Volunteer Tutor

Volunteer Tutor

How to Become a Tutor

Please follow these steps to become a volunteer tutor. Please note this is a Western Australian program.

Step 1 - The Application Form

If you would like to be a tutor, please complete the application form and submit it. Please note we prefer applicants to be over 22 years of age.

Step 2 - Meet your local Coordinator

You will be contacted by a Coordinator in your region, who is also a volunteer, to arrange an interview. At the interview the Coordinator will discuss with you your interests and background as this is an important part of matching you with a student. You will also be made aware of the responsibilities that go with being a tutor, including training and making a commitment to the Program for at least 12 months.

Step 3 - Permission for a Police Check

Government regulations insist that as of 2008, all adults (both volunteer and paid) who work with 'vulnerable people' must have a Police Check. The term 'vulnerable people' not only includes children and the elderly, it has been deemed to also include those with low literacy levels. It is therefore compulsory that all Read Write Now tutors have a Police Check. This is done at no expense to you. You will be asked to provide appropriate identification at the interview stage. A previous conviction does not necessarily disqualify you.

Step 4 - Training Course


All Read Write Now tutors complete a training course. For tutors in the metropolitan area, this is a combination of face-to-face and online training over a period of approximately 5 weeks. Currently, regional tutors attend two weekend (Saturday and Sunday) training sessions.  Training is provided free of charge.

The course, Tutoring Adult Literacy and Numeracy, is designed to give tutors ideas and strategies to confidently assist adult students. Topics covered include: reading, spelling and writing, lesson and program planning, adult learning principles and approaches to assisting students from a culturally and linguistically diverse background (CaLD). Homework is set during the course for tutors to complete.

"The course is so enlightening on how to assist people with their literacy challenges. The philosophy of setting up students for success is brilliant and infectious" Tutor, Catherine

Professional Development

Read Write Now offers specialist workshops throughout the year for tutors to attend to increase their skills and expand their personal and professional networks. Centrally based workshops are conducted throughout the year and local workshops are organised by Regional Coordinators. 

"I've been tutoring for nearly a year now! I've used your training, materials and advice extensively, and think of you often, with much gratitude!" Tutor, Lucy 


Step 5 - Become a Tutor

Becoming a tutor is a 'no pay' job but it is definitely not a 'no perks' job. You will receive professional training, have the support of your Coordinator and the Central Office team and have access to a varied range of resources. You will have the opportunity to gain as much knowledge as you want and develop both professional and personal skills. However the real 'perks' come from the students themselves - being part of their new-found success is a wonderful experience. 

Tutor Success

One of the perks of being a Read Write Now volunteer tutor is sharing in the success of your student. We love to receive feedback from tutors in regard to students reaching their goals, short or long term. Here are some examples of what students have achieved:

  • passed all relevant areas of his Police Entrance Exam
  • requested support for her enrolled nursing course, finished training and now has a job at the local hospital
  • read first entire book and has now joined a bookclub
  • has gained confidence in her own reading and writing abilities
  • is now able to help other women in the community with filling in forms
  • completed a degree in library studies while still keeping her part-time job
  • completed a Cert III in Aged Care, when many others dropped out, and now has a job working as a carer
  • now has his first job ever!
  • improved her writing and learned a lot, is going back to TAFE

Our Teaching Principles

When teaching adults we encourage tutors to follow the sound principles of adult learning.

  • Establish a relaxed atmosphere through respect, enthusiasm, instilling confidence and a sense of humour.
  • Plan lessons that are linked to your student's needs, goals and level of skill.
  • Use your student's own experience and interests as a focus for lessons.
  • Provide lots of opportunity for your student to practise the new skill.
  • Involve your student in planning ongoing lessons and ask for feedback to be sure that your student's needs are being met.
  • Teach to your student's 'point of need'. E.g. if they are writing a letter they will need to know the format of a letter.

When adults reach their educational goals, their families and communities grow stronger!