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Nick

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I am currently in my senior year at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign studying Mechanical Engineering. At a young age, I benefitted from tutoring services and am now looking to provide the same, lasting benefits that I received while growing up.

I began tutoring my peers in my sophomore year of high school and have been tutoring for five years. I have a lot of experience tutoring students my own age, oftentimes tutoring in subjects that I am currently taking. Recently, I have begun tutoring at an elementary school near the University of Illinois in my free time. I have lots of experience tutoring at all levels, in a variety of subjects: English Writing, Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, Calculus, High School Physics, AP and College Physics, Spanish and Economics. Because I am studying Engineering, I also have learned a lot of practical applications for many of the subjects in which I tutor. I find that explaining the practical applications of an otherwise difficult subject helps students make sense of the material.

Of the subjects listed above, I enjoy teaching Spanish and Physics the most! I think learning another language is one of the most applicable skills in life and knowing another language (or more!) can, and often does, open doors for new, exciting opportunities in one’s career and personal life. Physics is the most basic science and dictates many aspects of our daily lives, from the computers we do work on to the cars we drive. I enjoy showing students how physics can be applied to almost everything we do; learning physics also teaches students many important problem solving skills which can be applied to any academic subject they pursue later on in life.

I believe students should learn, and be taught, material in such a way that they can take the skills learned and apply them to many types of problems. In today’s era of standardized tests, too many students are “taught the test” and cannot apply core concepts to other subjects or situations. I always try to encourage learning for the sake of learning, this often gives students the opportunity to relax and enjoy the material, allowing them to absorb information better and gain beneficial problem solving skills in addition to learning and mastering a subject.

Outside of academics, I enjoy doing puzzles, learning how to code, and growing my fraternity. I am currently the Vice President of my fraternity at the University of Illinois and manage a group of 20 highly motivated undergraduate men to lead our growing, 100-man organization. At the university, I am also very heavily involved in the College of Engineering, in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, working to expand networking and academic opportunities for other students in Mechanical Engineering.

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Nick’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Bachelors, Mechanical Engineering

Test Scores

ACT Composite: 34

ACT English: 34

ACT Math: 34

ACT Reading: 33

ACT Science: 33

Hobbies

Coding; Soccer; Badminton; Puzzles; History; Business Ventures

Tutoring Subjects

Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

I believe students should learn, and be taught, material in such a way that they can take the skills learned and apply them to many types of problems. In today.

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

I begin by getting to know the student a little better. I then try to ascertain what led a student to seek out tutoring services. I then set goals with the student, and parent (if applicable), determining where the student is currently at, and where he wants to go/what he wants to accomplish in each week of tutoring. I usually begin a first session by finding out a little more about a student's personal background and interests. Tutoring is naturally a very personal relationship and building a strong foundation with a student is key to making good forward progress in a student's academic life. I always ask students how they have been doing in the subject at hand and what has led them (or their parents) to seek tutoring services. This helps me ascertain how advanced a student's abilities are in a certain subject. I then set goals with the student for each week of tutoring. I always attempt to set tangible goals, such as solving a certain type of problem or being able to say a certain phrase in another language, to help keep each tutoring session on track and give the student a way to visualize his or her progress. If able, I usually have this same conversation with the student's parents because they are often the ones that have sought tutoring services for their child. It is also important to hear what a parent thinks about the student's abilities and what expectations the parent has for tutoring.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

I always focus on teaching concepts and problem solving skills, rather than teaching a student how to solve a particular problem or how to study for one particular exam. My students find that they are able to take skills learned while being taught one subject, and apply them to many other aspects of their academic and personal lives.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I always try to work with the student (and the student's parents, if able) to set tangibles goals for each week of tutoring, such as solving a certain type of problem or being able to say a certain phrase in another language, to help keep each tutoring session on track and give the student a way to visualize his or her progress. Recognizing real progress made after a few weeks of tutoring is often all the motivation a student needs to stay positive and keep going!

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

I always try to break down tough skills and concepts into their component parts. Some students have difficulties just beginning a problem. What I do is try to take a formulaic approach to everything we learn so that a student can apply the same principles to all aspects of the subject. Besides this, I always try to show students the practical applications of a subject. This often involves me using YouTube videos, online resources, and other helpful tools to illustrate the practical applications of a subject which may be easier for a student to understand than a purely academic description of a concept.

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

Building a relationship and rapport with the student helps me to connect better with the student during the learning process than diving into the subject right away. I also set goals with students and parents for each week of tutoring to track progress and show tangible results to everyone involved. Tying academic concepts to real world examples is also very effective in helping a student grow and learn.

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

There are a lot of websites that make learning fun! For subjects like Spanish, Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, Economics, Physics, there are websites which turn the concept of each subject into a game which makes the subject at hand a little more fun. Beyond this, showing interesting YouTube videos and giving real world examples that illustrate the subject are really successful in getting students engaged in what they are learning.

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