Effective Tutoring

A tutor is someone who helps individuals or small groups with instruction.  A tutor helps a student improve their personal learning strategies so they can become better learners and be empowered in the classroom. The purpose of a tutor is to help students progress to the point where they can be independent learners and eventually have no need for a tutor.  A tutor should work so that they are no longer needed.

A successful tutor should have certain qualities.  Some of these qualities are content knowledge, empathy, a positive attitude and an engaging sense of humor. 

An effective tutor should have sufficient content knowledge and empathy for the student.  Empathy is the ability to feel what someone else is feeling.  One of these qualities is sufficient content knowledge.  This is important if the tutor is to be effective.   A tutor with empathy can read the attitude, emotional state, and perceptions of a student.  An effective tutor should be able to discern if the student is frustrated with a class, having a bad day, or even how they feel about being tutored. 

Tutors need to develop a mutually supportive relationship with students.  Tutors need to be honest and open.  Students may not be very enthusiastic about getting help with their academic issues.  However, if a student believes a tutor is genuine and wants to listen, that student will begin to open up about their academic problems.  Having a good sense of humor and an engaging personality can also make the student comfortable enough to open up to the tutor.   

An effective tutor should have a passion for helping people and be caring.   A caring tutor is punctual for the tutoring session and develops specific teaching strategies to help their students.  Tutors share themselves with students and develop relationships that will be beneficial for both.

There are many benefits of being a tutor.  A tutor can gain a better understanding of the content they are tutoring in, gain work experience, improve time management skills and make some extra money. 
Students also benefit from tutoring.  A student receives more individualized help and their academic performance improves.  Tutoring also offers intensive practice and can generate a better attitude toward content and academics. 
There are ethical considerations when it comes to tutoring.  Confidentiality is important.  Whatever happens is a tutoring session is confidential.  If personal or academic problems come up they should be brought to the attention of the tutoring supervisor.

Remember not to disclose any personal information and to limit comments about instructors.  It is unethical to disclose phone numbers and home addresses.  A tutor cannot accept or ask for this information. 
It does not help the student being tutored to be allowed to criticize a teacher or professor and complain about the course.  It the student has little or no confidence in the teacher or class, they will not be able to learn what they need to learn.

A tutor should not dress in a way that distracts from learning.  A tutor should not wear revealing clothes or clothing that promotes such things as drugs or violence.  

Effective tutoring is accomplished when their services are no longer needed.

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Tutoring Article courtesy of http://www.tutoring-services.org/