Published 28th March 2020
Teaching English is a dream for many people but if you don’t have a degree, your choice of destination is limited. This is not because of any requirements from employers but rather from governments with regards to work permits and working visas. It’s not impossible, but it can be harder than those who have a degree. Interestingly, it doesn’t matter what your degree is in, as long as it’s a Bachelor’s degree.
Read more: What are My TEFL Options without a Degree?
Teaching English online, however, has a much more level playing field.
There are still companies that require their teachers to have a degree, but there are loads of companies that don’t. However, these companies generally require a TEFL certificate and a proficiency level of English of C2 or above. Some also require teaching experience, but this differs from company to company. So rather than waste your time applying for jobs that require a degree when you don’t have one, it’s very easy to find jobs that will happily hire you without one.
For teaching English Online without a degree, here is our list of companies that are good options for teachers who don’t have degrees.
If you’re interested in teaching English online to children and adults in South America, then have a look at Open English. Though a degree is preferred but not needed to teach with Open English, you do need a TEFL certificate and teaching experience. You need to be able to commit to at least 10 hours a week, but materials and lesson plans are provided so no preparation is necessary. You teach on their interactive learning platform. The salary is $13 – $15 an hour, so while the rate is not particularly high, Open English has a very good reputation with teachers and it is possible to have a full schedule so your earnings are reliable.
Tutlo allows you to teach General Conversational English to adults or children or Business English. The lessons are conversation-based and they provide materials to help with the lessons. Lessons are only twenty minutes long, but you earn between $5 and $11 an hour. You don’t need a degree, but you need to be from the US, the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South African, or Canada, have a TEFL certificate, and at least 6 months’ teaching experience.
Lingoda is a language learning platform for adult learners. Online teachers commit to a particular class at a particular time e.g. 9 a.m. group class on natural disasters, view the materials, and turn up for the lesson. Classes can be 1-to-1 or groups of up to 4. Teachers are provided with in-house designed materials, so you don’t have to think about lesson preparation. To teach with Lingoda teachers need to have a TEFL certificate and have at least 3 years’ teaching experience. Teaching with Lingoda you’ll earn about $11 an hour.
Palfish is an app which connects teachers with Young Learners in China. You can be a General Palfish teacher or a Palfish Official Kids Course teacher. A General teacher can teach 1-to-1 or group classes, but no materials are given. These classes are more like conversation classes. A Kids Course teacher will teach only 1-to-1 and is given lesson materials. There are no requirements to be a General teacher but you need to have a TEFL certificate and be a native speaker to be a Kids Course teacher. General teachers set their own rates and Kids Course teachers earn $22 an hour plus bonuses.
With Hugo English, you will teach children in China aged 5 to 16 years old. Classes are 1-to-1 and lessons take place seven days a week. Teachers aren’t required a degree but you must be a native speaker and a TEFL certificate is preferred. Teachers earn $14 to $20 an hour.
Berlitz provides a virtual classroom which is like an online conferencing platform (similar to Zoom) which allows teachers and students to chat, share screens, and use multimedia. Lesson plans and materials are provided, as well as training for the platform. A minimum commitment of 4.5 hours a day is required. Lessons are 1.5 hours and you are paid $14 per lesson, including a ten-minute break. Berlitz is a European company so it’s likely that you’ll be teaching European students.
With HelloKid you will teach English to Young Learners aged 3 to 16 in one-to-one lessons. You don’t need a degree but you do need a TEFL certificate and experience teaching English online to Young Learners. Teachers need to commit to at least 12 hours a week for a year. Classes are 25 minutes long and payment is between $8 and $22 an hour (two lessons). All lesson plans and materials are provided.
Then there are a few companies that provide a platform for teachers to connect to students. In this way, there are no strict requirements because the students choose their teachers. All the teachers have to do is sign up!
With Amazing Talker, teachers upload a demo or introductory video and students can book a time with the teacher of their choice. Lessons are 1-to-1 and 50 minutes long. Teachers set their own rates, but the majority of teachers charge $10 – $20 per 50-minute lesson. A degree is not required but a TEFL certificate or teaching experience is preferred and you must be a native English speaker or have proof of your proficiency. Teaching materials are not provided.
italki is a platform for teachers to teach more than 130 different languages. Teachers upload video introductions of themselves and students book lessons with them. Teachers set their own rates and organize their own schedules. In order to be approved as a teacher, you need a 120-hour TEFL certificate or teaching experience.
With Skimatalk you will teach English to Japanese adults through Skype. The majority of the lessons are Business English but these are conversation-based lessons so no formal lesson planning is required. Classes are 25 minutes long and teachers can earn $10 – $15 an hour – you set your own rates. You don’t need a degree or a teaching certificate but you must be a native English speaker. Interestingly, students are invited to give feedback on their teachers and you need to maintain a positive feedback score to keep teaching with Skimatalk.
With Cambly, you will be teaching English online on a 1-to-1 basis. The students are based all over the world so you can find students who are in countries which suit your time zone – so you don’t have to teach at the crack of dawn if you don’t want to! You get paid per minute, which equates to $10.20 an hour with Cambly and $12 an hour with Cambly Kids. There are no minimum teaching hours and you get paid weekly through Paypal.
With Preply, you create a profile with an introductory video and set your own rates. Students can browse the tutor profiles and book a lesson with whatever teacher they choose. Lessons are an hour long and the first lesson is unpaid because payment goes to the company for a commission.
Classgap is similar to Preply. It’s free to sign up for the platform. Once you have created a profile students can book lessons with you. Classgap provides an interactive classroom and takes care of the payment but they take a percentage of each lesson’s fees as commission, which is between 10 and 20%. Teachers set their own rates.
Pop On is an app that allows you to teach English to Chinese students. There are no application requirements but obviously, you will need a smartphone. All you have to do is download the app, sign up, and set your own rate. Students will book you for lessons from 3 to 15 minutes long.
Teaching English online is a way for you to keep teaching and earning money if you cannot physically be in a classroom. It is flexible and convenient and it should definitely be an option if you’re considering teaching English as a Foreign Language, even if you don’t have a degree.