How to Find Private English Students
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Are you trying to make some extra cash or getting a feel for teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL) but you don’t know how to find private English students? Well then, you’ve come to the right place.
Why should you have private English students?
Teaching private English students is probably more common than you realise. Some teachers are not 100% surethey want to commit to a life of teaching English, so they give private lessons to try it out. Others perfer to try out their teaching skills on one student before they are faced with a class of 30. And many TEFL teachers make use of private English lessons for extra income.
Having private English students is a convenient way to get valuable teaching experience, get comfortable teaching and earn a bit of extra cash.
Who are private students?
Many people who want to learn English are working or studying full-time. They are not able to or don’t want to commit to a language course. It is not easy for them to make time to attend classes but they still want to learn the language and brush up on their English skills. Fitting into school schedules can be tricky. Or sometimes students would rather have one-on-one lessons than learn English in a classroom situation, so they decide to try and find a private tutor. Private students can be found in-person or online.
How to find private English students
Word of mouth
As you can imagine, advertising is key. If you are already working for an institution or a school, you might not be allowed to offer private lessons to your students because that would be taking business away from the school. (So be sure to check this!). However, creating a reputation for yourself among the students you teach opens yourself up to good word-of-mouth recommendations. Even if you can’t teach Galina because she’s in your Intermediate class, there’s nothing to stop you teaching her cousin, Irina.
Besides word-of-mouth, you can make use of websites to advertise your services. Gumtree is a common one for teachers to advertise themselves. LinkedIn is another good way to promote your services. As with any online activity, always be careful about students you find in this way. When you meet them initially, meet them in a public place and let someone know where you are going to be – just to be on the safe side.
A personal website
It’s also a good idea to set up your own website. This can be done quite easily on sites like WordPress and Wix, and usually for free. On your website you can introduce yourself, share your experience and provide contact details. You can add blog posts if you like which can show your knowledge on all things English. Once you’ve had a few students, you can ask them to write testimonials for you. All of these things will help potential students trust you – and be more likely to hire you!
Be active on social media
Establish yourself as an expert on social media. Contribute to threads and posts in Facebook groups or Reddit, illustrating your knowledge as a TEFL teacher. Answer questions related to English usage and grammar. People will become familiar with your name, and students will have you top of their mind if they are looking for private lessons.
In your area, make use of age-old advertising methods like jobs boards or community boards at your local shopping centre, community hall or library. It might seem old-fashioned, but you’ll be surprised how effective a good ol’ notice can be.
How do private English lessons work?
Well that’s the beauty of private students: it can work however you want it to. Whether it’s in the evenings after work, or during the mornings or afternoons, your lessons can be whenever you choose. The rate you charge must be negotiated between you and the student, but this is also flexible. It might be tempting to be suer cheap, but your rate should take into account the length of the lesson, the preparation required and the venue of the lesson.
It is also common to offer a free trial lesson to private English students. This is for both parties – for the student to know that you are a serious teacher and for you, so that you know what is expected of you and are happy with the arrangement. When the first lesson has been concluded and the details have been finalised, you are set to start your lessons.
Remember, private lessons can be done face-to-face or online. If your private students are in the same city, it can make sense to meet up in a coffee shop or workspace for lessons. But if it’s more convenient, there’s no reason not to take your lessons online.
Our to tips to find private English teachers
- Be confident. Selling yourself can be quite uncomfortable. But let’s be real, if you’re not confident in your teaching then why should a private student trust you?
- Be mindful with your pricing. If you are starting out and are new to the field of TEFL, don’t overprice yourself. Students will pay a higher rate for an experienced teacher with a good reputation so be careful not to overcharge. In the same vein, you should never short change yourself, so your hourly rate should be better than that of the hourly rate you’d be paid for teaching in a school or language centre.
- Cancellations happen. Private students are notorious for either cancelling or just not showing up at all for their lesson, which can be frustrating as a tutor. Have a clear cancellation policy along with your hourly rate. There is nothing wrong with charging for any lessons that may be cancelled if that is agreed upon in the beginning.
- Consider bundles. Selling bundles of lessons can be cost-effective from a student’s perspective and reassuring for the tutor. Students can pay upfront for a set number of lessons, which not only safeguards you against cancellations but also gives you a sense of financial security for the month ahead.
- Specialise. Specialising will help you stand out from the crowd. General English teachers are a dime a dozen, but teachers of exam English or English for Special Purposes are harder to find. Even better, you can charge a higher rate for specialised lessons.
Private EFL lessons aren’t for everyone and there is a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes when preparing lessons for private students. Tailoring a lesson to an individual is a lot harder than teaching a group of people who may share common interests. You will need to source your own materials and construct your own syllabus but the freedom of working your own hours can make up for this extra bit of preparation. Some teachers rely completely on private students, so if you are looking to increase your TEFL experience or supplement your income, becoming a private tutor may be just the thing for you.
Don’t forget, the best way to market yourself is by getting an excellent qualification behind your name. A Top-up Course from The TEFL Academy looks good on anyone’s CV – just saying!
The TEFL Academy was the world’s first TEFL course provider to receive official recognition from government regulated awarding bodies in both the USA and UK. This means when you graduate you’ll hold a globally recognised Level 3 (120hr) Certificate or Level 5 (168hr) Diploma, meaning you can find work anywhere and apply for jobs immediately.
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LAST UPDATED: 19th July 2022
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ELEARNING FUTURES LTD retains personal information in line with our corporate retention requirements. Your data will be stored within the European Economic Area (“the EEA”) (The EEA consists of all EU member states, plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein). However, in some circumstances, part or all of your data may be stored or transferred outside of the European Economic Area (“the EEA”). You are deemed to accept and agree to this by using our site and submitting information to us. If we do store or transfer data outside the EEA, we will take all reasonable steps to ensure that your data is treated as safely and securely as it would be within the EEA and under the GDPR. Such steps may include, but not be limited to, the use of legally binding contractual terms between us and any third parties we engage with, and the use of the EU-approved Model Contractual Arrangements. If we intend at any time to transfer any of your data outside the EEA, we will always obtain your consent beforehand.
Right to access personal information
- Under the law, any individual has a right to ask for a copy of the personal information held about them. This means that you can ask for the information that ELEARNING FUTURES LTD holds about you. This is known as the right of ‘subject access’.
- When making a request you will need to give us:
- a request in writing (by post or by email)
- We may need to ask you to provide:
- proof of your identity
- proof of your home address
- any information that we reasonably need to locate the information you have requested (for example details of the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD offices or staff that you have had contact with and when)
We will not start looking for your information until we receive all of the above. In order to submit your request, or for help making a request, please contact us.
Rights concerning the processing of your personal information
- Right to restrict processing of personal information
- In some situations, you have the right to require us to restrict the processing of your personal information. We may restrict your personal information by temporarily moving the information to another processing system, making the information unavailable to users, or temporarily removing published information from a website. We may also use technical methods to ensure the personal information is not subject to further processing and cannot be changed. When we have restricted processing of personal information, this will be clearly indicated on our systems.
- You can require us to restrict processing in the following circumstances:
- You are concerned that the information we hold about you is inaccurate. You can ask us to restrict the information until we can determine whether the information is accurate or inaccurate.
- We are processing your personal data unlawfully and you do not want us to delete the information but restrict it instead.
- We no longer need the information for the purposes for which we collected it, but they are needed by you for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims.
- You have objected to the processing (see below), and we need to decide whether the legitimate grounds we have to process the information override your legitimate interests.
Processing you think is unlawful
- If you tell us that you think we are processing your personal information unlawfully, but you do not want the information to be erased, you have the right to require us to restrict the processing of that information.
- We will ask you for an explanation about why you think the processing is unlawful, and may also ask that you provide evidence to support this view.
Processing of personal information you think is inaccurate
- You can tell us if you think the personal information we are processing about you is factually inaccurate. You can require us to restrict how we use your personal information until we can verify the accuracy of the information. We will ask you for an explanation about why you think the information is inaccurate, and may also ask that you provide some supporting evidence of the alleged inaccuracy.
- If we find that the personal information we are processing about you is inaccurate, we will take appropriate steps to correct the information.
Personal information is no longer needed by ELEARNING FUTURES LTD but needed by you in connection with a legal claim
- In most circumstances, we will securely delete or dispose of personal information when we no longer need it for our legitimate business purposes. Our approach to retention is outlined in our corporate retention schedules.
- However, if the personal information we no longer need would assist you in establishing, exercising or defending a legal claim, you can require us to keep the information for as long as necessary. We may ask you to provide an explanation and any available supporting evidence that a legal claim is ongoing or contemplated.
Right to erasure of personal data (“the right to be forgotten”)
In the following circumstances, you have the right to require that ELEARNING FUTURES LTD securely deletes or destroys your personal information:
- If the personal information we hold about you is no longer necessary for the purposes for which we originally collected it.
- The processing is based on consent – if you have previously given your consent to ELEARNING FUTURES LTD collecting and processing your personal information, and you notify us that you withdraw your consent. Please note: withdrawing your consent does not mean the processing of your personal data which occurred before the withdrawal was unlawful.
- We are processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes, and you want us to stop.
- If you think ELEARNING FUTURES LTD has processed your personal information unlawfully.
If you think any of the above situations apply, we may ask you for an explanation and further information to verify this.
Right to object to processing
You have the right to object to the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD processing your personal data in the following circumstances:
Personal information used for direct marketing
If we are using your personal information to send you direct marketing, you have the right to object at any time. If you exercise this right, we will stop processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes. However, we may keep your information on a “suppression list” to ensure your information is not added to any marketing lists at some point in the future.
Automated decision making and profiling
- ‘Profiling’ is the automated use of personal data held on a computer to analyse or predict things that have a legal effect, or other similarly significant effects, on the individual. Examples would include economic situation, health, personal preferences or interests and location. You have the right not to be subject to a solely automated decision (that is, a decision made electronically, with no human intervention), and this may include profiling (although there is no general right to object to profiling). If you are concerned the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD has made a solely automated decision about you, you can object.
- Please note, ELEARNING FUTURES LTD is allowed to carry out automated decisions with no human intervention where you have given your explicit consent to this processing (although you have the right to withdraw your consent).
- We are also permitted to make automated decisions with no human intervention in the following circumstances:
- The automated decision is necessary to enter into, or perform a contract, or complete a contract involving you and the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD.
- The automated decision is allowed under a law passed at the European Union level, or at the level of the European Union or EEA member state level (i.e., is allowed under national law). The law will provide safeguards to protect your rights and freedoms.
However, you still have a general right to object in both of the above circumstances, providing reasons why you think the processing is having a negative effect on you. If you do object, we will carefully consider your reasons, and decide whether to review the decision-making process in your specific case.
Right to data portability
- If you have provided your information to ELEARNING FUTURES LTD, you have the right to request and receive a copy of that information in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format.
- You also have the right to ask us to send the information we hold about you to another organisation.
- There are some situations in which the right to data portability does not apply. For further information, please contact us.
Exercising your rights concerning the processing of your personal information
If you wish to exercise any of the above rights concerning the way in which we process your personal information, please contact:
Risk Management Team
ELEARNING FUTURES LTD,
21-22 Old Steine,
Email: [email protected]
Your right to complain to a national data protection regulator (data protection supervisory authority)
- If you think we have processed your personal information unfairly or unlawfully, or we have not complied with your rights under GDPR, you have the right to complain to a national data protection regulator.
- Complaints about how we process your personal information can be considered by the data protection regulator.