Online English Tutor – How to Find the One Who is Best For Your Needs


If you’re reading this, you’ve seen many ads and websites promising to teach you how to speak English like a native-speaker, write English well, perfect your grammar, or get “A”s in English. It seems that each site has hundreds of English tutors who are eager to help you or your child. How can you “weed out” the ones who aren’t for you and select the tutor who will help your English flourish and bloom?

Think about why you need a tutor. Do you need a tutor to help your child with reading, spelling, vocabulary and composition? Maybe you need to “brush up” your own English so it will be easier to understand technical manuals or to communicate more effectively and command respect at work. Do you need help to be certain that your website really says what you intend it to say Sydney Maths Tutoring?

Think about the tutor’s qualifications. Is their degree in English? Some tutors have multiple degrees and their resumes are studded with various splendid honors. But, this may not actually help you learn what you want to learn.

Is the tutor’s experience in education only? Sometimes this is very valuable but oftentimes, business experience is just as valuable. For instance, a tutor with executive secretarial experience has a wealth of real-world business knowledge to impart and she will be able to help you with grammar, spelling, composition and vocabulary.

Think about why your tutor is charging what he or she does. Is the price too good to be true? Some tutors charge a very low rate for the first few sessions and then raise the rate. I heard of a tutor who raised his prices three times in six weeks! Do you really believe that you can get a qualified, professional, caring, pleasant tutor to help you for very little money? Keep in mind the fact that a caring tutor will spend a great deal of time preparing for your tutoring session so that each session suits your needs.

Some tutoring companies use non-native English speakers to teach English to ESL students. Don’t you think this is like the blind leading the blind? Some tutors are not professionals and they pretend to offer you a service for lower than normal prices. I’m sure you have seen their ads which contain English mistakes and promise that you will have a lot of fun. Let’s face it; learning is work…with an occasional laugh.

Where is the tutoring company located? If they are located in a non-English speaking country, most of their tutors will be non-native speakers. They charge less but their standards are lower.

A less expensive tutor may not have a degree from an accredited university. They may not even have a degree or they may have one from a “diploma mill.”

Don’t dismiss a young tutor who is just starting to teach or an older person who is making a career change and has started to tutor. These people have more of a desire to help you succeed. Sometimes, they care more about your progress than someone who has tutored for a long time. A lot of these tutors have mentors to guide them, so it’s almost like getting input from two tutors.

You need to consider the responses to these questions also:

– does the tutor offer hours that suit your schedule?
– can you contact the tutor directly if you have a question or need to talk with him or her?
– do you have to sign a contract?
– does the tutoring company let you have the same tutor for each session? Just like the song lyrics, “Once you have found her (or him), never let her (or him) go.”

It is very important that you talk to the tutor to see if you are comfortable with him or her. If you or your child can’t develop a rapport with the tutor, it will never work for either of you, regardless of the tutor’s qualifications or rates.

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