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My goal is to get my students to the point where they no longer need me. I like to focus on the underlying concepts so that students can apply what we learn in our sessions to problems they haven't seen before. After our sessions, my students should be able to have a concrete plan when attempting a new problem and be able to extrapolate their knowledge of concepts to master the details.

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Dara’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Oregon State University - Bachelor of Science, Bioengineering

Test Scores

ACT Composite: 32

ACT Math: 35

ACT Reading: 31

ACT Science: 33


I am applying to medical schools to attend Fall 2016 and I like to play basketball, go backpacking and volunteer with youth in my free time.

Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

Concepts first, details later. 'Why' is just as important as 'what'.

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

We will go over goals, needs, and what has already been attempted to make a plan of action. Then we get started!

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Master the fundamentals together and discuss independent study skills and methods. Then we will do practice problems together as if I am not there.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

Motivation is often driven by goals. Keeping goals small, realistic and manageable is the key.

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

If it's just not 'clicking,' then I may try a different method. Otherwise, more and more practice is always helpful.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

Investigate with them what the source of the issue is and provide alternative methods to either solve or circumvent the issue.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

A clear plan of action to guide the future session. Clear communication of goals and challenges is crucial.

How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?

Give real-world examples and promote appreciation for improvement rather than perfection.

What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?

Have them teach it back to me. That's when you know you understand a concept.

How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?

Confidence comes from preparation. This involves studying and then application through practice.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

Communication at the start, as well as having them talk through problems to understand their approach and process of thinking.

How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?

No two students are the same, but subjects can often be mastered through understanding the fundamental concepts. Together we will work on finding the best way for the students to do this.

What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?

Textbooks and other online resources are typically the fastest, but sometimes I will provide links for the student to use outside of our sessions for further studying. These could be text or videos.

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