When to book a private tutor

January 4, 2017

We sometimes get asked the question "When is the right time to book a private tutor?" There isn't really a right answer; however we do think that there is potentially a wrong time to book a tutor. Some parents and students panic on the run up to the exams and we often get calls3 weeks before an exam asking to book a Maths, English or Science tutor in Harrogate. By this time we have little to no availability which means nearly all of the parents looking for tuition from March onwards are often disappointed. If you are fortunate to find a space with a tutor, whether that be with Harrogate Tutors or another agency, the impact they will have within a few weeks of an exam will be limited. Private Tuition is a powerful tool that if used effectively can make a huge difference to a student's final grade and we see this year after year. However this impact is really limited when the tutor only has a few hours working with a particular student. In addition to this, booking a tutor last minute can often be stressful for the student as in some cases they then realise how far away they are from achieving a particular grade. That said, on occasion last minute tuition can sometimes help but only in the right circumstances and for specific students. This would be for a student who is all ready very well prepared for the exams but wants a few booster lessons to fill any minor gaps or help to instil confidence in the run up to the exams. Those students who are really struggling with a subject need much more input and support which becomes almost impossible to achieve once we get so close to the exams. Some may think that as a tuition agency our incentive is to advise as much tuition for every student as possible but we genuinely do not do this. For instance with the 11 Plus we often get requests for tuition to start 2 years in advance of the exam itself and we have never proceeded with this as we know that beyond 12 months tuition there seems to be no correlation between the amount of tuition received and pass rates for the 11 Plus. This is because those who are able to pass will almost always pass with 9-12 months of tuition and any additional tutoring is therefore unnecessary. In other areas such as GCSE Maths and English we do see that those students who receive more input over a sustained period of time do perform considerably  better in relation to their predicted grades comparison to those who have last minute tuition. In summary, the right time to start private tuition will be dependent on the individual student and their needs and goals. There isn't necessarily a wrong time to start tuition but we believe in most cases booking a tutor within 4 weeks of an exam isn't likely to achieve the desired outcomes.

 

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