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Can Academic Support Be an Alternative to School?

By Yann, published on 29/06/2018 We Love Prof - IN > Tutoring > Advice for Parents > Educational Support as an Alternative to Traditional Schooling Methods

What is academic support? Academic support means complete freedom.

The freedom of learning when you want, what you want, and how you want.

While private tutoring is often seen as a punishment, it’ll quickly become very enjoyable. That’s because there’s a huge difference between one on one tutoring services and the instruction you usually get at school. The tutor is usually “cooler” than your teacher at school, too.

How else do they differ to regular classes?

Academic Support versus School: Two Completely Different Methods

Those who’ve already had academic tutoring will understand what we mean by freedom. Students have the option to experiment with different approaches to help them improve their grades.

Can academic support complement normal lessons? Academic support doesn’t need to fight with traditional schooling. (Source: RyanMcGuire)

Your tutor won’t always be a qualified and experienced teacher. In some cases, you can get gifted students.

When it comes to this kind of one on one tutoring, you can enjoy a methodology completely different to what you get in school.

It mightn’t be the refined pedagogy of a teacher with years of training. However, you’ll probably get on with them much better. The lessons can be much more relaxed. The tutors will probably be younger than your typical teacher, too.

The way they talk to the student is different, too. This helps break down the barriers between the two. You mightn’t always get a qualified or experienced teacher. In some cases, your tutor might be a student or self-taught.

Flexibility or Discipline?

It’s unfair to say that lessons at school fall into the discipline category and that academic support tutorials fall into the flexibility category.

However, the methods used usually do.

Why is this the case?

Let’s take a school teacher, for example. Even their posture, standing in front of a class or sitting behind their desk, makes them more authoritative than a private tutor. During this hour, they’ll be teaching you.

What is the difference between academic support and traditional schooling? Your academic support tutorials probably won’t be as strict as school. (Source: Free-Photos)

While there are different ways to teach, there are still a lot of teachers who teach in this way. It’s hard to blame them when they have so many students and a very strict set of guidelines to follow. That’s a fact.

Let’s go back to academic support tutorials. Since the tutor teaches the student in their house, there’s already a different type of relationship. This means they can be more flexible when teaching their students. When it comes to academic support, tutors can focus more on teaching and less on discipline. The goal isn’t to keep twenty-odd students in line but rather teach a single one.

Finally, even though the tutor is a teacher first and foremost, they’re also part of a partnership. Maintaining this partnership is one of their main focuses as its benefits will be seen in terms of the student’s homework, how they perform in class and their exam results. This will take some time.

The tutor will never be the student’s “mate”, but they probably won’t be “sir” or “miss”, either.

Tutors that Adapt to Their Students

When it comes to academic support, flexibility is essential. Of course, they need to be more than just flexible to teach a student who’s struggling in school or applying to top universities, they need to adapt!

Once the child’s no longer struggling in school, the way the tutor teaches them will have to change.

Academic Support Tutorials: A Tailored Solution

Each student is very different. Here are 3 examples:

  • A struggling student. A student who’s looking to do resits or one who has a high probability of failing their exams.
  • An underachiever. A student who does the bare minimum even though they’re capable of more. Or they seem to work a lot without the results. A tutor can help them reach their potential.
  • An overachiever. They’re applying to the best universities in the country or around the world but need help making sure that their grades reflect their abilities.

What are the benefits of academic support tutorials? Like a good suit, tutorials need to be tailored. (Source: matham315)

You wouldn’t teach these three examples in the same way, would you?

The tutor has to adapt to each student. They need to work with their strengths and weaknesses. Academic support offers a solution that’s tailored to each student.

They need to adapt to their student’s personality, too. The tutor needs to work out whether their student’s curious, shy, dynamic, worried, etc.

There are tutors for every subject including:

  • Maths
  • Science (Chemistry, Physics, Biology, etc.)
  • Foreign languages (French, Spanish, German, Italian, etc.)
  • Psychology
  • Economics
  • English

A Relationship with Shared Goals

Everyone knows how difficult school can be. It doesn’t matter whether the student’s in primary school or secondary school.

We’re not talking about the social aspects of school but rather the academic aspects. Lessons at school can be intense and with twenty-odd other students, it’s unlikely that everyone will completely understand the lesson. Some need to go back over the lesson again sometimes. Then there are the others who study all the time and just can’t get it. This is where academic support tutorials can come into play. It’s rarely the case that they’re just not capable. They’ve just hit a roadblock and need some help getting over it.

When the school can’t help them, academic support, either with a tutor at home or online, can help. Unlike the teacher in their school, an academic support tutor has all the time in the world to focus on the only student in their class.

Of course, you need to make sure you’ve picked the right tutor. They also need to use the right tools and teaching techniques. The tutor can focus just on certain subjects, too. This can be beneficial for the student.

Deviate from the Programme and Learn More

We’ve mentioned the freedom you get with academic support (be it online or in person). The freedom comes from the techniques used and the tutor’s and the student’s partnership. It also comes from the fact that they can go off script.

There’s nothing forcing a private tutor to follow the curriculum to the letter. Parents hire private tutors because they believe them to be an alternative to the education they’re getting at school.

This means a tutor can use different tools and resources and conduct their tutorials in completely different ways.

We have to mention the ways they can integrate modern technologies into their tutorials. Nowadays, there are so many ways for tutors to make use of technology:

  • For organising, scheduling, and planning their lessons.
  • Timing activities.
  • Learning with video resources
  • Accessing infographics, quizzes, and interactive games
  • Learning while having fun
  • Online classes over Skype
  • Downloading courses

These new tools, including other resources like YouTube, can help students to learn in new and interesting ways.

Struggling with algebra, calculus, geometry, or trigonometry?

It might be time to find a tutor specialising in mathematics.

Academic Support and the Freedom to Go Further

Academic support can help students catch up with their classmates. Thanks to private tutorials, students can do more than just catch up. They can go beyond what they’re learning at school.

Once a students getting the results they need, tutors can challenge them to learn more. This is another huge advantage of academic support tutorials! Academic support tutorials can help students prepare for the future. They can learn more about plenty of different subjects, too. Whether for fun or for their future career!

How do you apply to top universities? Keep on the lookout for good universities! (Source: Free-Photos)

Hiring Private Tutors

If you’re looking for private tutors or just an academic advisor, don’t forget that a lot of the tutors on Superprof offer free tutoring for the first hour. While they probably won’t provide much academic coaching or tuition during this hour, it can be useful to see what kind of tutor they are and whether it’s worth scheduling more in the future.

If you’re concerned about the cost of hiring private tutors, you could also consider getting a tutor to do a group tutorial or a workshop for several students at once. While these sessions will be more like a seminar at college or university, students can get far more out of working in a small group than they otherwise would in the larger classes they’re used to at school.

Online tutoring also tends to be cheaper than home tutoring because the tutor doesn’t need to pay for transport costs or resources for the student. The advantage of these tutorials is that you still get one to one help with your studies.

Whether they’re at primary school, secondary school, sixth form, college, or university (undergraduate and postgraduate), any student can benefit from having someone there to assist them with their studies during the academic year and the holidays.

Of course, don’t forget that you don’t have to be studying for exams to get a tutor. You can also learn new skills with a gifted educator. You might just want to improve your grammar in preparation for a new job. You could get tutored by writing tutors.

You can also learn to dance, paint, sew, or knit with private tutors. The possibilities are endless!

If you’re a tutor, don’t forget that you can make your profile on Superprof and start finding tutoring jobs immediately.

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