In an article about virtual tutoring, an illustration by Yao Jian of someone on a computer screen teaching
Virtual tutoring is the perfect job opportunity for college students. (Illustration by Yao Jian, Minneapolis College of Art and Design)

The Virtual Tutoring Market Is Growing, Here’s How You Can Get Involved

Ever since the transition to online learning, several teaching services are seeking additional educators to fulfill the new demand.

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In an article about virtual tutoring, an illustration by Yao Jian of someone on a computer screen teaching

Ever since the transition to online learning, several teaching services are seeking additional educators to fulfill the new demand.

When my university transitioned to online learning, I knew I would have more time on my hands than before. I decided to try my hand at virtual tutoring and signed up for three different tutoring sites. Throughout the past few months of exploring the different platforms, I’ve realized just how rewarding, both financially and personally, virtual tutoring can be.

The Rise in Virtual Tutoring

As schools across the country transitioned to remote learning, many students turned to virtual tutoring services to supplement their classes.

Virtual tutoring and other educational technology had seen immense market growth prior to COVID-19; however, its usage has surged over the past few months. Analysts predict that this trend will continue, growing by $7.37 billion by 2023.

This is likely due to an increased comfort with technology. Before COVID-19, students were not as comfortable using the internet for educational purposes. But as students were forced to learn remotely, they became accustomed to it and were more aware of what tools and resources were available to them.

While most school years are drawing to a close, there are many students who are enrolled in summer classes that seek support from virtual tutors. Not to mention, with camps and other summer programs canceled, many parents are turning to online tutoring to occupy their children’s time and help them get ahead for the next school year.

Benefits of Virtual Tutoring

Virtual tutoring is an easy way to make money without leaving your house. While it depends on the company, the average pay is about $20 per hour. This may not seem like a lot, but if you’re able to gain a large client base and/or sign up for multiple tutoring sites, it really adds up. It’s important to note that most companies hire tutors as independent contractors, so you are responsible for paying taxes on your earnings if you make above a certain amount.

One of the greatest benefits of virtual tutoring is the flexibility it offers. Most websites let you choose your own hours, and don’t require you to tutor for a minimum number of hours a week. This lack of complete commitment makes it super doable to fit into whatever your schedule may look like this summer.

Additionally, tutoring is very gratifying. You have the chance to make a positive impact on a student and help them master something they may be struggling with. As someone who is considering a career in education, my experience with virtual tutoring has further solidified my interest in the field.

How to Become a Tutor

Many tutoring services are trying to expand their rosters to keep up with the increased demand for virtual tutors. While there are many different virtual tutoring services, they all provide one-on-one tutoring to students of all ages. Most of them have Zoom-like platforms with virtual classrooms, where students and tutors are able to upload images, share screens and write on a “whiteboard.”

Whether you’re looking to help students prepare for the SAT, provide AP chemistry tutoring or workshop students’ essays, all of these services will hire college students. For most of these platforms, you just need to submit an application and prove mastery of a subject.

1. VarsityTutors

VarsityTutors is a St. Louis-based company that provides in-person and online tutoring for all ages. VarsityTutors also offers instant tutoring, where students can request immediate help. Once a tutor accepts, students and tutors will be whisked to an online platform to work out the concepts in real-time. For those looking for a longer-term commitment, VarsityTutors will match tutors with students based on the students’ objectives and tutor’s abilities/experience. VarsityTutors also has an app, which makes it easy to communicate with students.

2. Chegg

Chegg is a common site used by high school and college students. Similar to VarsityTutors, Chegg features both instant and scheduled tutoring. All tutors must be enrolled in or have a degree from a university and provide two forms of verification (diploma, student ID, transcript).

3. GoPeer

Created by Lafayette College alum Ethan Binder, GoPeer provides both in-person and online tutoring. The program exclusively hires college students to tutor grades K-12 in over 70 subjects. GoPeer does not match students and tutors, rather parents or account holders will directly message tutors to ask about availability.

4. GooRoo

GooRoo is another tutoring site for students of all ages. GooRoo uses a personalized matching process, taking into account things like child grade level and learning styles, to pair students and tutors. Every virtual lesson is recorded and saved for future review

5. TutorMe

Like many of the other sites, TutorMe provides both instant and online tutoring in over 300 subjects. Tutors and students are matched either through TutorMe itself, or through direct contact between clients and tutors. Note that TutorMe requires that you link your account with Facebook to provide extra security.

6. UPchieve

UPchieve provides tutoring to low-income students across the U.S. Upchieve is specifically looking for students who are able to tutor math and science and give basic college advice. While some of these sites prefer those with prior tutoring experience, UPchieve does not require it at all. As its website states: “We’ll give you all the tools and training you’ll need to succeed, including subject-specific review materials and an optional, self-paced course on how to be a great tutor.”

7. Tutors.com

Tutors.com is essentially a list-serv for in-person and online tutoring. Clients can post what kinds of tutors they’re looking for, and tutors are expected to deal directly with them.

8. Wyzant

Wyzant runs similarly to Tutors.com. Clients browse from a list of tutors and subjects, and book sessions directly.

9. IvyBound

IvyBound is a Connecticut-based tutoring company that specializes in SAT/ACT prep. However, the company is starting to expand to other test prep (i.e. AP) and is looking for tutors.

10. Outschool

Love the idea of tutoring but don’t know what subject you would teach best? Outschool allows tutors to design their own classes to teach. If you are interested in teaching something you’re passionate about, Outschool is the place for you!

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