Pros and Cons of Teaching Online

Aug 30, 2018

We recently wrote another blog post about different ways that you can make extra money on the side while teaching abroad. One popular and simple way to make extra money is to start teaching online

Perks of teaching online

Man on a video call

Not only does online teaching provide you with some schedule flexibility, but you also get to meet students from all over the world without having to go anywhere yourself. 

A few pros of teaching online are:

1. Job availability & flexible hours

The biggest advantage to teaching online is the schedule. You can choose when you are available to teach, and it won’t interfere with your work schedule or social life. One of the barriers to earning more money on the side is usually the time restraint. Teaching online eliminates this barrier almost completely. There are students all over the world who are looking for ESL & subject teachers, and you’re bound to find students with schedules that match up to yours.

2. It’s convenient!

Do you remember your first video call/Skype interview? When I was at uni, I remember kids all up and down my dorm hall that would crawl out of bed and turn on their laptops less than ten minutes before their interview. Now, I’m not saying that you should do this; however, no one can deny that it’s much more convenient to use a video call compared to standing face to face.

On top of that, your ‘commute’ is cut down to 3 minutes (times vary depending on the size of your apartment). You can wear a nice, professional top and wear your pajama bottoms. We promise not to tell.

3. The personal aspect

Teaching online provides that one on one interaction that both teachers and students need, and you will get to know each of your students on a personal level. Class sizes for many online teaching companies start with one on one, but on occasion you’ll have two or three students.

By teaching a smaller number of students, you learn about what their weaknesses and strengths pretty quickly, and then you’re able to address them effectively. Does Lily need to focus on pronunciation? Does Javi want to learn more about sentence structures? With this setup, you’re able to hone in on what the students need.

4. The simplicity

No more printing out practice quizzes, taking work home to grade, or crafting activities. Many online teaching companies provide lesson plans and materials for their teachers to use. After a quick review, you’re ready to start the class. It’s always best to be prepared, but there’s no need to go out of your way to create elaborate lessons.

What do I need to consider before becoming an online teacher?

Young children in a classroom

For the skeptics out there, we know there are still drawbacks to teaching online. Before you delve in, consider these cons and see if teaching online is right for you.

1. The inevitable disconnection

No matter where you live in the world, your internet connection can be spotty depending on the day. You will need to account for what was missed or misheard during a momentary lapse of connection. It can also dampen your mood when you were on a roll teaching and you have to stop to reconnect and get the lesson back on track.

2. Interaction limits

When you’re in front of a classroom, you can better gauge what your students’ moods are. If they’re coming from a long day and are tired, you can adjust your plan to better match what they need at that time. This is much more difficult to do when you are seeing someone through a video call. Facial expressions aren’t as noticeable and the call may lag.

3. Future job requirements

If you’re looking to add a little something to your resume or CV, any teaching experience is a great way to showcase your teaching ability. However, some schools do not count online teaching experience as ‘formal experience’. Schools like to see full-time, in-person positions when they’re looking for teachers with ‘experience teaching’. Keep this in mind when you’re looking at job postings.

How do I start teaching online?

If you’re ready to move forward with teaching online, please contact a placement consultant at Teaching Nomad, and we would be happy to help you find a position!

View Online Teaching Jobs


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