Can Non-Native English Speakers Teach English Online?

As long as you can speak the language fluently, then non-native English speakers are just as in demand and being hired for online jobs teaching English as a foreign language.

Even if you don’t have a lot of experience teaching English online, or maybe you have non, you have just as much chance getting hired for a job as a native English speaker with the same teaching experience. Some employers look favourably upon hiring on non-native English speakers because those teachers are people who know the challenges of learning a new language. This can make them better English language teachers.

Non-native English speakers have a better technical grasp of the English language than native speakers because they have studied and learned the rules. While native English speakers may know what to say in a given situation, they may not know the reason why.

Another thing that non-native English speakers don’t have to worry about when considering pursuing a career teaching English online is visas. Some countries only hire people for jobs teaching English in a classroom from certain countries who are native speakers. Not the case for online jobs.

Some of the companies may have certain requirements that you have to meet in order to be considered for hire. Here is a list of requirements commonly asked.

  • Being eighteen years old or older
  • Have a University Degree (Not all ask for this and the companies that do ask do not mind what you have the degree in)
  • Have some teaching experience (Don’t let this stop you from applying if you have none)
  • TEFL Certification (You can get your 120-hour TEFL qualification by clicking here)
  • Have the necessary equipment and WiFI (High speed Internet that is reliable and a phone or laptop that can work video platforms such as Skype or Zoom)

If you’re feeling any lack of confidence regarding your level of fluency, you can do our 30-hour Advanced Grammar course that will give you a brush up on the language rules and improve your command of English.




So, now that we’ve cleared up whether you can or can’t and we’ve also given you convincing reasons why you would make an excellent English teacher, it’s time to go through who would hire you. There are plenty of companies that you can apply to and here’s our list so you can start sending in your application.

Non-Natives can teach online

TOPICA Native is an online English tutoring platform which allows tutors who are non-native speaking. You will be free to choose as many classes as you want based on your flexibility and free time and each class runs for 45 minutes. The students you will be teaching are university students and working adults who would love to learn conversational English so you must be fluent in the language. In terms of earnings, TOPICA uses a pay scale system made up of 8 ranks. Tutors are classified into ranks based on their performance during their lessons.


  • Previous tutoring experience, although this not necessarily required.
  • A fast internet connection (at least 1 MB) and a reliable audio headset.
  • Desktop or laptop computer

Fluentbe is an online language school based in Poland. They are on the lookout for more teachers because more and more Polish students are looking to learn English online. Their requirements for non-native English speakers only state that you are happy, talkative, engaging and open. You will be asked to talk about something you’re passionate about in the interview so your level of proficiency in English can be assessed. Their hours are flexible, you choose when to work. You’ll be teaching English to Polish adults and the online lessons are on a one to one basis or in groups of a maximum of four students. The rate per hour paid by Fluentbe is usually around $10 per hour.


  • Fast internet connection.
  • At least one year of experience teaching adults.
  • Ability to teach online via Skype or other similar applications

Non-Native English Teaching

First Future

The online English teaching job provider, First Future, hire non-native English speakers and offer a fixed schedule of work to its tutors. They also pay you for your agreed minimum hour schedule whether or not a student shows up. You can also register for additional flexi-classes to boost your income if you have more time to spare beyond your minimum agreed hours. Group classes are 45 minutes long and 1-on-1 sessions are 25 minutes long. They don’t require teaching experience and your students range from children to adults.


  • Clear speaking voice with no difficult accent to understand
  • A degree and TEFL Certificate are preferred

iTalki is an online language marketplace with the goal of making learning a language online easier. You can set your own pay rate and have full control over your teaching hours. You apply through their website and create a profile for students to find you. The platform takes a 15% commission whenever a student pays you for a lesson, so they don’t make any money from you unless you’re making money. You can teach any language you’re proficient in on iTalki so it’s a great option for anyone looking to teach English online or any other language.


  • Have a minimum C2 level in English
  • Have at least 2 MB Internet speed
  • Most teachers and students use Skype

Formerly known as Bibo Global Opportunity, Engoo provides English lessons to students from predominantly Asia. Engoo do hire non-native English speakers to teach English online. You just have to pass the English proficiency test and the Skype interview. Most lessons are conducted over Skype so you will have to be very familiar with the platform. You can choose your own hours with no minimum amount required. Engoo will also provide you with lesson plans for you to use to teach your students of kids or adults. The classes are one-to-one and last 25 minutes each.


  • You must be 18 years old or older
  • High speed and reliable internet connection

Online teaching positions are normally flexible short-term opportunities with around 15-20 hours of teaching a week. Teaching online means you have the flexibility to teach wherever you are in the world – from the comfort of home or in an exotic faraway land! It’s also a lot easier to set your own schedule and fit your teaching hours around your lifestyle. Online teaching roles are aimed mainly at teaching young learners via an online interactive learning platform. But there are opportunities to tutor adults, too.

Most online TEFL companies will ask for a minimum of 120 hours of TEFL training and teaching practice. Some online companies may ask their teachers to also have a bachelor’s degree. This is particularly true for Chinese companies, as it’s a government regulation (no matter where you are living). 

You will more than likely need high-speed internet, a computer with an HD webcam and a headset if you want to teach online. If you have the choice of a video calling platform for your online lessons, Zoom is a good choice. It gives you a clear view of your students. You can also share your screen and create separate rooms for group work in lessons. 

If you have no experience in teaching online, a good idea is to get some teaching practice in as employers may ask for “experience” hours, which are unpaid. You can alternatively complete our 10 Hour Virtual TEFL Course, which has a section focused on teaching English online. 

You can add our 30 Hour Teaching English Online Course to any primary course to boost your knowledge and skills. The teaching English online course is a huge benefit because it prepares you to enter the online tutoring world – and looks great on a CV, too!

Then there’s our Professional Online Expert Course. This is a specialised online teacher qualification that gives you the skillset and the confidence to hit the ground running. This package includes the 120 Hour Advanced TEFL Course, 30 Hour Teaching English Online and the 30 Hour Teaching Young Learners to give you an edge in a competitive market. 

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