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How to Become a Physics Tutor

How to Become a Physics Tutor

This is a guest post from Tutor House, a platform that connects students with personally interviewed & DBS checked tutors. Founded in 2013 by Alex Dyer, Tutor House has grown to become one of the UK's leading tutoring companies.

It’s been well documented that private tuition is a flourishing industry, with as many as one in four UK students currently working with a private tutor. The UK private tutoring industry has been estimated to be worth over £6 billion, with tutors also benefiting from flexible hours and job independence. It’s unsurprising then, that an increasing number of professional individuals are turning to tuition as a career and source of income.

Physics is one of the most in-demand subjects for tutoring and due to its complexity, it’s also one of the highest-paid subjects to tutor. A private physics tutor can expect to make anything from £30 to £90 an hour depending on their qualifications and experience.

The benefits of tutoring physics is clear, so, the key question is, “how do you become a Physics tutor?”

Get Qualified

While there is no legal minimum qualification required in order to tutor in physics, you are unlikely to be a successful tutor unless you are qualified to at least one level above that of the students you hope to teach. For example, if you are hoping to tutor GCSE physics, you should have at least obtained a good grade in physics A-level.

Some tutoring companies and clients may expect a tutor to have at least a degree in physics, even if they are tutoring GCSE level or younger. Regardless of minimum requirements, the more qualified you are, the more likely you are to attract pupils and the higher you will be able to charge.

Beyond having a qualification in physics, it is also beneficial (but not necessary) to have a teaching qualification of some description. Whether you have a PGCE, Bachelors in Education or alternative proof of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), having a teaching qualification will demonstrate that you have the training and experience to deliver top-quality physics tuition, meaning that you can also charge more for your services.

Get Experience Tutoring

Next to qualifications, the most important factor in determining how successful you will be as a physics tutor is the amount of tutoring experience you have. While the idea that “you need tutoring experience to become a tutor” may seem something of a chicken and egg situation, in practice this simply means that you should be able to show you have helped one or more students to learn physics.

You can get experience through voluntarily tutoring friends, the children of friends, or family members, and asking them to leave you a review or comment. You may have worked as a student mentor or helped out in a homework club at school, you may even have worked as an ESL teacher, teaching assistant, or be a practising teacher.

Relevant experience can come in many forms but the more you have the easier you will find it to attract prospective students, and the more you will be able to charge for your services.

Research Exam Boards and Specifications

Depending on at what level you are hoping to teach physics at, for you to be an effective tutor you will need to have an in-depth knowledge and understanding of each exam board’s syllabus, curriculum, specifications and exam format.

It is perfectly acceptable for a physics tutor to specialise in one specific qualification, for example GCSE or A-level, and one specific exam board, for example OCR or AQA, particularly when they are first starting out as a physics tutor. However, the more levels and exam boards you are knowledgeable and experienced in tutoring the larger the pool of prospective students you will be able to tutor.

Remember that exam boards frequently update their specifications and we recommend that all physics tutors refresh their knowledge of the exam boards they are tutoring on a frequent basis. Tutors should also collect a large variety of past and practice exam papers, as well as the grading specifications so that they are able to prepare students effectively for those all-important exams.

Market Yourself

The final stage in setting up as a Physics tutor is to market yourself to potential students. There are a number of different ways in which to advertise your services to students, but the easiest is definitely to register with a tutoring platform like Tutor House.

These online agencies will enable students to search for Physics tutors who meet their requirements, meaning that by signing up you are automatically being advertised to thousands of students.

At Tutor House, our tutors are also alerted when clients phone us up requesting a Physics tutor via an in-house job advertisement, making it easy for Physics tutors to apply for roles which suit them. While there are some fees involved in signing up for a tutoring platform, usually either a commission on each lesson or a “finders fee” for each student, the ease at which tutors are able to find as many students as they require makes it the leading way to market yourself to student.

Aside from, or as well as, working with a tutoring platform, Physics tutors can use word of mouth, set up their own individual website as a private tutor, or place personal ads or advertising their services on social media in order to advertise their services and attract students.

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