I am a graduate of Cornell University with a B.A. in Psychology. After graduation, I spent a year volunteering and teaching AIDS orphans in China and will soon be attending law school. My teaching philosophy is centered on the belief that anyone, from any academic background, is capable of achieving a score that reflects their true potential. My individually tailored testing strategies can help any student improve their performance on the ACT, SAT, and LSAT. No matter what issue you may be struggling with, my extensive tutoring experience can help us find a solution.
Cornell University - Bachelors, Psychology
ACT Composite: 36
ACT English: 36
ACT Math: 36
ACT Reading: 36
ACT Science: 36
SAT Composite: 2340
SAT Math: 740
SAT Verbal: 800
SAT Writing: 800
What is your teaching philosophy?
Every student can improve their performance on standardized tests by identifying their weaknesses and learning specific strategies to counter them. A top score on the SAT, ACT, or LSAT relies partly on knowledge of the test and test material, but a much greater factor is an understanding of one's own strengths and weaknesses.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
To begin, I want to get a general picture of what the student wants to get out of the tutoring sessions, and what his or her ultimate goal is for the test. We also need to establish a good baseline for how well they are currently doing, using information from past exams or diagnostic assessments. Finally, it is important to set a plan for the rest of the sessions by identifying the study materials and schedule that the student is most comfortable with. If time remains, we can begin some practice problems in the student's target area, so I can learn their thought process during testing.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
To build confidence, it’s crucial for a student to see that steady improvement is being made. A good baseline assessment of their scores, followed by periodic practice tests, sometimes only single sections, will allow them to track their performance. Through seeing their scores rise, a student will gain confidence in their abilities and know that their progress will be reflected on test day.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Initially, by asking them. Many students have a good idea of their strengths and weaknesses or have a specific plan of what to work on. However, not every student will able to identify what they should work on, and some may have only a general idea. This is why it is important to do practice tests of specific sections, having the student verbalize their thought process. This is a great way for both tutor and student to discover new aspects of their test taking and improve them.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
Experience helps. I have tutored many students on the ACT and SAT, less on the LSAT, and many students run into similar problems. That said, it is important not to generalize, and there are specific strategies to tackle each weakness. In addition, not every student learns the same way. Some benefit more from practice problems and repeated drilling; others prefer a detailed walkthrough of a single question or concept. Every student is different, but the tutor can often draw on past experience to utilize the most effective teaching strategies
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I have my preferred prep books for each of the tests that I tutor, as well as some basic materials. Additionally, if they do not wish to purchase those books, I have handouts of what I consider to be the most useful material (such as the diagramming methods for the LSAT logic games).