Guidelines for Tutors
This is a list of suggestions which may help you be a more effective tutor.
Please read it through and ask a supervisor if you have any questions.
- Let students know you’re here and wear your badge so they can identify you easily. At the start of your tutoring hours
visit each student in the area, tell them your name and that you’re
a tutor, and answer any questions they have for you at that time. On a slow
day, let them know where to find you when they need help; on a busy day, say you'll be helping other students as well and can’t
spend all your time with them.
- Encourage students to ask questions. Periodically visit each student in
the area to see if they have questions. If a student doesn’t know
what to ask, ask them questions about what they’re learning in the class
and which questions they’re stuck on.
- Help as many students as you can. It’s easy to get “bogged
down” on a difficult question or while helping an insecure student.
Try not to spend more than 20 minutes at a time with one student if there
are others waiting.
- Teach at the students’ ability level. The easiest way to determine
a student’s ability level is to watch them do a problem themselves. If they make an error show them
the correct way to proceed. You may find yourself explaining precalculus concepts
to calculus students; this is OK. Don’t
hesitate to work a problem yourself; the student
can refer back to it later.
- Model good study habits. If a student isn’t ready to skip steps in
their work, try not to skip steps while explaining the problem. If you’re not sure of a definition, use
the book’s index.
- Encourage students to work together. Let students know when there are other
members of their class present, and if the opportunity arises, encourage them
to sit at the same tables.
- Keep the area neat. When you get the chance, recycle used scratch paper,
throw out trash and replenish the scratch paper supply at each table. Store
your coat and bag in the cabinet to make more room for students to work.
- Be on time. If you find you’re having trouble working the hours assigned
to you, talk to a supervisor about changing your hours. When it’s time
for you to leave, point out other tutors in the area to the students you’ve
been working with.
- Be flexible. If you’re in Math Services and think more tutors
are needed, ask a supervisor if they’d like you to work a few
extra hours. If you’re feeling overloaded during your hours, make a note when you sign out
suggesting we hire additional tutors for those hours.
- You work at Math Services. Students study here. If you see anything that might make you or your students uncomfortable or interfere with the mission of Math Services (unwanted flirting, heated political discussions, loud music), please talk to a supervisor about your concerns. Also, please do not eat while on duty.
Last Modified: September 19, 2005