Is Algebra 1 tripping you up and you worry you'll never make it to higher math classes? Did you just realize that your trigonometry class is going over your head or that you might never feel ready for the SAT math section? If so, you might need to consider tutoring for mathematics.
Once thought of as only a tool for struggling learners, tutoring is increasingly popular with students for a number of different reasons. But how can you be sure that math tutoring is a good investment for you? And how can you find a math tutor who suits all your unique needs? Let's take a closer look.
When Is It Time To Consider Tutoring for Mathematics?
Lots of students know extra effort tends to pay off. You study extra hard and ace your test or put your essay through an extra round of revisions to get a great grade. There's no doubt that this is a gratifying feeling.
Sometimes, though, this extra hard work can result in frustration. What happens when you don’t see the results of your hard work in your grades? Why spend all those hours studying for the ACT if your score doesn’t improve?
If this is the case, it might be time to consider tutoring for math. It can be hard to know where to draw the line, but there are a few clear signs that you might need a tutor.
1. You Can't Keep up With Grade-Level Work
Many times, the first time that you need some extra help comes when you can't keep up with your math work anymore. This could mean different things for different grade levels.
Trouble with math looks different at each level. If multiplication math homework is tripping up your elementary school student or middle school student, you might consider looking for extra math help. The same could be true if you're a high school student tackling AP computer science but something isn't clicking.
As math problems become more challenging, tutoring for mathematics can become more necessary. College students who never had a problem with high school calculus might struggle with college-level differential equations.
This is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic. As learning gaps emerge after time spent away from school, the benefits of tutoring become even more important.
Sometimes, the hardest part of your tutoring journey is admitting you need help. It's always best to err on the side of caution and seek a math tutor before you fall too far behind. If you aren't sure, ask your math teacher if they think a math tutor might be a good option for you.
2. You Need To Prepare for a Standardized Test
There are some math skills that require specialized math instruction. This is definitely true when it comes to things like standardized tests. Whether you're prepping for the SAT, the GRE, or the GMAT, test prep tutoring sessions are a good idea.
Because standardized tests vary in content, format, and scoring, it's best to find a tutor with tutoring experience or teaching experience directly related to the test. The best math tutors for test prep have aced the test and taught others to do so also.
Before hiring a math tutor specifically for standardized test prep, ask about experience and results in this subject matter. These tests are specialized enough that you'll want someone very familiar with the specific test’s format and problem-solving.
3. You Want To Take Your Skills To the Next Level
Tutors aren't just for students who need extra help. Sometimes, tutoring services simply bring your skills or knowledge to the next level. There are a couple of reasons you might consider this option.
Perhaps your interests lie in a math-related field and you know that you need to achieve a higher level of instruction if you wish to pursue that field. This could be true if you're interested in becoming an engineer, a doctor, or even an astronaut. Math is essential for many fields, and you don't need to limit your math studies to the courses offered in your school.
Even if you don't want to pursue a field that requires higher level math skills, you might really enjoy math. Working with numbers is a concrete skill many people simply enjoy. If you want to learn more about numbers, a math tutoring program may be right for you.
How To Find Tutoring for Mathematics
Once you know that it's time to find a math tutor, you need to know where to find the best math tutor for you. After all, it can be difficult to find a tutor who checks all the right boxes.
First of all, you'll want to find someone with experience in the specific math subjects you need tutoring in. This might be easy for general topics like pre-algebra, but there are fewer tutors the more specialized your topic is. For example, there are far fewer linear algebra tutors than there are middle school math tutors.
Face-to-Face Math Tutors
If you're looking for a face-to-face tutor, you need someone with this experience who lives nearby. That person will need to have availability that matches your own, and they will need to charge a per-hour rate that suits your budget. This might not be easy.
One place to start looking is your school. Often, schools have free tutoring for mathematics resources. If this isn't an option, your math teacher may be able to refer you to a private math tutor or a math tutoring center near you.
Online Math Tutors
For some students, face-to-face tutoring may not be the right tutor choice. In fact, online tutoring for mathematics can open many options and solve the problem of finding a local tutor who checks all your boxes. Instead, you can search through hundreds and hundreds of tutors who are available at a touch of the keyboard.
On sites like TutorMe, you can filter tutors by subject area expertise and find tutors with availability in real-time. There's no hassle about agreeing on a location, and rates start at as low as $26 per hour.
While online tutoring might at first seem less traditional, online learning is becoming more and more common. And, as the TutorMe demo lesson space shows, the website provides a platform for clear verbal and written instructions.
Is a Math Tutor Right for You?
There are many reasons that someone might find a math tutor. While trouble with homework or course content might be one of them, tutors are a great choice for other students too. Students who are preparing for standardized tests or who simply want to engage in a deeper study of mathematics can all be good candidates for tutoring for mathematics.
Deciding to find a math tutor is one thing, but finding the right tutor for you is another. It can be difficult to locate a local tutor who has enough experience and meets all your other requirements.
Online tutoring provides a feasible alternative for students with limited availability or those who want to cast a broader net. Consider online tutoring if you want to find the best math tutor for you, no matter where he or she may be located.