The increasing popularity of online tutoring has sparked researcher interest within this particular field. Not only as a U.K. national service but one that has reached demand on a global scale. Cuts in public education have opened a path for private entrepreneurs to introduce new brands and companies, in order to compete in the tutoring industry.
Whilst many of these offer face to face tuition at specific locations, some individuals have decided to go a step further and also provide online help. Reasons such as convenience, practicality and a strong passion to help are combined to be a driving force. Interestingly, online client-tutor relationships are found to be the same degree of reliability as face-to-face tutoring. Many tutors feel a sense of long term commitment with payments being up to date and very few cancelled sessions.
A study conducted in 2015 shows almost 70% of tutors said they have considered online tutoring in the nearby future. The majority of these individuals chose science based subjects to teach, closely followed by secondary school subjects and MFL. In relation to being the subjects offered, demands are also highest for those pupils studying at high school level and beyond. Exploring the likes of Maths, English and Science particularly at GCSE and A level, the requests for extra tutoring sessions are likely to rise as our new generation further their academic positions.
From being asked how fees and charges differ, 50% of tutors stated that it was no different to face-to-face sessions. Almost 25% of tutors charged a 70% reduced fee and as little as 1% charged more than the normal amount. Although some individuals preferred mailed cheques to cover the charges, most favoured more simple payment processes. This includes bank and PayPal transfers.
In relation to practicality, just like face-to-face tuition, pupils work through textbooks and revision guides, with tutors explaining difficult concepts. As a result of free sign up and few expenses to cover, over 80% of tutors choose ‘Skype’ as the main media communication tool to deliver their services. Easy access for both tutors and clients allows Skype to take the lead from apps such as Facetime, Google talk and Google Hangouts.
The benefits of online tutoring also seem to outweigh face-to-face servicing. For tutors as well as clients, there is access to a larger market with locality being no issue. As a result, convenience is greatly advantageous with no worry about location. Additionally, there is flexibility in regards to which times are appropriate and for students with shorter attention spans, there is the option of shorter periods of work. From a financial point of view, there are no travel costs to cover which is also environmentally beneficial because there are less carbon emissions exposed. The least unanimous of all benefits seemed to be that students are more focused and relaxed during sessions. Almost 50% thought this truly wasn’t the case but this was counter argued with greater privacy and safety.
As studies reveal clear evidence for the utility of online tutoring, there is expected to be more competition in the global tutoring market. Aspiring tutors have the opportunity to see the underlying facts of a successful service and with enthusiasm being on the rise, Britain is expected to see more online tutors very soon.