There are many reasons why you might be seeking a private tutor in English. Perhaps, English is not your mother tongue, rather your second or even third language. Alternatively, English may well be a subject that you or your child struggles with. You may be seeking a little extra help to gain a vital qualification such as a GCSE or A level. Private tuition does not come cheap. However, with the right tutor and support, you will find it is money well spent.
What factors affect the price of private tuition in English?
Location – Where you are based in the UK can have a significant impact on the cost of private tuition. As expected, London is the priciest area with tuition typically costing upwards of £45 per hour. Conversely, in East Yorkshire, you are looking at around £25 per hour. Where you choose to have your tuition is another factor which determines the price. Some tutors prefer to travel to your home, whereas others are keen for you to visit them. Travelling tutors often charge extra for their expenses. However, some do build this into their hourly rate. Furthermore, some offer to tutor in a public place such as a local library or cafe.
Experience and expertise – how experienced a private tutor is could impact on the price you pay. One with years of private tuition under their belt will undoubtedly have higher prices than those trying to establish themselves. Often, new tutors start with lower prices to attract new clients. Furthermore, students hoping to earn some extra money on the side often charge rock bottom prices as they won’t be paying tax. Qualified teachers generally charge a higher hourly rate too. However, there is no regulatory body associated with private tuition and therefore it is not a requirement for a tutor to hold QTS.
If you are simply seeking to improve your conversational English skills, you may be happy to choose someone whose language skills are top notch, but don’t have formal qualifications to teach. Although most people prefer to choose someone with credentials, that is not to say that tuition cannot be a success with others.
Demand – there is a much higher demand for evening and weekend lessons than those during the day. This is largely due to students already being in school during the day and thus needing support outside of those hours. If you are able to make time in your schedule for a daytime slot, this may be a cheaper option due to lower demand. If your tutor is in high demand owing to an excellent reputation, prices may be higher too.
Requirements – if you are in need of support to obtain a GCSE or A level, you will usually find that this will set you back a little more. This is owing to the fact that the tutor will need to do extra preparation. Furthermore, they will need to fully understand the requirements of the examination board and expectations of the student. For those wanting some extra help for younger children, this may cost you less.
If English is an additional language for you, you may only be seeking help with your conversational skills. Generally, a less formal lesson set up will be priced lower owing to less preparation and fewer resources needed.
Type of lesson – if you are seeking 1:1 private tuition, this will always cost more than paired or group lessons. A greater number of pupils mean that the same level of preparation will be necessary for just one session. You will usually be looking at a reduction of 25-50% for a shared lesson. The length of a lesson will also alter the amount of money you are expected to spend. Many tutors will not teach for less than one hour at a time. However, for younger pupils, a shorter lesson may be more beneficial.
Independent or agency – many tutors begin their career through an agency. For some, it makes things easier as the agency deal with paperwork and admin. People searching for a tutor via an agency should be made aware that the agency will make money usually in one of two ways. Firstly, they may take a cut of the session fee that you pay your tutor. Secondly, they may charge you to access contact details for your chosen tutor. Usually, they allow you to contact a variety of tutors through their own platform. However, it is against their rules to share personal details. Once arrangements have been made for a lesson, the person requiring the tutor is expected to pay for their contact information. Opting to go for an independent tutor may save you money in this respect as fees could be lower than agency tutors whose prices could be elevated to take the agency’s fee into account.