Getting the most out of tutoring: Setting expectations for yourself

Signing up for tutoring with Skooli is the first step in advancing your learning. However, passively participating isn’t enough — it’s important to set expectations for yourself and take an active role in your learning.

Speak up! If you need help in one area and you don’t think you’ve done enough review, tell your tutor. They might explain their reasoning for focusing on something else first, or they might simply not know that you’re still not confident in this area. Remember that this is your time and your learning; you have the right to ask for what you need.

At the same time, set realistic expectations. If you’ve been earning C’s until this point and only have four weeks left in your semester, it’s unlikely you’ll end up with an A average. Be honest with yourself about what you hope to achieve, whether it’s a better understanding, more confidence in your writing skills, or bringing your grades up to a certain level. In addition, share these expectations with your tutor so they can design a learning plan that will work best for you.

During your lessons, make sure to take notes on what your tutor is explaining. A good tutor can explain concepts or procedures in a way that breaks them down simply — but once you’re on your own, you may find that you can’t remember exactly how they explained it to you. Write down key points, tips, shortcuts, and anything else important your tutor gives you.

In addition, as you work through problems, verbalize every step. Talking out loud may feel silly at first, but it serves two very important purposes: First, it allows your tutor to know what you understand and where you might be going wrong. Second, verbalizing your thought process has benefits to learning by allowing you to cement your understanding of the concept. Throughout this process, be sure to ask your tutor for feedback to make sure you’re on the right track.

Outside of your tutoring sessions, keep studying on your own. Your tutoring should help you advance your learning, but it won’t be enough if you don’t put in some work on your own time. This includes paying attention in class, consistently finishing homework assignments on time, and reviewing concepts so that you know exactly where you need the most work with your tutor.

Finally, the most important tip of all: don’t give up! Learning can take a long time, and sometimes a subject takes many review sessions before it clicks. Stick with it, and your hard work will pay off in the end.

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