Teaching English Online- How To Create a Killer Resume - Henry Harvin

Teaching English online is a booming profession with many benefits. 


  1. Firstly, it’s among many highly demanding jobs, particularly in non-English speaking countries like China, Japan, Spain, etc. 
  2. Secondly, online English teaching jobs are very convenient as you can work in the comfort of your home or from sitting remotely anywhere in the world.
  3. Thirdly, an online English teacher means you should be willing to work as an entertainer as well, apart from being a teacher. Why do you ask? Because in most high-paying companies, you have to teach children, not adults.

Building an impressive international resume is also an equally daunting task. You must build up a resume that addresses the needs of the students and the company you are teaching.


As mentioned above, due to the high demand for online English teaching jobs, the employer/interviewer may receive resumes from many people who are well versed in the field. So it’s time for you to send a unique and eye-catching resume rather than a boring one. 


The following tips and tricks will help you understand what the employer is looking for in a resume and how to make it appealing.



What should be the length of your resume?

Most interviewers receive hundreds and thousands of resumes, and shortlisting the best ones is not an easy task for them. So it goes without saying that creating a precise, crisp, and captivating resume is paramount.


The Ladders in their website states


“Human beings have always had small attention spans. You have 6 seconds to make an impression.”


Usually, an employer takes only 10 to 15 seconds to read your resume. Make sure you include all your information on one page. If the resume is longer, the interviewer may not be interested in flipping pages; instead, they could end up looking at the first page and stop.


What to mention in a resume when you apply for online English teaching jobs?


The first impression is crucial.


When you go for a face to face interviews, you have to make yourself very impressionable. Similarly, a resume also has to be presentable and well-formatted. Choose a font (preferably Times New Roman), which is readable. Arial and Calibri are also considered readable fonts.


Don’t use Italics – it will be difficult to read.


Adhere to black and white font as opposed to using colour.


There is no norm stating that you can’t choose a colour font on your resume. But as a general rule, employers like black and white. Furthermore, selecting a font colour is not a good idea as there are high chances that your interviewer may not like the colour you choose.


In terms of font size, the accepted standard is usually between 10 and 12. Anything smaller or more significant than that won’t help your resume stand out.


Like the saying, “You never get a second chance to make the first impression,” a striking resume can impress the recruiter at first glance.


In other words, while preparing your CV, you should bear in mind that your ultimate goal is to market yourself for online English teaching jobs!!


Don’t use complicated jargon.

Remember that teaching English online means you will mostly be teaching students from non-English speaking countries. It means that the interviewer who reads your resume may not necessarily be a good English speaker.


Hence, you should avoid using complicated English words in your CV so that the employer can understand.


Pronouns in resumes

Another critical point to keep in mind is that you should not write resumes in the first person.


The standard norm about using pronouns in resumes is that you shouldn’t use them at all. 


For example, if you want to say “I got the TEFL certification from The International TEFL Academy,” just list it under the certification and remove all the unnecessary words like “I,” “got,” etc..


This also has another advantage of not making the sentence too “wordy.”


Always your name first.

The first step towards creating a good resume is to make sure your name is on top, bolded, and in a bigger font. 


Always add a professional title below your name in a smaller font. For example, an educator (if you have any experience), experienced tutor, etc.


Nationality

If you are a native English speaker, you must mention it at the top of your resume to bring it to the interviewer’s attention at once. If you are a non-native speaker, make sure you specify and emphasize your English communication skills well and your experience, if any.


Highlight your educational background and certifications

Graduation with TEFL certification is required for you to be qualified to teach English online. Make sure you emphasize your TEFL certification next, so your employer can notice it quickly. 


If you have any other certifications which can be related to teaching, lump all of them together but ensure to list them either with bullet points or numbers. For example, you can incorporate your work experience in schools, if you have any.


Contact details

A formal email ID should follow in your resume with your first name and last name, so your recruiter should feel you are a professional. If you don’t have any, create one and make sure you avoid using any nicknames.


Ensure that you provide your contact details like your complete address and your phone number where someone can easily reach you.


Corroborate the necessary tools you have with you

Many pieces of equipment are essential for a digital classroom. Ensure you give a brief description of them in your CV. Some of the examples are listed below.


  • At least one computer with good internet speed.
  • A backup internet connection is recommended.
  • A good headset with a microphone.
  • Good lighting.
  • Many companies expect you to have properties like educational toys, etc. Teaching English online means that most of you are going to be teaching small kids. (As mentioned above, you have to have charisma and be entertaining rather than just being a trainer while teaching kids.) 

Profile photo

You must incorporate a professional profile photo of yours, especially if you are applying for jobs in Asian countries like Japan, China, Taiwan, etc. 


“Include a photo, preferably a professional-looking head-shot. In Asia, in particular, many schools are keen to know that potential teachers look professional.”


Never lie in a resume.

Add in only the things you have achieved honestly. Ultimately, you are going to apply for a teaching job where you will be teaching kids. You are the ones who should teach kids honesty and Integrity. 


Moreover, you would like to get the job because of your eligibility, not because you lied in your resume.


Like the famous saying goes: “Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people.”


What to mention in the resume if you are a fresher?


teaching english online

It is evident that if you are fresh out of college, you won’t have any teaching experience. In that case, you could mention any informal teaching experience if you have. Or, if you have ever worked with kids in any way, you could highlight that.


However, if you don’t have any experience at all, you don’t need to worry. If you have attended an on-site TEFL course by any legit institution, everybody gets hands-on classroom teaching experience because it’s a part of their curriculum.


According to Henry Harvin EFL Academy 

“To complete your TEFL/TESOL certification course, Henry Harvin EFL Academy requires that each student complete 120 hours of practicum.”


Hobbies

Mention hobbies only if they are relevant to the job. For example, to teach English online, mentioning hobbies such as cooking and swimming, etc. in the resume will be irrelevant. And as stated above, be honest when putting down your hobbies.


If you are multilingual

If you are a bilingual person, add it to the resume. Online English teaching jobs don’t expect you to be bilingual. But the employer will get a feeling that as you are a language teacher, you already have exposure to the world of linguistics.


References

Reference is always put at the extreme bottom of the resume and is among last in the priority.


There is no thumb rule saying that you have to include references. But some recruiters specifically demand that recommendations should be incorporated, in that case, you can consist of the relevant references.


Including references doesn’t mean that you should randomly add a couple of contact details of someone close to you. You should narrow them down in such a way that they should be the right references to support you.


For example, The Job Posting.ca Team in her video says

“The people who choose as references should be either one of them.

Someone who worked with you directly or carefully in the past.

Someone who knows everything about your work ethics and personality.

They should be good communicators.

Someone who wants you to succeed.


Some more tips for creating a killer international resume


teaching english online

Last-minute editing and spell checking

You must let someone review your CV and give you feedback. Even if we re-read it several times, there is a high chance for us to make errors. After all, we all are humans. So it’s always advisable to get someone to edit your resume.


It is also very crucial that you don’t make any spelling errors. So it’s a good idea that you use Grammarly or any similar online tool to do a last-minute spell check.


Understanding what is in your resume

While saying you have to put accurate data in your resume, it goes without saying that it is also essential that you understand every word you write in your resume. This will help you to give the recruiter on the spot clear-cut answers if in case he/she has any questions.


This way, the interviewer may shortlist you for the job, but you can avoid that embarrassing moment of confusion as well. 


Delete unwanted content

Another critical point is to tidy up your old resume. You need to make sure your resume is not only captivating but also packed with good content. 


Some things that are irrelevant to English teaching jobs are simply not required in your resume. 


For example, if you have previously been working in the IT industry or healthcare field, they shouldn’t be mentioned as it will be utterly insignificant in English teaching. Instead, you can specify any teaching or public speaking experience, if you have any. 


Also remember, a resume is one of the best places to showcase your skills and get the job you want.


Make sure you don’t use crummy adjectives.


Moreover, you shouldn’t be mention your age, racial background, marital status, etc. in your resume. (Your interviewer may not be interested to know if you are married or not when you are applying for online English teaching jobs).


Use short sentences

As mentioned above, make sure that your sentences are not wordy. The elaborate use of full stops and short sentences make it easy for the interviewer to understand your profile better.


Resume Samples

If you are a fresher applying for the online English teaching jobs, then good advice will be for you to get a sample template resume and start building your profile. There are many online websites like zety.com, resumegenus.com, etc. which will make your job easier to build a professional resume.


Do’s and Don’ts


Do’s

  • Resumes have to be short and crisp.
  • Your name has to be on top of the resume bolded and add a professional title below your name.
  • Add your nationality at the top of the resume.
  • Highlight your educational background and certifications related to the job.
  • You should include contact details, including your address and phone number.
  • The email ID should look professional with your first name and last name in it.
  • List the teaching tools that you have.
  • Delete the unwanted content from your old resume.
  • List out the past experiences if you have any.
  • Let someone proofread your resume.
  • If you are a bilingual person, do mention it in the resume.
  • Include a profile photo if you are applying for jobs in Asian countries.

Don’ts

  • Avoid wordy sentences.
  • Pronouns shouldn’t be used.
  • Don’t create Email IDs with nicknames.
  • Never lie in a resume, include only the facts.
  • Try not to mention the hobbies that are not related to the profession.
  • Don’t use an italics font.
  • Don’t include complicated high-end English words.

FAQs

Q1. Why am I not getting any response from the employers despite sending a lot of resumes?

Your resume should be crisp and clear, and it should not cross one page. The longer the resume, the lesser the employer be while sorting them out. Moreover, your educational qualifications like graduation TEFL certification, etc. should be highlighted in your resume. 

Q2. Should I use pronouns in my resume?

No, you should not. It’s a general practice of not using first person, second person, third person, etc., in the resume.

Q3. Should I mention the pieces of equipment that someone would need for online teaching?

Yes. Try to give a brief listing of the equipment so that the employer knows that you are well equipped to take up the job.

Q4. What kind of email ID should one use in a resume?

You can give any email ID with your first name and last name to make it look more professional. But make sure you don’t provide an email ID with your nickname.

Q5. Where can I find good resume samples?

There are many online resume templates and samples available like zety.com, resumegenius.com, etc., which will help you build a professional resume.

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Author

Ranjana Gopinath has been working as a medical transcriptionist for the last 10 years. She is an English Literature graduate who has also successfully completed a professional course in copyediting and proofreading from Rehoboth Academic Services in Bangalore. She has also completed basic computer programming in New Jersey, US and is an aspiring content writer. She is a perennial student who aspires to get into digital marketing. At home, Ranjana is a wife and mother of two sons. She has an immense passion for cooking, cinema, and wine-making. Her articles in Henry Harvin will focus on an array of topics

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