7 Ways Math Tutoring Can Boost Academic Performance
Note: Since physics is a mathematical science, each of the following tutoring benefits apply to physics classes as well.
1. Provide Individual Instruction
One of the most important things about math tutoring and tutoring in general is that it provides one-on-one instruction for the student. When you have a class of 20 or 30 students, each student is at a different academic level and some have different learning styles than others. Some students also find certain areas of math easy while others may find that same material difficult. Unfortunately, the teacher cannot individually address every student’s needs in the class. However, with individual instruction a tutor can zero in on what a math student is particularly struggling with and teach in a way that conforms to their learning preferences.
2. Build a Foundation
Sometimes students fall behind in math and are never able to recover. This can happen because math is cumulative and students usually need a good mathematical foundation to excel in a new math class. For example, doing well in calculus could be very difficult if you don’t have a strong foundation in algebra and trigonometry. A tutor can focus on what a student lacks in their previous knowledge so that they can build up this mathematical cornerstone. This will help them be well prepared for the math they are learning in their current class.
3. Get Over a Math Hurdle
There could be a math topic that no matter how a student approaches it they just can’t comprehend it. I call this a math hurdle. Since math is cumulative, not understanding this particular topic can greatly effect a student’s performance in the remainder of the class. A math tutor that has extensive knowledge on the topic can help them overcome this hurdle. They can provide the student with their expertise and present the material in such a way that gives clarity and makes sense. This will allow the student to understand the topic and be able to move forward in the course.
4. Provide More Repetition
Another key benefit of math tutoring is that a student can spend more time going over concepts and doing examples for each topic they are learning. Learning math requires practice and repetition, so the more example problems the student does the better they will become at a particular math subject. Having a tutor can allow the student to spend the extra time needed to go over these additional problems and make sure they are learning from them. For example, the tutor can go over book problems that were not assigned as homework for the student or they can provide supplementary material outside of the student’s regular class work. This will ensure that the student has plenty of extra practice.
5. Provide a Comfortable
One benefit of math tutoring that often gets overlooked is that the student can have a much more comfortable learning environment. In a math class, if a student doesn’t understand something they may be scared to ask a question because they don’t want to feel embarrassed in front of their classmates. However, math tutoring is one-on-one and a good tutor will know what it’s like to be in the student’s shoes and what they’re feeling. In turn, the student should feel much more comfortable because they aren’t being judged and will be much more willing to ask questions if they don’t understand something. Having this level of comfort to ask questions will greatly facilitate learning.
6. Build Confidence
Another very important aspect of math tutoring is that it can really build up a student’s confidence in math. So many people think they are just bad at math and that trying to get good at it is hopeless. Tutoring can bust this myth and give the student the tools necessary to realize that they can actually become good at math. Tutoring provides one-on-one instruction, extra practice, and a comfortable learning environment, which will all allow the student to excel. Once the student starts to do well in their class they will have the confidence in math they thought they would never have.
7. Have Future Success
Once tutoring has improved a student’s academic performance in their current math class, they will be well prepared with the background knowledge needed to excel in their future math courses. They will also have the confidence to tackle any new problems they encounter. If they do happen to have issues with the material in their next class they will still have a tutor to help them overcome their math hurdles. Tutoring will not only allow the student to do well in their future math classes, but also enable them to have the confidence to take on any new academic endeavors. If they can overcome their math challenges they can overcome anything. The sky’s the limit!