Recent Tutoring Session Reviews
"The student and I started by going over her verbal homework. She did fine on the reading sections and generally well on the text completions. The major limitation for her were questions that had a lot of difficult vocabulary words in the answer choices. She should start practicing vocabulary from the hit lists in her book. For today's lesson, we went over the reading section of the GRE Verbal test. I started by advising her to consider the structure of the passages, and to look for clues in the intro paragraph of how the essay will be structured. I also told her to always keep the author's main idea and purpose in mind, as this is directly helpful in many question types and can provide a clue in any kind of question. We then divided the question types up into simple fetch questions versus critical reasoning questions. I went over answers to eliminate for fetch questions, including extreme answers, answers that recycle phrases from the text but have a different meaning, answers that are not mentioned, and answers that have comparisons that were not made in the text. We then focused on critical reasoning questions. She practiced identifying conclusions, premises, and assumptions. We then broke these questions down into reasoning, assumption, strengthen, and weaken questions. I reiterated that the first thing to consider when doing any of these questions is the author's purpose, as each of them deal with the underlying reasoning in the author's argument. Finally, we quickly went over types of answers to eliminate for each of these question types. Next lesson, we will finish the reading section and continue with geometry. I gave her a Math test and vocabulary lists to do for homework."
"The student and I worked on GRE verbal strategies again. We finished the problem set that was started at our last session. This gave us a kind of diagnostic to see what problem types she was strong/weak on. We went through the last sets of reading comprehension questions together at the end and worked on leaving previous knowledge at the door, taking the problems at face value, and looking for evidence. Next week, we move on to the next problem set."
"The student and I started by discussing her GRE plans and working out a schedule for our meetings. Then she took a learning styles assessment so I could tailor my material to her learning style. Next, the student took a diagnostic test for the GRE verbal section. She did fairly well starting out. I then offered the student several vocabulary building tools to work on outside of our sessions. Lastly, we discussed a few general test taking strategies. The student seems very smart and determined, and I think she will be able to significantly improve her performance."