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Therese PopeGive Your Grades a Boost: How to Find the Right Tutor for You

by Therese Pope

As a re-entry student, you may find yourself in need of a tutor to help boost your grade. As a professional copywriter with a background in journalism, I moonlight as a tutor and assist students with their English and writing classes. I tutor re-entry students who have never taken a college-level writing course and/or are required to pass a writing class in order to maintain their current job position.

Math and writing are must-have skills you need no matter what career path you choose. However, math and writing does not always come easy to re-entry students. If your grades have slipped and you need extra help with your classes, here are five tips to help you find a reputable and experienced tutor.

1. Take advantage of your college's tutoring center. Most college campuses provide on campus tutoring centers and services to their students. These tutoring services are usually free or cost a nominal fee. If you aren't familiar with your college's tutoring center, ask fellow students or your professor for help.

Tutoring centers often lead study skill workshops and connect you with tutors who have taken that specific class before. On-campus tutors also provide more than just writing expertise and assistance. They can also assist with organizing assignments, time management, and studying for tests.

2. Hire a fellow student. If your college doesn't have a tutoring center on campus, seek out a student who performs well in your class. For example, an English major will have strong writing and critical thinking skills. They can easily assist you with writing composition and research papers. If you struggle with statistics or accounting, seek out a business major (or recent graduate) who received an A in the class.

College students are always looking for extra ways to earn money. Fellow students are more likely to cut you a break with reasonable tutoring rates. Another option is to negotiate and barter tutoring services. For example: if you're an accountant and you're a whiz with numbers, you can offer to help a student with a statistics class in exchange for writing assistance. If you cannot find anyone in your class to assist you, ask around for tutoring leads (see #3 below).

3. Reach out to friends, family, or a business professional within the community. Before you hire a professional tutor, connect with your personal network of friends, family, and colleagues. Do you know someone who is an English teacher who might be willing to tutor you during the weekends or evenings? Ask around in your community. There are kind and generous business professionals (i.e. writers, accountants, scientists, etc.) who enjoy helping college students and might be willing to tutor you pro-bono (for free).

4. Search online for an experienced tutor. There are college professors and high school teachers who moonlight as part-time tutors on weekends or during evening hours. If you have access to a Web camera and microphone, you can hire an online tutor and work from the comfort of your own home.


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