Teach English Online with No Experience

Teach English Online with No Experience

Do you want to teach English online but don’t have any experience yet? Are you a recent university or TEFL graduate looking for an online ESL teaching job? Keep reading to find out how you can teach online with no experience.

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How to get English teaching experience

Teach English as a volunteer to gain experience

Firstly, a great way to gain teaching experience while helping your local community is to teach English as a volunteer tutor or teacher.

If you want to be an online English teacher, I would recommend finding an online platform for teaching refugees. For example, RefuNet in the UK allows teachers to teach English online with no experience. 

In this way, you can improve your teaching and online technology skills while helping refugees who need to learn English in order to start a new life.

In addition, once you are ready to apply to teaching jobs, your time spent as a volunteer online English teacher will count as experience for most programs.

Decide what ages you want to teach and see if you have any previous, related experience

If you previously worked as a nanny, camp counselor, babysitter, coach, or scout leader, then you already have experience working with children from a certain age group. Some online English companies will allow you to include these activities as previous experience.

Some qualities that online English teachers should have are patience, creativity, energy, flexibility, and technological skills. Make sure you highlight these in your application if any of your previous jobs required these skills.

Make sure you have a university degree, a TEFL, or both!

These days, many programs require a university degree from a 4-year institution. Luckily, it often doesn’t matter what you studied! You don’t need a degree in English or Education to teach English online.

Also, some programs require an English teaching certificate such as a TEFL, TESOL, or CELTA. I recommend getting a TEFL certificate from Premier TEFL. They have affordable fast track accredited TEFL courses as well as level 5 government-regulated certifications. You’ll want a TEFL of at least 120 hours, but one with more hours is better.

If you are serious about teaching English and want to work mostly with adults, then I would recommend getting a CELTA certificate. I did my CELTA certificate in Brisbane, Australia. 

If you want to work with young learners, you can complete a “Teaching Young Learners” TEFL certificate. There are many different programs that offer this.

Online English companies that don't require teaching experience

Companies that allow you to teach English online with no experience

Have you done all of the above and are ready to apply to companies? Here are some companies that don’t require any previous teaching experience.

  • QKids – you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in any subject and a TEFL certificate or equivalent to teach. You must be able to legally work in the United States or Canada. You’ll teach English lessons to children in China. Make between $16-20 USD per hour.
  • Camblyno degree or teaching certificate is needed. However, you must be a native speaker. You’ll teach conversation classes from your phone or computer. You choose how many hours you want to work, with no minimum hours. You get paid weekly and can choose to teach adults or children. You’ll earn $10.20 USD per hour for adult classes and $12 USD per hour for children’s classes.
  • Palfish – no degree is required, but you need a TEFL or equivalent. You DON’T need to be a native English speaker! You can teach from a phone, tablet, or computer and the lessons are mostly conversation classes. Set your own rate and earn an average of $10-18 USD per hour. There is also a higher-paid “Kids Course” program. However, this program requires teaching experience.
  • Landi English – you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in any subject and a TEFL or equivalent. You must have a neutral accent and speak English “at an idiomatic level.” Teaching experience is preferred but isn’t a requirement. You must teach a minimum of 12 hours per week. Earn up to $18 USD per hour.
  • ITalki – you’ll need a bachelor’s degree OR TEFL/TESOL/CELTA and a C2 level or native level of English to be a “professional teacher.” To be a “community tutor” you don’t need a degree or teaching certification. Preference is given to people who have studied something related to education or languages. Set your own rates and iTalki will take out a commission.

Do I have to be a native English speaker or from an English speaking country to teach English online?

Unfortunately, some programs do require you to be a native English speaker, from an English speaking country, or even have work rights in a specific country. 

However, there are a few options if you are not a native English speaker:

  • Contact businesses in your country to see if any employees need Business English lessons.
  • Set up your own website, Facebook page, Instagram account and/or YouTube channel and promote your online English lessons.
  • Work for Palfish or iTalki (see above).

Should I work for more than one online English company?

Because online ESL companies are constantly changing their requirements, pay scales, teaching hours, and more, I highly recommend working for at least 2 companies. You don’t want “all your eggs in one basket!”

Do you work for an online ESL company? Are you looking for an online teaching job with no experience required? Leave a comment below.

Do you have teaching experience? Find out more about working for VIPKid.

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Thanks for visiting ESL Teacher 365!

Thanks for visiting ESL Teacher 365!

Certified Teacher & Founder of ESL Teacher 365

I am passionate about helping people teach abroad & online so they can live a life of adventure!

I’ve taught in 6 different countries and love sharing my teach abroad (and online) tips and tricks.

The world is yours to teach and explore!

– Jamie


Leave a comment



    I am an English teacher from Greece and a DELTA candidate.I would like to find out more about what you offer and I would appreciate any information avaliable.

      • Swapna Thottipully

        I am a now native speaker. I have recently done my 120hrs of TEFl and received certificate for it. I have 9yrs of experience in teaching academic English and Science. I am looking for genuine online ESL tutoring platform where I can start with which hires now native speakers. I don’t mind if the pay is less to start with.

        • ESLTeacherAdmin

          Hi Swapna,
          Non-native speakers can work for iTalki or Palfish (one of the programs doesn’t require you to be a native speaker). However, with your experience, have you thought of creating your own online teaching business? Try this article to see you can be a niche teacher and teach private students online, often earning A LOT more than traditional companies:https://www.eslteacher365.com/niche-teaching-teach-english-online/

        • Olga

          Hello,im non-naitive,having bachelor at managment and marketing.Dont have any languagnsertificate.Is it possible to work as english teacher for chinese children on-line?

          • ESLTeacherAdmin

            If you want to teach English as a non-native speaker, you will need to have a near-native level of English first. Judging by the English in your comment, you will want to improve your level of English first. Then, you should do a TEFL or similar certificate.

  2. Kaysha Jones

    Hello, I am a university student from the United Kingdom with a 160 hour TEFL certificate. I have in school teaching experience but I don’t know where to start in the online teaching world. Can you assist me ?

    • ESLTeacherAdmin

      Hi! Unfortunately, if you don’t have your degree yet, some of the online companies won’t hire you. You can try Cambly, Palfish, or iTalki. These companies don’t require a degree. Otherwise, you can start your own teaching website or Facebook page to teach English to a specific niche. The more specific you are, the more likely you are to find people willing to pay for your classes. Best of luck!

  3. Aumbigai Naidoo

    I really need assistance. I had completed my bachelors degree, my TEFEL, TESOL and 2 days practicles. But I do not have experience teaching online. I am a South African native english speaker. I am happy to do voluntary work so that I can get some experience.

      • Mbali Sweetness Booysen

        Hi, I’m a native English speaker from South Africa. I hold a bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences majoring in Psychology and Education Development, currently I’m doing my Honors in Education and Development and I would like to join the online teaching space. I don’t have any experience in online teaching nor have a TEFL Certificate , kindly advice how do I go about starting in the online teaching space

        • ESLTeacherAdmin

          You’ll definitely want to get a TEFL. That will open a lot more doors for you. Make sure it’s accredited and at least 120 hours. I recommend TEFL courses from Premier TEFL:

  4. Poonawala

    Hello.. Im a certified English teacher, teaching for about 15 years. I have also taught Cambridge English for young learners, teaching different levels like Starters, Movers, Flyers, KET, PET, and FCE. I want to teach English online. If you could kindly assist me.
    Thank you

  5. Amanda

    Hi! I have a certified TEFL Certificate as of November 2020. I have experience with private tutoring for one year with a 8 year old and a 9 year old but I have no further experience when it comes to teaching. I’m really looking to gain some experience regarding this but I don’t know where to look for guaranteed hours every week. If you could kindly assist me that would be great.

  6. Rene Fourie

    Hello. I’m South African, live in Johannesburg and have both a 4-year BA Communications degree and a 120-hour TEFL certificate. I am multi lingual and my English proficiency is excellent. I do not have teaching experience but have lead many courses in my former career as a broadcaster. Any suggestions? Thank you very much.

    • ESLTeacherAdmin

      Would you like to teach children or adults? Have you thought of starting your own teaching business?


    I reside in Kenya and i am a certified teacher for both CTEYL and CTBE. I have no online teaching experience. Where can i apply for teaching jobs

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