Teach English Online to Indian Students

Teach Indian Students: Top Companies

Here are the top companies you can work for to teach English online to Indian students. If you are interested in helping Indian students learn English, there are quite a few options.

Why do Indian students want to study English?

Though English is an official language of 7 states in India and used extensively by the Indian government, Hindi is India’s “official language of the Union” and there are many Indians who want to perfect their English skills with an online English teacher. In fact, only 0.02% of Indians speak English as their first language, according to a 2011 census. (1)

Teach Indian Students Online
Teach Indian Students Online

#1 Cambly

If you want to teach English to Indian students then Cambly is a good company for you. Cambly caters to students all around the world, but there is a large audience of Indian students. If you open your schedule during peak hours in India, you will receive many Indian students. You can go further and cater your profile primarily to Indian students, too, to build an Indian student base.

The best part about Cambly is how easy it is. It is easy to get hired and also easy to be a Cambly teacher. To apply to Cambly, you apply online and upload a video of yourself with an introduction. That’s it!

Cambly Teacher Requirements

  • no degree or teaching certificate necessary
  • must be a native English speaker
  • laptop or desktop or Chromebook
  • no minimum hours, no commitment.

Cambly Teacher Pay

  • earn $10.20 USD/hour
  • Cambly pays the same regardless of your residency- so great for expats in cheap countries

Teach English to Indian Students
Teach English to Indian Students

Freelance ESL Platforms that cater to Indian Students

Many platforms allow English tutors to specify what students they want. Try some freelance ESL platforms if you want to teach Indian students.

Teacher On caters to Indian students. See some profiles here of tutors who teach Indian students.

Here are some common platforms that let you teach English online your own way while teaching students from India.

Build your own Platform

You can also build your own booking platform.

Also, if you want to be a totally independent freelance online English teacher, you need to build your own booking platform. Read “Build Your Own Tutor Service Booking Website”, an e-book from Foreign Development English, that can guide you. Then join the Facebook group: Online Teachers – Independent, Fulfilled & HIGHLY Paid! for more support and networking.


I also made an extremely comprehensive comparison chart that you can look at, too. You can sort through the columns to filter by companies that only focus on Indian students and find the company that is the best fit for you.


  1. “POPULATION BY BILINGUALISM AND TRILINGUALISM (Table C-17)”censusindia.gov.in. Retrieved 14 May 2019.

Tips to teach English to Indians

As an ESL teacher, you have stay cognizant of the difficulties Indians can face when learning and using the English language due to differences in pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary, and idiomatic expressions. Some common issues that Indians may encounter include:

  1. Stress: T differences in stress and unstressed sounds between Indian English and American English really impact the overall rhythm and tone of the language.
  2. In Indian English, each syllable is pronounced with approximately equal stress, resulting in a more even and uniform rhythm. This means that even unstressed syllables receive some degree of emphasis, and the length of the syllables can vary less. This can result in a slower and more deliberate speaking style, which may sound more formal or academic to American English speakers.
  3. In American English, on the other hand, stress is placed on certain syllables in a word, while others are unstressed or reduced. This creates a more rhythmic and syncopated style of speaking, where the stressed syllables are pronounced more forcefully and the unstressed syllables are pronounced more quickly and with less emphasis. This can create a faster and more casual speaking style, which may sound more natural or colloquial to American English speakers.
  4. Pronunciation: Indian English has a distinct accent that can make it difficult for non-Indians to understand. Indian speakers may also struggle with certain sounds that are not present in their native languages, such as the “th” and “v” sounds.
  5. Grammar: Indian English may differ from standard English in terms of grammar. For example, Indian speakers may use certain expressions that are not grammatically correct in standard English, such as “I am having a headache” instead of “I have a headache.” Indian speakers may also struggle with subject-verb agreement and verb tenses.
  6. Vocabulary: Indian English has its own unique vocabulary, which may differ from standard English. Some Indian words may be unfamiliar to non-Indian speakers, and vice versa. Additionally, Indian speakers may use certain words in different ways than they are used in standard English.
  7. Idiomatic expressions: Indian English also has its own idiomatic expressions that may be difficult for non-Indians to understand. For example, the phrase “passing out” means “graduating” in Indian English.

Here is a sample lesson plan I wrote to help Indian students master the schwa sound.

Level of students: Intermediate

Age of students: Ages 25-70

Class size: 10

Nationalities: Indian

Learning outcome / Success criteria:

A success would mean that all 10 students master the schwa sound /ə/. This will be measured by observing their spoken work and written work. The spoken work will measure how well they can pronounce the schwa sound. The written work will measure whether they can recognize the sound when they hear it.

Overall, while Indian English is generally intelligible to other English speakers, Indians may face some challenges when communicating with non-Indian English speakers due to these differences. With practice and exposure to standard English, however, Indians can become proficient in the language.

Learn More

Ingrid Maria Pimsner, MA, BA, TEFL
Ingrid Maria Pimsner, MA, BA, TEFL

Ingrid Maria Pimsner has been teaching for over a decade in various universities, nonprofits, and private academies. She has taught English as a Second Language for Lutheran Children & Family Service, Nationalities Service Center, Lernstudio Barbarossa Berlin-Tegel, and more. In addition to her Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) Certification, she holds a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and a MA from Maryland Institute College of Art.