Online Jobs for College Students That Pay


Bronze Wordsmith
May 17, 2018
Today's post is for college-age people who might need a bit of inspiration when it comes to finding ways to earn online. I also realized that the information that I’ve been sharing is also useful for a wide variety of people. For example, since online jobs are pretty flexible, even non-college students can give them a try. So this time, I decided to write a list containing some leads that both adults and college students could use for finding jobs online.

Back when I was in college, earning felt like an uphill battle, what with all the reports I had to do and exams I had to prepare for. If I had all these earning opportunities students have now, my college days would have been way easier! But this post isn’t about me. If you’re a college student, I hope you find this list useful.

Data Entry

Let’s start with the least-paying job you can try. Online data entry jobs aren’t the coolest or highest-paying jobs online, but they are a great place to start. You don’t need much experience (if at all) to get work as a data entry clerk. All you need is basic computer skills, a stable internet connection, and a solid work ethic.

Earning Potential: You can expect to make about $9 to $16 an hour doing data entry.

Where to start:

DionData Solutions



People sometimes mix up transcription work with data entry. While they both involve entering existing info, with transcribing, you create a written document based on an audio recording. You can expect to transcribe a wide range of recordings, from interviews to even medical recordings. For the latter, you will have to receive special training, given the technical nature of the material. But where the recording comes from, you will have to give them all the same respect and attention to detail.

Earning Potential: Earnings with online transcription jobs are better than data entry (although transcribing does require more effort). You can make $15 to $25 an hour transcribing. You could even earn more for technical/specialized recordings.

Where to start:





You can also go at it on your own. If you want to become a freelance transcriptionist (or even start your own transcription business!) you can take courses from Transcribe Anywhere. Not sure if this is the right path for you? Transcribe Anywhere has a free sample lesson you can try first.

Virtual Assistant

Moving up the ladder, you have virtual assistant work. Being an online virtual assistant is pretty serious work since your client will be relying on you to help keep their affairs in order. It’s pretty wide-ranging work, and your exact tasks will vary from client to client. For example, if you work for a business executive, you could be tasked with making appointments (both personal and business) and managing their recurring bills.

Working as an online virtual assistant requires a great deal of professionalism and responsibility. But do good work here, and you could even build a network, which would be useful when you graduate.

Earning Potential: Earning potential varies, but you can try asking for about $30 starting salary. Full-time virtual assistants can earn way more, but as a student, you’ll need to be more flexible with your pricing.

Where to start:


People Per Hour

VA Networking


Among all the items on this list, genealogist has to be one of the more unexpected jobs. I don’t know about you, but when I was in college, I sure as heck didn’t know a lot of aspiring part-time genealogists!

The job involves you mapping people’s family trees. If that sounds complicated, it definitely is. You will have to do a bit of sleuthing to get all the info your client needs. So a good eye for detail and some good ol’ detective skills are required for this type of work.

Earning Potential: Since it’s a demanding job, you can expect to earn more than the other online jobs from home listed here. You can expect to make anywhere from $70 to $700, depending on the complexity of the project.

Where to start:

Since you’ll be working freelance, you can start looking for genealogist jobs at freelancer sites:



Slideshow Designer

I used to joke that modern civilization cannot survive without PowerPoint (or Keynote, if you’re a Mac user) presentations. I’m only half-joking. The world absolutely needs PowerPoint presentations. But the thing is, while many of them have good content, they look positively atrocious.

If you’ve got some good design or layout skills, you can try ridding the world of ugly PowerPoint presentations! And since you most likely use PowerPoint for school presentations, chances are you’ve already got enough skills to make some good money designing and fixing other people’s slideshows!

Earning Potential: Technically, this is a design job. So I would charge a couple of bucks per slide. You can increase or decrease that amount depending on the length and complexity of the slideshow.

Where to Start:

Freelancer sites are also a good place to find this type of work:



Freelance Writer – Journalist

If you’ve got the talent for it, freelance writing can be one of the most lucrative gigs you try. I should know – I wrote a lot of articles for the local newspaper back when I was in college. “Journalist” doesn’t mean you have to cover hard news or anything difficult. You could cover events like art exhibit openings or concerts.

Also, being a journalist these days doesn’t have to mean writing for an old-fashion print newspaper. You can write for news websites or online magazines. And don’t limit yourself to event coverage. You could write a movie critique, opinion pieces, and even humor articles.

Earning Potential: Pay will vary depending on the publication you write for, but $20 to $40 is a good range.

Where to Start:

It’s all up to you where you want to try writing, really. The first step is to find sites that you love reading since the topics you love reading about will most likely be what you’ll enjoy writing about. Once you’ve made a list, check their submission guidelines.

Most sites will require you to write a pitch. A pitch is basically a list of topics you’d like to write about. But pitches need to contain complete ideas. Saying you want to write movie reviews will not be enough. You’ll have to tell the editor which movies you’d like to write about, what your angle will be, and why their readers will find value in your articles.

Freelance Writer – Resume Writer/editor

If covering events or writing think pieces aren’t really your thing, you can still make money as a freelance writer. One of the more interesting writing gigs you can try is writing other people’s resumes. I know a lot of successful people, and they’re usually too busy to update their own resumes. And that’s where you come in. I think writing a person’s resume is like telling a story. If you’ve got a knack for that, you should give resume writing a try.

A word of advice though – make sure your own resume is up to snuff. It would be funny if you offered resume-writing services when your own CV isn’t very good. In fact, I would say your own CV will be your most compelling sample work.

Earning Potential: You can charge $15 to $25 an hour on this, but since you won’t be working more than a couple of hours on a single resume, temper your expectations.

Where to Start:



Content Creator/product Reviewer

Anyone who’s checked out YouTube (that’s to say all of us) will know that product review or unboxing videos are pretty popular. If you’ve got a specific interest, whether it’s collecting sneakers or playing board games, you can create content based on that hobby. Since you’ll be creating content based on your interests, you can consider content creation an extension of your hobby.

Earning Potential: It’ll depend on your views and followers. You can then earn by monetizing your videos and starting a Patreon page. But take note that you’ll have to invest your own money before you can develop a following (and earn your investment back). You’ll have to spend on camera and lighting gear, and some editing software. But if things take off, this could even become a full-time gig for you.

Where to Start:



Online Tutor

Among all the available online jobs for college students, I think tutoring has to be one of the best ones. When I was a college freshman, I tutored high school students, and it was pretty awesome (and lucrative). With online tutoring jobs becoming a thing, there are even greater opportunities for college students to pass on knowledge to younger students.

They key is to find a subject that you’re good at. But having this knowledge isn’t enough – you’ll have to be able to pass that knowledge effectively to your students. So having good communication skills is a must.

Earning Potential: Anywhere from $13 to $20 an hour. Earnings can go up depending on the number of students you teach online.

Where to Start:



In Closing

So those are some of my recommended online jobs for college students. If you’ve got any other suggestions let everyone know by commenting!
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