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I am currently a MA/PhD student in English at Loyola University Chicago. I have an MFA in Creative Writing from Fairleigh Dickinson University, and a BA in Biblical and Theological Studies from Wheaton College. I've been tutoring for over three years, with the last year as a Graduate Tutor at the Writing Center at Loyola.

I'm a grammar whiz as well as an expert at bringing students through the entire writing process. I have experience with tutoring ESL students, high school, elementary, and college students, as well as students with different learning abilities.

I also excel in teaching test-taking skills, especially strategies for dealing with test anxiety. I received a perfect score on the reading/writing portion of the SAT.

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Rachel’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Wheaton College (Illinois) - Bachelors, Biblical and Theological Studies

Graduate Degree: Fairleigh Dickinson University-College at Florham - Current Grad Student, MFA in Creative Writing

Test Scores

SAT Composite: 2310

SAT Math: 710

SAT Verbal: 800

SAT Writing: 800


I have a little kitten named Zoya and I enjoy reading fantasy and science fiction. I play a little ukulele (though I’m not any good!) and I like to bake.

Tutoring Subjects

ACT Writing


AP Music Theory

College English

College Essays

College Geography

College Level American History

Comparative Literature


English Grammar and Syntax

Essay Editing


High School English

High School Geography

High School Level American History

High School World History


Homework Support





PSAT Critical Reading

PSAT Writing Skills

Public Speaking


SAT Prep

SAT Math

SAT Mathematics

SAT Reading

SAT Writing and Language

Social studies

Study Skills

Study Skills and Organization

Test Prep

World History

World Religions


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

Everyone can learn whatever they put their mind to. It just takes patience and finding the perfect learning style.

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

I would start by asking the student what they feel they need help with. Sometimes the answer is surprising. Then, I would go over the work they have already done and assess where they are with the subject.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

It is all about building good study habits. I seek to help the student understand what helps them learn the most and create a routine that they can replicate on their own.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I remind them of how far they have come, help them visualize their own personal goals, and--if all else fails--add some fun into studying with a review game or reward system.

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

I would find an alternative method of explaining the concept or a new way to solve the problem. Above all, patience and determination is critical.

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

I teach them to break down the reading into pieces, and break each paragraph down into topic sentences and examples. If they understand the structure of the piece, they have a tree to hang the thoughts on.

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

They often know how they want to learn. If a student needs to toss a ball while reviewing questions, that can help them remember the answers later because they used their whole body.

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

Find a way to relate it to their own interests. If a student hates reading, but loves reptiles, we can use books about reptiles to keep them engaged. If they are struggling in learning about mean, median, and mode, use a package of Skittles.

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

The best test is if they can explain it back to me.

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

Give praise and encouragement for every step of progress. And practice more than strictly necessary so when the test comes around, the nervousness won't be a factor.

How do you evaluate a student's needs?

Looking at a student's past work or at a practice test is invaluable. Also, working through a practice question together with the student thinking out loud shows where they excel, and where they need more help.

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

Short attention spans require more frequent mini-breaks. If someone needs everything written down, I can create a review guide from the session, like a sample essay outline or a step-by-step on how to solve a problem.

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