The short answer as to the requirements and formal qualifications you need to be a private tutor is that you don't need any. Unlike a teacher where certification is required - usually a degree in education and preferably a few years of teaching experience - there are no prerequisites to becoming a private tutor. This is essentially the main difference between a teacher and a private tutor.
Here are some questions you might like to ask yourself to find out if tutoring is right for you:
1. Do you have a high school, college or university degree - preferably in the same field that you plan on tutoring in?
2. Do you have work experience in the subject you would like to tutor?
3. Do you have textbooks, course material and previous exam papers? Though these materials are not necessary, they do save you time from having to look around for what you will eventually need.
4. Do you live near a library, school or campus which is convenient for students?
5. Do you have a knack with explaining difficult subjects.
6. Can you empathize and understand people on an emotional level?
7. Do you feel comfortable talking to people on an individual level or with a small group of people?
8. Some private tutors need to pick up and drop off their students. This is usually arranged before hand. Are you willing to do this?
If you answered "yes" to most of these criterias, you're perfect for the position of a private tutor! Some people may be impressed with your teaching credentials or educational attainment, but ultimately a private tutor is able to retain students and get new referrals simply because they care, and they have a knack for working with students. Only when you connect with the hearts of your students, and only than can you begin to influence and teach them. There are always many students in need of a competent and empathetic tutor, especially around exam time - you could be the one that they're looking for!
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