Finding a tutor can be an intimidating experience. When you’re looking for the best tutor to help you or your child master basic subjects, there are plenty of options. Some are highly qualified, and others may have limited experience. There are also considerations of cost, teaching style, and convenience.
With so many choices, it can be hard to find the perfect fit. Here, we’ll offer tips on how you can find a tutor from using local resources to working with online tutoring platforms. Plus, you’ll find advice on how to vet your candidates and select the best one.
Where To Find a Tutor
In terms of finding a tutor, there are local, in-person, and virtual options to help you look through a wide range of applicants. Here, we'll show you how to leverage your local resources and online options to find a tutor.
Use a Tutoring Service
Online tutoring services like TutorMe are a great way to get both short-term and long-term tutoring assistance. These sites offer one-off tutoring sessions and discount pricing for monthly plans. You can find tutors who can help with a range of subjects, including social science, professional topics, math, and engineering. Online tutoring services also work with tutors across the nation, so you won’t be limited to local tutors.
Working with an online tutoring agency is simple. You don’t have to worry about meeting an in-person tutor, shuffling yourself or your child to and from tutoring sessions, or figuring out payments. Online tutoring platforms take care of all these details. Some sites let you find your tutor from a database while others use your criteria to automatically match you with the right tutor.
Payments are completed securely online, and sessions are held virtually. This saves you time and makes it easy for students to get last-minute help as well as long-term support. Most online tutoring platforms also offer safety commitments and the help of a customer service team.
Ask at School
Schools work hard to provide services and support to students. You can reach out to your child’s counselor or contact the family resource center at school to get advice on tutoring options. The staff member may recommend after-school study groups or programs designed to help students with challenging subjects, including science and math. Often, test prep study sessions are available during breaks and after school to help students prepare for college, university, and Ivy League education.
TutorMe partners with numerous school districts and colleges across the United States and Canada to offer tutoring for all grade levels and a wide range of subjects. If your school doesn’t offer free tutoring, ask an administrator to reach out to TutorMe to set up tutoring services. You can also simply pay out of pocket for tutoring on TutorMe’s platform where sessions are as low as $26 per month.
In addition to study groups, a counselor can recommend study tips suited to your child’s learning style. They may also recommend local tutors or peer tutoring options for learning support in common subject areas.
The United States Department of Education and your state education department will offer resources for tutoring and support.
Consider Peer Tutoring
Sometimes, finding a good tutor is as easy as asking your student’s classmates or looking within your own network. You may know a friend or relative who has certain subject area expertise and can help you or your child master the material. Alternatively, if you’re a high school student or college student, you can ask high-performing students in your class if they can help you after school.
These arrangements are best suited for short-term tutoring. If you’d like to ask someone you know to tutor you or your child long-term, it’s a good idea to discuss payment and scheduling before you get started.
Look Into Nonprofits
Nonprofits and some colleges may offer free tutoring services for students who need a little extra support. Many of these organizations work with undergraduate and graduate students to provide subject-specific tutoring to high school students, middle school students, and elementary students. Some great nonprofits to include in your search include the YMCA and Junior Achievement USA. You can also find tutoring options for students with autism and special needs by contacting the Autism Society.
How To Vet a Tutor
Once you’ve decided where you’re going to hire a tutor, it’s time to think about how to select the perfect one. Here are a few things to keep in mind when vetting a tutor.
Subject Matter Expertise
In terms of hiring a tutor, the first thing to consider is whether the tutor has expertise in the subject area you need help with. This becomes more important with advanced subjects. For example, a general math tutor may be able to help younger students with pre-calculus and basic geometry, but you may need a more intensive or subject-specific tutor for higher-level courses such as statistics.
Check to see if the tutor has tutoring or teaching experience in your desired subject area — the more, the better.
You should also look for a tutor who uses active teaching. This means the tutor is involved in your or your child’s studies and provides feedback. The tutor should adapt lesson plans suited to your skillset and address the areas you need the most help with. Tutors who ask follow-up questions, learn how you or your student found a specific answer, and tailor lessons to you or your child will be more effective than ones who simply list information and move on.
Not all of us learn the same way. Some of us grasp concepts better when they’re accompanied by visuals, while others prefer auditory cues or written explanations. Find your or your child’s learning style, and find a tutor who can adapt to it. If you’re a visual learner, make sure your tutor is comfortable using drawings, diagrams, or other visual aids.
It’s also useful to consider what you or your child needs at different grade levels. Younger students tend to work better with friendly, kind, and approachable tutors. These tutors will be well-versed in using props such as blocks or math counters to help reinforce certain subjects. Young students may also need more help to stay focused than high school students. Keep your child’s learning needs in mind when looking for the right tutor.
Interest and Passion
As you find a tutor, look for someone who’s genuinely interested in the subject, not just trying to make a little extra cash. Look for tutors who are passionate about teaching and their subjects. To evaluate this, set up an interview with a tutor to get a feel for their excitement for teaching. Many online tutoring platforms screen tutors or require them to submit a video of themselves teaching a subject they are passionate about. However you choose to hire a tutor, make sure they’re interested in the subjects they're tutoring.
Start Learning With TutorMe
With TutorMe, you can find a tutor in minutes and start getting support for all of your learning needs. Just let us know what subject you need help with, and our algorithm will match you with a qualified tutor in less than 30 seconds.
You’ll find help with more than 300 subjects ranging from foreign language (including Spanish tutors, ESL tutors, and German tutors) to math tutors, science tutors, and history tutors. You’ll also find a wide selection of test prep options, including the LSAT, GRE, and SAT.
Tutoring with TutorMe is also affordable. Here’s how it works: You can sign up for pay-as-you-go plans or monthly options with discounts for multiple sessions. You’ll pay as little as $26 per hour for private tutoring.
All sessions are conducted in our proprietary lesson space, face-to-face with online professional tutors. The lesson space features video chat functionality so students and tutors can easily see each other and work on problems together. The digital whiteboard includes a calculator and file-sharing options so you can get homework help and work out math problems. It’s an easy and integrative way to find a tutor who is highly qualified.