There are many instances where a teacher receives fewer lesson requests than expected and one the reasons may be that the teacher is teaching a non-native language. Is teaching a non-native language a recipe for failure on italki? Do all italki students prefer native speaking teachers?
There are many italki teachers who teach non-native languages successfully. These teachers tend to have solid teaching qualifications and teaching experience. Some Professional Teachers will emphasize their qualifications and mention their experience living in the country of their teaching language on their profile.
In the example below, this English Community Tutor has taken the OOPT test and achieved C2, which demonstrates their English proficiency level.
Some teachers teach several languages including their native language. Good reviews and statistics obtained from your native language teaching will impress all students, including those who would like to learn other languages with you.
Many teachers open up their availability and cater their lessons to the student market of their native language countries. We see that some students will prefer teachers who can speak their native language, particularly beginners. Teaching beginners requires a bridge language to help students understand vocabulary and grammar.
For example, a beginner student from China might like to learn English with an English teacher who can speak Chinese. This gives teachers who can speak Chinese fluently an advantage. Most teachers offer courses for beginners and understand that their availability needs to match the prefered lesson times of their target markets. Other teachers offer specialized courses which support the national syllabus for kids and teenagers in their native country. This is something that native language teachers struggle to compete with.
Apart from the strategies mentioned, offering Trial Lessons, Informal Tutoring lessons and a lower price also helps especially for those who do not have a strong professional background in teaching their non-native language. We strongly suggest starting with a lower price to attract new students and then raise prices after 30-40 completed lessons.
Not quite sure why a Jamaican teaching English is being used as an example of a non-Native teacher...
I teach Japanese as well as my native language, English. At the moment, there seems to be a large imbalance in supply and demand for Japanese. I actually have way more adult Japanese students than English students. Additionally, I have had one student tell me they had native Japanese teachers, but they couldn't explain things so they preferred a native English teacher.
Yeah, it's strange that a Jamaican is used as an example here, even when simply hovering over those red bars indicates that English is "native". And this is an official italki post. I expect them to know better.
Dear Adam and Yemi,
Apologies for the wrong example. We have replaced the example with a new one. Thanks for your reports.
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