Finding the Perfect Tutor
Whether you are falling behind in certain subjects or simply want a head start on future lessons, it can be well worth hiring a tutor to help you get the most from your academic life. Tutors can do more than just help students academically, however. They can also help students build confidence in the classroom so they can excel in areas like class participation and public speaking. No matter what your reason is for seeking out a tutor, here is some advice to help you find and choose the right tutor for you.
Searching for Potential Tutors
There are various ways to seek out potential tutors. For starters, you may want to try asking your teacher or school counselor if they know of any tutors who specialize in the areas you happen to be struggling in. Even if your teacher or school counselor is unable to recommend any formal tutors, they may still offer to set up some in-school study sessions between you and a fellow student.
A second place to seek out potential tutors is online. Simply search for "Tutors in X," where X is the name of your city or town. If your search turns up any local tutors, then take note of the ones specializing in your problem subjects so you can contact them for more information about their services. While online searches often yield more results for those in larger cities, students in smaller towns may still be able to find a local tutor by performing such searches online.
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If you are still having trouble finding a local tutor after contacting your school and searching online, then you may need to consider signing up for sessions at an online tutoring agency instead. While online tutoring agencies may have some advantages over local tutors (like their tendency to offer more flexible tutoring schedules), do note that most agencies require their students to possess a stable internet connection, web camera, and microphone.
Choosing the Right Tutor for You
You'll want to ask potential tutors a variety of questions so you can narrow down your options to include only the tutors that meet your needs. By interviewing each tutor, you can get a better idea about whether or not a specific tutor may be a good fit.
Here are some sample questions to ask during the tutor interviews:
What formal training or first-hand experience do you have tutoring students in the same grade and subject that is to be focused on? Ask for references so you can verify their claims.
What are your available hours? If the tutor can't provide tutoring sessions that fit into your schedule, they won't be a suitable match.
What are your fees? You can easily narrow down your options by excluding any tutors who don't fall into your or your parents' budget. You should also ask each tutor about their payment options and cancellation policy.
Where would the tutoring sessions take place? If the tutoring sessions aren't to be held directly in your school or online, ask if the tutor would be willing to come to your house or if they prefer tutoring in a public space like a library.
Please be aware that no matter how careful you are when choosing a tutor, it's entirely possible that you end up choosing the wrong one. If, after a number of sessions, you feel like you've chosen the wrong tutor, don't be afraid to make a change. Do be sure that you allow yourself enough sessions to give the tutor a fair shake before giving up on the pairing, as it can take time for any new tutoring relationship to reach its full potential.
It's also important that you realize that working with a tutor won't be an instant fix to your learning struggles. It can take several sessions to see noticeable results. If, after a reasonable amount of time, you find you aren't seeing the kind of results you were hoping for, then it could be worth looking for a new tutor. If you do end up looking for a new tutor, be sure to put these tips back into action so you can once again increase your odds of locating the best tutor for the job.
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