What is Tutoring?

If you have stumbled upon this post, you are currently searching either with an interest to become a tutor and want more information or as a parent looking to supplement your child’s studies or to help improve your child’s lack of understanding in certain (or all) subject areas due to fast pace curriculums in a traditional school system. No matter your reasoning, continue to read on for details on what is tutoring, who can be a tutor, who can be tutored and additional roles of a tutor.

But what exactly is tutoring?

Tutoring is the act of teaching or instructing on either a one-to-one or small group basis by a tutor. A tutor, then, is a person who is able to teach one or several subject areas and most times they are employed as private instructors.

The word tutor can also act as a verb in which one is guarding/protecting an individual. Place those two definitions together, then you see that a tutor instructs one or several subject areas in a private capacity or small group setting and has the responsibility of guarding/protecting their pupil. This makes sense as a tutor eventually spends time developing a one-to-one relationship, most times, with their pupil, thus ultimately allowing them to form bonds in which their tutee would look to their tutor as their mentors.

The purpose of a tutor is to ensure that their pupil becomes self-sufficient, i.e. they are able to learn, understand and come up with solutions to complicated concepts on their own. Interestingly enough, this sounds counterintuitive to the job of tutoring because the tutor depends on the tutee for business. However, the best tutors are ones who are able to foster critical thinking and guide understanding at the very foundational level so that when complex questions are thrown at the student, they are able to respond thoughtfully using their developed critical thinking skills.

This is important, especially in the Bahamas, because there are many times when a child may lack understanding at the foundational level of their earlier years and the problem is never solved. This leads to the child continuing to struggle as they are forced to advance into higher grade levels in a traditional school setting.

Sadly, many of these students ‘slip through the cracks’ of the educational system because of large class sizes (currently in the Bahamas, the average class size is around 30), stricter and more fast pace curriculums that are made to accommodate most of the world’s educational standards, pressures on teachers to perform well the majority of the time, etc.  Therefore, a tutor would then be responsible for rectifying this situation by adjusting their lessons to accommodate the tutee’s needs and pace, resolidify their knowledge at the foundation of that subject, and help them to answer questions using critical thinking.

===>Click here to learn more about the educational problems in the Bahamas<====

Who can be a tutor?

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Usually, you may see certified teachers engaging in private tutoring but essentially, anyone can be a tutor as long as they have a strong understanding of a particular subject area. A blog post on Chapman University’s website further states that a tutor has to be trained on effective tutoring practices. While on the other hand, Itcconline.net states that having great knowledge in a particular subject isn’t as important as understanding exactly how one should learn. Thus, a great tutor is one who infuses empathy with their knowledge and makes learning interactive, meaningful and fun.

To give you an example, what I love to do with my students is to ensure that they have a real-life application to whatever it is that they’re studying. Let’s use a science such as biology, for example. Many students tend to detest subjects like biology because there are many terms that fly over their heads so they resort to memorizing, rather than understanding and relating that term to their actual bodies. So to help facilitate that connection between the textbook and their physical bodies (and because I am not legally able to cut anyone open), I explain using detailed youtube videos, anatomical models (if available), or cross-sectional images of that particular topic. Usually, once they have a visual representation, they are able to superimpose those images to their bodies and they start to understand that the information in the textbook is not so far removed as they thought.

Roles of a tutor

According to an article on Chandler-Gilbert Community College, tutoring is the “process of comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation.” So even though a tutor may be responsible for reviewing class material and helping with homework assignments, they are NOT responsible for providing answers/solutions for their students because their main purpose is to help them understand the question and find the answers themselves.  They are also responsible for fostering their tutee’s confidence

Sometimes a tutor can act as an uncertified counselor to a student because there may be times when a student is facing a challenging situation at home or school and their tutor can be their confidant.

Who can be tutored?

Anyone, at almost any age, can be tutored. This includes students from PreK to University level or even those who just want to continue their education on a subject that they have always been interested in, such as music. In fact, I have students of various ages ranging from 3 years old to 50+, which had taught me that you’re never too old or too young to learn a particular subject, it’s just how you relate that subject to the student. Of course, a student at 3 years old would require a different method and pace of instruction than a 50-year-old on the same topic.

Stay tuned to my blog for more information on the advantages and disadvantages of tutoring, the differences between tutoring and teaching, how to find a good tutor, effective tutoring practices, and much more!

11 thoughts on “What is Tutoring?”

Yama

I think this is going to be a great website by just reading the way you’re writing. Also, this is a very nice niche. Love the front page design. It’s simple and sophisticated. Keep it up.

Carol

Tutoring is a very good orientation as it helps to understand a lot if things.

Both the tutor and the person under tutelage would benefit from the interaction.

Tutoring requires perseverance and patience as a tutor can always get frustrated at times when he or she is trying to impact knowledge into their students under tutelage.
Becoming a tutor is never a day job, it tequires the acquisition of various skills which are required for efficient tutelage

    Tyra-admin

    I agree with the majority of what you said but I would like for you to expand more on your thoughts about tutoring is never a day job. Are you trying to say that tutoring is not similar to a 9-5 job?

Carol

Tutoring is a very good orientation as it helps to understand a lot if things.

Both the tutor and the person under tutelage would benefit from the interaction.

Tutoring requires perseverance and patience as a tutor can always get frustrated at times when he or she is trying to impact knowledge into their students under tutelage. Becoming a tutor is never a day job, it requires the acquisition of various skills which are required for efficient tutelage

Parveen

Hello Tyra, Thanks for giving light on tutoring. Sometimes a tutor can act as an uncertified counselor to a student because there may be times when a student is facing a challenging situation at home or school and their tutor can be their confidant.

Anyone, at almost any age, can be tutored. You’re never too old or too young to learn a particular subject, it’s just how you relate that subject to the student.

Your guide is awesome for me.

Thank you

Parveen

Shahlla Anjum

This is a remarkable way to talk about ‘tutoring’ the topic of this discussion. Tutoring is needed by most of the people but there are a lot of tutors out there. It becomes easier for any one to rely on this person’s website and services because of the way it is presented. Regular tutoring ads are all same and boring. We all want a change. This topic and discussion about the topic brings all that we need if we are looking for tutoring . It builds a relation between the service provider and a customer. The open discussion about the topic gives a sense of freedom everbody likes.

    Tyranique Thurston

    Thank you so much Shahlla for the words of encouragement! I tried my best to ensure that I am educating both the parents and students on who a tutor is and what to expect with my website. I want to ensure that everyone is pretty clear on this subject and we are all on the same page.

Alblue

Thanks for the explanation about tutoring. I personally interested to become a tutor, especially online tutor. I don’t really know if I need some certification to become a tutor. In the past, I usually taught my juniors about business and accounting. Do you happen to know some platforms to match tutors and students worldwide? Thanks

    Tyranique Thurston

    Hi Alblue!

    Usually, you don’t need specific ceritification to tutor but it helps to have substantial knowlege in a particular subject which may be aquired through a Bachelors degree or continuing education cerifications. 

    There are so many platforms that match tutors to students but it depends on what you are interested in tutoring and where you live.

    If you are American you have:

    1. Skooli

    2. Udemy

    3. Wyzant

    4. Tutor me

    5.Take Lessons

    6. Club Z

    7. The Princeton Review

    8. Varsity Tutors

    Please note that these first several websites are strictly for American citizens. The following websites are for anyone but are still based in America

    9. Chegg.com

    10. Tutor.com

    11. Smart Thinking Pearson.com

    12. Speacial Ed tutoring.com (this one you need a Bachelors degree in special education)

    If you’re American and interested in teaching English as a Foreign language or have any other language to offer, you can check out these websites:

    13. VIPKid

    14. Preply

    15. Lingoda

    16. i-to-i TOEL courses

    For Europeans:

    17. John Academy

    These are just to name a few and the list is not meant to be extensive. If you have any questions, dont hesitate to ask!

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