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My work style encompasses both hands-on exposure and utilizing the latest scientific technology available. My students used laptops in conjunction with their laboratory exercises on a regular basis. For instance, many of my Earth Science projects included analyzing data on climate change and comparing that data to real time NASA satellite imagery. I have also used many internet resources for virtual dissections in honors zoology. It is vital that students are made aware of the intricate relationship between science and technology.

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Donna’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Indiana Univeristy - Bachelor of Science, Biology, General

Graduate Degree: Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis - Master of Science, Curriculum Design and Instructional Technology


Hobbies include: organic gardening, environmental awareness and creating online science resources.

Tutoring Subjects


College Biology

Earth Science


Environmental Science

High School Biology

Life Sciences


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

Let's make the journey to a better world through science. Tutoring is available to all grade levels for life and environmental sciences. Tailor-made science curriculum by a 16 year veteran of both secondary and collegiate level instruction is available both online and face to face. Outdoor programs include real-life connection to the natural world.

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

Introductory sessions would include grasping basic background knowledge of the subject area, discussing real-life connections to science, and determining the student's reading and writing levels.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

Independent learning is a must have for the educational career of all students. To build this framework, I would suggest note-taking and creating basic outlines of major subject areas. Also, a reference list of all online websites that are helpful would be highly suggested.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

Motivation can be achieved through individual connections between science and the world we live in. Interests can be based on individual hobbies, organizations, and family activities.

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

Learning a difficult concept can be enhanced via resources that include: multimedia, books, and varied explanations provided by an expert tutor.

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

I have over 15 years experience teaching science with special needs students included in my classroom. Reading comprehension is a skill that requires repetition, patience, and the use of multimedia tools.

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

Strategies for working with new students can include: creating common interests, exploring science web sites, and determining what resources best fit the individual's learning style.

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

Engagement should be based on real-life connections and individual interests. Many topics in local media can be directly related to science.

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

To gauge the understanding of a student, I would have the students explain the concept in their own words, provide a written detail of the concept, and provide a session in which the individual student actually instructs the subject area.

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

Encouragement and gauging understanding as we progress should build confidence and interest in science.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

Evaluations of students needs have to be individualized. Both reading and writing levels must be considered. Also oral and test taking skills need to be evaluated in the subsets of science.

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

Providing a nurturing environment in which questions are encouraged begins the process of creating relationships. Once a trusting relationship is established, individualized instruction can be based on the student's strengths.

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

Materials used can include science texts, lab books, Internet resources and supplementary books that I have acquired during my 16 years as an educator.

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