I've been tutoring students of all ages and abilities for over seven years. My primary focus is STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math), but I also help students succeed in computer programming and in test prep (ACT/SAT/GRE). I believe that, with the right support and attitude, anyone can learn to do anything! My students validate this belief every day.
I began tutoring when I was getting my degree in mechanical engineering at Rose-Hulman (Terre Haute, IN), the top-ranked undergraduate program in the country. I lived in a sophomore dorm and provided support to students of all majors. This experience propelled me into education, as I later founded my own tutoring business and taught engineering at an all-girls middle school. I have done several years of graduate research at Purdue University (W. Lafayette, IN) and run SAT prep programs. I have over a thousand hours of experience in most of the subjects I tutor, and I'm constantly pushing to improve.
Whether you're a high school student struggling with math for the first time, a college student trying to run the gauntlet of engineering classes, or an adult learner looking to brush up on concepts you've forgotten, I can help you succeed!
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology - Bachelors, Mechanical Engineering
Music, model railroading, & board games
High School Physics
SAT Subject Tests Prep
What is your teaching philosophy?
My teaching philosophy is a modified Socratic method. I love to ask questions, but I'm not afraid to answer them either. I strongly believe in matching my instructional style to each student's learning style.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
There are three things I really want to do in a first session: 1. Learn more about my student's history and future goals. 2. Discover what the most challenging part(s) of the material are for my student. 3. Figure out my student's learning style. Once I know this information, I'm confident I can teach in a way that will make a difference.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
To use education jargon: scaffolding. This term means that, like the scaffolding around a building under construction, I'll provide lots of support early on and then gradually hand control of the process over to the student. This is like wading into a pool rather than being thrown in the deep end. My primary goal as a tutor is to make myself obsolete.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Each student has different skills and motivations. I like to tie abstract concepts to real-life scenarios, and I especially like to emphasize why each skill being learned is important. My approach always depends on the student.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
Some concepts take lots of time and practice to master. I am always patient, encouraging, and unafraid to try new approaches with my students.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Ask as many questions as possible. The more I know about my students, the better I can help them.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
By relating it to things the student cares about. STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) is in everything, but sometimes it just requires closer inspection. If I know what my student is interested in, I can relate our work to that.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Lots of questions. "Why is that correct?" "How do you know?" "On a scale of 1-10, how sure are you?" I can be a bit obnoxious, but if I don't check for understanding, then I'm just flying blind.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
I'm all whiteboard, all the time. I can also write down solutions on a pad, but I enjoy using dry-erase markers more! Also, my trusty old graphing calculator comes in handy.