You applied to become an online English teacher and got a bite—wahoo! It’s time to prepare for the interview. Don’t fret; you got this.

Since we at Premier TEFL are cheering for you every step of the way, we’ve put together this robust list of online ESL teacher interview questions and the answers to really “WOW” ‘em.


Common ESL teacher digital interview questions and answers

We’ve grouped the online ESL teacher interview questions and answers into a few generic buckets: Personality, Past Experience, Certification, Equipment, Tactics, Commitment, and YOUR Questions. You should be prepared to answer a combination of these interview questions for online teachers.

Personality Related Questions

Most online teacher interview questions will start with getting to know you, the applicant. Be prepared to be peppered with questions designed to understand your overall background, where you are now, what your goals are, etc.

Possible questions:

  • Tell us about yourself.
  • What have been your education experiences?
  • What are your biggest weaknesses?
  • What are your biggest strengths?
  • Why should we hire YOU?
  • Why do you want THIS job?
  • Describe your dream job.
  • What do you like to do outside of work?
  • Why do you like teaching?

Tips for answering:

Be prepared to give an elevator speech about what makes you their top candidate at any given point. If possible—and if it sounds natural and not forced—relate all of your answers back to the core idea you’re trying to sell: That you are their next choice hire.

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Past Experience-Related Questions

After the interviewer gets a sense of who you are as a person, they’re going to want to better understand your relevant experience to teaching English online. Be prepared to answer numerous virtual teacher interview questions pertaining to not only your past experience, but specifically your past experience teaching.

Possible questions:

  • Have you taught before?
  • Have you taught English before?
  • Have you taught English online before?
  • What do you consider to be your biggest professional achievement?
  • What is your leadership style?
  • What age level have you taught prior?  
  • Tell us about the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last year.

Tips for answering:

At this point, you really want to sell the company on your ability to succeed as an online English teacher. This means focusing on relevant experience and highlighting essential transferable skills from past gigs (especially if you have minimal teaching experience). You want them to end this section on the interview feeling utter confidence in your skills to conduct English lessons online successfully.

>> Why You Need A TEFL Course With Certified Practicum


Certification Related Questions

Different online English teaching platforms will have different levels of requirements for their new hires. Some will require a bachelor’s degree, some might require that you’re a native English speaker. Almost all will want to know about your training in teaching English.

Possible questions:

  • Do you have a teaching certificate?
  • What were your three biggest takeaways from your TEFL course?
  • How is teaching online different from teaching in a classroom?
  • How did your TEFL certificate prepare you for becoming an online English teacher?

Tips for answering:

You’ll need to be upfront and honest with the interviewer when answering any digital interview teacher questions related to your training. Your best bet is to actually get your TEFL certificate in advance—maybe even specializing in teaching English online—so you can really impress them with (and make them feel even more confident in) your experience.

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Equipment Related Questions

Okay—they’re now feeling good about your innate skills and capabilities. But do you have the right stuff to bring the online English teaching classroom to life? 

Possible questions:

  • Who is your internet provider?
  • Do you have a headset?
  • What is your upload speed? Download speed?
  • Do you feel comfortable using Skype?
  • Do you have a quiet place to work from?

Tips for answering:

We hope that you’ve thought through the way your current environment and setup is conducive (or not) to the life of an online English teacher. Hopefully, you can swiftly move through this section because it is more perfunctory than demonstrative of your ability to do the job well.

If you can’t answer these questions breezily, this might not be the right gig for you afterall!

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Tactics Related Questions

Teaching English online takes more than knowing the correct order of noun + verb + object or helping cute kiddos memorize new English vocabulary via virtual flashcard games. There’s a LOT that can go into a short 25 minute session, and this chapter of your online English teaching interview will try to suss out how you plan to juggle your multiple responsibilities.

Possible questions:

  • How will you approach teaching students of different ages?
  • How would you discipline a child while teaching English online? 
  • What is your lesson planning process?
  • What are ways that you will prepare for unexpected free time in a lesson?
  • How will you build rapport remotely with students?
  • How will you deal with nagging parents?

Tips for answering:

We think this section requires the most deep thinking in advance of your online English teaching interview. You need to have thought through—and feel comfortable—responding to online ESL teacher interview questions that dig deep into your processes. These types of inquiries will shed light on your reasoning and logic, not to mention how you would approach potential hiccups (all VERY telling when considering a new hire).

Note: You might also be asked to conduct a mock/demo class!

>> Free Resource: How To Create A Winning Demo Lesson Video

Or Discover this Job Coaching Seminar with Emos

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Commitment Related Questions

Now that you’ve convinced them you’re an amazing online English teacher, they’re going to want to understand how you envision yourself fitting into their team. 

Possible questions:

  • Why do you want to join us?  
  • What can you offer us? 
  • Do you see yourself signing a contract?  
  • What are your pay expectations?
  • What is your availability?
  • What was your salary in your last job?

Tips for answering:

Talking money isn’t usually a comfortable situation, so we recommend that you arm yourself with enough facts, figures, and numbers as possible to make negotiations go smoothly. This means researching average pay for entry-level online English teachers for the given company, as well as preparing legitimate reasons if you’d like to be paid above their typical offer.

Convince them that you’re more or less in it for the “long haul,” as they want to train ESL teachers that will stick around for longer than a few weeks.

Laptop - online teacher questions & answers

YOUR Questions

In classic interview form, there should be a few minutes left at the close of the meeting for you to ask questions of them. We recommend having one or two questions at the ready for this opportunity, plus any questions that have come up throughout the interview itself.

Possible questions:

  • What does a typical day look like?
  • Are there opportunities for advancement or professional development? Where have successful employees previously in this position progressed to?
  • What did you do before this? 
  • Why did you come to this company?
  • Where do you see this company in the next few years?
  • Who will I work with most closely?
  • Who will I report to directly?
  • What are the next steps in the interview process?
  • Is there anything else I can provide you with that would be helpful?
  • Is there anything that concerns you about my background being a fit for this role?

>> Need More Help? Join A TEFL Interview Coaching Session

With all these online ESL teacher interview questions and answers, there’s no WAY you can fail

You are ultra-prepared to ace your online English teaching interview thanks to our comprehensive guide to digital interview teacher questions. 

So put on your power skirt or tie, plug in your headset, launch Skype, and get ready to impress anyone interviewing you to become an online English teacher!

Did you find these blogs about online teacher questions & answers useful? Let us know in the comments which one is most valuable when preparing for an interview as an online English teacher.

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