I am an MD with a BS in Biology. I have also completed one year of surgical internship and am now completing my training in integrative and preventive medicine. I have over 10 years of experience in taking and helping others sit for standardized and college exams. I have also tutored medical school courses at Harvard Medical School. I know what it's like to encounter a difficult subject, and the frustration with having to study for a particular exam, or for a course that is uninteresting but a prerequisite, which is why I have developed methods over the years to effectively study the material while enjoying the process. Studying can and should be entertaining, and that makes retaining the material easier, and taking the test or passing the course less stressful. I also know that preparing for the test format and developing mental endurance are as important as course material.
American University of Beirut - Bachelors, Biology
American University of Beirut - PhD, Medicine
Anatomy & Physiology
MCAT Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills
High School Biology
MCAT Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior
What is your teaching philosophy?
To make studying enjoyable, even the most challenging subjects. I also strongly believe in teaching students how to learn for themselves, so that they can become independent and self-reliant.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
Introducing myself and my teaching style, and getting to know the student and his/her interests, as well as the areas of weakness and concerns. I tailor my study approach to merge with the student's style and interests, which makes learning easier and enjoyable, and to also turn the weaknesses into strengths.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
By sharing my learning methods that I have accumulated over 12 years of higher education, university and standardized exams, and over a wide variety of courses.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
By making the learning process enjoyable. Learning can (and should) be fun. This is great in helping the student retain the material and reducing stress.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I would start by simplifying the concept to its most basic level, and progress using analogies, videos, images, real-life examples, etc. One step at a time, and I firmly believe that practice makes perfect.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would help them become more efficient readers, improve their vocabulary and critical understanding of the text. I start by stimulating an interest in the subject matter, and progress from there.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Making the process enjoyable and relaxed. Additionally, the more involved the student is, the better he/she will understand and retain the material.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I would try to make it relevant to their everyday lives. It always helps when the subject is placed in a familiar and simplified context.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Practice, practice, practice. I would also ask the students to always repeat the information in their own language, because that's what they'll remember.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
By making sure the student has a firm grasp of the fundamentals. Once that is done, the student will notice an improvement in answering questions and understanding the more challenging topics.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
The student usually knows what his/her weaknesses are, and frequent communication helps with that assessment throughout the study period, because needs can change over time. I would also evaluate the student's interpretation of the material and the performance on exams.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
By finding the strategy that the student feels most comfortable with.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Drawings, images, videos, and sometimes relevant articles in the news.