While I am not new to tutoring, I am new to Denver. I am passionate about art, traveling, exploring, and helping people. For undergraduate, I attended Washington and Lee University, and am now starting a Clinical Mental Health Counseling masters. While grades and extracurriculars might better predict how you will do in college and later in life, standardized test scores are a large part of what schools look at to accept students or automatically weed them out. I worked hard on my scores, and then was able to choose between a myriad of schools. It isn’t necessarily fair, but luckily there are many ways to increase your scores to really showcase your true abilities even if you are not naturally great at a certain subject. I am excited to help show you how to do this, and to increase your confidence in your abilities and test-taking!
Washington and Lee University - BA, Psychology
ACT Composite: 33
ACT English: 34
ACT Math: 33
ACT Reading: 36
SAT Composite: 1400
SAT Math: 680
SAT Verbal: 720
GRE Verbal: 163
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I want to hear the student's goals and past test history, including any anxieties, so that we can address those early on. Then I move through to make sure they are not missing any major basics before honing in on the exact places where they are struggling, and then teaching them helpful tips to do the things they are already good at even more effectively, capitalizing on their strengths.
What is your teaching philosophy?
Confidence in a student can make all the difference, so I aim to build self-efficacy through a thorough knowledge of the test itself and the basics of the material covered.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I think this also is built through self-efficacy. You need to teach a student how to solve problems rather than just getting the answer. If a student feels confident and is equipped with the right knowledge, they can begin the skills of independent learning and self-motivation.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
To be motivated, a student needs to have a goal and an internal knowledge of why they are taking a test. It is about casting vision to the bigger picture.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Pinpointing a student's strengths and weakness in order to leverage strengths to minimize difficulties on a section. Almost everyone has a few gaps in their learning, and often this can be cleared up and taught right then. These need to be identified, but sometimes a student can also learn to use a different, easier, more familiar strategy to solve the same problem, and that is very helpful.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
I use a mixture of techniques. Often I mention specific math concepts, or types of reading questions, etc., and ask a student's familiarity and understanding. But then I also have the student do a few questions varying in difficulty to make sure they are really able to figure the concept in context of a question. Also if the student is able to do work outside of the tutoring session, that is a great way to make sure the student feels confident in the concept when I am not nearby.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I ask a student a few questions, specifically what their goal score is, or if they have already taken the test, then what their scores were, and preferably the official breakdown of what types of questions were missed. I try to double check this with the student to see if they agree with the test on their weak areas, and if so, start to focus on what specifically they don't know so that we can work on that. If they don't agree, then I help them pinpoint why, and again focus on what they feel least confident in to try and increase their self-confidence and efficacy on the test.