle of the night. Due to the fact that online classes happen from throughout the world, time zones between students and teachers usually clash. For example, if you live in the USA, the chances of you finding an online TEFL teacher job with students from the US is slim. It’s more likely that you’ll find one with students in, let’s say, Asia. So, you’ve got to be a little flexible. However, if you’re teaching English abroad in Asia, you could find some extra work with hours that would probably be optimal, unless you are teaching in person during the times.
Next, online TEFL teaching is a great idea for those TEFL teachers who are just starting out. Most online hiring institutes require slightly less experience than brick and mortar schools. You can find online teaching jobs pretty quickly after the completion of your TEFL certification course. By doing a little online teaching first, you can boost your resume before you choose to teach abroad or teach at an institute in your home country. You’ll gain super valuable experience and it’s a great way to start your TEFL career.
Another important thing to note is that one of the most important roles of a TEFL teacher is the rapport built with one’s students. This becomes much harder when teaching TEFL online because you don’t have daily face to face interaction with your students. However, there are still ways to do this. 1.) Create a professional Facebook page for yourself. This page should be completely separate from your personal page. Furthermore, it’s a wise idea to change your personal Facebook name to something else, maybe your first and middle name, so students can’t search you. As for your professional FB page, you can create a private group for yourself and your students so you can all interact. Students can message you with any concerns and questions they have. This will create a good rapport between your students and yourself. 2.) Try your best to motivate students. Even though this is harder (because it is less personal), it is still possible. Get creative! If your classes are Skype-based make sure that your backdrop is something encouraging, and switch it up once in a while! Show students your personality. Lastly, encourage your students to get creative with any projects you have them prepare.
I truly think online teaching jobs are going to become more and more available as more and more people across the globe desire to learn English. Your typical classroom setting is changing as technology progresses and this may be the future of language learning. I encourage all TEFL teachers to try it out and see how they feel about it.
Please let us know if you have any questions or comments about teaching English online by leaving a comment below!