Start Your Own Tutoring Business vs Work in a Tuition Centre

This is often up to personal preference and confidence. It’s a matter of working for someone else, or working for yourself.

Working in a tutoring centre:

  • Everything is organised for you – the location, resources, payment, liaising with the parents, advertising for students etc. This takes a lot of pressure off you, especially if you have no idea how to tutor or how to run a business.
  • Centres often require parents to pay for a full term, so you are guaranteed continual work/pay.
  • Your work is limited to the time that you are paid (see below points for private tuition).
  • BUT you will get paid less than if you were tutoring privately, because the centres will take a profit margin off. Depending on the centre, you may be getting paid minimum wage, while the centre charges parents $50 per hour.
  • There is also, obviously, less flexibility in that you tend to have to work minimum hours per week and you can’t choose your students.

On the flip side, private tuition means:

  • Everything is controlled by you. This has benefits as you can choose when/where to tutor, your method/strategy for tuition, price charged per hour, and this gives you a lot more flexibility to adapts things to your personal life and other commitments like uni and family/friends.
  • You get 100% of the price charged per hour, because there is no middle man.
  • BUT because everything is controlled by you, it requires a lot more commitment and responsibility. Do you have a place to tutor? If you’re tutoring at their place, are you willing to travel? What resources to do you need (e.g. past papers, study guides) and how much will it cost? Are you going to prepare for each lesson (prep worksheets and review materials)? How long will that take?
  • Your work is often not limited to the tuition time. For example, you may tutor a student for one hour, but spend 10 mins travel plus 1 hour before and after doing preparation of materials or marking their work. Or the student may call or email you outside the tutoring time to ask you a question. Because you are the direct contact (as opposed to say a centre manager), it will be hard to “stop” work.

You could also take the best from both worlds. First work at a tuition centre, gain some experience and then leave to start your own tutoring business.