Tutor Guide

Tutor Guide

Register for a tutor account on the ESL Tutor Registration page.

On the registration page, you can choose your role – Student or Tutor.

Register for an ESL Tutor Account
In order to request your own personal calendar, you will need to fill out your full profile on your profile page. Just go to your dashboard, and click Edit Profile under your name.

Getting your own personal calendar is super easy. You only need to complete the above steps and then fill in the Calendar Request Form below. We will check your account to ensure that it conforms to our requirements and then create a calendar for you. You will subsequently receive an email with your login details. Please be sure to fill in the details correctly below.

In order to get a personal calendar, you need to fulfil one or more of the following requirements:

  • Be a native English speaker
  • Born in an English-speaking country – USA, UK, Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, or South Africa
  • Been an English teacher for more than five years (non-native teachers only, proof will be required)
  • Have a teaching degree with English as major (non-native teachers only, proof will be required)

[gravityform id=”18″ name=”Calendar Request” description=”false” ajax=”true”]

We have partnered with a third-party to handle scheduling of classes. Just go to the Scheduling Software Login page.

Scheduling Software Login

Set up your hours in Availability. For example, if you work Monday-Friday from 9:00am-4:30pm, with an hour break for lunch at noon you would set your hours to “9:00am-12:00pm, 1:00pm-4:30pm”.

Very Important: The timezone of the scheduling software is set at GMT (No Daylight Saving). This means that you must convert your timezone to GMT and schedule accordingly. You can use WorldTimeBuddy for the conversion.

Offer extra hours, or change your hours, for specific days by using Override regular hours. If you wanted to change your hours on September 24th to be available from 1:00pm-7:00pm:

  1. First click Override regular hours
  2. Select the start date of September 24th so the new hours will affect just that day
  3. Set the hours to “1:00pm-7:00pm” for that day
  4. Click “Save Hours” to save your availability

Block off certain days, like holidays or vacation, with Block off time at the bottom of the page.

Alternating hours every other week

To make time available every other week have different hours:

1. Set your normal hours to be the availability for one week under Availability

2. Choose “Override Regular Hours” under Availability to set the other week’s hours

3. Designate a start date and an end date more than 2 weeks apart. If you want these hours indefinitely you can set the end date to be several years in the future. The start date is the week these other hours take effect.

4. Check the “every other week” button that appears after choosing the dates

5. Enter the times you’d like to be available on those days

6. Click “Save Hours”

The every (available) will be on the starting week, the other (not available or normal business hours) will be the week after. So if you make Wednesday February 5th- Wednesday February 26th from 10am-12pm available every other week your calender will show Feb. 5th and Feb 19th available 10am-12pm and not show availability or show availability set by your normal hours on the other weeks of February 12th and 26th.

Alternating Hours

Select the types of lessons you will be able to teach. Go to Availability & Calendars –> Settings.

Choose Lessons

Students can book lessons on any of the following pages:

  1. The Schedule Page – Students can choose both the lesson type and the tutor they’d like to schedule a lesson with.
  2. Individual lesson type pages. When students browse the Find a Tutor page, they will be able to select a lesson type to view tutors who can teach that particular lesson type. On the lesson type page, e.g. Conversation Lessons, they can schedule lessons with tutors offering English conversation lessons. On these pages they cannot choose the lesson type, only the tutor.
  3. Individual Pro Tutor profile pages (Coming Soon). Pro tutors will get a personal profile page that shows the courses and posts created by them. On the profile pages, students can also view the lessons offered by the specific tutor and book lessons with him/her. On these pages students will not be able to choose another tutor, only the tutor whose profile page it is.
  4. ESL Tutor Facebook page. On ESL Tutor’s Facebook page, students will be able to book lessons just like they would on the Schedule Page on ESL Tutor.
  5. On individual tutors’ Facebook pages. Tutor (both Regular and Pro Tutors) have the ability to embed their personal calendars on their own Facebook pages. These calendars will allow students to book lessons with the tutor whose Facebook page it is, and not any other tutor. Please read below on how to add your calendar to your Facebook page.
When students book a lesson they will:

  1. Choose the lesson type to book
  2. If the lesson can be booked on different calendars (different tutors), then they’ll get a list of calendars to book with or can choose “any available” to see the combined availability
  3. Pick an available date and time for the lesson
  4. Fill out their first name, last name, phone, and e-mail. These will always be asked for, they’re the basis for reminders and your client list.
  5. Pay for the lesson.
  6. Finally the appointment is confirmed. You and students are immediately sent an e-mail confirmation. Students will also have the option to register for an account to remember their information

You can add your own students to the scheduling system so that you can easily schedule lessons with them manually (whether online or offline lessons).

To do so you need to be logged in to the scheduling software and then follow these steps:

Step 1: Go to View Calendar and click on Clients.

Step 2: Click on Add Clients.

Step 3: Fill in your student’s details.

Add your students

Import a list of students.

Under Import/Export/Syncing in the left hand menu you can upload a CSV (comma separated value) file of your contacts. On the second page you’ll verify the clients before you add them, and also select which columns correspond to the first name, last name, phone, and email of the client. From there you can choose “Import” to add them to your client list.

For help exporting your contacts to CSV from Outlook see http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/outlook-help/ex…

For help exporting your contacts to CSV from Google see https://support.google.com/mail/answer/24911?hl=e…

Contacts on Mac do not export directly to CSV, but you can easily convert their format to CSV using something like http://www.antoniolore.net/ab2csv.php

From a Mac Numbers file, export as CSV: http://apple.stackexchange.com/questions/44828/can-numbers-save-a-file-as-csv

Import or export text (.txt, .csv) files Excel http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/excel-help/import-or-export-text-txt-or-csv-files-HP010099725.aspx

You can export (or sync) your schedule to Outlook, Excel, or Google Calendar (Pro Tutors only).

Export to Outlook

You can export all your appointment to Outlook under Import/Export/Syncing clicking “Export to iCal/Outlook” will save all your appointments as an ICS file. In Outlook you can go to File–>Import–>Import iCalendar (ICS) file to import all your calendar information into Outlook.

Outlook 2007 supports iCal subscriptions which will automatically update your Outlook calendar with new appointments and cancellations. Clicking “iCal/Outlook Subscription” will open Outlook to set this up.

Export to Excel

You can export all your appointment to Excel under Import/Export/Syncing clicking “Export Appointments to Excel” will save all your appointments as a CSV file.

There are 3 options to print your schedule from the scheduling software:

– In the upper right hand side of the main calendar page click the “printer” icon and choose to “Print Agenda” (list view) or “Print Calendar”

Print your schedule

– You can print your schedule from the main appointments page using your browser’s print button. That will print out just the schedule on the page.

– You could also print a list from Excel. If you click “Calendar Export/Syncing” on the left side of that page and export to Excel, you can print from within there.

One of the great things about teaching with ESL Tutor is that you can install your personal calendar on your Facebook page. This allows you to have students book lessons with you right on your Facebook page.

Step 1: In the scheduling dashboard, go to Client’s Scheduling Page.

Client's Scheduling Page

Step 2: Click on Facebook.

Facebook Integration

This will automatically take you to Facebook and ask you for permission to install the app.

You can manually schedule lessons with your students using the scheduling software.

To do this, go to View Calendar.

Here you have two options.

Schedule Appointments Manually

Option 1: Click the +Appointment button.

Option 2: Click on the time you’d like to schedule the appointment.

Both these options will open the box where you can schedule an appointment.

Schedule a Lesson Manually

Step 1: Choose the type of lesson.

Step 2: Choose your own calendar. Please be sure to choose your own calendar as choosing another tutor’s calendar can cause a lot of confusion.

Step 3: In order to send email and text notifications to your student with the correct appointment time, you need to choose your student’s timezone.

Step 4: Fill in your student’s details. Adding a phone number will allow the system to send automated text message reminders, and setting your student’s email will do the same via email.

Step 5: Click the Schedule Appointment button.

There are two ways to reschedule an appointment:

1. Click the appointment on your calendar, click the reschedule button at the top of the window

Reschedule an Appointment

2. Click on the appointment and drag to the new appointment time on the calendar and confirm in the window by clicking the best option.

Rescheduling OptionsChoose either Reschedule Appointment (which will send an email notification to your student) or Reschedule, but don’t send email.

When you cancel an appointment you can mark it as a no show. This will show in the student’s history and also within reports. The normal cancellation e-mail will go out, or you can choose to not send an e-mail.

No Show Appointments

After becoming a Pro Tutor member, we will set up a free Google Apps account and also synch your calendar with your new Google Calendar for easy schedule management.
Pro Tutors can set a series of group classes, such as an exam preparation course, and sell the series as a whole. Tutors decide how many students par class as well as the price per student.
Pro Tutors can request a coupon to distribute to their students for a specific group class.

You will get paid once a month given that your account has a minimum balance of $100. A minimum of $50 will be kept on books to cater for cancellations of your appointments. Please make sure that your correct Paypal email is available on your profile in your dashboard.

ESL Tutor’s commission varies inversely with the total number of points you’ve collected. You can earn points through a number of actions as described on the Earn Points page.

Rank Regular Tutors – ESL Tutor % Pro Tutors – ESL Tutor %
Bronze (0 – 1,000 points) 36%  24%
Silver (1,001 – 5,000 points) 34% 22%
Gold (5,001 – 10,000 points) 32% 20%
Platinum (10,001 – 20,000 points) 30% 18%
Diamond (20,001 – 50,000 points) 28% 16%
Master (50,001 – 100,000 points) 26% 14%
Grandmaster (100,000+ points) 24% 12%

Earn points through a number of actions on ESL Tutor. The more points you earn, the higher your rank and subsequently your income will be. Learn more on how to earn points on the Earn Points page.

In addition to the points stated on the page referenced above, tutors will also earn points for the following:

  • Lessons scheduled and delivered: 10 points per class
  • Positive feedback from students: 2 points per feedback

Points will be deducted for the following:

  • No show by the tutor without rescheduling the lesson or arranging another tutor: -15 points per no show
  • Negative feedback from students: -3 points per feedback

We also reserve the right to cancel a tutor’s account following multiple no shows or negative feedback from students.

Class Packages are only available to Pro Tutors.

Class packages refer to classes sold as a package and usually delivered at a set time. These packages can be more profitable than one-on-one lessons since you can have multiple students per class.

Let’s say for example that you want to start a TOEFL preparation course. You will accept a maximum of 8 students and will charge the students $8 per hour each. You plan on delivering the lessons five days a week in one-hour lessons, and the whole course will stretch 4 weeks. You can then decide whether you want to force students to purchase the whole course at once or to allow them to purchase individual lessons.

In the case of a structured course such as the example TOEFL course above, it would be best to have students sign up for all lessons at once.
Leaving registrations open would be more preferable with for instance open conversation lessons. This would allow students to choose their available timeslots for joining the group conversation lessons without having to book the whole course.

Once created, the course will be added to your calendar and the timeslots created for the course will become unavailable for one-on-one lesson scheduling.

Pro Tutors can use the Class Package Request Form to request the creation of a package. (Please note that this page is only viewable by Pro Tutors).

Self-study courses are only available to Pro Tutors.

Pro Tutors have the ability to create multi-tier self-study courses on ESL Tutor. These courses can include all kinds of media as well as self-marked quizzes. Tutors can also request students to upload assignments and offer certificates upon completion of the course.

Some of the features include:

Multi-tier Courses – Break-up courses into lessons, topics, quizzes, and categories.

Drip-feed Content – Drip-feed your lesson content according to a schedule.

Sell Your Courses – Courses can be sold for a single price or a subscription.

Certificates – Create certificates to be automatically awarded to students upon the (successful) completion of the course.

Advanced Quizzing – Create advanced self-marked quizzes and add them to your courses.

Expire Access – Remove access after a specified amount of time.

Manage Assignments – Comment and approve on submitted assignments.

Lesson Timers – Set a minimum amount of time that must be spent per lesson.

Flexible Prerequisites – Set course, lesson, and quiz based prerequisites.

Use Any Media – Insert videos, Articulate & Adobe Captivate files, images, audio, Google Docs and more.

There are many different ways to go about setting up your courses on ESL Tutor. This is only one possible way to get started, but we find it to be the most efficient.

Courses are created in the ESL Tutor backend, so you will have to be logged in to access it. When you are in the backend, you will see a menu item called Courseware.

All courses, lessons, topics, quizzes and assignments are created and managed under this menu item.

Courseware Menu

PART 1: Setting up a Simple Course

3 Tips before getting started:

  • Tip 1: We cannot stress enough how helpful it is to have a roadmap of your course.
    By this, I mean the number of lessons, topics, quizzes and their positioning in the course.
  • Tip 2: We strongly recommend setting up the architecture of the course before adding content.
  • Tip 3: Make your titles intuitive and organized to make your road-map easier.

Step 1: Creating a Basic Course

  1. Add a new course. Navigate to COURSES > ADD NEW.
  2. Enter the title and publish.

Step 2: Add Lessons to the Course

  1. [Do this step only once] Set the order. Navigate to LESSONS > LESSON OPTIONS and Sort by “Menu Order”, Sort Direction “Ascending”. Update.  
  2. Add the lessons. Navigate to LESSONS > ADD NEW.
  3. Associate the lesson to the course. When editing the lesson, make sure to select the course to which it should be associated by selecting the course name from the appropriate drop-down menu.
  4. Just below, you will see an ATTRIBUTE box with an Order option. This is for ordering your lessons. The first lesson should have 1, the second 2, and so on until all your lessons are numbered. This will make ordering them very easy.
  5. Repeat step B through D until all your lessons for that one course are created and associated with that course.

Step 3: Add Lesson Topics

  1. Add the topics. Navigate to TOPICS > ADD NEW.
  2. Just below, you will see an ATTRIBUTE box with an Order option. This is for ordering your topics (just like you did for lessons). The first topic should have 1, the second 2, and so on. This will order your topics under each individual lesson.
  3. Scroll down, and select the lesson to which it should be associated under the Associated Lesson drop-down.

Congratulations, you have set-up the ARCHITECTURE of your course!

To see the initial result of your work, navigate to COURSES and View the course you just created. You should see all the lessons listed. Click the Expand All button, and you’ll see all your topics. Next up, the quizzes!

PART 2: Getting Creative on Content and Quizzes

Step 1: Creating A Quiz Template

  1. Navigate to QUIZZES > ADD NEW.
  2. Read carefully through each option deciding whether or not it is something you want.
  3. Save.

Step 2: Adding Questions to your Quiz

  1. Click the QUESTIONS tab and then the ADD QUESTION button.
  2. Read through the different options, and select the ones that fit your needs. Save, go back to the questions overview and repeat until all your questions are created.

Repeat Step 1 and 2 until all your quizzes are created.

Step 3: Content and Options

  1. Add a price OR a make the course a free course. Navigate to COURSES > EDIT your course. Scroll down, and choose your pricing option.Other fields are optional.

There are many other optional features – feel free to navigate around and discover them at your own pace. This was a simple overview to get you started.

[Quick Tip] To test the entire course, we recommend setting up a test user account so you can see the “Take This Course” button.

Courses Tab Overview

Courses Tab Overview

  • Add New – Opens the editor so that you can create a new course.
  • Courses – Displays all courses that are published or in draft status.
  • Course Shortcodes – Displays available shortcodes for courses.
  • Categories – Opens category manager.
  • Tags – Opens tags manager.

Creating a Course

1. Go to Courseware > Courses

2. Click Add New

You can click the tab or the button.

2. Click ADD NEW

3. Enter a Course Title

3. Enter a Course Title

4. Enter a Course Description

To display a different course description for visitors and students, use the “[VISITOR]” and “[STUDENT]” shortcodes.

4. Enter a Course Description

5. Fill out the Course Options

  • Course Materials – Enter any materials needed for the course; accepts HTML markup.
  • Course Price Type – Select the price-type for the course. There are five options (Open, Closed, Free, Buy Now, Recurring).
  • Course Price – Enter price of course (i.e. “50.00”). Set currency in Options for Courses menu. Course materials, lessons, and quizzes will be blocked with a PayPal button if a price is entered.
  • Billing Cycle – Set the frequency for billing for recurring payments. This field is only visible when “Recurring” is selected as a Course Price Type.
  • Course Access List – Users who purchase the course (or click the JOIN button) have their UserID inserted here automatically via comma-separated-values. The UserID is always a numeric value.
  • Sort Lesson By – Determines how lessons are sorted for the course.
  • Sort Lesson Direction – Determines the lesson direction.
  • Course prerequisites – Course a user must successfully complete first.
  • Disable Lesson Progression – When checked, users can take the lessons and quizzes in any order they prefer.
5. Fill out the Course Options

6. Add a Featured Image (Optional)

If the featured image does not appear, it is likely because your theme does not support featured images for custom post types (or at all). Please contact your theme developer for assistance.

6. Add a Featured Image (Optional)

7. Add a Category (Optional)

This is useful if you plan to list your courses by category using the Course List shortcode.

7. Add a Category (Optional)

8. Add a Tag (Optional)

This is useful if you plan to list your courses by tags using the Course List shortcode.

8. Add a Tag (Optional)

9. Click PUBLISH

9. Click PUBLISH

Course Shortcodes

You may use shortcodes to add information to any page/course/lesson/quiz. Here are built-in shortcodes for displaying relevant user information.

This shortcode shows the content if the user is not enrolled in the course

Course Shortcodes

. Example usage: “[VISITOR]” Welcome Visitor! “[/VISITOR]”

This shortcode shows the content if the user is enrolled in the course. Example usage: “[STUDENT]” Welcome Student!“[/STUDENT]”

This shortcode displays the Course Content table (course lessons, topics, and quizzes) when inserted on a page or post. Example:
“[COURSE_CONTENT COURSE_ID=”123″]” shows the course content for course with Course ID: 123

Using the Course Shortcodes, you can create a custom sales page for your courses to be shown to visitors, and after enrollment the sales message disappears.

Creating a Lesson

1. Go to Courseware > Lessons

2. Click Add New

You can click the tab or the button.

2. Click ADD NEW

3. Enter a Lesson Title

3. Enter a lesson Title

4. Enter Lesson Content

Enter lesson material in the text editor.

4. Enter Lesson Content

5. Fill out the Lesson meta-box

  • Associated Course – Assign the lesson to a course.
  • Forced Lesson Timer – Requires a user to stay on a lesson for a specific amount of time. The MARK COMPLETE button is not active until the timer reaches zero (optional).
  • Upload Assignment – When checked, the MARK COMPLETE button is replaced with a field for the user to upload a document. User cannot progress until the Administrator marks the assignment as complete. Admins can mark an assignment as complete, or delete it, by logging in and navigating to the lesson page (optional).
  • Auto Approve Assignment – When checked, all submitted assignments are approved without the need for the Admin to review first.
  • Sample Lesson – Makes lesson accessible to visitors prior to purchase or enrollment.
  • Make lesson visible X days after sign-up – Allows you to specify when the lesson is available for viewing (in days). Timer begins after a user clicks the JOIN button, or the course is purchased.
5. Fill out the Lesson meta-box

6. Set Lesson Order (Optional)

Set the lesson order from the Attributes box.

6. Set Lesson Order (Optional)

7. Add a Featured Image (Optional)

If the featured image does not appear, it is likely because your theme does not support featured images for custom post types (or at all). Please contact your theme developer for assistance.

7. Add a Featured Image (Optional)


8. Click PUBLISH

11. Click PUBLISH

Drip-Feeding Your Lessons

About Drip Feeding

Drip feeding lessons (also known as “scheduling”) is a way for you to deliver your course content on a pre-defined schedule. This has many advantages, mainly being that you can control the learning experience for your users.

How it Works

In ESL Tutor, the scheduled lesson sequence begins when someone registers for the course, either by purchasing the course or signing up for free (by clicking the “Take this Course” button). At this point, the clock begins, and your lessons will be released accordingly to the specified number of days AFTER sign-up you have configured.

1. Create your lesson title and content

Reference the Creating a Lesson script for more detail.

1. Create your lesson title and content

2. Below the text editor, you will find the Lessons meta box

2. Below the text editor, you will find the Lessons meta box

3. Find the field titled “Make lesson visible X days after sign-up”

3. Find the field titled "Make lesson visible X days after sign-up"

4a. Specify when you want the lesson to become available (in days)

Timer begins after a user clicks the JOIN button, or the course is purchased.

4. Specify when you want the lesson to become available (in days)

4b. Set a specific date when the lesson should become available

5. Specify the lesson order

5. Specify the lesson order

6. Click PUBLISH

6. Click PUBLISH

Creating Topics

About Topics

The Topics feature allows you to break your lessons into further “sub-lessons”. A lesson can have an unlimited number of lesson topics, much like a course can have an unlimited number of lessons.

Lesson Topics adopt the same progression functionality as lessons. If you require lessons to be completed in a chronological order, then Lesson Topics also must be completed in chronological order. A lesson cannot be marked complete until all lesson topics have been marked as complete.

1. Go to Courseware > Topics

2. Click Add New

You can click the tab or the button.

2. Click ADD NEW

2. Enter a Topic Title

2. Enter a Topic Title

3. Enter Topic Content

Enter topic material in the text editor.

3. Enter Topic Content

4. Fill out the Topic meta-box

  • Associated Course – Select which course this topic will be part of. When you select the course, the Associated Lesson list will populate with applicable lessons.
  • Associated Lesson – Assign the lesson topic to a specific lesson.
  • Forced Topic Timer – Requires a user to stay on a lesson for a specific amount of time. The MARK COMPLETE button is not active until the timer reaches zero (optional).
  • Upload Assignment – When checked, the MARK COMPLETE button is replaced with a field for the user to upload a document. User cannot progress until the Administrator marks the assignment as complete. Admins can mark an assignment as complete, or delete it, by logging in and navigating to the lesson topic page (optional).
  • Auto Approve Assignment – When checked, all submitted assignments are approved without the need for the Admin to review first.
4. Fill out the Topic meta-box

5. Set Topic Order (Optional)

Set the lesson order from the Attributes box.

5. Set Topic Order (Optional)

6. Add a Featured Image (Optional)

If the featured image does not appear, it is likely because your theme does not support featured images for custom post types (or at all). Please contact your theme developer for assistance.

6. Add a Featured Image (Optional)

7. Click PUBLISH

8. Click PUBLISH

Creating a Quiz

Part 1 – Configure Quiz Settings

1. Go to Courseware > Quizzes

2. Click Add New

2. Click ADD NEW

3. Enter a Title

3. Enter a Title

4. Enter a Description or Instructions

4. Enter a Description or Instructions

5. Configure the Core Settings

  • Repeats – Number of times a user can take the quiz.
  • Certificate Threshold – Percentage that must be obtained to earn a certificate (set to “1.1” if you don’t want to issue certificates).
  • Passing Percentage – Percentage that must be obtained to pass the quiz.
  • Associated Course – Course that the quiz is assigned to.
  • Associated Lesson – Lesson or Topic that the quiz is assigned to (Optional)
  • Associated Certificate – Certificate that is delivered when threshold is met.
5. Configure the Core Settings

6. Configure Optional Settings

Below the Core Settings are the Optional Settings. Each item has a description providing additional detail as to what happens if the option is selected.

6. Configure Optional Settings

7. Click PUBLISH

7. Click PUBLISH

Part 2 – Create Quiz Questions

1. Click on the Questions Tab

This tab becomes visible after you SAVE or PUBLISH your quiz settings.

1. Click on the QUESTIONS Tab


Alternatively, you can click COPY QUESTIONS FROM ANOTHER QUIZ to copy already created questions.


3. Enter the Question

3. Enter the Question

4. Select an Answer Type

Examples of question types can be found at http://learndash.com/quiz-options

4. Select an Answer Type

5. Enter Possible Answer Selections

This will look different depending on which option you choose. The image below is for “Single Choice”

5. Enter Possible Answer Selections

6. Click SAVE

The question is saved. Repeat as necessary.

6. Click SAVE

Bulk Question Creation

If you have a lot of questions you want to add to your quiz, we have created a script that will make it easier to add questions in bulk.

ESL Tutor Quiz Converter – Please follow the instructions on that page carefully when creating a quiz.

Managing Assignments

1. Go to Courseware > Assignments

2. A list of submitted assignments will display

This page shows the list of the submitted assignments. Here you can:

  • Download assignments
  • Approve assignments
  • Delete assignments
  • Leave comments/feedback on the assignment for the user
2. A list of submitted assignments will display

Only Pro Tutors can publish blog posts that will be linked to their profiles.

Blog posts refer to articles published on ESL Tutor by Pro Tutors. These blog posts are educational in nature and are a way to provide students with information and/or exercises that will help them improve their English.

There are multiple reasons to create blog posts:

  • You earn points every time someone views your blog points
  • You earn money for views. Since points are exchangeable for money, you earn a small amount of money for each view. If your posts are popular, this amount can grow quickly.
  • You increase your ranking through points earned, leading to lower commissions paid to ESL Tutor. Please refer to the commission schedule above for more details.
  • You get a better ranking in Tutor search results. When students search for a tutor on the Find a Tutor page, search results are ordered according to post count, placing tutors with a higher post count higher up on the search results.
  • More students will view your personal profile page and possibly schedule lessons with you. Since all posts created by a tutor link back to that tutor’s profile page, students will often browse to the tutor’s profile. On the tutor’s profile page, students will be able to schedule lessons on the tutor’s personal calendar.

In order to create blog posts, you need to go to the backend dashboard. You must be logged in before you can access the backend.

When in the Backend, choose Posts –> Add New

You will see the following Create a New Post page:

Add New Blog Post

  1. Enter the title – The title of your post. You can use any phrases, words or characters. Avoid using the same title twice as that will cause problems. You can use commas, apostrophes, quotes, hypens/dashes and other typical sym9. Add a Tag (Optional)
    10. Allow Comments (Optional)You can allow your users to leave comments on your lessons.
    10. Allow Comments (Optional)bols in the post like “Preparing for the TOEFL Listening Test”. The system will then clean it up to generate a user-friendly and URL-valid name of the post (also called the “post slug”) to compose the permalink for the post.
  2. Create post content – The blank box where you enter your writing, links, links to images, and any information you want to display on your site. You can use either the Visual or the Text view to compose your posts. In Visual view, you see what the post will look like once finished – with the formatting. In Text view, you see the HTML code. This view is useful if you want to add extra HTML code, or if you want to check for and delete formatting added by other programs such as Microsoft Word. You can use the text editor to create the content or you can copy and paste from another program. Be careful when copying from another program, such as Microsoft Word, as it can add a lot of unwanted formatting to your post. You can style the post any way you like. You can also add media such as video, audio and images to the post. Please be sure to use media that you own the rights to or use creative commons media. You can search for creative  commons media here.
  3. Choose a category – Choose only one category that best describes what the post is about. Readers can browse specific categories to see all posts in the category. If you feel you need a category that is not currently available, please be sure to contact us.
  4. Add tags – Tags are keywords from your article. They are like micro-categories for the blog, similar to including index entries for a page. Posts with similar tags are linked together when a user clicks one of the tags. Add new tags to the post by typing the tag into the box and clicking “Add”. You can add new tags, or you can choose from the most used tags.
  5. Upload a featured image – Upload a featured image for your post. The featured image is what people will see when scrolling through the list of posts. Again, please make sure to use your own or creative commons media.
  6. Add a focus keyword – Which keyword would you like your post to rank for in the search results? The best practice is to have your keyword(s) in your post title, post heading and content, as well as in the meta description.
  7. Add the meta description – The meta description is a short description – 156 characters – that will be seen under the post title in the search engine results.

All posts are moderated and inadequate or off-topic ones will be deleted. Please create posts that create educational value to students.

Please make sure to follow the following guidelines when creating blog posts:

  • Only create posts that add value to the site and add value for the students.
  • Do not create self-promotional posts. Blog posts are for informational or educational purposes, not self-promotion.
  • No more than one link to an external site per blog post.
  • Do not use copyrighted content.
  • Do not create posts with obscene, racists, or otherwise inappropriate content. Repeat offenders will be banned from the site.

Here are some tips you need to know to help you write your posts on ESL Tutor.

Practice Accessibility 
To be compliant with web standards for accessibility, be sure to include ALT and TITLE descriptions on links and images to help your users.

Use Paragraphs
No one likes to read writing that never pauses for a line break. To break your writing up into paragraphs, use double spaces between your paragraphs. The text editor will automatically detect these and insert <p> HTML paragraph tags into your writing.

Use Headings
If you are writing long posts, break up the sections by using headings, small titles to highlight a change of subject. In HTML, headings are set by the use of h1, h2, h3, h4, and so on. By default, ESL Tutor uses the first heading level within the site. You can use h2, h3, and h4 to set your own headings. You can use the Heading styles from your editing dropdown menu using the Visual Editor, or you can enter your headline manually in the Text Editor by typing:<h4>Subtitle of Section</h4>.

You don’t have to use HTML when writing your posts. The text editor will automatically add it to your site, but if you do want control over different elements like boxes, headings, and other additional containers or elements, use HTML.

Spell Check and Proof
Check your spelling and proofread regularly. Some serious writers will write their posts in a text editor with spell check, check all the spelling and proof it thoroughly before copying and pasting into the text editor.

Think before you post
Ranting on blogs is commonplace today, but take a moment and think about what you are writing. Remember, once it is out there, it can be seen by many and crawled by search engines; and taking things back is harder once it is public. Take a moment to read what you’ve written before hitting the Publish button. When you are ready, share it with the world.

Write about what you like
You’ve heard this a thousand times before and it sounds too cliched, but it is true. If you force yourself to write something that you don’t really enjoy, it will show. Perhaps you might not have a specific theme for writing when you just start, but that’s ok. You’ll become more focused later. Just enjoy the experience and write what you like.

Write frequently
Write as frequently as you can, but don’t let quantity get in the way of quality. Your viewers (and potential students) come for content, not to spend time reading useless stuff.

Consider your readers
Consider who will be reading your blog posts. Most of the students on ESL Tutor are from countries where English is a foreign language. Write your blog posts so they are understandable by ESL students. Also, don’t use too much slang.

Make use of comments
Comments let people share their ideas. Sometimes, they might not be good, but you can ask such people to shut up. Most of the times, they will and if they don’t you can delete their comments. Blogging like real life, can be both fun and not so fun at times.

Content is king
Content is what attracts your readers, so make sure to provide authentic and useful content.

Use pictures and videos
They make the pages colourful and help to keep the attention of viewers.

Save your posts
Save your posts before you press the publish button. Anything can happen with your computer or with an internet connection. You don’t need to lose your post.

When writing your post, you have the option of using the Visual or Text mode of the editor. The visual mode lets you see your post as is, while the Text mode shows you the code and replaces the WYSIWYG editor buttons with quicktags. These quicktags are explained as follows.

  • b – <strong></strong> HTML tag for strong emphasis of text (i.e. bold).
  • i – <em></em> HTML tag for emphasis of text (i.e. italicize).
  • b-quote – <blockquote></blockquote> HTML tag to distinguish quoted or cited text.
  • del – <del></del> HTML tag to label text considered deleted from a post. Most browsers display as striked through text. (Assigns datetime attribute with offset from GMT (UTC))
  • link – <a href=”http://example.com”></a> HTML tag to create a hyperlink.
  • ins – <ins></ins> HTML tag to label text considered inserted into a post. Most browsers display as underlined text. (Assigns datetime attribute with offset from GMT (UTC))
  • ul – <ul></ul> HTML tag will insert an unordered list, or wrap the selected text in same. An unordered list will typically be a bulleted list of items.
  • ol – <ol></ol> HTML tag will insert a numbered list, or wrap the selected text in same. Each item in an ordered list are typically numbered.
  • li – <li></li> HTML tag will insert or make the selected text a list item. Used in conjunction with the ul or ol tag.
  • code – <code></code> HTML tag for preformatted styling of text. Generally sets text in a monospaced font, such as Courier.
  • more – <!–more–> tag that breaks a post into “teaser” and content sections. Type a few paragraphs, insert this tag, then compose the rest of your post. On your blog’s home page you’ll see only those first paragraphs with a hyperlink ((more...)), which when followed displays the rest of the post’s content.
  • page – <!–nextpage–> tag similar to the more tag, except it can be used any number of times in a post, and each insert will “break” and paginate the post at that location.
  • lookup – Opens a JavaScript dialogue box that prompts for a word to search for through the online dictionary at answers.com. You can use this to check spelling on individual words.
  • Close Tags – Closes any open HTML tags left open–but pay attention to the closing tags. The text editor is not a mind reader (!), so make sure the tags enclose what you want, and in the proper way.

Workflow Note – With Quicktag buttons that insert HTML tags, you can for example click i to insert the opening <em> tag, type the text to be enclosed, and click /i or Close Tags to insert the closing tag. However, you can eliminate the need for this ‘close’ step by changing your workflow a bit: type your text, select the portion to be emphasized (that is, italicized), then click i and your highlighted text will be wrapped in the opening and closing tags.

The Quicktag buttons also have the accesskey JavaScript attribute set, so you may be able to use a keyboard equivalent (e.g., Alt-b for bold) to “press” the button, depending on your browser.

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