YiYi English Review – Too Good to Be True? Yes.
Yiyi English is a Chinese based company looking to hire both enthusiastic native and non native English speakers to teach students in China. They have numerous appealing selling points to attract teachers: Things like not being a native speaker, no experience required and not requiring a TEFL certificate all are ideal for inexperienced teachers.
But for us at Teach and GO, these are all red flags and to ignore them is a mistake and it’s no surprise the emails we’ve received regarding this company. Things like lack of payment, unprofessional corespondence and not showing up for interviews and demo classes for teachers.
In general, we suggest avoiding Yiyi in part because they appear to disregard their own countries regulations regarding online teaching and ESL. A TEFL is required in addition to a bachelors degree to work with any Chinese based company because you still need to meet the legal requirements to teach in China, even if it’s remote.
Yiyi English Job description
YiYi English offers classes for students to learn with native speakers or non-natives who have near native pronunciation)and promises to provide flexible teaching schedules.
However, feedback we have received as well as Glassdoor feedback regarding this company have surfaced from teachers working with YiYi about not being compensated accordingly, making this online teaching company a risky option.
As with most Chinese based teaching companies they expect the following if you’re employed with them:
- Early morning availability due in part to the students being based in China. If you’re on the east coast, it’s a 12 hour time difference so a 6 pm class for your student is a 6 am class for you.
- The company create the lesson plan and material for you, you must bring your enthusiasm and teaching expertise to the online classroom.
- You’re allowed to miss classes within reason but they do require you to have a high level of responsibility.
- You can live abroad and teach English with them.
- Non natives are encouraged to apply.
- You will be given a 6 month or 1 year contract.
With regards to payment it can range anywhere from $13 to $20 an hour. There is not a lot of transparency with this company and we want to emphasis a lot of teachers have complained about not being paid, being under paid and having no idea how much they are supposed to be compensated in the first place.
By contrast, VIPKID is quite upfront about their pay and in the app it keeps track of how much you earned so there are no surprises.
Hours at YiYi are early morning, however the company does the booking and scheduling for you on your behalf and then reports to you what days and what time you must teach.
Also, they book for two weeks in advanced which can make them quite an inconvenient choice as you give up a lot of flexibility in your schedule.
YiYi English preferred requirements
What requirements are needed for employment with YiYi English? There are quite a few and are all fairly standard for Chinese based companies.
- You must have a bachelors degree or greater.
- Have a TEFL or TESOL.
- Be a native speaker from the US or Canada.
- Have the required technology to teach like decent a laptop and headphones.
The intangible aspect they also want is simply to have a good personality for students, be enthusiastic, happy and motivated.
How to apply
We don’t recommend them and as such won’t link to them for you to begin the application process. They also ask illegal questions like your age (age discrimination is illegal in the US, but still a common practice in Asia).
But if you are curious they follow the standard process of scanning and interviewing potential candidates.
Submit your resume and video introduction
You’ll have to fill out an online form where you give your personal information like your name, age, number and where you live. You’ll also have to upload a resume as well as an introduction video on how you would teach students to pronounce the phrase “supercalifragilisticexplalidocious” from the movie Marry Poppins.
Which in short is silly and borderline stupid as English teachers focus on phonics, reading comprehension and more advanced concepts like the differences and use cases of different tenses.
Interview and demo lesson
Upon completion of the application process, if they decide to move forward with your application you’ll have an interview and a demo class to complete over Zoom.
From here you either pass or fail this process. Once you pass you’ll be given a 6 month to 1 year contract and YiYi will being scheduling classes.
YiYi English Pros and Cons Conclusion
To conclude, YiYi English is too good to be true. With average pay at best, it may seem like the go-to option for non native speakers, but the lack of transparency and the illegal questions they ask in the hiring process make them a company to avoid.
Not only do they not respect American law by asking applicants their age, they also disregard the laws of China which state that English teachers must have a TEFL or TESOL in addition to a degree.
- They are willing to hire non-native speakers.
- They provide the lesson material and book the students on your behalf. Ideal if you struggle to get students on other platforms.
- Any comment of teachers not getting paid is a big deal to us. This seems to be an all to common game YiYi likes to play. Hire a bunch of teachers, have them teach class then not pay them.
- They also hurt Chinese students and their parents who pay a lot to study with a foreign teacher.
- They schedule the hours and can potentially over-book you by requiring you to teach everyday which no one want’s to do if it requires getting up early in the morning. We all need a bit of flexibility in our schedule.
In short, take caution when considering applying to YiYi English.