Would You Benefit from a Tutor?
Many students will experience difficulties with academic subjects at some point during their academic career, but all universities provide some type of resources to help during those times.
Professors are probably the best people to ask when you need some clarification about something, but they usually have limited office hours. In that case, your school’s resource centre is your best bet to finding more accessible help. Hiring a tutor through your school also means a higher likelihood that the person is a reputable tutor and could even be offered at a subsidized cost to you.
You can find a tutor outside of your school, but consider taking the extra time to ensure the person you hire is in fact knowledgeable in the field and understands the tutee/tutor relationship in order to be worth the money you are paying.
“I think it depends on how much help one needs as a tutee. If one is lagging behind in a class and wanting to catch up, then tutoring will be helpful as it re-teaches the material; but if one needs tutoring for a specialized personal need or wants to excel in an area, then tutoring is only useful if the tutor is competent and one-on-one, and most tutors are not competent enough for that”, said Virginia Zhao, 4th year UBC student.
“To that effect, I don’t find tutoring helpful in most situations. When I need help, instead of asking for a tutor, I ask for ‘higher authorities’ such as teachers [and] professors…they are more helpful and efficient than peers” continued Zhao.
For more specialized purposes, such as wanting to start building a foundation for a particular career while still in school, you might consider working with a mentor. Mentors – whether you work with them in your job or at school – have proven to expand knowledge, help narrow down focus and improve decision-making in their mentees.
Colleges and universities might have mentorship programs in place where students are carefully matched to their mentors to ensure both parties will gain value from the experience. If a student is even more certain about what they want to do when they finish post-secondary they should consider becoming members of the related associations and join programs where mentorship is available.
“My mentor was easy to get along with and was very helpful in refining my technical skills” Marko Martic, IT Diploma graduate from BCIT, said. “I Kept in touch with my mentor even after I was done my program and he introduced me to a network of people in my field that eventually helped me find my job”.
“Maybe one day I’ll have the opportunity to be a mentor and help someone like my mentor helped me – there are always mentees looking for mentors and more people will see the benefits once they get into it” Martic said.