Undoubtedly, English is the language that opens numerous opportunities for non-natives, in both business and private life. There are two basic ways in studying the language of global communication: with a tutor or online program. Which one to choose?

Quite a reasonable question that Lucy Adams, an aspiring blogger and essay write, will try to answer in the lines below.

Tutoring: Pros

  • Individual approach. In contrast with online programs aimed at a large audience, tutoring offers an individual approach, which means every lesson is scrupulously prepared by a professional tutor, taking into account specific features of thinking, interests, aspirations and wishes of the learner. Tutor focuses all his efforts exclusively on the student, trying to reveal and fill possible gaps.
  • 24/7 support. The student always has an excellent opportunity to get answers to arising questions, not only directly but also by modeling complex situations, which contributes to independent thinking and search for the right answers.
  • High effectiveness. Tutoring passed the test of time, and if organized properly, professionally and competently, it suits almost everyone. A good tutor can significantly raise his student’s level of knowledge in 99% of cases.

Tutoring: Cons

  • Difficulties in choosing the right tutor for your kids. The downside is that tutoring is now very popular so that almost everyone, from homemakers to pensioners and people who know nothing about pedagogy, tries it. It may take a long time to find the right person. But what if you need it now?
  • High rates. You can’t kill two birds with one stone! Those who wish to save money and hire an inexpensive guru just waste their time and money. Be ready to end the program with the empty pocketJ. Knowledge costs money.

So, thinking about tutoring, determine for yourself whether you are willing to invest or just change teachers, looking for a better one while spending time and energy.

Online Programs: Pros

  • The possibility to self-educate from any place and at any time. Online classes are the result of technical progress – remote education requires nothing from the student, except the Internet connection. No need to visit classes or wake up early in the morning! The whole learning process is completely autonomous and individualized.
  • The ability to choose the best learning speed. Why focus on the pace and academic performance of other students if you can select the most comfortable speed? With online programs, you’ll never miss the lesson!
  • A variety of materials. Most online educational courses include tests, games, beautiful and even amusing illustrations, etc., which makes learning process exciting for everyone. You’re now a part of a huge community – share your results with other to show your superiority!
  • Affordable price. Good online linguistic courses may seem not very cheap at first glance, but if you consider these expenses as an investment in the future, you’ll see that they bring quite tangible dividends. Also, it’s about one-time payment while tutoring requires constant payment.

Online Programs: Cons

  • Self-studying. Online education requires discipline, attention, and concentration so that it suits someone who’s really interested in learning English or any other subject. Children, for example, show much worse results due to lack of motivation and constant distraction while learning.
  • The need to assess the initial level of knowledge and the lack of adequate knowledge assessment system. The key is that the assessment must be as accurate as possible as it determines the complexity and the start point of the online program. An error in the evaluation may lead to the fact that the material will be too simple or complex. Although there are tons of online language test, none of them is able to assess the level of knowledge as accurate as the professional tutor.
    Knowledge is evaluated using special algorithms and scripts that are embedded in computer programs (unless it's not about the online classroom with a live teacher using Skype or similar services). However, if the training course is made professionally and can adapt to different people, it’s noteworthy and commendable.
  • No socialization. Most online educational programs suggest very little interaction with instructors and other students. This forms big gaps in the development of social skills such as communication and teamwork. Even if the communication is there, it still doesn’t guarantee an exchange of experience and cultural enrichment.

The Verdict

As you see, it’s about 50/50 and depends on your linguistic goals. For example, if you’re preparing for a business meeting and want to in-depth your knowledge of specific terminology, then (given you already have fluent English) you can find a special profile program. But if your English is poor, I can’t recommend you automated programs as they can’t show the entire depth of the language so that can form incorrect patterns.

Finally, you can combine these two approaches to achieve better results. I wish you best of luck in your linguistic endeavors!


Lucy Adams is an aspiring buzz essay writer. Being a generalist, Lucy almost never refuses to cover intriguing topics. She’s very open-hearted so that you can expect a fast and grounded response to your each and every request. Feel free to share your ideas with Lucy if you’re willing to add something valuable to your blog. By the way, guest posts are free.