Requirements to become a Spires tutor
In order to make a successful application to become a tutor, you should understand what we are looking for in tutors at Spires:
1. Allowed countries
As a global marketplace, Spires connects students and tutors from across the world. This means that payments have to be sent across borders. Certain countries have very stringent laws on international remittances, which means they are unable to receive money from marketplaces like Spires.
The core requirement is you would need to possess a bank account and proof of address matching the country the bank account is in located on this list.
If you do not meet this requirement, then you cannot work on Spires.
2. Relevant teaching experience & qualifications
Spires is a platform for experienced & qualified tutors.
Undergraduates and recent graduates are rarely successful unless they can demonstrate an ongoing commitment to tutoring as well as fulfilling a subject where this is a shortage of tutors. While we do not have any age requirements to become a tutor, subject to your local laws on the minimum age of self employment, we would not accept applications from School students.
We are looking for at least two years formal, paid experience of teaching, tutoring or lecturing, and we would not count volunteering or tutoring friends and family.
If you want to tutor at the School level, we will need to see evidence that you know the curriculum and the way it is taught in the country. As a minimum, we would expect that you have sat the curriculum yourself, ideally you will have a teaching licence that has trained you teach this curriculum. Many of our tutors have additional workshops and gained further qualification relating to their knowledge of the curriculum and the pedagogy behind it.
Most of our tutors have a further qualification for teaching specific to their level, be that School or University. Many school tutors have further training for marking, examining and assessments as delivered by exam boards.
3. Online teaching experience
Online tutoring is quite demanding as you will need to be able to use lots of different pieces of software as well as troubleshooting your own issues.
Prior experience is extremely helpful and will speed up your application. This can include on other online tutoring platforms, VLEs, online whiteboards etc. Most of our successful applicants have some form of experience, and are familiar with the basics of IT.
4. Appropriate subjects which are in demand
Spires is focused only on academic subjects which you can take an examination in, with demand typically centred around the STEM subjects. Our subject list is fairly extensive and outside of this, we do not offer anything else.
Our most in demand subjects tend to be Maths, Computer Science, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Economics and Engineering.
The humanities and social sciences are in the second category, where we do see some demand but not to the level of the subjects above. This includes subjects such as Psychology, Sociology, History, Geography, Philosophy, Politics, International Relations and Theology.
The third category is the Arts and Languages, where we see the least demand. This would be subjects like Art, Art History, French, German, Spanish, Italian, ESOL, EFL, TEFL, IELTS etc. That is not to say we do not get requests in these areas, but the demand is significantly lower and we often have more applications for these than students.
It should be noted that the only language requests Spires caters to are those for the GCSE, IGCSE, IB and A Level. We do not offer generic coaching for foreign speakers.
We do not offer general/life coaching, or IT certifications like Scrum, Agile or training for specific software e.g. the Adobe suite of software. At the time of writing, the only subjects on Spires available are subjects where there is a specific examination to take.
We will only invite people to interview if we think their skills will be genuinely utilised on Spires, and even then this is not a guarantee.
5. An understanding of what tutoring is
Tutoring is not the same as lecturing or classroom teaching. It revolves around 1:1 interaction, is personal and should be personalised. Building rapport and gaining the respect and attention of your student requires a more proactive and interactive approach to teaching. Emotional intelligence is as important as raw intelligence in tutoring!
Tutoring is all about being knowledgeable, positive, proactive, likeable, approachable and competent. In short, professional. These are the qualities we look for in our tutors.
Quality and integrity are also important to us as you will be working on our platform with our clients and representing the Spires brand of high-quality online tutoring.
Poor tutorials and/or a lack of professionalism reflect badly on our team and the other professional tutors using the platform. They also lead to complaints, refunds and unnecessary administrative burden for all involved.
Our system relies on integrity; we give you clients and our services are paid for through platform fees charged to the client over the length of the job. Entering into private arrangements to avoid platform fees on Spires is equivalent in spirit to shoplifting or tax evasion and will be met with consequences from our team. See our house rules for more info.