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I am a first-year student at Columbia University in the City of New York with a prospective major in economics-political science. I am a native New Yorker, having attended the Brearley School for grades 9-12. Having experienced the college process firsthand, I am passionate about tutoring students in test prep and college essay writing, as I know how important success in these areas is. I have loved learning all my life, and I try my hardest to impart a similar feeling to the students I work with. My teaching style emphasizes patience and practice, which I believe is the best way for students to reach success.

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Nina’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: Columbia University in the City of New York - Current Undergrad, Economics-Political Science

Test Scores

SAT Composite (1600 scale): 1570

SAT Math: 770

SAT Verbal: 760

SAT Writing: 800


Literature, writing, politics, running, visual art

Q & A

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I believe the best way for students to stay motivated is to see tangible signs of improvement, whether it be a better test score or finally mastering a difficult concept.

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

When a student has trouble mastering a skill or concept, I normally see how they have already learned it and then try to explain it to them in a different way. Not all students learn the same, so it is important to tailor one's teaching style to fit the situation.

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

I believe that practice tests or questions are the best way to be sure that a student understands the material on test day. The best way to truly understand concepts is not just to memorize them, but to practice them as well.

What is your teaching philosophy?

My teaching philosophy emphasizes patience and practice. I believe that it is important to impart patience to the students I am working with, as they will not always understand concepts the first time they learn them, and they should realize that is perfectly fine. My teaching philosophy also emphasizes practice, as I believe that it is impossible to succeed in test prep without ample practice.

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

During a typical first session with a student, I would usually talk to them about their typical study methods and what material they have studied so far, so that I know what skills to emphasize going forward. I would also give them some practice questions, so that I can see what they need to work on and what their thought process is.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I believe that the best way to help students become independent learners is to make sure that they have not just memorize concepts on a superficial level, but that they truly understand what they are learning, so that they will be able to study independently with ease.

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

I think the best way to build a student's confidence is a subject is to be patient and help them learn skills at their own pace. Once they have mastered some material, seeing how their test scores and skills have improved will go a long way, confidence-wise.

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

I believe that nothing motivates students more than seeing their own improvement. In a difficult subject, when a student masters even a single concept and then sees tangible improvement on a practice test, it really helps motivate them.

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

I believe that getting a feel for each student's unique learning style when I first start working with them is vital; I usually do so through going through practice problems with them in order to see how they learn.

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