Algebra is a broad mathematics concept students need to master in order to grasp more advanced math topics. While not as difficult as more advanced math courses, it’s the first time students encounter letters in addition to numbers. Encountering this new way of thinking in math can confuse some students. Fortunately, algebra doesn’t have to be hard, especially when you work with an algebra tutor who can help you work through tough concepts.
Here, we’ll show you the benefits of working with an online algebra tutor and give you tips on studying algebra concepts between tutoring sessions. You’ll learn what to look for in a great tutor and discover where to find highly qualified tutoring options.
Qualifications to Look for in an Algebra Tutor
Finding the right algebra tutor depends on the level of help you or your student needs. There are different levels of algebra and subject areas, including trigonometry and pre-calculus. You or your student may need help in one particular subject area, or you may need support grasping multiple topics. In general, the best tutors will have some form of tutoring or teaching experience and a good grasp of the subject matter.
Most students first encounter algebra when they reach the high school level, though some advanced students are introduced to the basic concepts in middle school. If your child takes an advanced middle school math class, or if you want to support their transition to high school math classes, look for a tutor who can help them learn pre-algebra topics.
If your child is a high school student, they’ll probably need help with the introductory and foundational aspects of algebra. For starters, you can look for a high school level tutor with experience in algebra 1 (algebra I) topics, including solving linear equations, linear inequalities, factoring, polynomials, and quadratic equations. You may also want to work with a tutor who has experience teaching geometry, since algebra 1 builds on many of the same concepts.
Higher-level high school students may benefit from working with a tutor who can teach algebra 2 (algebra II) subjects. These include probability, trigonometry, sequences and series, and logarithmic expressions. Algebra II math tutors should also understand matrices, conic sections, and exponential functions.
If you need a college algebra tutor for more advanced classes and test preparation, it’s important to look for tutors who are subject matter experts. You’ll want to find a college algebra tutor with extensive experience with algebra I and algebra II concepts as well as related math subjects such as trigonometry and geometry.
The best tutor for a college student will be someone who has tutoring experience or experience teaching algebra to higher-level students. When it comes to college-level tutoring, you may want to look for a private tutor who has worked as a math teacher or has a bachelor’s degree in algebra or a similar topic.
Where to Find an Algebra Tutor
You can find algebra tutoring for both in-person and virtual learning. In-person tutors are generally hired locally using services such as Craigslist or teacher recommendations. If you choose to hire an in-person tutor, you’ll need to set the price range for tutoring sessions, payment methods, and transport yourself or your child between home and the algebra lessons. Additionally, in-person or in-home tutoring limits you to the tutors in your area, whether you live in a big city like Houston, Ashburn, or Los Angeles, or a rural town.
Alternatively, you can use an online tutoring service to get algebra homework help or learn skills like problem-solving and solving differential equations. Online tutors offer virtual lessons and support for a wide range of math classes including algebra. You can also find math tutors who can help with test prep for college entrance exams like the SAT and ACT.
The benefit of working with online tutors is you don’t have to worry about driving back and forth to lessons. Online tutoring platforms also take the guesswork out of hiring a tutor. Some sites like TutorMe connect you with a qualified tutor in minutes, making it easy to get last-minute help. It also helps save you time so you can focus on learning or supporting your child’s educational needs.
With online tutoring platforms, you also don’t have to worry about making cash payments in person to someone you don’t know. You’ll pay the online tutoring service, and they’ll connect you with a great tutor. Online tutoring is safe, and most sites offer help if you have any concerns. If an issue arises, you can easily contact the company’s customer support team.
Tips for Practicing Algebra Between Tutoring Sessions
Like most things, mastering the concepts in math courses involves practice. To get the most out of your tutoring sessions, hone your skills between math tutoring lessons. Here are some ways you can learn algebra and improve your skills while you wait for your next tutoring lesson.
Know the Basics
To be good at algebra, you need to have a firm grasp of basic arithmetic including multiplication, division, and order of operations. In addition, you need to be able to solve formulas and feel comfortable showing your work and explaining how you got to a specific answer. If you struggle with any of these topics, it’s a good idea to work with your math teacher or a basic online math tutor before jumping into more complicated algebra concepts.
Don't Be Afraid of Letters
For many students, algebra and geometry are the first high school math courses that have letters as well as numbers. These letters, known as variables, are simply a way for mathematicians to identify what they are solving for. Some problems may have more than one variable, making it look a little overwhelming. Take your time and work on one variable at a time. Make sure to practice solving math problems with variables in between your tutoring lessons to build your skills.
Practice Makes Perfect
In between tutoring, it’s important to complete practice problems on topics you recently learned. This will help you identify any problem areas and practice what you learned in your online tutoring session. You can rework problems your tutor went over or go back through last weeks’ homework assignment. Make sure to jot down a note if you get an answer wrong so you can see what you did incorrectly and learn how to avoid that mistake next time.
Prepare for Your Tutoring Session
Getting the most out of your tutoring sessions involves some preparation. Take a few minutes before your session to write down any concepts you’ve been struggling with. Share those problem areas with your tutor at the beginning of your lesson so they can adjust the lesson plan to suit your needs. This will help keep your sessions focused on working past your obstacles.
Learn and Master Algebra With TutorMe
If you need algebra help, TutorMe is here to help. Our highly qualified algebra tutors can assist you with anything from college-level concepts to special education needs. All our tutors are screened to ensure subject matter knowledge, and we’ll connect you with the best tutor in less than a minute. You can hop in for quick help before a big exam or schedule monthly sessions to master topics in your algebra class.
Our tutors are not only knowledgeable — they’re also affordable. You’ll pay as little as $26 per hour for monthly tutoring plans, or you can choose a pay-as-you-go option. From basic math tutors and pre-algebra tutors to linear algebra tutors, you’ll find plenty of resources to help you with your math learning needs.
Our proprietary lesson space makes it easy to learn different algebra concepts. You can use the math editor tool to easily insert variables and graph functions. The calculator tool also enables you to work out equations, including ones with functions. You can also share files with your tutor, making it easy to work on homework assignments or worksheets or to evaluate your work.
At TutorMe, we make it easy to find a tutor regardless of the subject you need help with. You’ll find highly qualified tutors on plenty of secondary education topics, from computer science and linear algebra to social studies. We also offer tutoring for college-level topics such as ethnic studies, chiropractics, and law.