How to Become a Certified Tutor Online

Nov 21, 2019

Certified Tutors are qualified professionals who help students understand lessons and homework. Read on for a description of the tutor career, as well as a step-by-step process on how to become a certified tutor online.

Tutor Career Information

Tutors often work with schools, organizations or on their own to help students understand core subjects and concepts. Tutors often have to come up with ways to explain the information in a way that makes sense for the student and their learning style. Tutors provide remedial or supplemental instruction to help students in areas of difficulty or with subjects, concept areas, or solution methods in which they are falling behind. Since certification requires some documented work hours, preparing for certification in this career can be somewhat difficult to do online.

Required Skills Communication Skills, Learning Strategies, Technology Skills
Job Growth (2018-2028) 4-6%*
Average Salary (2019) $36,958 per year**

Sources: *O*Net **Payscale.com

Online Steps for Becoming a Certified Tutor

There are many levels and types of tutors. The following steps offer a high-level overview of preparation options and considerations for the various levels of tutoring. The National Tutor Association offers certification options for tutors with online webinars, although they do require some in-person work too. As such, the following steps can be completed online except for some in-person requirements for the certification step, depending on the level of tutor certification.

Step 1: Become Proficient in a Subject Area or Grade Level

Whether you plan on working for a school or university, a tutoring organization, or being self-employed, you typically need to have some expertise in at least one subject area or multi-subject proficiency in at least one grade level. Although this can be accomplished through a formal postsecondary education, some levels of tutoring, such as peer tutoring, don't fit with the following education step. Those who are planning on completing a formal degree program or postsecondary education can learn a lot from self-study using online resources. This is true not just about the subject areas themselves, but also about effective methods of communicating these complex subjects and concepts.

Researching and watching online videos can be a great way to start familiarizing yourself with the subjects you will need to be proficient in, and they also act as examples for explaining the concepts themselves. Similarly, there are also more comprehensive online offerings for self-study through web courses at sites like Udemy, Coursera and OpenCourseWare.

Step 2: Complete Education Requirements

Each level of tutor certification through the National Tutoring Association (NTA) comes with its own respective education requirements. For example, basic tutor certification only requires obtaining a high school diploma, while master tutor certification requires the completion of a bachelor's degree.

With that in mind, completing these education requirements is as simple as meeting at least the minimum level and number of credit hours for each certification tier. For example, intermediate level tutors are required to have completed 30 college credit hours. You will still likely want to complete these hours in courses relevant to the subject area you wish to eventually tutor students in. This does mean that any online college courses with proper accreditation will suffice for meeting these education requirements.

Step 3: Complete Testing and Other Certification Requirements

Once you have completed the education requirements, the rest of the requirements are again dependant on what level of tutor certification you wish to achieve. For example, those wishing to complete basic tutor certification can do so through the completion of two webinars. Completing these webinars, combined with your education requirements and any certification fees, will give you basic tutor certification.

Those wishing to become master tutors will need to complete three advanced-level NTA programs. However, these programs and certification levels are designed for those who have been working in the field for some time. For this reason, they may come after you've already received a basic certification.

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