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Lauren P.
Tufts Graduate with Eight Years of Tutoring Experience
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Writing
TutorMe
Question:

To demonstrate my writing tutoring, I will use a short section of text that a theoretical student might want assistance editing: It rained a lot in 1816.... a lot - like everyday; the weather in Europe was abnormally wet because it rained in Switzerland on 130 out of the 183 days from April to September. If I was Mary Shelley I might decide to write a book too. Afterall, it was the onnly thing you could do without TV or anything. She said that she "passed the summer of 1816 in the environs of Geneva...we occasionally amused ourselves with some German stories of ghosts... These tales excited in us a playful desire of imitation" So, people were stuck inside and bored. Mary Shelley decided to write a book becuase it was so awful outside. I can totally see her point, you know? I guess I would write a novel if there was nothing else to do. Found from: http://slulibrary.saintleo.edu/c.php?g=367733&p=2485890

Lauren P.
Answer:

There are a couple of things that are working well with what you have so far! (1) Nice use of a quotation by Mary Shelley! Quotations add legitimacy to your piece, and can provide concrete support to a point. You also move on and attempt to analyze the quote afterwards, which is key when using quotations. (2) Your intro has some good things working for it. Setting the background is a nice way to ease a reader into your essay. However, that being said, I do have some suggestions for you! (1) Be certain that you're tone is appropriate for the subject matter. A lot of words that may be appropriate in your everyday life may be less effective, and even distracting, in a more formal paper. (2) In order to score well, and submit an assignment that you're proud of, it is necessary to spell check and check for any grammatical errors. If you have questions on this, you can look a lot of things up online! If not, ask a tutor or your teacher. (3) Make sure that you're points are logically sound. It may be helpful to write an outline before you start to ensure that each point flows logically into the next. Let me show you an example of how you might do these things. Let's take the very first sentence of your essay. Right now, you have: "It rained a lot in 1816.... a lot - like everyday; the weather in Europe was abnormally wet because it rained in Switzerland on 130 out of the 183 days from April to September." Let's start with recommendation (1). It is imperative to avoid overly casual words in formal writing, especially if they do not add value to your message. My favorite word to get rid of is "like." Like is almost never necessary to say. In this first sentence you say, "like everyday." Judging from the rest of your sentence, it seems as though it did rain quite a lot, but not actually everyday. You then go on to use statistics (awesome!) to demonstrate the frequency that it rained. So, in comparison to the statistics, "like everyday" is almost meaningless. Therefore, I would recommend dropping the phrase. You also use the term, "a lot," twice in this sentence. Now, repetition (repeating a word twice for effect) can be a very effective tool. However, this should be used carefully, and only when the word is particularly poignant. I would therefore avoid repeating it here. Okay. let's move on to point (2): proofreading for spelling and grammar. There is a lot of different grammatical symbols going on right now. In writing, its helpful to keep things simple and clean. I would recommend staying away from ellipses (...) in general, unless you are using them to represent unmentioned text in a quotation. I would even recommend getting rid of the dash (-) as well. I typically don't love dashes in formal writing; I feel that parentheses, commas, and the like can typically do their job. They can be used sparingly, if an author feels that they really would like the reader to take a pause. Therefore, I recommend getting rid of both the ... and the -, as well as all the text that is surround them. You could instead say, "It rained a lot in 1816; the weather..." etc. Finally we are at point (3), making sure that your points are logically sound. In your text, you say that "the weather in Europe was abnormally wet" BECAUSE "it rained in Switzerland on 130 out of the 183 days from April to September." However, was the weather wet because it rained in Switzerland? I would instead argue that the Switzerland fact is an EXAMPLE of how it is abnormally wet. Does that make sense? The Switzerland fact is a good one, but it can be even more powerful when used correctly. You could instead say, "It rained a lot in 1816; during the 183 days from April to September in Switzerland, it rained for 130 of them. This was an abnormally wet time for Europe." OR maybe you could say, "1816 was an abnormally wet time for Europe; during the 183 days from April to September in Switzerland, it rained for 130 of them." Here, the semi-colon acts as an AND (signifying an example) instead of a BECAUSE. Now that we've worked on the first sentence together, how would you use these recommendations to imporve on the rest of the paragraph?

Chemistry
TutorMe
Question:

State the type of reaction and balance it properly: Pb(NO3)2+ AlCl3 → PbCl2 + Al(NO3)3

Lauren P.
Answer:

First, let's start with the math. Let's balance the reaction. We'll start by listing all components present on each side of the reaction: Pb(NO3)2+ AlCl3 → PbCl2 + Al(NO3)3 On the lefthand side of the reaction: 1 Pb 2 NO3 1 Al 3 Cl On the righthand side: 1 Pb 2 Cl 1 Al 3 NO3 So, we see that the Cl and NO3 are not balanced. Cl goes from 3 --> 2; NO3 goes from 2--->3. Luckily, you can notice that these changes here are inverses of each other! That is, the numbers switch places. Therefore, if we simply multiply each unit that has a 2 in it by 3, and each unit that has a 3 in it by 2, we should end up with a balanced equation: 3 Pb(NO3)2+ 2 AlCl3 → 3 PbCl2 + 2 Al(NO3)3 Another way to think about it involves finding the least common multiple of the numbers involved. In our case, we are working with 2 and 3. So, the LCM is is 6! So, if we aim to get 6 NO3 and 6 Cl, we can add to the equation accordingly. Now, let's move on to naming the type of reaction. As you can see, multiple molecules have moved here. 2 completely new compound products have arisen from 2 unique compound reactants. Said another way, the anions switched which cations they were bonded with. When this happens, it is generally referred to as a double replacement reaction. There are subtypes of this type of reaction. But for now, we will simply call it: double replacement reaction.

Algebra
TutorMe
Question:

Write a system of equations to describe the situation below: Zach owns a coffee shop, Central Perk. Lately, he has noticed that all of his usual customers are going to the coffee shop across the street, Cafe Grumpy. So, in order to boost sales, Zach starts a special promotion: half priced coffee! However, because not all of his typical customers drink coffee, he adds another promotion: buy any non-coffee drink and get a free cookie! Before this promotion, Zach was serving an average of 148 coffees a day at a price of $3, 20 cookies at a price of $1, and 40 non-coffee drinks at a price of $2. After the promotion, sales jump to 282 coffees a day and 67 non-coffee drinks with cookies! Non-coffee drinks (tea, coke, etc.) cost $2. Did Zach sell enough extra coffee and other drinks to make his promotion worth it?

Lauren P.
Answer:

In order to solve this problem, we need to first extract any numerical information we can find! I find it easiest to solve problems to compile all relevant information FIRST, and then go from there. I'm going to separate information into 2 categories: Before the promotion AND After the promotion. BEFORE: 148 coffees @ $3 20 cookies @ $1 40 non-coffee drinks @ $2 AFTER 282 coffees @ 1/2 price 67 FREE cookies 67 non-coffee drinks @ $2 We see that we have to do a little math in this section. Because Zach sells coffee at half price, we have to find what price this actually is! We can do this by creating a small equation: 1/2(full price) = half price Then, we fill in what we know: 1/2 ($3) = half price And solve: $1.50 = half price SO Zach sells 282 coffees @ $1.50 Now that we have our information compiled, we can move on to the next step. The original question asks, "Did Zach sell enough extra coffee and other drinks to make his promotion worth it?" We can interpret that question to mean, "Did Zach make more money BEFORE or AFTER the promotion?" To answer this question, we need to find the TOTAL amount of money Zach made BEFORE the promotion and AFTER the promotion. So, let's start by making an equation to find the TOTAL money earned BEFORE the promotion. In order to do this, we have to think about a few different things. First, we must think about the money earned by each product. This is done by multiplying the number of each product sold by the price of that product. So for example, in order to find the money earned by selling coffee, we would say 148coffees($3) [we can write this more simply by saying 148(3)]. HOWEVER, we DO NOT need to solve this multiplication yet. We can leave it as is. We do this for each product involved. THEN, in order to find the TOTAL money earned, we have to add the money earned by each product together: 148(3) + 20(1) + 40(2) = ? We can then solve this equation we created 148(3) + 20(1) + 40(2) =444 + 20 + 80 =544 Meaning, Zach made $544 at his store BEFORE the promotion. Now, lets make another equation using the exact same methodology for Zach's sales AFTER the promotion. 282(3) + 67(0) + 67(2) = ? We can solve for it... 282(1.50) + 67(0) + 67(2) = 423 + 0 + 134 = 557 Meaning, Zach made $557 at his store AFTER the promotion. Because $557 is GREATER THAN $544, we can say that Zach DID SELL enough extra products to make his promotion worth it!

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