SmileTutor Blog Tutors Tutoring Tips 6 Work Ethics a Tutor Must Know

6 Work Ethics a Tutor Must Know

There are countless articles that provide tips on how tutors can better help their students academically. However, tutoring is not only about academics; many work ethics come into play too.

It is important to practice them so that you can earn trust and gain credibility as a tutor.

Always ask permission from their parents

Since parents are the ones paying for their children’s tuition classes, the parents are technically your clients, and your job is to help their children.

Hence, you have to be careful to make sure that you are not doing anything against the parents’ wishes.

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Particularly for younger children and minors, you have to consult their parents whether they are okay with you contacting their children directly via their phone number if they have one.

You can also suggest creating a chat group with your student and their parents in order to keep their parents can be kept in the loop of what is going on and be assured.

Update the parents on their child’s progress regularly to build their trust in you. This is to prevent any miscommunication as younger children may not know how to communicate appropriately.

It might also be considered inappropriate to some parents if you connect with their child on social media as the child might be too young to know how to use these online platforms tactfully too. 

Respect their house rules

If you are conducting home tuition, it is a form of basic courtesy to adhere to the rules of the house you are visiting.

Especially with the Covid-19 pandemic, families may be more particular with the hygiene in their house.

Some examples of house rules may include: washing hands once you enter their house; adhering to the Covid-19 regulations; wearing their house slippers, etc.

Be wary of physical contact

The definition of inappropriate physical contact is different for everyone, and on top of that, safe distancing is also a concern during our current Covid-19 pandemic. So, do remember to maintain boundaries.

To avoid misunderstandings, keep a respectful distance from your student, regardless of your gender.

If their parents request for you to keep the doors open during home tuition, you should respect their concerns as well.


This goes without saying, as being on time applies to all jobs, and tutoring is no exception.

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You should note that students nowadays may be loaded with all sorts of back-to-back holistic and academic classes, as well as many other commitments.

Their busy schedules will not allow you to simply make changes to the tuition time as and when you wish, so keep to the agreed timing.

Be responsible for your lessons and inform them as soon as possible if you are unable to make it for the lesson. Tutors should exercise respect for the student and their parents’ time, and make sure to arrive with ample time to prepare for their lessons.


Always put in your best effort in helping your student and not put too much emphasis on selfish gains.

Your priority as a tutor should not be merely clocking in hours for your pay, but to really exercise the heart of wanting to teach.

Help the student just as you would help yourself when you were a student; be enthusiastic in guiding them.

Parents place their trust in you to help their children with their academics, hence you should do your utmost for them. When you perform well and own a good reputation, you’ll get more clients and in turn, increased revenue.

Care for your student too

Although your main job is to coach your student academically, you should show concern for their well-being and character development as well. 

Check on your student every now and then for signs of bullying, abuse, or mental illnesses such as depression.

If you suspect that something serious is going on with the student, inform their parents immediately. 

Just as school teachers conduct character development lessons in school, a tutor can also help to shape a child and make a difference in their life. For example, if you notice that the student could be disrespectful to you, their peers, or even their parents, you can gently guide them to tell right from wrong.

Just make sure to set your boundaries and not take matters too much into your own hands without giving considerable respect to their parents.

If you conduct group tuition, make an effort to know your students individually so that they feel comfortable reaching out to you when they need help.


Even though you are sort of “your own boss” as a tutor, tutoring is a unique job in which you need to abide by a unique set of work ethics. It is important that you are aware of the expectations of a tutor beyond just teaching, and exercise these work ethics with utmost professionalism.

If you are a parent, there are ethics that you should abide by too! Read our article on common mistakes that parents make for home tuition.

Are there any other work ethics that you think a tutor should possess? Share it in the comments below!

Rum Tan

Rum Tan is the founder of SmileTutor and he believes that every child deserves a smile. Motivated by this belief and passion, he works hard day & night with his team to maintain the most trustworthy source of home tutors in Singapore. In his free time, he writes articles hoping to educate, enlighten, and empower parents, students, and tutors. You may try out his free home tutoring services via or by calling 6266 4475 directly today.