Things to Consider before Choosing a Tutor

This article gives insight into several tips and tricks before choosing a tutor for your child. Read on for more information about tutor selection.

Selecting a suitable private tutor is a time-consuming process, and sometimes it becomes exhausting when you have too many choices. Choices itself are not bad, but knowing on what bench-mark, private tutors to judge

Don’t worry, and I have tried framing a few questions which will help you in deciding private tutor before you take a final call. Let’s begin:-

Does the Tutor have the relevant experience?

Does the Tutor have good communication skills?

Does the Tutor have academic credential and qualifications to teach students?

Does the Tutor have his or her own resources?

Does the Tutor travel to your place or do you have to travel to the Tutor?

How much does the Tutor charge?

Can I afford the Tutor charges?

Does the Tutor have references from previous students?

Does the Tutor have a good track record in getting results?

Does my child really need a Tutor or is it a deeper underlying issue that can be resolved at school?

Can I be a Tutor to my child?

Does the tutor have the relevant experience?

Educational qualifications, years of experience do matter. But, what matters the most is a relevant experience like if your child is studying for IB curriculum, do teacher have experience in teaching to students of IB curriculum or International Curriculum. The relevant expertise becomes essential as it will help in exam pattern, style of study, and course design. Don’t hesitate but do ask questions, this will help in knowing the teacher better. You can also read in the profile description of the teacher to know it.

If a teacher is teaching for IIT-JEE, he/she should have relevant experience in teaching to students of IIT-JEE.

Does the tutor have excellent communication skills?

Communication skills do not mean just oratory skills or not having stage fear. The student-teacher relationship is such that it demands a lot of verbal and non-verbal communication skills. The teacher should be understandable and have empathy towards students. The teacher should be able to teach in the language in which students can understand and appreciate. His/her personality should not be such that student fears in asking questions; else the very purpose of having a private tutor will be defeated. So, communication should happen two-way, and the study setup is such that students should be able to ask questions without any hesitation.

Does the tutor have academic credentials and qualifications to teach students?

Before hiring any tutor or starting with any tutor, it is prudent to check their detailed profiles which do mention their educational qualifications and years of experience. Start a conversation with only those teacher who meets your expectation in terms of academic credential and skills. Academic credential means whether the tutor has experience in teaching in a formal or informal setup like teaching in schools, colleges, or in coaching classes. Do teachers have experience in taking private lessons.

Qualifications do matter at every stage, but it’s not a mandatory criterion. It is more pronounced if the teacher is taking classes of higher degrees like preparing for Medical Entrance, IIT-JEE or preparing students for CAT, GMAT, etc. 

Does the tutor have his or her resources?

The tutor has resources that are a tricky question or subject to deal with. Some tutors have to develop their study notes and provide students with these study notes. And there are quite a large number of a teacher who relies on the external publisher of reference books for study notes. You will find a teacher who has developed their resources with years of experience and these kinds of resources are highly useful and students will find it very much handy.

Does the Tutor travel to your place or do you have to travel to the

tutor?

Teaching location is one of the most crucial factors to consider before you start any tuition classes. This decision could be one of the Top 3 factors in deciding whether you or your child is going to a teacher’s place or you want the teacher to visit your home. If you happen to ask, teacher to come to your location, you should have a proper environment or set up at your place that at that few hours there should not be any disturbance at your home. You should have sufficient place at your home and proper setup where the teacher and students can sit comfortably. Further, don’t distract teacher attention with pleasantries like Tea, Coffee, or snacks item. It is customary to give a glass of water but doesn’t go beyond that during study hours. If any event is going to happen at your place, do inform teachers well in advance or cancel/postpone class for other times or days.

Suppose you want to send your child or you want to travel and go to the teacher’s place. Ensure, that teacher takes tuition/ learning lesson from their home too or have some arrangement to take learning lessons from some dedicated area. You should have a proper provision of transportation of going to the teacher’s place at dedicated time and day. You should keep in mind that you don’t have to travel too far, else going every day or multiple times a week will become difficult.

How much does the Tutor charge?

Generally, the charge for the tutor is put on the website. Do refer to understand whether the cost will fit in your budget or not. It’s always prudent to clarify and understand the charge structure in the first meeting or better over the first phone call itself. There is no standard charge structure in private tutoring. It varies, some teacher prefers to charge per session/per hour, sometimes teachers do charge on a monthly fee structure and some times on a complete course which can run for 80-100 hours.

A tutor can have payment terms of advance payment or in the middle of the month or the end of the month. If it is in installment then 40% in the beginning, 30% and 30% in the second and last installment, whatever, charge structure and payment terms should be clarified at the beginning itself, and it should be crystal and clear. Ideally, if you are comfortable with charge/fee structure, do insist on the teacher to have signed an agreement for the same and prefer to make payment through Cheque/Bank Transfer. If making payment through Cash, do have Cash receipt, so that there is no dispute related to money transactions later.

Can I afford the Tutor charges?

Affordability is one of the most critical factors in hiring any private tutor. Do keep in mind that private tutor is going to be expensive when compared to Schools or Coaching Classes. In private tuition most of the time, the teacher has to visit and devote the entire time for you or your child. The teacher can be great, but if you are not able to afford Fee, there is no point in discussing further. We also do not recommend to bargain for tuition fees.

Does the tutor have references from previous students?

If you are not able to find references in the website or credible source, do ask the teacher directly that whether they can provide any recommendation. Referrals will help you in knowing the teacher from the person/student who has studied. References help in understanding the credibility, style of teaching, the approach of teaching students, personality of the teacher, etc.

Does the tutor have a good track record in getting results?

There are some courses which highly result-oriented and required focused approaching like preparing for Medical or Engineering Entrance or preparing for cracking CAT, G-MAT, IELTS, TOEFL, or banking exam. So, you would like to study from a teacher who has helped students in cracking these Entrance exams. Everyone has a different way of measuring results. Some teachers have helped students in developing an interest in subjects, and then student outcomes improved automatically. For results, you need to give sufficient time frame to both students and teachers to perform. If your result expectation is going to be from Day 1, it will become difficult for both student and teacher to work on long-term priorities. 

Does my child need a Tutor, or is it a deeper underlying issue that can be resolved at school?

This question is essential to know whether you need a tutor or not. Just like, if all children are going for private tuition, they should not compel in going for a private tutor. But, you have to judge whether you need a tutor or not.

Can I be a Tutor to my child?

This question is also one of the great ideas, and most of the parents in the early years teach their child. For teaching to your child, you should time, energy, and knowledge of subjects. If you have all these, it’s always ideal for teaching your child yourself. 

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