Tutoring students remotely via videoconferencing is not all the different from a face to face private tutorial session.
Online tutoring jobs have obvious advantages in terms of lowering travel costs and increased working flexibility, but you still have to provide the same level of academic support to help your students progress.
If you’re doing test prep with VCE students HSC students or teaching them a new AP physics concept, or helping a student to succeed with their homework, you can become a tutor and work online to provide these students with the help they need.
Learn how to promote academic success for your students in your online tutoring jobs!
Tutor Online with the Right Equipment
You’re going to need the right tools to provide quality online tutoring to your students.
You’re going to be relying on these technical resources to provide your online tutoring service; this is intrinsic to the service, so it’s important to have quality equipment.
Whether you’re a Calculus tutor, do math tutoring or, provide supplemental instruction in writing assignments - it doesn’t matter if you’re teaching music production via screen-sharing; to relay your knowledge in all subjects you’re both going to need good video and audio equipment.
No use teaching a lesson no-one can hear! It should be like you’re right next to them in your online classroom.
Tight budget? No problem.
You can get started on your online private tutoring business with a nice set up as low as $150.
For your online tutoring centre you’ll need:
- A webcam (roughly $90)
Laptops often have a webcam, but most of the time they’re low-quality cameras; not great for showing writing or math to your students. Get a decent webcam so your students can see you and follow the lesson better.
- A headset ($50+)
Why be seen if you can’t be heard? A laptop might have a microphone inbuilt, but they’re rarely good, even for simple tasks. They’re often fickle and crackly. Both you and the sake of your students, tutor online with a decent headset.
Advertise your quality equipment on your online tutoring profile. It may make a difference when your student is trying to find the best tutors online.
Prepare your Online Teaching Jobs with Online Resources!
Not only does one-on-one tutoring or group tutoring online allow for unique working flexibility, but you also have better access to new technologies designed for your students and you as an online tutor.
You don’t even need to leave your house to plan online academic support services and tutoring programs.
If you have a computer, you can access a deep pool of online lessons and educational tools that can help you become a good online private tutor. If you plan your online tutorials well, your students will reap the academic benefits and make progress at school.
- MOOCs: Massive Open Online Courses that are available to everyone all over the world. Study your favourite subjects and talk directly to professors to get help with your lessons.
- The National Curriculum: For students studying VCE, this page is an index of past exams, exam specifications and reports.
- Specialists Websites: Whether do English tutoring or Methods tutoring, you can find websites that offer quality resources, videos and articles. Make your lesson fun for students by mining these resources while planning your online lessons.
- Apps: There are heaps if educational apps on both computers and smartphones/tablets. Babbel is a great application for learning a foreign language and is popular amongst motivated students.
Become a Tutor Online: Communication Between Lessons.
With the inherent distance during online tutoring jobs, it’s important to work to close that gap by staying in touch with your students between lessons.
Your students won’t progress unless they retain the information that you teach them during your private tutorials.
Encourage your student to study on days off or in the evening so that they’ll have an easier time during exam periods or during assignments. This will promote student success.
To provide homework help, or assignment help, or test preparation help or just to answer a question, you can use some of these resources available to online tutors:
- A task management program like Podio or Fusioo (etc.).
- Messaging apps like Slack, WhatsApp, Hangouts or Discord.
- E-mail clients like Gmail or Fastmail.
Communicating instantaneously with your students is still obviously the most effective way to stay in touch. You don’t want to be inundated with unopened e-mails, and you want your student to feel supported.
This is possibly one of the best parts of webcam tutorials!
Task planning applications can help with remotely sharing work and exercises with your student, and is great for correcting the work that they share with you.
Whether it is college-level tutoring or just general online academic support for HASC, QCE, SACE, or VCE students, there are tonnes of useful services online that can make your online tutoring jobs easier.
There are also specialised resources for every subject. Writing tutors can find resources for essay writing online and Psychology tutors can find personality tests and psychological games for illustrating concepts.
Watching a tutor play game online isn’t that fun so share these links with your students and encourage them to explore.
Check Their Homework Online at the Start of Lessons
Before you start going over new educational content in your private online teaching jobs, you should check the student's homework.
Think about what the student might be having trouble with and ask yourself these questions:
- What concepts did they get? Which didn’t they?
- Why didn’t they understand the last concept or exercise?
- Which topics do they prefer and which do they find the most challenging?
- What are their favourite types of tasks?
Review their work and brush up where there is a gap in their understanding. Go through step by step and find a way to explain the content so that it is understood, then have the student illustrate their understanding to you before moving on. They need to demonstrate that they have acquired the essential knowledge and can explain it in their own words.
It doesn’t matter what you teach, you can use these resources to check that you’re students are following along and catching up on a number of topics:
- Maths and Science (Further Maths, Maths Methods, algebra, accounting, statistics, physics, chemistry, biology etc.).
- English and Languages ( English, English Literature, ESL (English as a Second Language), Chinese, French, Spanish, Arabic or grammar, reading, writing and speaking in all of those).
- History and Geography.
- Psychology and Philosophy.
If your tutorials are going a little bit over-time, try not to worry. Rushing a student can be counter-productive and impact their stress levels. If you need to cut back on the amount of content, try and schedule in another session with the student or their parent to catch up and cover everything.
When students are studying in VCE subjects, make sure to take your time going over the critical elements of the curriculum. Give your students the best chance to take on their SAC assessments and VCE exam preparation and get good scores.
Become a Tutor: Listen to Your Students!
Your computer is a tool that will help you get closer to your students.
Don’t forget your skills as a teacher and an online tutor when instructing students. It’s good to build relationships with students, but interactions between students and teachers should mostly contain educational content.
You want to learn enough about your students to know what it is they enjoy, and so you can help them as an educational advisor, guiding their academic career to fit with their long term goals. So don’t hesitate to ask questions and get to know them better as a person.
If your student is really struggling, try contextualising their learning and show them the benefits of it.
Audrey - a foreign language tutor - explains:
“Put yourself in your students’ shoes by asking them how their week went, what they did on the weekend, what their homework was. Try to understand why they’re struggling and whether it stems from a specific subject or a bigger issue. Analyse how this relates to teaching. If they struggle at school or with the subject you’re teaching, establish a clear limit between your academic support and what they do in class.”
Remote academic support is a great way to differentiate private tuition lessons from traditional teaching: by utilising your digital resources in your tutoring services, you won’t be anything like the teachers your students know from school. Use this to your to advantage and develop a rapport with your student. Make sure they understand that you want to help them discover their academic success and that you will be there to support their progress.
Don’t be over-familiar of course, private online or in-home tutoring is a professional, working relationship between and instructor and a student. You’re their to listen to your students, but they’re also there to listen to you and to treat you and your time with respect.
Find online teaching jobs that suit your (newly acquired webcam) skills!