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Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Sat Jul 23, 2011 1:03 am
by samarts

I'm a native English speaker (American English) and I reside in New York City. I taught abroad a few years ago, and did get my TESOL certificate. I need to make some extra money, so I was hoping to offer some English Conversation classes via Skype and charge $20/hour, or so. Has anyone done this? If so, how did it go? I guess the toughest part is getting students. I have no idea how to do this. I put in an ad in craigslist (Tokyo), but that's about it. Any ideas? or should I give up? I need to make some extra money and was hoping this would work...please advise.


Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:33 pm
by JackW

To be honest, $20 may be a little steep. Finding students isn't the only problem - how do you plan to receive payment? How will you present materials? Skype isn't the greatest for online teaching - you need a whiteboard to go with it. WebEx or other meeting software would be better, but is more complicated, and your students may not have it or want to sign up. It's probably a good idea to start out with an online school that have all this sorted out and get some experience - online teaching is different to classroom teaching in many ways - it can take a little getting used to. I've been at it about 3 months, now and I'm starting to feel more comfortable with it.


Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 6:34 pm
by zuzuhany
dear Samantha, i'm so glad that i finally found a netive speaker to ask for an advice . i'm trying to improve my english.and the idea is wonderful but the price is a little high .

Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 4:03 pm
by willkingdom
I am really interested in this too.
We've started using webex with a few students and although it is a bit weird to begin with it seems to work. it's SOOO important to have reliable internet service; you don't want skippy fuzzy sound. learning/teaching is hard enough as it is.
very different to regular lessons and initially frustrating/worrying not being able to see your students reactions to instructions and tasks.
I found i've had to change materials drastically and experiment to get past technical issues and find out what works.
so far i've only done one:one lessons as a component of face to face courses.
technology in webex allows more but we are starting slow.
regarding prices: nothing wrong with charging even more. individual lessons go for 30bucks an hour.
talk to Canada charges 40CAD per hour.
The other benefits are improved efficiency (no travel time) which is also great for your students.

I would love to hear other teachers' experiences with this kind of teaching.

Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 7:13 pm
by paulinefiddle
I have lots of experience teaching one on one via Skype. When I'm not an English teacher, I'm a violin teacher, and I have given violin lessons on Skype. I know enough about Skype teaching that I would be quite comfortable teaching English for non-native speakers one on one by Skype. I also have experience teaching English for professional exams (for example, English for pharmacists from other countries). Almost all students need more help with spoken English than they think they do. How can I find students to teach one on one on Skype? What is a reasonable price to ask?

Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:32 am
by NamaNama
It's not easy to find students when you just start, coz online teaching is a new stream and needs a certain level of trust as well...
You can place add on Gumtree or smth like that and just trust your students (they usually dont prepay for lessons).
To make sure you'll be paid for your time you'd better work through online language schools, but sometimes they ask too much information and skills\certificates confirmations, which makes process longer. Also, they'll make sure you have everything to provide good quality service - good internet connection, headphones and microphone,you should be online 2-4 hours every day. After registration you'll have to wait new students who'll pick you up among all other teachers before getting started. And, by the way, a lot of online schools offer at least one free lesson to get started. But in this case you know you'll get your money,after school get it's part though ;)
Or you can use StretchPay, in this case there is no third part involved. You and your students must have PayPal account and that's it. The amount of money you get will only depend on your professional qualities and relationships between you and your student.

Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:06 am
by ainwee
It's probably a good idea to start out with an online school that have all this sorted out and get some experience - online teaching is different to classroom teaching in many ways - it can take a little getting used to. I've been at it about 3 months, now and I'm starting to feel more comfortable with it.????

Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Wed Apr 08, 2015 7:17 pm
by johnsimpson
Samantha, $20 hour is a very reasonable price for a native speaker, and it would be an insult for a student to expect. And if you ever decide to get qualified with a Celta or TKT , you can charge $40 an hour or more. Give the internet a good search on online english, and you will see what I mean. The only ones charging cheap are nationalities such as Philipines.

Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 4:32 am
by trice
thanks for that.

R-HUB web video conferencing server

Posted: Mon Mar 05, 2018 7:08 am
by PrasantaShee
Skype is good. Additionally, you can also use tools like webex, R-HUB web video conferencing servers etc. for conducting classes online, provide online trainings etc.

Re: Teaching English With Skype?

Posted: Thu Apr 19, 2018 6:08 am
by AaronTNelson
Hello Samarts,
I have had experience teaching online - and I would say you can totally do it AND make a living at it if you're willing to put in a lot of work.

I have used both Skype and Google Hangouts for my classes - both have been very easy to use for the purpose of teaching. To get rolling, and rolling well I suggest you work on the following:
1. Get a domain name. A domain name you own will help you look professional to students. (Would you rather work with someone with a iamaneslteacher(at) (Not a real e-mail by the way) or jake(at) (NOT a real address.) The point: if you can afford to do it, purchase a domain name that helps students know what you do - it will also give you a credibility boost.

2.Build a simple website which explains who you are, what you do, how you work, how much you charge etc. You don't need to do anything super fancy - but you should go as pro as you can - a wordpress site has been all I have ever used, and you can get pretty good sites up for no or very low cost after you purchase hosting - hosting is just where you website lives.

3. Get paid - you need an online way to collect payments. I've always used Paypal with zero problems. You can issue online invoices to your students which they can pay with their debit or credit cards. Options: paypal offers subscription service payments = repeat payments for your services. (Maybe set it up for monthly charges to your student for your work?) You could also try - to help create trust with students - charging half up front, then the other half when the last class of the week/month is given? bold, be brave: charge your full rate up front. Maybe offer a special deal if students pay for blocks of time up front?

4. Build a community of students - one thing I worked hard to do is build/attract students through online communities like Google+ - I started by connecting with people looking for English conversation - free of course - and did my best to be as helpful as possible, and met with them online to hold conversation clubs. As they got to know me, and I got to know them it became easier to move to private or groups classes that you charge for.

5. Build an e-mail list! I use Convertkit ( - yes, this is an affiliate link for Convertkit.) I do currently use it for my business, and really like it. (I've used Mailchimp extensively, and just have found it to be....clunky. Hard to make it do what I want it to do...Convertkit has been a breeze.)
IN short: having a growing e-mail list of potential students will help you build your online teaching business! Don't start without one - have a way to collect student e-mails, and keep in touch with the folks on your list to help you build and develop relationships and trust. (Keep in touch with maybe a weekly newsletter with English learning tips, maybe an automated e-mail sequence that helps students master something.... the point is that regular (not being pushy or spammy) contact with prospects creates trust, and people tend to do business with people they feel they can trust.

Hope these ideas help some....