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I have always been a passionate learner. I have a Bachelors of Arts in Mathematics Economics from Pomona College in Claremont, California and am working on my Masters in International Affairs at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs in the City of New York. I have also taught accelerated mathematics (Algebra I, Algebra II, Pre-Calculus and AP Calculus BC) at the Episcopal School of Los Angeles and economics as a high school elective. Over the past few years of teaching and tutoring, I found great joy in developing that passion in other students. My favorite subject to tutor is upper level mathematics (Algebra II and beyond). This is when the true beauty of mathematics is explored and mathematics begins to have important applications, including what to what I do in international security! I stride to provide a student with creative materials and explanations that best suits their learning style. I am not someone who is satisfied when a student memorizes steps to solve a problem. I always want the student to understand what he/she is doing and why they are doing. This insight will make them a stronger, faster and better student, particularly in the field of mathematics. This brings the student long term results that could extend far beyond the work done in the tutoring sessions. Mathematics is my love and economics is my passion and because of this I bring incredible enthusiasm for the subject to my work. I bring the beauty of mathematics into my explanations, through theoretical and visual interpretations. In my spare time I like to paint and run.

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Michelle’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Pomona College - Bachelor in Arts, Mathematical Economics

Graduate Degree: Columbia University in the City of New York - Master of Arts, International Affairs

Test Scores

SAT Composite (1600 scale): 1430

SAT Math: 780

GRE Quantitative: 167

GRE Verbal: 159


Painting, running, current events, travelling

Tutoring Subjects


Algebra 2

Algebra 3/4



College Algebra

College Business

College Economics



Graduate Test Prep

GRE Quantitative

High School Business

High School Economics

IB Economics

IB Economics HL

IB Economics SL

IB Further Mathematics

IB Further Mathematics HL

IB Mathematical Studies SL

IB Mathematics HL

IB Mathematics SL

IB Mathematics: Analysis and Approaches

IB Mathematics: Applications and Interpretation

IB Physics

IB Physics HL

IB Physics SL






Quantitative Reasoning

SAT Math

SAT Mathematics

SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 1

SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 2

SAT Subject Tests Prep


Test Prep


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

My number one philosophy is that a student understands the why. I want students to have the insight behind the process of a solving a problem instead of just memorization of steps. This develops a greater appreciation for the unique aspects of a subject like mathematics, creating a connection between the student and their work.

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

In the first session, I want to watch the student work on problems they are confident in. Each student has their unique style of learning and understanding content. From there, I may present a few options of solving and explaining a more complex question and ask the student which method they related to most. From there, I can best prepare for future sessions with proper materials best suited for the student. Of course, the session would end with the student's goals. I find it incredibly important to have a goal; only with a goal can a path to that goal be developed.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

The best way to help a student be an independent learner is by giving them the tools to understand, rather than the steps to memorize. In my sessions, I give the student space to be inquisitive and ask questions so they can better understand. Often, I ask them questions to assess their understanding. If a student wishes to solve problems on their own, they must know the why.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

A tutoring relationship with a student is often only successful if there is a goal set by the student. I find it important to frequently return to that goal and tweak it if necessary. If a student can articulate why they are there, I can develop a session that is a path toward that goal. If a student is reminded of why they are doing something, I find they're that much more likely to continue to be motivated.

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

The keys to working with a student who is experiencing difficulty are patience and compassion. Then, the first step is to ask questions and try to figure out what it is about the skill or concept the student is having difficulty with. The student might be struggling to visualize it, in which case, we can draw pictures. The student might be struggling when the problems get tougher than the examples shown in class. In this case, I might give a student multiple examples and ask he/she to compare them. Mathematics and economics are both subjects built on patterns, and if we can identify those patterns, we can gain insight that might bring us closer to solving difficult problems.

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